Sculptor Louise Bourgeois dies


This video is on Louise Bourgeois and her work.

From the New York Times in the USA:

Louise Bourgeois, the French-born American artist who gained fame only late in a long career, when her psychologically charged abstract sculptures, drawings and prints had a galvanizing effect on younger artists, particularly women, died on Monday at the Beth Israel Medical Center in Manhattan. She was 98.

Rare dragonfly back in the Netherlands


This video says about itself:

Leucorrhinia caudalis is one of the most threatened dragonfly species in central-Europe regarding its wide distribution throughout Europe to West-Asia in the past and the heavy recent retreat. It is included in the Annex 4 of the EU Habitats Directive and listed in the Bern Convention as well. The video was taken on one of the few (not more than 5-10) colonies in Hungary in 2008 while taking quantitative survey at Őrtilos (river valley of Dráva).

From Staatsbosbeheer in the Netherlands:

Rare dragonfly found in Weerribben nature reserve

News release, Saturday, May 29, 2010

The rare Leucorrhinia caudalis dragonfly is back in Weerribben National Park. A visitor noticed the species during a trip to the edge of a hole in a bog where peat used to be mined. In 1970 the species had been last seen in a lakes complex in Noord-Brabant province. The Leucorrhinia caudalis dragonfly is the forty-sixth dragonfly species recorded in the Weerribben.

In the area where overgrown peat holes have been restored by dredging, the water quality has greatly improved and the underwater plants have recovered. This has made the Weerribben into one of the main areas for dragonflies in the Netherlands. Eg, in the Weeribben rare species fly, like the large white-faced darter dragonfly, Siberian winter damselfly, dark bluet damselfly. These species are typical of a well-developed peat area. The Forestry Commission will, jointly with dragonfly researchers, look in the Weerribben to see if the species occurs in more places.

Leucorrhinia pectoralis in Nieuwkoopse Plassen: here.

Leucorrhinia caudalis back in Weerribben reserve: here.

White-faced darter genus photos: here.

June 2011. The first white-faced darters have hatched at Cumbria Wildlife Trust‘s Foulshaw Moss Nature Reserve, near Kendal, for the first time this century. This exciting recurrence of this darter dragonfly is part of the Trust’s three-year programme to re-introduce it to Foulshaw Moss. It is hoped that these darters will now start to colonise the nature reserve. The moss has over the last 13 years been restored to its former moss habitat, which is perfect for the extremely rare white-faced darter: here.

The dragonflies of Borneo: here.

Nakamura’s Skydragon, Chlorogomphus nakamurai, is listed as ‘Vulnerable’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened SpeciesTM due to its restricted range of occurrence. This rare species was first described in 1996, and has only been found in Cuc Phuong and Ba Vi National Park, North Vietnam: here.

Rare vagrant emperor dragonfly found in Pembrokeshire: here.

April 2011. At a time when the world has been focussed on events in North Africa and the Middle East, large numbers of predatory invaders have been silently invading Europe, and some of these have reached Britain! The invaders in question are brownish dragonflies known as Vagrant Emperors: here.

A dragonfly’s guide to Britain: here.

Dragonfly wings inspire micro wind turbines: here.

Curacao dragonflies: here.

Pale Snaketail Ophiogomphus severus: here.

Dragonflies: The Flying Aces of the Insect World: here.

Extinct bird in Australian rock painting


Rock painting, with Genyornis?

From ABC Online in Australia:

Megafauna cave painting could be 40,000 years old

May, 31 2010

Scientists say an Aboriginal rock art depiction of an extinct giant bird could be Australia’s oldest painting.

The red ochre painting, which depicts two emu-like birds with their necks outstretched, could date back to the earliest days of settlement on the continent.

It was rediscovered at the centre of the Arnhem Land plateau about two years ago, but archaeologists first visited the site a fortnight ago.

A palaeontologist has confirmed the animals depicted are the megafauna species Genyornis.

Archaeologist Ben Gunn said the giant birds became extinct more than 40,000 years ago.

“The details on this painting indicate that it was done by someone who knew that animal very well,” he said.

He says the detail could not have been passed down through oral storytelling.

“If it is a Genyornis, and it certainly does have all the features of one, it would be the oldest dated visual painting that we’ve got in Australia,” he said.

“Either the painting is 40,000 years old, which is when science thinks Genyornis disappeared, or alternatively the Genyornis lived a lot longer than science has been able to establish.”

Mr Gunn says there are paintings of other extinct animals right across the area including the thylacine, or tasmanian tiger, the giant echidna and giant kangaroo.

“It does give you a window back to a time that you can pinpoint, and in the case of the Genyornis it’s a very long picture,” he said.

The traditional owners of the land in the Northern Territory say they are excited the painting could be Australia’s oldest dated rock art.

The Jawoyn Association‘s Wes Miller says the painting is one of thousands rediscovered across Arnhem Land in recent years.

“It verifies that the Jawoyn people were living in this country for a very, very long time,” he said.

“People say it, but once again this is clearly a demonstration of how long Jawoyn people have been in this country and other Indigenous groups. It’s great from that point of view. It’s pretty exciting stuff.”

More on Australian Aboriginal Rock Art May Depict Giant Bird Extinct for 40,000 Years: here.

The extinction of Australia’s ‘megafauna’ was caused by long-term hunting, new research suggests: here.

When the researchers analyzed the so-called Bradshaw rock artworks found in Western Australia’s Kimberley region, they didn’t find paint. Instead they found a black fungus, probably belonging to a fungi group known as Chaetothyriales, as well as a reddish organism that is suspected to be a species of cyanobacteria: here.

Dung fungus reveal that humans, not climate change, killed Australia’s giant beasts: here.

Climate change, not human activity, drove Australia’s megafauna to extinction, says Dr Stephen Wroe: here.