Archive for June 2015

New Trip Report – Tuscany

June 30, 2015

Tuscany, 2015: Mark Hows, 1 week & 15 species including Porcupine and Beech Marten.


Calling All Rodent Photographers: Request for Images for the next HMW

June 29, 2015

I am posting this at the request of José Luis Copete from the Handbook of the Mammals of the World series


Dear Photographer,

We are writing to inform you that the Handbook of the Mammals of the World series is well underway. So much so that we have already published four volumes – 1 (Carnivores), 2 (Hoofed Mammals), 3 (Primates) and 4 (Sea Mammals) – and Volume 5, Monotremes and Marsupials is already printed. At present, we are working on Volume 6, Rodents and Lagomorphs, for which we are looking for photographic material for possible publication. The families included are the following:

Ochotonidae (Pikas), Leporidae (Hares and Rabbits), Castoridae (Beavers), Heteromyidae (Pocket Mice, Kangaroo Rats and Kangaroo Mice), Geomyidae (Pocket Gophers), Anomaluridae (Anomalures or Scaly-tailed Squirrels), Pedetidae (Springhares), Ctenodactylidae (Gundis), Diatomydae (Kha-nyou or Laotian Rock Rat), Hystricidae (Old World Porcupines), Thryonomyidae (Cane Rats), Petromuridae (Dassie Rat), Heterocephalidae (Naked Mole-rat), Bathyergidae (African Mole-rat or Blesmols), Cuniculidae (Pacas), Caviidae (Capybara, Mara, Guinea Pig, Cavies, and relatives), Dasyproctidae (Agoutis and Acouchis), Chinchillidae (Chinchillas and Viscachas), Dinomyidae (Pacarana), Abrocomidae (Chinchilla Rats and Inca Rats), Ctenomyidae (Tuco-tucos), Octodontidae (Viscacha Rats, Degus, Rock Rats and Coruro), Echimyidae (South American Spiny Rats, Coypus and Hutias), Aplodontiidae (Mountain Beaver), Sciuridae (Tree, Flying and Ground Squirrels, Chipmunks, Prairie Dogs and Marmots), Gliridae (Dormouses), Sminthidae (Birch Mice), Zapodidae (Jumping Mice), Dipodidae (Jerboas and relatives), Platacanthomyidae (Oriental Dormice), Spalacidae (Muroid Mole-rats), Calomyscidae (Brush-tailed Mice), Nesomyidae (Pouched Rats and Climbing Mice), Cricetidae (True Hamsters, Voles, Lemmings and New World Rats and Mice), Muridae (Mice and Rats).

Please send any photos you wish to be considered for publication in these volumes as soon as possible, and by 31 August 2015 at the latest. We would like to remind you that wherever possible we prefer photos in which aspects of behaviour such as breeding, predating, feeding, locomotion, etc. are illustrated. Although those photos which have clearly been taken in the wild stand a better chance of being selected, we are aware that we might also have to include portraits and pictures of species in captivity. You might also like to note that we offer the same fee as on previous volumes for the non-exclusive, one-time use of each image published in either of the volumes.

All photographic material should be sent to the following address:

José Luis Copete
Lynx Edicions
Montseny, 8
08193 Bellaterra, Barcelona

Regarding the submission of the digital photographs, please send them on a CD-ROM or DVD-ROM for PC. We kindly request you to label each of the photograph files including the scientific name of the species shown together with the locality of the photo and the initial of your first name and your surname. For example:

Sciurus vulgaris London UK John Smith 1.jpeg

Preferably send original files (jpeg/tif, or raw/nef) in high quality resolution (the original, high-resolution, uncropped file), at 300 dpi to be published at 20 cm wide.
DO NOT SEND SCANNED SLIDES as we prefer to receive original slides rather than scanned files, since the resulting file is usually not of as high quality as the original photo.

Should you send us your photos by courier, in order to avoid being charged high customs duties, we would kindly ask you to please clearly write the following on the parcel and delivery note: “Sample slides for scientific use. Of no commercial value. To be returned to sender”. Thank you in advance for your cooperation in this matter.

In the case of sendings of few pictures, or not too many, it’s fine to be sent by email, Dropbox or WeTransfer, provided they are labeled clearly to avoid misidentifications of the species.

Do not hesitate to contact us should you have any questions about any of this.
We look forward to hearing from you soon, and of course, to receiving your photos for Volume 6 of HMW!

With best wishes,
José Luis Copete

José Luis Copete
Handbook of the Birds of the World-Alive
Handbook of the Mammals of the World

Lynx Edicions
Montseny, 8
E-08193 Bellaterra, Barcelona, Spain.

Phone: +34-93 594 77 10
Fax: +34-93 592 09 69

Pika ID (Arunachal)

June 27, 2015

I photographed this Pika near Sela Pass in Arunachal Pradesh, India in an alpine meadow at about 4200 meters elevation. Any thoughts on the ID? My guess is Large-eared Pika based on the length of the ear hairs. What resources would you recommend for making an identification? I’ll post a trip report later.



Another Bat ID Request

June 26, 2015

I took this picture in January and forgot about it.  This bat was on the side of the house we just purchased in Pima county Arizona.  Based on some research it seems to look like a myotis of some sort.  But, I am a real novice with bats.  It was about 4 or 5 inches in length.

Does anyone have any guesses?

Thanks in advance.



Bat ID (Tanzania)

June 23, 2015

If anyone knows more about Tanzanian bats than I do (which shouldn’t be hard as I know basically nothing!) then would you try to ID this species seen at Speke Bay on Lake Victoria (by David Bishop).

My best guess is Hairy Slit-faced Bat but that is very much a guess…




RFI Chipmunk near Yellowstone National Park

June 22, 2015

Attached are two images of a chipmunk sp. taken 15 June 2015 at the Rock Creek Scenic Overlook near Red Lodge Montana, on our way to the NE entrance of Yellowstone.  I believe three species of chipmunk are known from the area.  Can anybody help identify this one from the photos?  Thanks in advance.

. ChipmunkP1030223 ChipmunkP1030225

Mammals in the News

June 22, 2015

A few recent articles.

While the Eastern Cougar has been declared extinct, animals in the West remain bold (as do Colorado house cats!). Israeli Bee-eaters are also pretty bold too as these incredible photos of one eating a bat show.

Most of you will have read about the depressing report claiming the Earth is entering the 6th great extinction phase. I found other reports even more depressing over the past couple of weeks. Articles like this one – on Rhino poaching in South Africa – and this one – on Tanzania’s Elephants – leave little room for hope. Elephant and Rhino conservation is rooted within much broader systemic problems that are seemingly intractable without stopping demand for Rhino horn and ivory. Meanwhile I had no idea that Dholes were so endangered – I’ve seen them several times in India and Thailand.

Climate change is one of the most important factors driving the 6th great extinction. This article suggests Polar Bears may be able to change their diet to adapt (though people like Moreten Joergensen argue that Polar Bear hunting presents a huge risk to the species, notwithstanding climate change).

Don’t forget you can get more mammal stories via the mammalwatching page on facebook too.