Pallas Cat (Otocolobus manul)

Did you know?

That the vernacular name used in English, Pallas Cat, as discovered by the German zoologist, Peter Simon Pallas (1741-1811)? In 1767, Pallas was invited by Catherine II of Russia to become a professor of the Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg, and between 1769 and 1774, led an expedition to Siberia collecting natural specimens under his name. He also explored the upper Amur, the Caspian Sea, the Urals and the Altai Mountains to the east, reaching the Lake Baikal.

The maul or Pallas cat is a kitten with a wide head and low set ears. The head-body length is 50-65 cm and weight of 2.5-4.5 kg. The tail is 21-31 cm long and thicker, with a large terminal tuft black, preceded by five or six narrow black rings. The coat is very thick, dense and smooth, with a dark lining and filling. These features are indicative of adaptations to cold. The color varies from light gray to yellowish red. The tips of the white coat of frost produced look. There is no colored band on the cord, but there are some faint black stripes on the sides. The fur on the bottom is dark and longer than at the top. There is marked sexual dimorphism.


Philippine tarsier (Tarsius syrichta)

Did you know?

“I have tarsiers as pets”, is not a good idea? Having them as pets bring problems because living tarsiers need food and usually survive only a few days if not properly fed. Another reason is that the tarsiers usually have intestinal worms to which humans are susceptible.

The Philippine tarsier is one of the smallest known primates. It has a brownish-gray fur and a tail nearly naked, except for a tuft of hair at the end of it. The middle finger is elongated. The length of the head and body is around 9-16cm. It weighs 90-160 grams. Females are smaller than males. The most conspicuous characteristic of a Filipino tarsier is that its eyes are huge. In proportion to its body, its eyes are the largest among mammals.

Amazon frentirroja (Amazona autumnalis)

Did you know?

That there are four subspecies of Amazona frentiroja? The appointment, (A. a. Autumnalis) in Mexico and Nicaragua and the Bay Islands of Honduras (A. a. Salvini) of Nicaragua to western Colombia and northwestern Venezuela (A. a. Lilacina) in Ecuador and (A. a. diadem) of northwestern Brazil.

This Amazon bird is quite large with a total length of 34 cm and a weight of approximately 420g. The plumage is mostly green, with the bottom half and the outer tail feathers pale yellowish green. Generally, they have some yellow feathers on the face, crown and back of the neck are pale blue with black, have a bit of black on the chest. The outer membranes of the primary wings are blue and have a red speculum on the wing. The forehead is distinctly red. The iris is orange-brown in immature birds, the base of the beak is yellow, gray tip, ring around the eyes is naked and pale yellow, legs and feet are a dull gray. Outside the breeding season, the Amazon frentirroja lies in communal roosts and travel in pairs, in groups or large flocks, where the pairs are evident, foraging chiefly on the tops of tall trees. The nest is a hole, uncoated, in a tall tree, usually dead. The clutch is usually 3 to 4 eggs. It feeds on figs, seeds, leaf buds and some cultivated fruits such as mangoes and citrus.

Bearded Pig (Sus barbatus)

Did you know?

That the bearded pig can mate with the domestic pig (Sus scrofa x f. domestica), producing offspring in which both sexes are fertile? Experiments reproductive crosses made ​​in the 1890 in the then “Haustiergarten” in Halle (Germany) between two female bearded pig and wild boar were successful, but the mortality in the F2 generation was quite high.

The bearded pig is a pig with a relatively thin head-body length of 100-165 cm, a height of 72-85 cm at the shoulder and weighing up to 150 kg. Bearded pigs have long, slender legs and an elongated head. They have two pairs of small facial warts.Most characteristic is the yellowish white of beard on the muzzle and cheeks. The body has little gray hair bristled usually clearer. Missing coat bottom. 

They are predominantly diurnal and generally sedentary, but occasionally can present large-scale population movements which involved up to 300 individuals. After a gestation period that is similar to the wild boar (about 115 days), born a litter of pups usually 3-6, sometimes up to 11. Births may occur throughout the year, but it seems that the peak is in August and September, when most forest trees are fruiting. Bearded pigs eat the seeds of trees, fallen fruit, roots, stems of wild bananas, herbs, and probably earthworms, and along the coast they dig and eat turtle eggs. Also, they usually follow groups of monkeys in the forest, and fruits the monkeys left behind.


Caguan Colugo or Malay (Galeopterus Variegatus)

Did you know?

That the Philippine flying lemur is the main prey of the Philippine Eagle (Pithecophaga jefferyi) that is critically endangered? Indeed flying lemurs are up to 90% of meat consumption to eagles.

Despite its name “colugo” or “flying lemur”, this specie is not a prosimian lemurs, but belongs to a zoo by itself. The Dermoptera (“skin wings”), which contains only one genus with two species, the flying lemur of Malaysia and the Philippines. The flying lemur of Malaysia, or “colugo” is mottled brown or gray above and paler below. Head-body length varies from 36-43 cm, tail is about 22-27 cm long. Body weight varies from 1000-1750 g. Females are barely larger than males. 

Unlike bats, flying lemurs do not really fly, but a membrane stretching from forelimbs to tail, called a patagium, enables them to glide from tree to tree. Although the colugo resemble those of carnivores, their diet consists of fruits and leaves. They sleep during the day and forage at night. Females give birth to a single offspring, rarely twins after a gestation of 60 days. The newborn flying lemurs are relatively undeveloped and until weaning, are carried on the mother’s womb, which can also fold the patagium near the tail in a soft, warm bag for this purpose.

The South Boa Constrictor

Did you know?

That, like all other members of the family Boidae, the boa constrictor is also one of the oldest species of snakes and archaic. It still has traces of a pair of hind legs inherited from a lizard boa-type (appendices like claws on each side of the genital opening). These appendices are generally larger in males than in females and are thought to be used by the male to stimulate the female to mate. In addition, the boa constrictor also has a pelvis and a pair of lungs (the left lobe is large, the right is small).

Although sometimes, impressively large boas are giant snakes of the popular imagination. Depending on their geographic origin and sex (females are usually slightly larger), they can reach 1.2 to 3.9 meters as adults. The South Boa constrictor (Boa constrictor), but can grow to 5 meters. The longest recorded specimen was 5.5 m long. The boa constrictor has a short tail, which represents less than 50 cm in length.The constrictor Boas are pink or tan, cream, gold, gray or brown in color, with oval or dorsal spots a pattern of brown, reddish-brown to black. 

Copies of most of localities have markings more or less conspicuous dark red, reddish brown or brown on the tail. This coloration camouflages the right. The big guys Boidae family have heat sensitive pits on the head, but this snake has scales simpler heat sensitive. 

The boa constrictor is solitary and nocturnal (the pupil is vertical). During the day usually rest in a protected location, such as the burrow of a rodent. These snakes breed seasonally.The female emits a smell of sewer to attract males. Males and females join sewers for the male to fertilize the eggs.

During copulation, males may cling to the female through the evolutionary remnants of hind legs. Fertilization is internal. After fertilization, the eggs remain in the body of the female, where they develop for several months (approximately 110 days) in the thin membranes.

Unlike its close relative, the python, which lays eggs, the boa constrictor gives birth to live young, fully formed. The protective membrane breaks when juveniles are released. As many as sixty snakes are born at one time, each measuring 44 to 50 cm. The small snakes eat mice, small birds, lizards and frogs. As they grow, the size of prey increases. The diet of adults ranging from rodents and lizards (including iguanas) to birds, marmosets, monkeys, coatis, capybaras, agoutis, mongooses, wild pigs, lizards, possums and bats, catching hanging in trees or caves, or trapping if you fly by. 

As a nocturnal hunter, located at the dam with the sensible heat of the scales on its snout, and by the smell. The prey is killed by constriction until it drowns.   

Facts about the Grey-Headed Kingfisher

Did you know?

that kingfishers have a variety of calls used to announce their territory, warn off other birds, and communicate with a mate and their chicks, such as shrieks, screams, clicks, whistles, chuckles, rattles, and chirps?

Facts about this animal

The grey-headed (or greyhooded) kingfisher is a medium-sized kingfisher species, reaching a total length of about 20-22 cm. It is thus a bit smaller than the sympatric woodland (H. senegalensis) and brownhooded (H. albiventris) kingfishers. Females weigh 57 g, males 46 g.

The plumage is blackish-brown on the back, and grey on the head. The belly is chestnut shading to tawny and white on breast, and flight feathers, rump and tail are bright lt or violet-blue.

The iris is dark brown, bill, and feet are scarlet.

Breeding takes place from September to December. Both male and female participate in excavating a horizontal tube of 50 cm to 1 m length into an earth bank, using their strong bill and feet. The female lays on average 4 pinkish-white eggs into the nest chamber at the end of the tube, which are incubated by both parents for about two weeks. The young fledge after about 3 weeks.

The grey-headed kingfisher feeds on beetles and grasshoppers, occasionally , which are taken on the ground.

Facts about the Green Iguana

Did you know?

That the Green Iguana has been used as a food source in Central and South America during the past 7,000 years. Indeed, it is often referred to as Chicken stick, “Bamboo Chicken” or “chicken of the trees.” It is believed that populations in the Caribbean have been translocated there from the mainland by various tribes as a food source. The coloration of the skin, helps to camouflage the green iguana, which means that blend easily to their surroundings to avoid detection by predators.If detected, however, and need to escape quickly, can jump from the trees into the water and swim well. The green Iguanas are very hardy and can fall from 12-15 m to the ground without getting hurt (use the claws of their hind legs to “hook” leaves, branches, or anything holding the movement to break the fall). Its tail whip can be used to present painful strikes and like many other lizards, if a predator is detected by the tail, the iguana can allow it to break, to escape, turning then to grow a new tail. Indeed, green iguana skin is very hard to avoid cuts and scratches. The green iguanas have developed a photosensor body on top of the head called the parietal eye or “third eye”, “pineal eye” or “pineal gland”. This “eye” does not work the same way as does a normal eye, having only a rudimentary retina and lens and therefore can not form images. This sense organ however, serve as a gauge for solar energy, and helps in the maturation of sex organs, thyroid and endocrine glands.The visual effect of this “eye” is mostly limited to detecting changes in light and darkness and can therefore detect motion. This therefore helps the iguana when is stalked by predators from above.

This large arboreal lizard grows to 1.5 meters long from head to tail, although some specimens have grown more than 2 meters. The adult iguanas weigh 4 to 6 kg, although some of them with a proper diet can reach up to 8 kg. Although predominantly green, these animals are actually variable color. Thus, the color of an individual may vary depending on gender, mood, temperature, health, or social status.In addition, the discoloration can help these animals in thermoregulation. During the morning, as the body temperature is low, the skin color is darker, lizard helping to absorb heat from sunlight. However, in the midday heat the animals become lighter or paler, which helps reflect sunlight and minimize heat absorption. The dominant active Iguanas tend to be darker than the lower range iguanas living in the same environment. Most color variation seen in this species is exhibited by the males, and may be attributed, in part, to sex steroids. Six to eight weeks before and during courtship, males can acquire a bright orange or gold, but the color is still related to the domain status. The tail, in addition to its green color, has black stripes. Mature females, for the most part, remain green. Other distinctive features of this species include a double chin hanging in the throat, a dorsal crest formed by dermal spines ranging from the neck to the middle of the base of the tail, and long pointed tail. The dewlap is more developed in adult males than in females. 

Extensions rigid hyoid bone supporting the leading edge of this structure, which is used in territorial defense or when the animal is frightened. This fleshy structure also serves on the absorption and heat dissipation when extended. The laterally placed eyes are protected primarily by the upper eyelid and lower eyelid still moving freely. Green iguanas have long fingers and claws to help them climb and grasp. Most green iguanas reach sexual maturity between three and four years old. They are playing in the dry season, ensuring that juveniles hatch in the rainy season when food is more readily available. Mating appears to be poliginándrico (females mate with males, each of which is also paired with several different females). The procession takes place in a defined territory, where more than one female may be present. The conflicts between males are not uncommon. The courtship behavior of males including head shaking, extension and retraction of the chin, color changes, and stroke or biting the neck of a female. Dominant males can also mark the rocks, branches, and females with a pheromone substance containing wax secreted by their femoral pores. During mating, the male approaches the female and climbs on his back, straddling her. To curb his partner grabs the skin of his shoulder with his teeth, sometimes causing injury. The male then mates with her cloaca of the female and inserts one of his hemipenes. Mating can last several minutes. The female iguanas can store sperm for several years, allowing them to fertilize eggs in a much later date. Females lay their eggs about 65 days after mating.Over a period of three days, an average of 10 to 30 eggs are laid in a nest. Nests were located 45 cm to more than one meter deep, and can be shared by other females, if limited nesting areas. Females may also present some of these behaviors when limited nesting sites. Females may migrate to the same nesting area for several years running, and then return to their country of origin once they laid their eggs. In fact, green iguanas can sometimes travel considerable distances. Incubation lasts 90 to 120 days (with a temperature of 29.5 to 33 degrees Celsius). At birth, are about 17 to 25 cm and weigh about 12 g. Juveniles are independent from birth. The Iguanas are primarily herbivorous adults. His favorite foods are green leafy plants or ripe fruit.However, occasionally eat a small amount of carrion or invertebrates.   

Greenpeace Calls on Mexico to Cancel Plans for Nuclear Projects

Greenpeace asked the Mexican government to recall the central crisis in Fukushima, Japan, and abandon plans to build new nuclear plants in the country.

“Today we remember the tragedy of Fukushima, we encourage you to give up nuclear plans for our country,” the agency in a letter Mexican Energy Minister Jordy Herrera.

The letter, delivered by a group of activists in the ministry, said that that agency recently announced plans to build two new nuclear plants in the country, in addition to the Laguna Verde in the current state of Veracruz.

Mexico’s nuclear future

The Mexican government recently released its National Energy Strategy 2012-2026, which includes the direction of the country’s energy development over the next 15 years, including the possibility of building two nuclear plants.

Greenpeace said in his message that nuclear power is “a costly and risky for electricity generation and its contribution to mitigating global warming is minimal.”

He said there is no technical problem, or economic power to prevent putting aside the option of nuclear energy and that the only problem is “political will”.

Abandoning nuclear energy is the alternative “more desirable from the standpoint of safety and environmental protection and health,” he added.

They ask for the welfare of the population

The international environmental organization insisted that the Minister of Energy has the “responsibility to promote the welfare of the Mexican people and encourage future nuclear-free environment, a future that is safe for future generations.”

This activity is part of the Greenpeace campaign launched in 19 countries to warn of the risk they pose for millions around 400 active reactors in the world and to commemorate the first anniversary of the nuclear crisis in Japan.

The Decrease in Glacial Dust Storms Accentuates

From Patagonia to Iceland’s shrinking glaciers, exposes soil from rising dust storms affecting marine life and the global climate, according to a recent study. “The growing presence of mineral aerosols at high latitudes is surprising,” said Joseph Prospero, a researcher at the University of Miami, who for decades has investigated the effect of dust on the global environment.

Prospero’s investigations have established that the dust that rises from tropical regions of Africa is transported much of southern and eastern United States each summer (northern hemisphere) and causes 75 to 80 percent of the dust that falls on Florida.

It goes back to glacial periods. This phenomenon is not only contemporary and sediment samples in the ground and deep ice show increases in activity of dust associated with the ice ages. “There is therefore considerable interest in the global distribution of dust sources, factors affecting dust emissions and the properties of the emitted particles,” said Prospero, who over the years has established over two dozen observation stations around the globe.

The research that Prospero has developed over the past six years in Iceland, has determined that “there are large dust storms that originate there and move north Atlantic Ocean.”

According to the researcher, a substantial increase in dust activity in Iceland as glaciers decrease due to global warming. “In a hundred years, there will be no glaciers there,” said Prospero.

The dust itself contributes to increasing the rate of decline of glaciers explained the scientist. “When the glaciers are strong and ‘clean’, color is white, bright, light refractory,” he said. “But when they start to gather dust in their grooves in the top of the glacier, it absorbs more heat from sunlight and melting more quickly.”

Prospero and his colleagues spent six years studying the island of Heimaey, South Iceland and taking measurements of dust particles, or aerosols in the air. The researchers identified frequent episodes of dust production in the region, which in some cases reach 20 micrograms of particles per cubic meter, and found that dust emissions from the island tend to be higher in the spring.

15 Interesting Animal Facts



1. The alligator can close its jaws strong enough to break the arm of a person, but the muscles that open are so weak that he can keep his mouth shut with one hand.

2. The Koala sleeps more than any other animals. It sleeps no less than 22 hours a day.

3. The bees are born, live and die at the same size.

4. The whale shark has more than 4,500 teeth.

5. A canary’s heart beats one thousand times per minute.

6. Flies have about 15,000 taste buds.

7. The crocodile’s brain is the size of a thumb.

8. While the man has over 600 muscles, a caterpillar has over 2,000.

9. Ostriches never bury their heads in the sand, as what we see in cartoons.

10. Pigs are unable to bury their heads due to its anatomical structure.

11. Rats multiply so quickly that in just a year and a half, two rats could have over a million descendants.

12. The “quack” of a duck does produce an echo. Urban legend says “no”.

13. You can lead a cow up some stairs, but do not down because a cow’s knees cannot bend in a proper way to walk downhill.

14. A cockroach can live more than a week without a head, dying of hunger over time.

15. On arrival of a British man to Australia, he was amazed by the sighting of a kangaroo (an animal that was not yet discovered at the time). They called a native and repeatedly tried to ask the animal’s name using signs and jumping gestures. Noting that the Indian always said “Kan Chu Ru”, they referred to the animal as “Kangaroo” (Kangaroo). Linguists later determined that the meaning of what the natives told him was “I do not understand.”


Global warming has caused the current wave of cold in Europe?

It sounds paradoxical, however scientists are capable to explain the harsh winter that now overwhelms Europe by melting of large masses of ice in the Arctic, melting which is a result of global warming.

Complex characteristics of the wind were disturbed by the ice melting Arctic, scientists believe, it considers that it is cold explanation that hit Europe in recent weeks and has killed over 200 people.

Read More …