Archive for May 2015

Bats Successfully Treated for White-Nose Syndrome

May 27, 2015

A rare good news story on the ongoing white-nose syndrome saga: bats successfully treated for WNS released back into wild.

There is some interesting research serendipity that led to this. It is not a cure, and this does not solve the issue, but it is a good first step.

RFI: Cayembe Coca, Ecuador

May 25, 2015

Hi all,

I am planning a trip to Cayembe Coca Nat Park in Ecuador next September to look for Andean bear (and possibly mountain tapir…). I would like to know if the park’ roads are accessible with a standard car or if a 4X4  is needed?

Thanks in advance.


European Otter

May 25, 2015

Hi all,
For anyone visiting France, here is a great site to see European Otter.
Stéphane Raimond, a former pisciculturist, has built some years ago a blind where he welcomes wildlife watchers and photographers to observe wild otters that visit his site.
His website:
An a couple of nice videos:
Including the trailer of a movie recently shot at his place:

California news

May 22, 2015

Dear All,

2015 is shaping up to be an interesting year for marine mammals off California. There is already a huge “blob” of warm water offshore, and emerging indications of a possible apocalypse-scale El Niño in late summer and fall. We can expect a massive die-off of marine flora and fauna (there’s already a spike in dead or dying Guadalupe fur seals), but also some visits by tropical species. Since marine mammals occurring off Mexico and Central America are not known nearly as well as those north of the border, there might be some complete surprises. I recommend signing up for a few pelagic trips in Channel Islands area in August-November.

A few weeks ago an unusual whale was briefly seen during a regular whalewatching trip from Monterey. It was initially identified as a fin whale, but I suspect it could be the recently described Omura’s whale, so far the only whale known to occur on the Asian side of the North Pacific but not on the American side. It is difficult to identify, and could be routinely overlooked.


Mammals in the news

May 22, 2015
  1. What Is Killing Off Kazakhstan’s Rare Antelope?
  2. Musk Oxen baby boom in Siberia: Similarly for gyrfalcons in same area:

– Leslie

brief report Pt. Reyes CA and Martinez CA

May 20, 2015

Very brief report:

I was at Pt. Reyes Saturday night for a wedding, and did very brief spotlight loop around main Visitor Center and out to Limontour Road, both at 2300 hours. Too much traffic, at least for a May Saturday—coming back out from end of Limontour, I had four cars on my tail, all I think surf fishermen (?) (perhaps together?) who left beach at same time. I had reliable reports of Spotted Skunk on that road but presumably if they are around, better to try mid-week or later at night. Nothing small on road but there was one Gray Fox there, another one at Visitor Center, 10+ Mule Deer scattered around, and one Raccoon.

Sunday night at Martinez site for Beaver was better, or at least, half an hour before sunset one showed well, which locals said is the expected time. As prior reports state, go to the parking lot for the Amtrak station (in theory, permit required), and walk across the obvious pedestrian bridge that crosses the creek on parking lot’s west side. The day I was there, local gents were feeding the beaver apple slices. Water level in creek is low but (so far) adequate to support the (one) (more) beaver(s). If drought reduces flow further, not sure — I guess it could go downstream into the main river channel, and in which case, it would not be observable. There also were tracks and gnawed saplings upstream (various vantage points from cross streets) but the main lodge seems to be by the Amtrak bridge.

Charles Hood, Palmdale CA

Mammal watching in Romania

May 16, 2015

Hi everyone,

We’re planning a short trip to Romania in a couple of weeks and were wondering if anyone had any mammalwatching tips?

We’ll be based in the Carpathians near Zarnesti for a week and would appreciate any advice about good mammal spots and/or places to see interesting birds and herps (fire salamander?) . We’ll visit one of the bear watching hides but would love to see bears outside of a hide if possible. Wolves would also be great and I guess there’s always a (very remote!) chance of lynx…

Bats, martens, wild cats, chamois… any advice would be much appreciated!

Sarah & Andy Young

Sarah and Andy Young