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    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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Posts Tagged ‘Russia’

Good News in Dark Times for Russian Leopards & Tigers

Posted by Richard Conniff on May 6, 2016

Amur leopard (Photo: Julie Larsen Maher/WCS)

Amur leopard (Photo: Julie Larsen Maher/WCS)

By Richard Conniff, for Takepart.com:

Maybe it’s a little perverse of me, but today I’m going to celebrate a piece of good news about leopards and tigers: Russia has just opened its first roadway improvement designed to protect big cats, on its Siberian border with China.

The Narvinskii Pass tunnel runs for about a third of a mile underneath a major migratory route for Amur leopards and tigers. They’re two of the most endangered big cats in the world, and just to give you a sense of the hazard they face from increased highway traffic in the region, check out this dash-cam video (skip to about 30 seconds in).

Until recently, there wasn’t all that much traffic from Vladivostok down to the border, and there was just a gravel road across the Narvinskii Pass. But over the past 15 years, according to Dale Miquelle, a tiger specialist in the region for the Wildlife Conservation Society, a major city has sprung up on the Chinese side of the border, and a busy four-lane highway now crosses through critical leopard and tiger habitat, with the usual highway barriers on the sides. Miquelle credited Sergey Ivanov, chief of staff to Russian President Vladimir Putin, with taking the initiative to protect the leopards.

So what’s so perverse about celebrating that? Well, pretty much all the recent news for tigers and leopards alike has looked grim. A few weeks ago, I reported that

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Posted in Conservation and Extinction | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

Rare Amur Tiger Family–Dad, too–Caught on Film

Posted by Richard Conniff on March 6, 2015

This remarkable footage comes from the Wildlife Conservation Society. Here’s a composite photo of the animals passing in succession by the camera trap:

tigerfamilyphoto

And here’s the WCS press release:


NEW YORK (
March 6, 2015) –The Wildlife Conservation Society’s Russia Program, in partnership with the Sikhote-Alin Biosphere Reserve and Udegeiskaya Legenda National Park, released a camera trap slideshow of a family of Amur tigers in the wild showing an adult male with family. Shown following the “tiger dad” along the Russian forest is an adult female and three cubs. Scientists note this is

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Posted in Conservation and Extinction, Sex & Reproduction | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »