16-year-old girl wins adults’ championship, to Olympics?


This 22 February 2020 video shows the finals of the Dutch indoor track and field championship: sixty metres-dash for adult women.

As the video shows, the winner was 16-year-old N’ketia Seedo. Being 16-year-old means that Ms Seedo is in the Junior Girls B category of Dutch track and field. Supposedly, as she grew older, she would first go to the Junior A category, and later still to the adult women category. Yet, she won the adult women’s championship.

This photo shows N’ketia Seedo and the numbers two and three of the women seniors’ final.

N’ketia Seedo’s winning time was 7.24 seconds. The second-fastest time ever anywhere in the world of an under-18-year-old woman. Only Tamari Davis from the USA had ever been faster.

This March 2019 video is about Ms Seedo when she was 15 years old; including her playing saxophone.

Seedo, of African Surinamese ancestry, was born in Utrecht city. Like Dafne Schippers, former 200 metres-dash world champion. Ms Seedo yesterday ran faster than Ms Schippers when she was 16-years-old.

N'ketia Seedo and her club trainer Juul Acton

She now wants to go to the Tokyo Olympics later this year. If she succeeds in that, then she will be youngest ever 100-metres-dash runner at the Olympics. She will try to be in the 4 x 100 metres Dutch women’s relay team, maybe together with Dafne Schippers. Maybe the individual 100 metres four years later, at the next Olympics.

Maybe at the Tokyo Olympics, Ms Seedo will meet Keet Oldenbeuving, one year younger, European skateboard champion, also from Utrecht.

6,852 bird species in one year, film review


This Dutch September 2017 video is the trailer of the film Arjan’s Big Year. The film is about Dutch birder Arjan Dwarshuis, who set a new world record by seeing over 6,000 bird species, all over the world, within one year.

This video is from before Arjan went on this journey around the world. His aim then still was a ‘modest’ number of 5500 bird species. So, before he broke the over 6,000 world record in Costa Rica in November 2016. The final count for the year would become 6,852. The video says about itself:

Nerd Nite Amsterdam, Friday 23 November 2015

Arjan Dwarshuis speaks at Nerd Nite Amsterdam about his crazy adventure of trying to spot 5500 bird species in one year.

I went to see the film on 17 March 2018, in a packed cinema.

In the film, Arjan says that in New Year’s night 2016, when his Big Year started, he could not sleep well. In the Netherlands, there are many noisy New Year’s night fireworks, making it difficult for birds and humans to sleep. Arjan felt nervous whether he would reach his ambitious goal for 2016. Then, a robin started singing. A common bird in the Netherlands. But a very special bird when an individual arrives in the Gambia in Africa; or in Beijing in China, attracting hundreds of birdwatchers with cameras and binoculars. Also, a very special bird for Arjan. He noted the robin as the #1 species for his world record birding attempt.

He went to over 40 countries, seeing birds from the big ostrich in Africa to small hummingbirds in South America.

It is a pity that many of the beautiful bird species are shown fleetingly, with just their (English) names mentioned, and nothing told about their lives.

There are exceptions to that, like the maleo of Sulawesi island. These birds make their nests in warm volcanic soil; meaning the parents don’t have to sit on the eggs. In Sulawesi, Arjan saw not only wild maleos, but also birds in a breeding centre. When young maleos are about two weeks old, they are able to fly. So, they then can be freed into the wild. Arjan adopted a young maleo. It sat on his hand; then, it flew away into the Sulawesi forest.

Another species with more attention than others in the movie is the white-necked picathartes in Ghana.

This Dutch language 4 August 2016 video is called The Birding Experience: Suriname. With Arjan Dwarshuis, Humberto Tan, Sean Dilrosun, Michiel van den Bergh and Fred Pansa.

The Suriname part of the film brought back fond memories to me of the great kiskadee and other birds which I had seen in Suriname.

Eg, the Brownsberg nature reserve.

The Costa Rican part also pictured people and birds which I had seen there.

This video from the USA says about itself:

5 January 2017

On his way to setting the World Big Year Birding Record in 2016, Dutch birder Arjan Dwarshuis visits Minnesota’s Sax-Zim Bog.

The movie shows birds which Arjan saw in the USA, but does not mention the Minnesota part of his journey. As one can hardly put forty countries and one year in ninety minutes of film. I have added the Minnesota video because it was the only part of Arjan’s Big Year, not included in the movie, which I could find on YouTube.

At the end of his Big Year, Arjan arrived back at Schiphol airport in the Netherlands. His parents greeted him there. So did his girlfriend, birder Camilla Dreef. They had met during the Dutch TV birdwatching show Fascinated by the condor, and had fallen in love there.

Arjan had worried that after seeing nearly 7000 bird species all over the world, he would have been unable to enjoy the often less spectacular birdwatching in the Netherlands. However, that fear proved to be unfounded. He found out he really enjoyed watching birds together with Camilla at the Kwade Hoek nature reserve. Camilla had especially studied spoonbills; and Arjan loved looking at these beautiful birds together with her.

Surinamese artist Erwin de Vries, RIP


This video from the Netherlands says about itself (translated):

The Surinamese sculptor and painter Erwin de Vries will be eighty years old on 21 December 2009 and will be active in that profession for 60 years. The Kunsthal Rotterdam honors The Grand Old Master from Suriname with a retrospective exhibition. Over one hundred and twenty-five works, including paintings, drawings and sculptures from the nineteen fifties to the present, provide a multifaceted picture of his extensive oeuvre.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

The Surinamese artist Erwin de Vries died last night after a short-term illness in a hospital in his home town of Paramaribo. He leaves behind a large oeuvre, of which the National Slavery Monument in the Oosterpark in Amsterdam is one of the most famous works.

This 2017 video is about a Surinamese Winti religious ceremonial cleansing of Erwin de Vries’ slavery monument in Amsterdam.

The NOS article continues:

He [De Vries] also made many depictions of celebrities, eg in the Netherlands of politician Joop den Uyl, writer Simon Carmiggelt, cabaret artist Toon Hermans and footballer Clarence Seedorf. In Paramaribo there are images of him from, eg, the politicians Arron and Lachmon and the only survivor of the December murders, trade union leader Fred Derby.

De Vries (born in 1929) has been a prolific and successful sculptor and painter since the 1950s. He was influenced for some time by the Cobra movement and had solo exhibitions in, among other places, the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, the Rotterdam Kunsthal, in Jamaica and in other countries. …

He was born in Paramaribo and came to the Netherlands in 1949 for training as a drawing teacher. Later he went to the Rijksacademie van beeldende kunsten in Amsterdam.

This 16 March 2008 video says about itself:

The making of a sculpture of Barack Obama, by the well-known Surinamese Artist, Erwin de Vries.

Obama was then not yet president of the USA; he was only a presidential candidate fighting for the Democratic party nomination against Hillary Clinton.

New rabbit species discovery in Suriname


This video says about itself:

Trail cam footage by Dave McIntyre from a trip to the Suriname rain forest – South America 2011.

From Portland State University in the USA:

New species of South American rabbit discovered

May 16, 2017

Summary: A rabbit known for centuries to exist in South America is different enough from its cousins to be its own unique species, research has concluded.

A Portland State University researcher discovered that a rabbit known for centuries to exist in South America is different enough from its cousins to be its own unique species.

“At a time when species are going extinct every day, it’s encouraging to know we can add one back on the list of survivors,” said PSU biology professor Luis Ruedas.

His findings will be published May 17 in the Journal of Mammalogy.

Ruedas made his discovery after studying rabbit specimens at the Naturalis museum in Leiden, in The Netherlands. The specimens, collected in 1983 from the small country of Suriname on South America’s northeast coast, were labeled as South American cottontails.

Ruedas studied the anatomy of the museum specimens and determined they were larger and shaped differently than other rabbits throughout South America — so much so that they deserved to be classified as a distinct species.

The creature will be only the third new rabbit species named in South America since the start of the modern classification system 260 years ago.

The discovery follows another finding that Ruedas published this year showing that the South American cottontail, which was considered to be a single species distributed over a vast area from Mexico to most of South America, really only occupies a small area of Brazil. The other rabbits on the continent — perhaps as many as 35 species in all — will have to be renamed, he said.

The rabbit from Suriname will be the first on that list.

Ruedas — who has traveled around the world studying small mammals and discovering new species — said the rabbit discovery in South America could affect how animal species are identified as unique, which is an important step when determining if a species is endangered. Ruedas said it could also lead to conservation efforts in Suriname, where environmental degradation is threatening the rabbit’s habitat.

New Species of Cottontail Rabbit Identified: Sylvilagus parentum. Jun 14, 2017 by Enrico de Lazaro.

PARAMARIBO, Feb 15 2019 (IPS) – At the Bonn Climate Conference in 2017, Suriname announced its aspirations to maintain its forest coverage at 93 percent of the land area: here.

Surinamese musician Clarence Breeveld, RIP


This 2012 music video shows Surinamese singer and guitarist Clarence Breeveld playing his song Ala Presi.

Clarence Breeveld, who played kaseko and other music styles, died yesterday in Houten in the Netherlands. He was 68 years of age.