Wild View http://blog.wcs.org/photo/ An Eye on Wildlife (c) 2017 Wildlife Conservation Society, All Rights Reserved en-us Sat, 24 Jun 2017 13:46:44 +0000 Sat, 24 Jun 2017 13:46:44 +0000 Moving Time http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/22/moving-time-titi-monkeys-bronx-zoo/
In late spring, the Bronx Zoo’s New World monkeys (those monkeys from Central and South America) move to their outdoor enclosures for the season. One species visitors can see is the Bolivian gray titi monkey, or white-eared titi monkey, Callicebus donacophilus. Bolivian gray titi monkeys range from eastern Bolivia to western Brazil. Titis weigh 2 to 4 pounds and are considered medium-size monkeys. They live in monogamous pairs or family groups and are known for twining their tails together when resting on branches. Bolivian gray titi monkeys generally have one offspring at a time. While all family members occasionally carry the infant, the father has the primary responsibility until it is old enough to survive on its own. Both sexes have the distinctive, light-colored ears that their common name reflects, though the male is generally a darker brown color. I was always a shy child, observing a situation until I felt comfortable, and then opening up and participating. More than any other monkey species I’ve had the opportunity to work with, the “fearful brave” personalities of titi monkeys resonate with me. Once titis get to know and trust their keeper, they come racing over—but until then, they observe from a safe distance. If these fluffy monkeys capture your heart the way they did mine, stop by the Bronx Zoo’s Mouse House this summer to see them.

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Thu, 22 Jun 2017 10:00:42 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/22/moving-time-titi-monkeys-bronx-zoo/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/22/moving-time-titi-monkeys-bronx-zoo/#comments 0
See-through Frogs: Great Dads http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/18/see-through-frogs-good-dads-fathers-day/
Part 2   The reticulated glass frog is unique among the glass frogs because the male of this species exhibits the most specialized egg guarding and care. He will guard the eggs 24 hours a day until the tadpoles emerge—defending the eggs from predators such as grasshoppers, katydids, flies, wasps, and spiders. The male will sometimes go as far as to place himself over his clutch in an attempt to convince would-be predators to target him rather than his eggs. His translucent appearance confuses predators as they are unable to distinguish between the adult male and the transparent jelly encasing the embryo. Beyond deterring predators, the male glass frog must also ensure that his offspring remain moist by transferring his own body moisture directly onto the eggs. Another method that the male uses to hydrate the eggs is “hydric brooding.” Hydration of the eggs is achieved by the male emptying his bladder onto the egg mass directly. Males have also been seen using their limbs to channel rainwater onto the mass. Sex determination of these frogs can be rather easy; due to their transparency—eggs can be observed through the skin in females. The eggs are usually deposited on the leaves of trees or shrubs hanging over mountain streams, creeks, and small rivers so that tadpoles have easy access to water after emerging. Unlike the reticulated glass frog, males of other species in this family tend to their eggs for a day or two, but will eventually leave. Read Part 1 of See-through Frogs here.

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Sun, 18 Jun 2017 10:00:52 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/18/see-through-frogs-good-dads-fathers-day/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/18/see-through-frogs-good-dads-fathers-day/#comments 0
See-through Frogs http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/16/see-through-frogs-amphibians/
Part 1   The reticulated glass frog (Hyalinobatrachium valerioi) is a species belonging to the family Centrolenidae which ranges from Mexico to Argentina. It is small, ranging in size from about 3/4 to 1 1/4 inches, with females being slightly larger than males. The ventral side of the glass frog is transparent, which allows it to blend into broad leaves found along the sides of waterways; this feature also makes the stomach, bones, heart, intestines, and other organs easily observed through the underside of the skin. Typical outer coloration of this frog is lime green with speckles of yellow or orange. These frogs live an arboreal lifestyle and are nocturnal hunters; their prey consists of small insects and arthropods. During the daylight hours, glass frogs typically cling to the underside of leaves to keep from becoming dehydrated by the sun. Read Part 2 on June 18 — See-through Frogs: Great Dads.

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Fri, 16 Jun 2017 10:00:27 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/16/see-through-frogs-amphibians/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/16/see-through-frogs-amphibians/#comments 0
Stick Your Neck Out for Giraffe http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/14/stick-your-neck-out-for-giraffe-kenya-africa-world-giraffe-day/
Summer is quickly approaching.   The trees are almost in full bloom, and the grass is getting longer. Long grass reminds me of the Masai Mara where grass was as high as an elephant’s belly. While at the Mara, we encountered one of my favorite animals in the world – the giraffe. And not just any giraffe, but the Masai giraffe (above). The grass was so tall that instead of browsing from trees, the giraffe extended their necks down and plucked clumps of it to eat. The Masai giraffe are very distinct from other species of giraffe with their starburst, or leaf-like, spot patterns on their skin. Not only does summer mean more lawn mowing and gardening, but the first day of summer, June 21, celebrates these amazing animals on World Giraffe Day.  This year, the Bronx Zoo continues to recognize the longest-necked animals on the longest day of the year. Zookeepers will give keeper talks, training demonstrations, and other fun activities that will inform visitors about what can be done to help these majestic animals. There will also be keeper talks on the okapi (or forest giraffe), a cousin of the giraffe. Giraffe are in trouble across all of Africa. Populations have decreased by 40 percent in the last two decades and need our help. Stick your neck out and join us at the Bronx Zoo on June 17, 18, and 21 to meet some of our giraffe and find out more about their relatives in the wild.

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Wed, 14 Jun 2017 10:00:34 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/14/stick-your-neck-out-for-giraffe-kenya-africa-world-giraffe-day/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/14/stick-your-neck-out-for-giraffe-kenya-africa-world-giraffe-day/#comments 3
Tartaruga em Perigo (Turtle in Danger) http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/12/tartaruga-em-perigo-turtle-in-danger-amazon/
Worldwide, turtles and tortoises are facing many challenges to their survival—and the turtles of the Amazon are no exception. The Wildlife Conservation Society’s Brazil program is focusing on Amazonian turtles, particularly the five South American species of the Podocnemididae family, a prehistoric group of turtles that has existed since the early Paleocene period and were once found all over the world. These aquatic turtles are unable to retract their heads into their shell. Instead, they fold their necks sideways along their carapaces which gives them the moniker “side-necked turtles”. They are in particular danger in South America because both adults and their eggs are widely used as a food source by forest communities. Unregulated consumption endangers both the turtles and the populations that rely on them. Prospect Park Zoo is happy to house several big-headed Amazon river turtles (Peltocephalus dumerilianus) as part of their diverse chelonian collection. These turtles are uncommon in North American collections. There are many unanswered questions about their biology and reproduction. Though our animals are still young, we hope to breed them when they reach maturity. To learn more about this species and other fascinating turtles and tortoises, visit Prospect Park Zoo for Turtle Takeover Weekend on June 17 and 18. Guests can immerse themselves in the worlds of various species through informative keeper chats and engaging turtle-themed activities designed to discuss how human action can help ensure the continued survival of big-headed Amazon river turtles and more.

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Mon, 12 Jun 2017 10:00:37 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/12/tartaruga-em-perigo-turtle-in-danger-amazon/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/12/tartaruga-em-perigo-turtle-in-danger-amazon/#comments 0
Education is a Solution to Pollution http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/08/education-is-a-solution-to-pollution-world-ocean-day-sea-turtle/
Shortly after my brother and I started our nonprofit One More Generation (OMG), the Gulf oil spill happened in 2010. I remember the first image I saw in the news was of a large sea turtle being pulled out of the Gulf. It was caked in oil. It was not alive. We knew we had to act. We spent months collecting much needed animal rescue supplies and then drove 11 1/2 hours to the Gulf of Mexico to help out. It was there we learned that environmental threats such as oil spills, and even worse, plastic pollution, are major contributors to the demise of wildlife around the world (above, a sea turtle recovering from ingesting oil.) We educated ourselves on issues related to plastic pollution so we could inform others. We hired two teachers and a retired principal and created our award-winning Plastic and Recycling Awareness Curriculum written to match the latest national standards for science education. The program is now available to schools nationwide and is being tested in the UK and Australia. We realized early on that education is the key to affecting change in the world. We hope our curriculum will teach the next generation of leaders how to be the solution to issues like plastic pollution. EDITOR’S NOTE: Olivia and Carter Ries are speaking as youth against ocean pollution at the United Nations Oceans Conference on World Oceans Day. Reduce your use. Take the WCS 30-day plastics challenge.

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Thu, 08 Jun 2017 10:00:07 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/08/education-is-a-solution-to-pollution-world-ocean-day-sea-turtle/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/08/education-is-a-solution-to-pollution-world-ocean-day-sea-turtle/#comments 0
Let’s Dance http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/05/lets-dance-pheasant-asia/
Catching a glimpse of a great argus pheasant engaged in courtship behavior draws tourists from all over the world to the jungles of Southeast Asia. This behavior is performed by males at their dancing grounds which consists of an open area in the forest that they have cleared of sticks
and leaves. Male argus pheasants can measure nearly 80 inches length which includes their impressively long tail and wing feathers. This makes it easy to tell the sexes apart as females are much smaller in size (around 30 inches). Argus pheasants don’t fly, and instead, their long feathers have evolved to attract females. During the courtship dance, the male circles around the female with his head towards the ground and his wings extended in two large fans. If the female is impressed she will mate with the male dancer. If not, he has to try again with another female. During the argus breeding season, people may spend hours waiting near dancing grounds, hoping to see the pheasants in action. Sometimes the male pheasants get confused though, as our camera traps have photographed males displaying for the cameras on a few separate occasions. EDITOR’S NOTE: Sign up to receive our favorite camera trap shots from the field to share with your friends.

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Mon, 05 Jun 2017 10:00:34 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/05/lets-dance-pheasant-asia/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/05/lets-dance-pheasant-asia/#comments 0
An Unforgettable Hug http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/01/an-unforgettable-hug-black-bear-pennsylvania/
As a researcher at the Northeast Wildlife DNA Laboratory, a part of East Stroudsburg University, I have had a lot of unique opportunities to work with North American wildlife—rattlesnakes, elk, wolves, and many others. One of my favorite scientific outings involved black bears. Each spring, New Jersey Fish and Wildlife and Pennsylvania Game Commission invites our lab to assist in tagging black bears for conservation purposes. The officers locate a den site, anesthetize the residing bear so it can be tagged, and we collect blood samples and ticks to be tested for pathogens. Sometimes, we get lucky, and the bear has cubs—this season, it was a female with four of them. It was part of our job to keep the young bears warm. As we held them close, they fell asleep in our arms. When the time came to put them back with their mother, I didn’t want to give up the little bear. I had a thought for a moment that maybe she wouldn’t miss just one of them, but I knew I had to let it go. It was a great day getting to hold a bear cub and help conserve a species.

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Thu, 01 Jun 2017 10:00:12 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/01/an-unforgettable-hug-black-bear-pennsylvania/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/06/01/an-unforgettable-hug-black-bear-pennsylvania/#comments 0
Dolphin Dance http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/05/29/dolphin-dance-cape-code/
I have lived and worked on boats for nearly four years. Traveling on open ocean with a view of water all around is delightfully punctuated by animal visitations. Some days, as many as 20 to 30 dolphins participate in an Olympic-level swimming race just ahead of the boat. This particular pair was part of a small group I photographed on a parallel crossing along the east coast from Newport, Rhode Island heading south to Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Dolphins can be challenging to photograph. I laid across the deck on the bow and carefully placed my camera through a low slot to capture this angle just as this acrobatic pair leapt. There was something magical about watching their sleek bodies burst out of the water in a spray of white as they danced momentarily in the world above.

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Mon, 29 May 2017 10:00:27 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/05/29/dolphin-dance-cape-code/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/05/29/dolphin-dance-cape-code/#comments 2
A Young Hummer http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/05/25/a-young-hummer-hummingbird-bird-new-york/
Our backyard garden in Baldwin, New York holds a number of plants to which hummingbirds are attracted. Here’s a juvenile male ruby-throated hummingbird near a black and blue salvia. The adult male hummers rarely stop by, and then, only in May or June on their northerly migratory trek. In late summer, starting mid-August, the adult females arrive with offspring and stay for six to seven weeks before heading south. They visit various salvias, lobelias, tithonia (Mexican sunflower,) and hosta. Hummingbirds are also insectivores. In addition to these food sources, we provide three or four nectar feeders for them. It is sometimes difficult to tell the young males from the females, but this little guy is sporting a bright bit of red on his throat, a dead giveaway. EDITOR’S NOTE: Snap some feather-filled shots and participate in our For The Birds Wild View photo assignment here.

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Thu, 25 May 2017 10:00:57 +0000 http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/05/25/a-young-hummer-hummingbird-bird-new-york/ http://blog.wcs.org/photo/2017/05/25/a-young-hummer-hummingbird-bird-new-york/#comments 0