Tagged: extinction

Despite living amongst plants with large seeds, extinct giant moa dispersed only tiny seeds - Guest Work

Guest Work Apr 26, 2018

Jo Carpenter This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. When the giant moa of New Zealand were hunted to extinction about five centuries ago, the disappearance of the birds themselves was one of several losses. There were nine species of moa that ranged in size from 15 to 250 kilograms. Moa … Read More

The northern white rhino should not be brought back to life - Guest Work

Guest Work Apr 11, 2018

Jason Gilchrist, Edinburgh Napier University This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. A geriatric semi-captive rhino died in Kenya recently. “Sudan”, a 45-year-old northern white rhino was put to sleep as vets decided, after months of ill health, that his condition had deteriorated to the point where the levels of … Read More

We surveyed Borneo’s orangutans and found 100,000 had ‘disappeared’ - Guest Work

Guest Work Mar 19, 2018

Maria Voigt, German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research; Erik Meijaard, Australian National University, and Serge Wich, Liverpool John Moores University This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. “The Big House”, home to the University of Michigan’s American football team, is one of the world’s largest stadiums. Here’s … Read More

Through the looking glass: Fossils reveal a Miocene Wonderland at St Bathans - Lost Worlds, Vanished Lives

Nic Rawlence Mar 19, 2018

It’s the height of the Central Otago summer – barren, dry and dusty. Driving down the gravel road to St Bathans, we’re travelling back in time, down the rabbit hole to a world long gone. Only ghosts remain of this lost world and that’s what we’ve come here to find. The fossilised bones of a myriad of animals dating back … Read More

A tale of two penguins: Bice and Rosie - Lost Worlds, Vanished Lives

Nic Rawlence Mar 05, 2018

New Zealand has long been considered the cradle of penguin evolution. But two new fossil discoveries, affectionately known as Bice’s, (pronounced Bee-chee’s), and Rosie’s Penguins, are rewriting early penguin evolution and have taken the world by storm. Move aside Penguins of Madagascar; there are some new and cool kids on the block! But how did we get to this … Read More

Poor little Pangolins – Driven headlong to extinction by human greed and stupidity - BioBlog

Alison Campbell Feb 20, 2018

Pangolins are strange little creatures, with their diet of ants and termites, and the entire outer surface of their bodies covered with armour-like scales (face, belly and the inner surfaces of the limbs are either hairy or naked). When in danger, pangolins are able to roll up in a ball, presenting only that armoured surface to a predator. Actually, … Read More

Holy Batman! Giant extinct burrowing bat discovered in New Zealand - News

Jean Balchin Jan 11, 2018

The fossilised remains of a giant burrowing bat that lived in our fine land of New Zealand millions of years ago have been found by a UNSW Sydney-led international team of scientists. Near the town of St Bathans in Central Otago on the South Island was found teeth and bones of the extinct bat. The remains were recovered from 9 … Read More

Size Matters: the challenge of being a green consumer - Chthonic Wildlife Ramblings

Brendan Moyle Jul 26, 2017

The one thing that has really changed in the last century is the size and scale of human effects on the environment.   This isn’t to say we didn’t have impacts before. As humans spread over this globe, many vertebrate species became extinct. Whether it’s the giant mammoths or giant moas, humans alter the world around them.  What … Read More

Introducing the Poūwa: New Zealand’s unique and ill-fated black swan  - Lost Worlds, Vanished Lives

Nic Rawlence Jul 26, 2017

Step inside a TARDIS and travel to prehistoric New Zealand and the landscape looked very different. Moa roamed the forests, Haast’s Eagle soared in the sky and you would have met a very tall, heavy and potentially grumpy swan. This is the Poūwa – New Zealand’s newest species discovered by my team (published today in Proceedings B) including collaborators from the Otago Palaeogenetics Laboratory (University of Otago), Canterbury Museum and the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa … Read More

The Lark Descending: are non-native birds undervalued in New Zealand? - Guest Work

Guest Work Jun 23, 2017

By Stephen D Wratten, Lincoln University, New Zealand New Zealand has an audacious plan to protect its native birds. The country has pledged to rid itself of introduced mammalian predators by 2050 and, this year, will spend $20 million on the Battle for the Birds, one of the largest predator control programmes in the country’s history, across … Read More