Archive for September 2013

Whale stranding attributed to sonar mapping for the first time & a new rat genus in Indonesia

September 30, 2013

An investigation of a mass stranding of melon-headed whales in Madagascar in 2008 blames ExxonMobil echosounder


A prominent tuft of spiny hair on the back, a white tail tip and three pairs of teats represent the unique set of characteristics that describe a new genus of rat which has been discovered in the Moluccan province of Indonesia.


November trips

September 30, 2013

Dear All,

There will be an interesting pelagic trip from southern Cape Cod on November 9. Details here:

This is a bit outside the normal whalewatching season, so it’s difficult to predict what might be seen. In addition to lingering Northern right whale, humpback, rorquals, sperm whales, striped dolphin, white-sided dolphin and harbor porpoise, there is a possibility of white-nosed dolphin and perhaps some beaked whales and northern seals.

Also, I’ll be travelling (by car) from Massachusetts to Hudson Bay and Algonquin Provincial Park from immediately after that pelagic trip until November 16. Anyone who’d like to join me for all or part of the trip (or to invite me to enjoy their hospitality somewhere along the way),  please let me know.

Vladimir Dinets


Pygmy Sloth Fiasco & Hwange Elephants Poisoned

September 29, 2013

Last Monday (9 September 2013), the police officer on morning duty at Isla Colón International Airport, Panama noticed some foreigners loading crates with what appeared to be animals on a private jet. Finding this suspicious, he alerted his supervisor. Within minutes, the local police chief, the mayor of Bocas, the director of the regional office of the National Environmental Authority, community leaders and heads of local conservation organizations were informed about the incident. Little by little, a crowd of concerned citizens from Bocas town gathered around what turned out to be eight pygmy sloths – some of the rarest mammals on Earth.



Zimbabwean ivory poachers have killed more than 80 elephants by poisoning water holes with cyanide, endangering one of the world’s biggest herds, a minister said on Wednesday.
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Beaked Whales off of the UK and Ireland

September 28, 2013

True’s Beaked Whales spotted off of Ireland and a Sowerby’s Beaked Whale strands in the Scottish Hebrides


Panama … November

September 27, 2013

Hi all, I am thinking of going to Panama for a long weekend at the end of November. Probably focussing on the pipeline road and perhaps Barro Colorado and Coiba island. Any advice on places to go, and is that time of the year any good?

Targets for me include Olingo, Tayra, Night Monkey, Woolly Opposum, Rothschild’s Porcupine, Northern Naked-tailed Armadill. Pygmy Sloth (where are these?), Coiba Island Howler and Agouti, and a Margay or Oncilla would be nice.

Any advice? And has anyone been to Coiba or Barro Colorado Islands?



New Trip Report – India

September 26, 2013

A mega trip to India, 2013: Janco Van Gelderen, 5 weeks & about 40 species including 3 Snow Leopards, Lion and Tiger, Urial, Striped Hyena, Wolf and Hoolock Gibbon. Great report with some fabulous photos.


New Trip Reports – Brazil and Quebec

September 24, 2013

Two new shortish trip reports on Quebec and Brazil are on

Quebec, 2013: Steve Babbs, and some notes on a visit to Quebec in August 2013 where species included Blue Whale, Caribou and Beluga.

Brazil, 2013: Michel Watelet, 3 weeks & 29 species including Jaguar, Tapir and a Yellow Armadillo.