Refugee Olympic athletes honoured with mural

This video from Brazil says about itself:

Rio 2016: Refugee athletes honoured with mural

17 August 2016

Refugees competing at the Olympic Games have been honoured with a gigantic mural on Rio de Janeiro’s Olympic Boulevard.

Two street artists painted the 10 athletes in the refugee team. This is the first time a refugee team has been represented at the Games.

This video from Brazil says about itself:

Refugees living in Brazil cheer fellow refugees in Olympics

14 August 2016

Several members of the Congolese refugee community in Rio gathered to watch their compatriots compete in the Olympics as part of the first ever refugee team to take part in the games. The fans watched Popole Misenga and Yolande Mabika in jubilation as they competed in judo. The refugees community broke into song and dance as their compatriots took to the stage.

Black-fronted piping-guan back in Brazil

This is a 2013 black-fronted piping-guan video from Brazil.

From BirdLife:

Reintroducing the Black-fronted piping-guan in Brazil

By Alice Reisfeld, SAVE Brasil, 14 Aug 2016

A routine check-up in 2010 revealed that only one Black-fronted Piping-guan was left in the mountain range of Sierra do Mar, São Paulo. Wasting no time, the team of SAVE Brasil built a huge enclosure camouflaged in the Atlantic Forest to start a reintroduction programme. Six years later, the situation is being reverted: the birds are adapting and the locals are making sure their homes stay intact.

The Black-fronted Piping-guan Pipile jacutinga is a globally threatened species endemic to the Atlantic Forest of South America. As a consequence of poaching and habitat loss, this species is now locally extinct in big parts of its original distribution, such as the Brazilian states of Rio de Janeiro, Espírito Santo and Bahia. Originally, it was found from South Bahia to Rio Grande do Sul, Northern Argentina and Paraguay.

There are many programmes that have been successful in breeding this species in captivity, representing an opportunity for its reintroduction and population reinforcement. Considering the significant threat that the Black-fronted Piping-guan has been suffering throughout the years with substantial population declines, SAVE Brasil (BirdLife Partner) initiated its program “Conservation of Game Birds in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest: Reintroduction and Monitoring of the Black-fronted Piping-guan” in 2010.

The project aims to implement a reintroduction and monitoring programme for Black-fronted Piping-guans, increasing the species’ population through captive management and release of individuals, thus raising the species conservation status.

Projeto Jacutinga began in 2010 when a census was conducted in Serra do Mar, in the state of São Paulo, focusing on two bird families: Cracidae (chachalacas, guans and curassows) and Tinamidae (tinamous and nothuras). Along 160 km of transects covered during 1 year, only one single Black-fronted Piping-guan individual was recorded. This was worrying, as this bird has an important ecological role, since it swallows whole fruits and disperses seeds that can help the re-growth of forests.

This first census revealed that the species’ population was highly depleted and on the brink of local extinction in the region. A new population census was held in Serra da Mantiqueira in 2015 and not a single Black-fronted Piping-guan was recorded in the region. Species management measures such as population reinforcement were deemed necessary and urgent to conserve the population in the long term.

Following the census, the need for a population reinforcement programme for the species became apparent. Adaptation and rehabilitation enclosures for Black-fronted Piping-guan were built in two areas – Reserva Ecológica de Guapiaçu, in the state of Rio de Janeiro, and Serra da Mantiqueira, in the state of São Paulo.

The enclosures are about 15 meters long, 8 m wide and 8 m tall and are placed inside the Atlantic Forest to allow the birds to practice flight and enable them to acclimatize to the release area.

In March 2016, a group of Black-fronted Piping-guans from a private breeder (CESP-Companhia Energética de São Paulo) was transferred to the rehabilitation enclosure in Serra da Mantiqueira where pre-release preparations were held. During 3 months the birds went through flight, feeding and predator recognition trainings, along with assessments of the social interaction between individuals and tracing of their behavior profiles.

Finally, on the 28th of June 2016, the first 9 Black-fronted Piping-guans were released in Serra da Mantiqueira. Today these birds are being monitored by satellite transmitters, field visits and through the participation of the local community, by encouraging birdwatching.

One week after the release, the project team received the news of a Black-fronted Piping-guan sighting by a local resident in a property located 1 km from the enclosure. This individual was only sighted again near the enclosure 6 days after the release and he was accompanied by one of the released females.

The project team is very excited with release results so far, as the guans seem to be adapting and interacting well with the natural environment. Besides the individual who was sighted far from the enclosure, the others are also being seen in the forest feeding on fruits.

Besides the releases and monitoring, the project is also focused in education. Since 2015, more than 40 educational activities have already been held involving almost 1,200 people. Besides, nine capacity building workshops have been conducted for over 100 teachers of public schools in the region.

Brazilian coup president Temer scared of Olympics spectators

This video says about itself:

23 May 2016

Anti-impeachment protests highlight Temer’s failures in Brazil

Filed by Kimberley Brown for New Internationalist

On Sunday, massive anti-impeachment protests were organized in Sao Paulo, Brazil, by the MTST, Movimento dos Trabalhadores Sem Teto or Homeless Workers’ Movement. Various other social movements participated, including women’s rights organizations, unions, workers’ collectives and student movements.

The protests were aimed against the new interim President Michel Temer and his changes to government ministries making their composition all white, male and staffed with representatives from un-elected parties.

The changes do not represent the diverse people of Brazil, said protesters at the event.

Many were opposed to the impeachment of Dilma Rousseff because of their anger with Temer. Some made clear that they were against Temer because they were pro-democracy and he was not elected. However this did not easily translate into tacit support for the outgoing administration.

‘We don’t necessarily support Dilma’s government, but we do support democracy. Because we elected a government and all we got was this confusion,’ said Samara Gardenia from Intersindical.

A local journalist (working with Brasil da Fato) speculated that there were some 30,000 people participating in Sunday’s event. The journalist has been following the anti-impeachment protests around the city and this was one of the smaller ones he’s seen. One reason for this difference was that Sunday’s event was organized mainly by one group, the MTST, rather than several, he said.

The march started at roughly 3pm local time, with about 45 minutes of speeches, rallying and a long march to Temer’s house. The plan for some was to storm his home, but protesters were stopped by officials.

SOUNDBITE 1: (Portuguese) Samara Gardenia from Intersindical

‘We don’t necessarily support Dilma’s government, but we do support democracy. Because we elected a government and all we got was this confusion.’

SOUNDBITE 2: (Portuguese) Luis from the MTST

‘Good afternoon, I’m Luis from Vila Nova Palestina. This is not the first time that we’re here fighting this long battle against regression. Temer’s state, which is doing many things here, this interim government that took power is taking positions that it shouldn’t and cutting things that the incumbent president implemented, which is Dilma.’

SOUNDBITE 3: (Spanish) Marli from the Marcha Mundial das Mujeres

‘In talking about this interim government, we as women don’t believe, well, they don’t represent us.’

SOUNDBITE 4: (Spanish) Marli, soy de la Marcha Mundial de las Mulheres

This coup that is there, it’s better not to call it the government, has no legitimacy. It wasn’t elected, and nobody in the ministries represent the people. They didn’t get one vote from the people. So, they have a long-term project, but we don’t want that project. We don’t want it. That’s why we’re fighting. That’s why we’re in the street.’

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands today:

Brazil’s interim president Michel Temer will not be present at the closing ceremony of the Olympic Games next Sunday.

At the opening ceremony, he was massively booed by the audience. The music was then quickly made louder to drown out this painful sound.


Earlier that day, there had already been close to the stadium demonstrations against the unpopular interim president who replace the suspended president Dilma Roussseff.

To avoid another public humiliation Temer choose now for not appearing at the closing ceremony.

Capybara, burrowing owl at Brazil Olympics

This video from the USA says about itself:

28 February 2015

Just a few select minutes with the fascinating and incredibly cute Burrowing Owls of Cape Coral, Florida. These diminutive owls are only about nine inches tall. They make their homes in underground burrows formerly used by the Gopher Tortoise, or dug themselves. There are more nesting pairs of owls in Cape Coral than anywhere else in Florida. They are not particularly shy and their burrows are often near roads. The first 1:35 of the video (and audio) was filmed in slow motion, at 60 fps.

For more information on Florida’s Burrowing Owls, how to attract them to your yard, building a starter burrow or to help protect them, please visit Cape Coral Friends of Wildlife, here.

At the Olympic games in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, today the first Olympic golf tournament since over a century started. The TV report showed also animals lat the golf course: burrowing owls.

And capybaras.

This video is about capybaras.

Usain Bolt, other Jamaicans, arrive at Rio Olympics

This video from Brazil says about itself:

3 August 2016

Usain Bolt and his Jamaican teammates arriving at 2016 Olympic village in Rio.

SENATORS JOIN FIGHT FOR EQUAL PAY FOR WOMEN’S SOCCER STARS “Two U.S. senators on Wednesday renewed their efforts to scrutinize why players on the U.S. women’s national soccer team earn less than their male counterparts, just hours before the USWNT begins its run at a fourth consecutive Olympic gold medal.” [HuffPost]