Lorikeets by Me
Baby sea turtle leaving DeBordieu Beach.
How does a puffin hold so many fish in its mouth at once? The bloggers over at TYWKIWDBI did some research, and found the second photo above. It portrays:
An Atlantic puffin (Fratercula arctica) shows off its tongue, which is specially adapted to allow it to carry many fish in its bill at one time. Atlantic puffins typically carry about 10 fish in their bills at one time, using their tongues to hold their catch against spines on their palate.
Two Newly Discovered Salamander Species Described by Colombian Researchers
by Stuart Patterson
A team of young researchers from Colombia have recently published an article in the journal Zootaxa describing two new species of salamander discovered during a project supported by the Conservation Leadership Programme and Save Our Species.
The two new salamanders belong to the genus Bolitoglossa, otherwise known as tropical climbing or web-footed salamanders. One of the salamanders (B. leandrae) has been named after an 11-year old girl who became friends with the team whilst they conducted their fieldwork. “Leandra grew fascinated by the world of amphibians,” explains team leader Aldemar Acevedo. “She was eager to learn about our work and became an excellent spokesperson for nature conservation among the community.”
Bolitoglossa leandrae is a relatively small salamander (its body measures roughly 2.5 cm in length, about the size of a 50 pence, 20 cent or US quarter coin) with a narrow head and long, slender tail. Males are dark brown with thin yellow stripes along the length of the body and females are reddish brown.
Bolitoglossa tamaense is slightly longer than B. leandrae (the body of the longest specimen measured approximately 5 cm, or the same as the height of a credit card) and has a broad head and relatively long body and legs. A number of different colourations and patterns were recorded, but the body is generally brown or dark red, and the tail and limbs can be dark brown, red, orange or yellow…
(read more: Flora and Fauna Intl.) (photos: Aldemar Acevedo)
Striped Like a Badger: New Genus of Bat Identified in South Sudan
Researchers have identified a new genus of bat after discovering a rare specimen in South Sudan. With wildlife personnel under the South Sudanese Ministry of Wildlife Conservation and Tourism, Bucknell Associate Professor of Biology DeeAnn Reeder and Fauna & Flora International (FFI) Programme Officer Adrian Garside were leading a team conducting field research and pursuing conservation efforts when Reeder spotted the animal in Bangangai Game Reserve.
“My attention was immediately drawn to the bat’s strikingly beautiful and distinct pattern of spots and stripes. It was clearly a very extraordinary animal, one that I had never seen before,” recalled Reeder. “I knew the second I saw it that it was the find of a lifetime.”…
(read more: Science Daily)
(photo: the newly described Niumbaha superba, courtesy of Bucknell University/DeeAnn Reeder)
reference:Reeder DM, Helgen KM, Vodzak ME, Lunde DP, Ejotre I (2013) A new genus for a rare African vespertilionid bat: insights from South Sudan. ZooKeys 285: 89. http://www.pensoft.net/journals/zookeys/article/4892/abstract/a-new-genus-for-a-rare-african-vespertilionid-bat-insights-from-south-sudan
An African elephant charges at a photographer at the Savuti Game Reserve in Chobe National Park, Botswana. We hope the photog’s okay. (Photo: Ben Cranke / Solent News via The Telegraph)
Ocelot by Terry Whittaker
New Lizard Species Look Like Evil Dinosaur Hybrids
By Nadia Drake
If these lizards were larger, they’d look like featherless dinosaurs: With spiky spines and gleaming red eyes, two newly described species of wood lizard look a bit like stegosaur-evil velociraptor hybrids.
The lizards, reported Mar. 15 in ZooKeys, live in the Peruvian mountains and belong to the genus Enyalioides, which includes 10 previously described species. After comparing the lizards’ morphology and genetic sequences with known wood lizards, a team of scientists concluded that they could add two new members to a group most commonly found in Central and South America…
(read more: Wired Science)
(photos: P.J. Venegas and O. Torres-Carvajal)
The beautiful amphibian from Hell: scientists discover new crocodile newt in Vietnam
by Jeremy Hance
Researchers have discovered a new species of Vietnamese salamander that looks like it was birthed from an abyssal volcano. Found tucked away in Tokyo’s National Museum of Nature and Science, the scientists described the species in the new edition of Current Herpetology.
Coal-black with orange-tinted toes, the new crocodile newt (in the genus Tylototriton) was determined to be a new species when it showed morphological and genetic differences from near relatives. Despite its remarkable appearance, the researchers say these are typical colors for crocodile newts.
The scientists named the new species Ziegler’s crocodile newt (Tylototriton ziegleri) after Thomas Ziegler of Cologne Zoo who works with reptiles and amphibians in Vietnam. The new species is small, with males measuring 5.4 to 6.8 (2 to 2.6 in) cm and females measuring 7.1 cm (2.7 in). While genetic testing proved that it was a new species, the morphological differences were key…
(read more: MongaBay) (photos: Tao Thien Nguyen)
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