Giant Panda Conservation Success!

Giant Panda
Originally Reported by LiveScience by Kacey Deamer.

The giant panda, commonly a symbol for conservation, is no longer considered an endangered species, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

In an update to their Red List of Threatened Species on Sunday (Sept. 4), which assesses a species’ conservation status, the IUCN reported the giant panda population has improved enough for the endangered species label to be downgraded to “vulnerable.”

A nationwide census in 2014 found 1,864 giant pandas in the wild in China, excluding cubs — an increase from 1,596 in 2004, according to the IUCN. Including cubs, the current population count is approaching 2,060, the organization said. The report credits forest protection and reforestation measures in China for increasing the available habitat for the species.

On September 4th 2016 the IUCN made a historic update to the conservation status of the Giant Panda. This is huge in the conservation world due to how few major success stories there really are. This is also important because of the way the Giant Panda features as a poster child for conservation efforts. What better than to have it become a true success!

Hopefully this is just a reminder that we can make progress on these cases, and that we need to continue to add to the list of conservation success stories.

White Orcas!

I’m always astounded by images of unusual animals. That’s why last year I talked about the albino dolphin found by the Taiji roundup. That story was somewhat sad in that the family of the unusual specimen was destroyed by the pointless atrocity that is the Taiji Cove roundup.

2016-09-02_2The animal displayed above is called Iceberg. Iceberg was originally spotted in 2010. He’s part of a family that has remained together off the coast of Russia. The modern sighting has verified him and his family as part of the fish eating type of Orca, but his status as either true albino or leuistic has not yet been established. Russian waters are home to more than one white Orca, but this suggests that the population may be breeding closely and thus resulting in this concentration of recessively colored animals. Currently in Russia 5 white individuals have been confirmed, and there is evidence that suggests that the actual numbers might be as high as 8.

I look forward to the ongoing research on this unique population, and hope that the White Orcas of Russia continue to swim free!

Humpback Tail Sailling

Back in March reported on this video. Tail Sailing is a behavior that’s very rare to see in humpbacks (southern wright whales have been seen doing is fairly commonly), and definitely worth checking out. The video itself was captured by a NOAA drop according to the National Marine Sanctuaries website.

Feline Serial Killer on the Loose in India

Tiger continues to terrify locals in Indian state as 9 victims fall prey

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A man-eating tiger on the prowl in northern India has claimed its ninth victim, defying hunters and wildlife officials who have been trying to gun down the animal, an official said Friday.

Since December 29, the same big cat is believed to have been on a killing spree in a densely forested area near Jim Corbett National Park in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.

Salil Shukla, an official in the district of Bijnor, told AFP that the partly eaten body of a young farmer had been found on Friday.


AQHA backed by other associations in Cloning Lawsuit

Breed Groups Support AQHA on Cloning Issue

Seven breed associations and two non-equine associations have joined in a legal brief supporting the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) in its bid to overturn a court decision regarding cloned horse registrations. Still, one scientist believes that the time register cloned animals has come.

Some owners have used the cloning process to preserve their animals’ bloodlines, particularly those of high-performance equines. In response to cloning as a way to preserve bloodlines, some breed associations ruled on whether or not cloned horses can be included in their breed registries. In 2004 the AQHA board of directors approved Rule 227(a), which prohibits cloned horses or their offspring from being included in the organization’s breed registry.

Last year Jason Abraham and two of his related companies, Abraham & Veneklasen Joint Venture and Abraham Equine Inc., filed suit against the AQHA. The complaint asks the court to order the AQHA to remove Rule 227(a) on grounds that the ban on registering cloned horses and their offspring violates antitrust laws.


Effects of Captivity on the Orca Mind

The Documentary Blackfish (available on Netflix at the time I’m writing this) posits alot of things, and is based off the book I reviewed yesterday called Death at Seaworld. There’s a lot going on, and I’m not sure I completely understand all of the complexities of all of the details of the situation, but I’m not sure I’m a captivity supporter for these animals…

Taiji Cove Roundup Includes Rare Albino

A rare albino dolphin calf was captured in the Taiji roundup. The family (and bloodline) of this rare dolphin stands to be decimated in the coming slaughter. This is the very cove in which the documentary by the same name recorded the brutality that happens there. I’m willing to stand up for traditional hunting, but the animals collected in Taiji Cove are not being traditionally hunted, they’re being hunted using modern means and equipment.

Conjoined Gray Whale…

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Conjoined Gray Whales Found in Baja, Calif. Lagoon

JAN 7, 2014 02:50 PM ET // BY IO9.COM
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Conjoined whale twins washed on shore in California

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This is one of those things that I had never seen before, and think it’s pretty cool. I’m not sure what science can learn from them, save the ways that things can go weird in-utero, but it’s still interesting to see. It’s also nice to know that it’s receiving good coverage (via both io9, a discovery news blog and doubtful news) and getting out there. This needs to cover a little more ground, though.

Giant, Multi-topic News Dump

Critter News

General News

Internet Bigfooting