New Suriname bird book, ruff not yet included

This video says about itself:

22 January 2013

Small birds in Suriname, Amazonia. This is a collection of footage of “small” birds in our part of Suriname (South America). 99% of the footage has been made in our own yard. I excluded the hummingbirds, parrots/parakeets, birds of prey, and pterodactylae, because I want to make separate videos about them.

Very recently, a new book, Field Guide to the Birds of Suriname, was published. Its publisher writes about it:

Suriname, located on the Atlantic coast of northeastern South America, is a relatively small country compared to most other South American countries. It nevertheless has a rich avifauna. By the end of 2014, 746 species (including 760 subspecies) were known to occur in Suriname. Most of the land area of Suriname is still covered with tropical rainforest and the country should be a must-visit for birdwatchers. Suriname is even mentioned as being the best country to spot certain neotropical species. Surprisingly, few birders visit Suriname. The main reason given is the lack of a handy pocket guide that can easily be carried in a backpack.

The Field Guide to the Birds of Suriname (with its 107 color plates) tries to fill this gap. In addition to species accounts, data on topography, climate, geology, geomorphology, biogeography, avifauna composition, conservation, and hotspots for bird watching are given. So, why delay your trip to this beautiful and friendly country any longer.

An electronic version of part of the book is here.

Arie Spaans, one of the authors, was interviewed this morning on Dutch radio.

He confessed the book was not completely up to date. As the book was already being printed, a ruff, usually an Eurasian bird not present in the Americas, landed on a ship near the coast of Suriname. Too late to be included.

This video is about ruff mating season in Europe.

Swift migration biology

This video is about migration of swifts from the Netherlands to African countries like Mozambique.

Dutch swifts fly 280,000 kilometer a year, more than seven times the circumference of planet earth.

Biologist Raymond Klaassen studies their migration by providing the birds with geo loggers.

He recently won a Dutch prize for ornithology for his research about various bird species.

Wisdom, oldest albatross, returns to Midway Atoll

This video says about itself:

Egg Laid By World’s Oldest Banded Wild Albatross

18 December 2014

Wisdom, a 63-year-old Laysan albatross living in Hawaii, has lain yet another egg.

Wisdom, a Laysan albatross estimated to be around 63 years old, has laid yet another egg at her home on an atoll about 1200 miles northwest of Honolulu.

She is the oldest known banded bird living in the wild, and is believed to have already raised about 35 offspring.

Mating and child rearing isn’t a casual affair among the species.

Only one egg is laid at a time, so it’s particularly important that everything goes well.

Males and females couple for life, and once the egg is produced they share in the early incubation responsibilities.

It’s an all or nothing process, as if something goes awry and the shelled embryo doesn’t make it, there will not be another attempt until the mating season rolls around again in the following year.

If it does succeed, a great deal of time is spent preparing the little one to go and live on its own.

The whole process takes about a year.

Wisdom has enjoyed a phenomenal chick survival rate in recent years, with 8 of her 9 most recent attempts being successful.

Officials from the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge are anticipating that the latest will emerge in early February.

From the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, Pacific Region:

Something to be thankful for – Wisdom has returned to Midway Atoll!

Wisdom, a Laysan albatross and, the world’s oldest known banded bird in the wild has returned to Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge and Battle of Midway National Memorial within Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. On November 19 and just in time for the special day of giving thanks, almost a year to the day she returned last year, Wisdom was spotted with her mate among the world’s largest nesting albatross colony.

“In the face of dramatic seabird population decreases worldwide –70% drop since the 1950’s when Wisdom was first banded–Wisdom has become a symbol of hope and inspiration,” said Refuge Manager, Dan Clark.” We are a part of the fate of Wisdom and it is gratifying to see her return because of the decades of hard work conducted to manage and protect albatross nesting habitat.”

“Wisdom left soon after mating but we expect her back any day now to lay her egg,” noted Deputy Refuge Manager, Bret Wolfe. “It is very humbling to think that she has been visiting Midway for at least 64 years. Navy sailors and their families likely walked by her not knowing she could possibly be rearing a chick over 50 years later. She represents a connection to Midway’s past as well as embodying our hope for the future.”

Wisdom was first banded in 1956. And because Laysan albatross do not return to breed until they are at least five years old, it is estimated Wisdom is at least 64 years old, but she could be older. Many birds lose their bands before they can be replaced. Wisdom’s bands, however, were continuously replaced and because of meticulous record keeping associated with bird banding, we can verify she is the same bird first banded by noted author and Service ornithologist, Chandler Robbins. Biologists may find even older birds as old worn bands continue to be routinely replaced.

Although Laysan albatrosses typically mate for life, Wisdom has likely had more than one mate and has raised as many as 36 chicks. Laying only one egg per year, a breeding albatross and their mate will spend approximately six months rearing and feeding their young. When not tending to their chicks, albatross forage hundreds of miles out at sea periodically returning with meals of squid or flying fish eggs. Wisdom has likely clocked over six million ocean miles of flight time.

November 25, 2015

Helping grounded seabirds in Peru

This 23 November 2015 video from Peru says about itself:

Ringed Storm-Petrel Exam

From the American Bird Conservancy on this:

Video: Grounded Seabirds Find Help in Lima

By ABC Staff

November 25, 2015

Ringed Storm-Petrels are mysterious birds. Scientists don’t know much about them. However, they do know that fledgling storm-petrels get stranded in large numbers every year in the sprawling coastal city of Lima, Peru.

The grounded seabirds—on their way to the open ocean for the first time—are attracted to the city’s bright lights, become disoriented, and ultimately drop to the ground.

Yovana Murillo and Betto Delgado are wildlife veterinarians who are working to educate citizens of Lima on what to do when they find these injured, exhausted birds. Their Ringed Storm-Petrel Project has so far rescued nearly 500 grounded seabirds. After rehabilitating these birds, they return them to the wild.

In this video, Dr. Murillo examines one of the tiny seabirds that was grounded in Lima.

Seabirds like these tend to be “out of sight, out of mind” for most people, in spite of the fact that this group of birds is among the most endangered on Earth. Learn more about seabirds like the Laysan Albatross and Black-capped Petrel, and how we’re working with partners to conserve them.

Most threatened primates top 25

This video from the USA is called RED RUFFED LEMURS at DUKE LEMUR CENTER.

From AFP news agency:

Over half of world’s primates on brink of extinction: experts

24 Nov 2015 at 08:55 ET

More than half the world’s primates, including apes, lemurs and monkeys, are facing extinction, international experts warned Tuesday, as they called for urgent action to protect mankind’s closest living relatives.

The population crunch is the result of large-scale habitat destruction — particularly the burning and clearing of tropical forests — as well as the hunting of primates for food and the illegal wildlife trade.

Species long-known to be at risk, including the Sumatran orangutan, have been joined on the most endangered list for the first time by the Philippine tarsier and the Lavasoa Mountains dwarf lemur from Madagascar, scientists meeting in Singapore said.

“This research highlights the extent of the danger facing many of the world’s primates,” leading primatologist Christoph Schwitzer, director of conservation at Bristol Zoological Society in Britain, said in a statement.

“We hope it will focus people’s attention on these lesser known primate species, some of which most people will probably have never heard of.”

This includes the Lavasoa Mountains dwarf lemur — a species only discovered two years ago — and the Roloway monkey from Ghana and Ivory Coast, which experts say “are on the very verge of extinction”.

There are 703 species and sub-species of primates in the world.

Madagascar and Vietnam are home to large numbers of highly threatened primate species, the statement said.

In Africa, the red colobus monkey was under “particular threat”, as were some of South America’s howler monkeys and spider monkeys, it added.

“All of these species are relatively large and conspicuous, making them prime targets for bushmeat hunting,” the statement said.

Russell Mittermeier, chair of the Species Survival Commission of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), said he hoped the report would encourage governments to commit to “desperately needed biodiversity conservation measures”.

Mittermeier said ahead of next month’s global climate conference in Paris, there was growing evidence some primate species might play key roles in dispersing tropical forest tree seeds, which in turn “have a critically important role in mitigating climate change”.

Here is the list of the world’s top 25 most endangered primates for 2014-2016 and their estimated numbers remaining in the wild.

The list is compiled by the IUCN, Bristol Zoological Society, International Primatological Society and Conservation International and is updated every two years:

Lavasoa Mountains dwarf lemur — unknown

Lake Alaotra bamboo lemur — about 2,500-5,000

Red ruffed lemur — unknown

Northern sportive lemur — around 50

Perrier’s sifaka — 1,700-2,600

Rondo dwarf galago — unknown but remaining habitat is just 100 square kilometres (40 square miles)

Roloway monkey — unknown but thought to be on the very verge of extinction

Preuss’ red colobus monkey — unknown

Tana River red colobus monkey — 1,000 and declining

Grauer’s gorilla — 2,000-10,000

Philippine tarsier — unknown

Javan slow loris — unknown

Pig-tailed langur — 3,300

Cat Ba langur (golden headed langur) — 60

Delacour’s langur — 234-275

Tonkin snub-nosed monkey — less than 250

Kashmir grey langur — unknown

Western purple-faced langur — unknown

Hainan gibbon — 25

Sumatran orangutan — 6,600

Ka’apor capuchin — unknown

San Martin titi monkey — unknown

Northern brown howler monkey — less than 250 mature animals

Colombian brown spider monkey — unknown

Ecuadorian brown-headed spider monkey — unknown

Whales and their parasites, new study

This video from the USA says about itself:

Parasite Found In House Cats Showing Up In Arctic Whales

15 February 2014

Researchers believe an influx of house cats to the Arctic is responsible for the spread of Toxoplama gondii to whales.

From Parasitology Research:

23 November 2015

Endoparasite survey of free-swimming baleen whales (Balaenoptera musculus, B. physalus, B. borealis) and sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) using non/minimally invasive methods

Carlos Hermosilla, Liliana M. R. Silva, Sonja Kleinertz, Rui Prieto, Monica A. Silva, Anja Taubert


A number of parasitic diseases have gained importance as neozoan opportunistic infections in the marine environment. Here, we report on the gastrointestinal endoparasite fauna of three baleen whale species and one toothed whale: blue (Balaenoptera musculus), fin (Balaenoptera physalus), and sei whales (Balaenoptera borealis) and sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) from the Azores Islands, Portugal. In total, 17 individual whale fecal samples [n = 10 (B. physalus); n = 4 (P. macrocephalus); n = 2 (B. musculus); n = 1 (B. borealis)] were collected from free-swimming animals as part of ongoing studies on behavioral ecology.

Furthermore, skin biopsies were collected from sperm whales (n = 5) using minimally invasive biopsy darting and tested for the presence of Toxoplasma gondii, Neospora caninum, and Besnoitia besnoiti DNA via PCR. Overall, more than ten taxa were detected in whale fecal samples. Within protozoan parasites, Entamoeba spp. occurred most frequently (64.7 %), followed by Giardia spp. (17.6 %) and Balantidium spp. (5.9 %). The most prevalent metazoan parasites were Ascaridida indet. spp. (41.2 %), followed by trematodes (17.7 %), acanthocephalan spp., strongyles (11.8 %), Diphyllobotrium spp. (5.9 %), and spirurids (5.9 %).

Helminths were mainly found in sperm whales, while enteric protozoan parasites were exclusively detected in baleen whales, which might be related to dietary differences. No T. gondii, N. caninum, or B. besnoiti DNA was detected in any skin sample. This is the first record on Giardia and Balantidium infections in large baleen whales.