Wolves Out West Get Back Endangered Species Protection

An ID judge relisted the gray wolf as an endangered species, saying the USFWS can’t keep them endangered only in WY just because that state is crazy.

Keep reading Wolves Out West Get Back Endangered Species Protection


Help Stop Sending Kemp’s Ridley Turtle Hatchlings Into the Gulf Oil Spill

My personal opinion is, what’s the harm of trying? It could be a total disaster if the oil spill continues and spreads. Why not spend some money to keep these turtles out of the way?

Keep reading Help Stop Sending Kemp’s Ridley Turtle Hatchlings Into the Gulf Oil Spill

Arizona Gets its First Wild Ocelot

Sky Alliance 2008 ocelot pix

For the first time ever, an ocelot has been photographed living wild in Arizona, the Sky Island Alliance announced. This small, spotted cat was previously found only in the southern tip of Texas.

The picture was dates Nov. 9, but just physically picked up from a motion-activated wildlife camera last week in Cochise County. That’s in the southeast corner of Arizona. Geography buffs will notice that Arizona doesn’t even touch Texas. We’ve got 50 miles of New Mexico in between. “This record from Arizona places ocelots over 200 miles north in latitude from where they are found in Texas,” the Sky Alliance says. It looks like its also 200-plus miles west.

IUCN shows ocelots in NE Mexico only animalfiles show them in SE & NE Mexico

This ocelot may come from a population on the other coast of Mexico. Some rangemaps out there, like this one from theanimalfiles, show the ocelot living in both northeast and northwest, Mexico, but not in between. The preeminent international authority on animal species, the IUCN Red List, shows them only in the northeast and not even touching the United States. It would be a huge boon for diversity of the species if these two prongs of the population could meet up.

Ocelots (Leopardus pardalis) are listed as endangered in both the U.S. and Mexico. They used to range up to Louisiana and Arkansas but were wiped out when farmers cleared out grasslands in the 1930s. Its other

Keep reading Arizona Gets its First Wild Ocelot

Q & A With Endangered Species Artists

Lots of environmental causes give gifts when you make a donation. But how many eco totes do you really need? A couple of clever Chicago artists, Jenny Kendler, and Molly Schafer, have devised a new way to help the environment: the Endangered Species Print Project. They create a limited edition art print of a criticially endangered species. You buy it for $50. They give all the money to an organization that protects the species you’ll see on your wall.  The organizations they’re helping are so tiny (like the populations they serve) that they don’t have the slick fund-raising apparatus that supplies thank you gifts. So Kendler and Schafer effectively stepped in and offered the groups both publicity and donations–plus charming portraits of their animals. Here’s how they describe it:

The Endangered Species Print Project offers limited-edition art prints of critically endangered species. The number of prints available corresponds with the remaining animal or plant populations. For example, only 45 Amur Leopards remain in the wild, so for this edition, only 45 prints will ever be made. A different organization, whose mission is to the ensure the survival of the species depicted, is chosen for each print. 100% of the sales of ESPP prints are donated to these conservation organizations. You can check out the ESPP site at http://endangeredspeciesprintproject.com, and don’t forget to peep our blog, which is full of amazing endangered species facts and news. ESPP is an art project and labor of love is run by myself,

Keep reading Q & A With Endangered Species Artists

Save Endangered Species; Make them Pets?

Tiger quoll giving tongue

Tiger quoll giving tongue,originally uploaded by pierre poliquin.

Australian biologist Michael Archer is hellbent to stop or reverse human-caused extinctions one way another. First he tried resurrecting the Thylacine, the mascot of tragically extinct animals, using DNA from museum specimens. Now, according to Time, he’s close to getting permission to let regular people keep endangered species as pets so they won’t go extinct in the wild.Archer, a professor at the School of Biological, Earth & Environmental Sciences at the University of New South Wales, has been pushing this idea to the public for a while, as this 2000 article from the Telegraph shows. He told both publications something like: “No animal that human beings have turned into a domestic pet has ever died out. It’s the ones we don’t value that become extinct.”In particular Archer wants to try to save the quoll, a small marsupial with the spotted coat of a fawn. Quolls eat bugs, grubs and mice, but they’ve been wiped out by fox and cats. Cats often carry toxoplasmosis, which makes female quolls infertile, according the Warrawong Wildlife Sanctuary, which that has been arduously them since 1986. Predictably, as when anybody wants to try some last-chance idea to help an animal, another animal lover pops up to criticize and impede them. In this case, animal rights activists worry it will play into the hands of the pet industry. More seriously scientists worry whether people will be able to provide appropriate homes.Captive breeding has already saved or helped

Keep reading Save Endangered Species; Make them Pets?

Siberian Tiger Disappearing But At Least Putin’s Cat is Okay

Just when news is breaking that Chinese poachers are wiping out 10-16% of the critically endangered Siberian tiger population each year, Vladmir Putin’s tiger went missing. Russians had grown to love (or at least geographically track) this female tiger through Putin’s tiger website. But her collar hadn’t pinged in three months, exciting worries of poachers, who are wiping out tigers worldwide. The Siberian tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) is in special trouble from  poachers who use tiger parts for traditional medicine.

But, Putin’s spokesman announced, the only thing that died were the batteries in her collar. She’s fine and so is a cub she had recently. 

Which of Putin’s tigers is this? It’s hard to keep track since Putin has a special relationship with (at least) two tigers. This is the 5-year-old female one he shot with a tranquilizer dart last summer while touring the Usuri Reserve. The other one was a two-month old tiger he got as birthday present.

The first incident with this tiger — it apparently escaped from trap just as Putin approached, was hit by another dart, but not felled till Putin shot her again — prompted speculation that it was a dramatic stunt to show off Putin’s toughness. But no one questions his fondness for tigers, which he sees as a symbol of Russia. While this tiger slept he talked gently with her, shook her paw and then said good-bye by kissing her on the forehead.

It’s certainly good news for the tigers to have

Keep reading Siberian Tiger Disappearing But At Least Putin’s Cat is Okay

Mexico trying to save the last 150 vaquita porpoises

Mexico just announced it would spend $16 million to get fishermen in the Bay of California to learn not to catch the vaquita porpoise, which is down to only about 150 animals. A website dedicated to saving the vaquita estimates 39 to 84 die each year in nets.

There are so few left that some have even argued they’re extinct, so why bother trying to save them? The Vaquita Marina group says people still do see them–and catch them in nets–so they know there are still some around. They’ve even come up with a handy map of vaquita sightings.They say that the cartoon-faced porpoise “can not be easily observed, since it flees when boats appear and remains under the water for several minutes without having to come out to breathe.”

Go to the Best Places to See Anaimals in CaliforniaWhere to See Dolphins

If there really are 150 left, the program amounts to $10,000 per vaquita–and a good example of how expensive it is to save a species if we let it dwindle so low. What they’ll actually be spending the money on, according to Discovery News, is paying fisherman $4,500 not to fish in the reserve, $30,000 to learn safer techniques and $60,000 to turn in their boat and quit fishing.

To see more animals go to

Keep reading Mexico trying to save the last 150 vaquita porpoises