Owl news update


This is a video from California in the USA about baby western screech owls in a wildlife hospital.

From the Cornell Lab or Ornithology in the USA:

New owl resources!

Have you ever heard something go screech in the night, and wondered what it was? There’s a good chance it was an owl! Not all owls hoot; some shriek, bark, and wail!

For a limited time, you can download free owl sounds from the Cornell Lab’s Macaulay Library. They’re owl yours to do with what you like…use them as your phone’s ringtone, or add them to your Halloween party playlist! Just get them before they disappear into the night.

Can’t get enough owls? Find out which owls in your area you can attract with a nesting box or platform. Enter your region and habitat into our Right Bird, Right House tool, and get free nest box plans and placement tips.

And if you’re wondering why so many Halloween decorations feature owls, consider this: owls are symbols of death in many cultures. Read our Citizen Science Blog post, Myths of the Ghost Bird, to find out how these helpful birds crept into Halloween folklore.

New sea slug discovery in the Netherlands


This video from the USA is called Tiny Nudibranchs of Southern California.

Translated from the Dutch Stichting ANEMOON marine biologists:

Sunday, October 12, 2014

This summer sport divers in the Oosterschelde estuary encountered a new and thus the 58th Dutch sea slug species. This was Aeolidiella sanguinea, for which we propose here as its Dutch name “Verborgen vlokslak” [hidden aeolid nudibranch]. The Dutch name comes from the fact that during the day this slug is inactive, hiding under stones and large shells and is only active at night. As a result, the animals are very difficult to observe for sport divers. This species is identified by the combination of a number of anatomical features and especially the shape of the egg strands.

Bahrain’s marine life threatened?


This video from California in the USa is called “Teething” Baby Whale Uses Humans As Pacifiers, Whale Watching.

From the Daily Tribune in Bahrain:

Environment: Bahrain’s marine life threatened?

Oct 8 2014

If the sight of dumped oil bottles and other waste like plastic bags, fishing lines and diapers at local beaches wasn’t horrifying enough, a recent washed up carcass of a baby whale, at one of the Kingdom’s beaches, is truly a cause of concern for all.

While marine debris has been affecting the beautiful coastlines of the Kingdom for a long time now, it seems human wastage and carelessness are endangering the marine habitat too.

Bahrain Beachcombers (a volunteer group committed towards cleaning the shorelines of the island), Founder, Darren Schneider discovered the remains of the small mammal while going for a swim at the Nurana Island.

The species from which it belonged to, was not determined as it was already in a bloated state. Darren and his girlfriend dragged the carcass of baby whale back into the water so it could float away.

Shocked, he felt that the death of the animal could be related to marine pollution caused by the dumping of waste materials in the sea, which are not biodegradable.

Speaking to DT News, Mr. Schneider said, “As part of our cleaning initiatives, our group managed to collect more than hundreds of oil bottles from the shoreline that were not properly discarded. Some of them even have oil left in them and this can be an alarming health hazard for the marine life, in terms of oil spills and plastic dumped in the sea.”

California blue whales, have they recovered?


This video from California in the USA is called Drones Over Blue Whales, Gray Whales in Surf, Megapod of Dolphins off Dana Point Whale Watching.

From Wildlife Extra:

Has the California blue whale population made a complete recovery?

Analysis of numbers of California blue whale suggest that the population has achieved a complete rebound, with as many of the whales living off the Californian coast as there were before they were hunted to near extinction 110 years go.

In the 1930s, when whaling was at its peak, the population of blue whale dropped to between 500 to 1,000 individuals, according to researchers. After whaling became illegal in the 1970s, the population had a chance to recover and by the 1990s had grown to around 2,200 individuals. However, this figure levelled out, and remains the same today.

In order to assess whether this number represented a complete comeback for the whales, the research analysed published data looking at today’s number of California blue whales, the number that were killed by whalers during the 20th century, and the number killed each year by ship strikes. Using this data, scientists concluded that California blue whale numbers are currently 97 per cent as large as they were prior to 1905.

That the number is almost the same could explain why the population stopped growing in the 1990s. Cole Monnahan, a doctoral student in ecology and resource management at the University of Washginton, explains: “Before this study some people thought that number should be going up, but if there were about 2,200 whales to begin with, then that is what the environment can support.”

However, the findings were greeted with a certain amount of cynicism by some. Jay Barlow, National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration research scientists, says, “It all depends on whether you believe the whaling statistics or not, and my guess is there are more underestimates of whales killed, rather than overestimates.”

If the number of whale deaths during the 20th century were underestimated, it could suggest that California blue whale numbers are not in fact fully recovered. But if the data is indeed correct, it would make them the only species of blue whale to have made a full recovery.

Paddle-boarding between humpback whales in California


This video from the USA says about itself:

Ghost Tree Pebble Beach

Stand Up Paddling with [humpback] whales 9/17/2014 Monterey Bay California. Today is the closest I have ever been to whales in the Monterey Bay. All Video shot with GoPro Hero3+ and Original GoPro Camera. Having the mist from a whales spout come across the board was all time. This is NOT recommended for those unfamiliar with this area of Ocean. The majority of time I stood in the kelp beds and watched it unfold. Note: Always respect whales and other marine life. Keep Space.

See also here.

Galapagos islands, new film


This video says about itself:

Galapagos 3D Narrated by Jeff Corwin – Official | Digital 3D Version

In the vastness of the Pacific Ocean, there is a paradise unlike any other: the Galapagos. Amongst these remote volcanic islands, life has played out over millions of years in relative isolation. The result is a wonderland of nature, with a remarkable collection of plants and charismatic animals that have all adapted to this unique environment. Meet giant half-ton tortoises and marine iguanas that spit sea-salt. Dance with the tropical albatrosses and hunt fishes with the colorful blue-footed boobies. Swim with tiny penguins thousands of miles away from their natural habitats. This is a story of discovery, of survival against the odds, and of nature’s ingenuity, all brought to life in stunning 3D.

From the California Science Center in the USA:

Explore the Wonders of the Galapagos Islands in a Stunning New 3D Film

Wildlife Conservationist Jeff Corwin featured in “Galapagos 3D: Nature’s Wonderland” Opening on October 5, 2014 at the California Science Center

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 23, 2014 — The California Science Center invites audiences to an exploration of a paradise unlike any other, with the breathtaking IMAX film, “Galapagos 3D: Nature’s Wonderland” narrated by Jeff Corwin, premiering this October 5th.

“Galapagos 3D: Nature’s Wonderland” brings to the giant screen these remarkable volcanic islands, home to some of nature’s most incredible living creatures. Located close to the equator in the Pacific Ocean, at the confluence of several nutrient-rich currents, the Galapagos archipelago has developed over millions of years in relative isolation. The result is a living museum of nature, with an abundance of species of plants and unique animals that have adapted to thrive in this challenging environment. Giant half-ton long-necked tortoises lumber among dancing blue-footed boobies and flightless cormorants. Small penguins living thousands of miles from their natural habitats share the seas with unique marine iguanas that spit sea-salt. This is an incredible story of discovery, of survival against the odds, and of nature’s ingenuity.

“I was thrilled to provide the narration for this amazing project,” said Corwin, wildlife conservationist and Emmy award-winning TV host. “When I saw the film for the first time, it literally took my breath away. Despite traveling the world for 20 years hosting and creating documentaries, I was thoroughly impressed with this incredible journey.”

After viewing the film, Science Center visitors are encouraged to visit the “Ecosystems” exhibition, where concepts from the film like adaptation are illustrated through a blend of live plants, animals, and hands-on exhibits in 11 immersive environments, or zones. “Ecosystems” occupies 45,000 square feet and contains more than 250 species of plants and animals. Guests will find out why isolation breeds change and visit a simulated tropical island research station in the “Island Zone,” where they will learn about evolution by studying some of the unique animals that make these isolated habitats their homes. In the “Extreme Zone,” guests explore the desert, rocky shores, and more to discover how environmental factors test the limits of plants and animals—and how they have adapted to flourish, just like the animals featured in “Galapagos 3D: Nature’s Wonderland.”

“There are not too many places more powerful than the Galapagos Islands when it comes to understanding our planet,” said Corwin. “Galapagos 3D: Nature’s Wonderland” perfectly captures what makes the creatures living there such unique characters.”

Produced by Anthony Geffen, written by David Attenborough and narrated by Jeff Corwin, “Galapagos 3D: Nature’s Wonderland” is directed by Martin Williams and features original music composed by Joel Douek. The film is a Colossus Productions presentation in association with SKY 3D, distributed by nWave Pictures Distribution.

“Galapagos 3D: Nature’s Wonderland” was filmed on location over a ten- month period in 2012 and 2013, followed by five months of post-production. Using breakthrough digital 3D filmmaking technologies and featuring 4K ultra-high resolution imagery, the producers have brought to life the extraordinary world of the Galapagos archipelago in a way that has not been possible before. The Galapagos Islands are governed by Ecuador and lie some 600 miles from the coast of South America.

The film’s official website is here.

See also here.