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this curious life
Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind. - Dr. Seuss
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Lonesome George Not the Last of His Kind, After All?

Lonesome George Not the Last of His Kind, After All? | this curious life | Scoop.it
Maybe the late, lamented Galápagos tortoise wasn't the end of his line, after all. A DNA shocker is spurring a hunt for living cousins.

 

'Now, in an area known as Volcano Wolf—on the secluded northern tip of Isabela, another Galápagos island—the researchers have identified 17 hybrid descendants of C.n. abingdoni within a population of 1,667 tortoises.

 

Genetic testing identified three males, nine females, and five juveniles (under the age of 20) with DNA from C.n. abingdoni. The presence of juveniles suggests that purebred specimens may exist on the island too, the researchers said.

 

"Even the parents of some of the older individuals may still be alive today, given that tortoises live for so long and that we detected high levels of ancestry in a few of these hybrids," Yale evolutionary biologist Danielle Edwards said.'

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An Invasive Plant Is Killing Wombats in Australia | Extinction Countdown, Scientific American Blog Network

An Invasive Plant Is Killing Wombats in Australia | Extinction Countdown, Scientific American Blog Network | this curious life | Scoop.it

When an otherwise nocturnal wombat shows up in the daylight, acting lethargic and having trouble walking, you know that animal is in trouble.

 

When thousands of wombats turn up sick, emaciated, balding and dying, you know you have a crisis.

That’s what’s happening in Murraylands, South Australia, where up to 85 percent of the region’s southern hairy-nosed wombats (Lasiorhinus latifrons) are sick or dying, apparently the victims of invasive plants that have taken over the local ecosystem.

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Spineless creatures under threat, from worms to bees: study

Spineless creatures under threat, from worms to bees: study | this curious life | Scoop.it
The vital tasks carried out by tiny "engineers" like earthworms that recycle waste and bees that pollinate crops are under threat because one fifth of the world's spineless creatures may be at risk of extinction, a study showed on Friday.

 

'"One in five invertebrates (creatures without a backbone) look to be threatened with extinction," said Ben Collen at the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) of an 87-page report produced with the International Union for Conservation of Nature.'

 

And maybe politicians..........................

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