The pangolin, of which there are 8 species, is a strange creature that looks like a cross between a reptile and an anteater. In fact, this mammal can climb trees, has a long tongue for finding insects, is covered in keratin scales, can spray foul smelling liquid like a skunk, and are highly endangered (ranging from vulnerable to critically endangered).
Along the Laotian and Vietnamese border lives a small forest ox. This creature was only discovered in 1992 and has since only been seen a small number of times. Despite being a new-to-us species, it’s already under threat. This Odd Animal Profile is about the Saola (Pseudoryx nghetinhensis), which is already listed as critically endangered due to habitat loss and hunting. What can we learn about this fascinating animal before it’s too late?
In 2012 a study was conducted that examined the genetics of the 20 lions in Ethiopia, a country in Northeastern Africa. The reason that the study targeted these 20 lions is that they were last of their kind. Ethiopian lions tend to be much smaller and darker in color than those found across the rest of the continent, and, as the study found, are genetically unique (though not unique enough to earn species or sub-species status) too. Continue reading Hidden Lions Found in Ethiopia
While I faced visa problem after visa problem I found comfort in knowing that one of my cohort, and a great friend, Tom was out in the jungles of Borneo living the dream. Somewhere between May and July of 2015 I asked him to write a guest post, and being the person that I am, I am only getting around to posting it now. Sorry, Tom! But it was worth the wait, he really brings the jungle to life:
In this summer of 2015 I had the good fortune to find myself in a Bornean rainforest conducting fieldwork for my MSc. The Sabangau peat-swamp forest in Central Kalimantan was my home for two months. As I write these words my time here is drawing to a close. Read on, if you will, and I will tell you about the remarkable place where I lived and the strange and wonderful things that I saw in my short time living in the jungle. Continue reading Guest Post: Tom in the Jungle
In 2015 an oddity was first spotted in Tanzania’s Tarangire National Park. A newborn giraffe was reported, and she was dubbed Omo by a park ranger. The reason that Omo caused such a stir in Tanzania is that she looks a bit different from the other giraffes she shares the park with. This is because Omo is leucistic. Continue reading Omo the White Giraffe
We stepped off the boat and onto a dry, desert-like island, walked on a rocky path until we reached two towering statues of Komodo dragons guarding the entrance to the park. Within minutes we spotted a troop of mischievous macaques, and one 7 foot long Komodo dragon sauntering across a dry marsh where the tide encroached when the weather was wetter. Continue reading In Search of Dragons
On this day in 1932 a great wildlife warrior was born. Dian Fossey was born and raised in San Francisco where a love of horses greatly influenced her early years and education. She began studying to be a veterinarian, though changed courses and pursued a career in occupational therapy. She saved every penny, and even took out a bank loan, and eventually made it to Africa in 1963, where it had been a dream to travel too for much of her adult life. Continue reading Happy Birthday Dian Fossey