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(Photo: Karen Hayes @wdnesday)
A Life Spent Chasing Down How Whales Evolved
by Bob Holmes
The intriguing story of how whale evolution was unpicked is told in The Walking Whales, revealing what it’s like to be a globe-trotting palaeontologist
WHALES evolved from cat-sized terrestrial hoofed mammals, evolutionary biologists tell us. How could a tiny, deer-like creature morph into such a radically different leviathan? The notion has often provoked gleeful ridicule from creationists, especially because, until the 1990s, so few intermediate fossils had been discovered.
Little more than a decade later, spectacular finds had bridged that gap so convincingly that whales now stand as one of the best-documented fossil transitions – literally a textbook case of evolution in action.
Much of that change is thanks to Hans Thewissen, a palaeontologist at Northeast Ohio Medical University in Rootstown, who has made many of the key discoveries. The Walking Whales is his account of his research…
(read more: New Scientist)
image of Pakicetus, via: NHM/SPL
(Three-spot damselfish, Stegastes planifrons. Source: ReefGuide.org)
Yes, I’m talking about this little guy right there.
There is this wide belief that sharks are the meanest, most aggressive animals in the ocean. But compared to damselfishes, sharks are big teddy-bears. We all should…
VIRGINIA JUST LEGALIZED GAY MARRIAGE FIRST STATE IN THE SOUTH 30 MINUTES AGO HELL FUCKIN YEA TURN THE FUCK UP IN THIS STATE FUNCTION
guys, it’s Ric O’Barry. It’s legit
she wasn’t even rehabbed or trained to be wild either. she just got out of the pen and wild dolphins adopted her and she learned to hunt and survive.
Pretty neat. Even though not every dolphin can be released, a lot of people don’t realize that even a captive born dolphin is still a wild animal. It’s still going to have SOME hunting instinct, and dolphins are pretty intelligent creatures that can learn quickly. I imagine that many long-term captive dolphins (both wild and captive born) could be rehabilitated for the wild. Not all, of course, but probably more than people think. It just requires effort.
Another interesting tidbit for World Octopus Day!
I’ll just leave this here.
I just bought a math and pencil set for two girls, but some don’t have anything yet. If you have extra cash please try to help.
this is great!
my mom got a job offer in Baltimore
Mountain Chicken Frogs Offspring Return to Caribbean Home
Dozens of frogs reared in UK zoos to escape the deadly chytrid fungus returned to Montserrat
by Adam Vaughan
Dozens of frogs reared in UK zoos have been returned to their Caribbean home in a painstaking operation, five years after their parents were airflifted out to escape a deadly fungus.
A total of 51 Leptodactylus fallax, known as “mountain chicken frogs” because they reportedly taste like chicken and make a clucking-like noise, were released on the Jersey-sized island of Montserrat, a British Overseas Territory.
In 2009, conservationists rescued a population of the critically endangered frogs from the island to avoid them being wiped out by a chytrid fungus which has devastated amphibian numbers worldwide. The mountain chicken frog population has also dwindled due to people eating them – the species is the national dish in nearby Dominica…
(read more: The Guardian UK)
photograph: Gerardo Garcia/Chester Zoo/PA
Romer’s Tree Frog (Liuixalus romeri)
..is an endangered species of shrub frog (Rhacophoridae) which is endemic to four islands (Lantau, Lamma, Chek Lap and Po Toi) in Hong Kong. Romer’s tree frogs typically inhabits forests, old plantations and other areas nearby streams and marshes. Adult L. romeri are nocturnal and will feed on a range of insects and other small invertebrates.
Currently Liuixalus romeri is listed as Endangered by the IUCN, as it faces threats from Habitat Loss from Infrastructure development for human settlement.
Image: Thomas Brown
A young Pig-Nosed Turtle (Carettochelys insculpta) at a government facility just outside Bangkok, Thailand. The illegal trade in this species has grown exponentially in recent years, with Traffic’s new report estimating 1.5 to 2 million eggs being illegally collected annually. Without further protection and enforcement of current laws these captivating creatures could be in trouble.
clownfish by tbanny Clownfish or anemonefish are fishes from the subfamily Amphiprioninae in the family Pomacentridae. Thirty species are recognized, one in the genus Premnas, while the remaining are in the genus Amphiprion. In the wild, they all form symbiotic mutualisms with sea anemones. Depending on species, Clownfish are overall yellow, orange, or a reddish or blackish color, and many show white bars or patches. [Wikipedia]