strange behaviors

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  • Reviews for Richard Conniff’s Books

    Every Creeping Thing: True Tales of Faintly Repulsive Wildlife: “Conniff is a splendid writer–fresh, clear, uncondescending, and with never a false step; one can’t resist quoting him.” (NY Times Book Review)

    The Species Seekers:  Heroes, Fools, and the Mad Pursuit of Life on Earth by Richard Conniff is “a swashbuckling romp” that “brilliantly evokes that just-before Darwin era” (BBC Focus) and “an enduring story bursting at the seams with intriguing, fantastical and disturbing anecdotes” (New Scientist). “This beautifully written book has the verve of an adventure story” (Wall St. Journal)

    Swimming with Piranhas at Feeding Time by Richard Conniff  is “Hilariously informative…This book will remind you why you always wanted to be a naturalist.” (Outside magazine) “Field naturalist Conniff’s animal adventures … are so amusing and full color that they burst right off the page …  a quick and intensely pleasurable read.” (Seed magazine) “Conniff’s poetic accounts of giraffes drifting past like sail boats, and his feeble attempts to educate Vervet monkeys on the wonders of tissue paper will leave your heart and sides aching.  An excellent read.” (BBC Focus magazine)

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Feast Your Eyes: Bolivia’s Madidi National Park

Posted by Richard Conniff on September 12, 2012

A little more than 20 years ago, a group of naturalists visited an area on the eastern slopes of the Andes in Bolivia and  helped bring international attention to an Amazonian region of incredible, and unsuspected, diversity.   (I wrote about two of them, birder Ted Parker and botanist Al Gentry in this article last year.)  As a result in 1995, Bolivia created the Madidi National Park, protecting 4.5 million acres, an area the size of New Jersey, and all the species within it.

Now the Wildlife Conservation Society has put together a report showing that Madidi National Park contains 11 percent of the world’s birds (just as Parker had predicted), more than 200 species of mammals, almost 300 types of fish, and 12,000 plant varieties.

WCS also put wildlife photographer Mileniusz Spanowicz on the scene, and I have nothing to say but feast your eyes

A juvenile harpy eagle, the most powerful bird of prey in the world. Photo: Mileniusz Spanowicz/WCS

The crested forest toad, one of an estimated 100+ species of amphibians in the Madidi park. Photo: Mileniusz Spanowicz/WCS

One of more than 1000 species of butterflies estimated for Madidi park. Photo: Mileniusz Spanowicz/WCS

A juvenile wattled jacana, one of more than 920 species birds so far registered for the Madidi park. Photo: Mileniusz Spanowicz/WCS


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