A news site about animals

Dutch Beaver Population Growing Well… a Little Too Well

The beaver population in The Netherlands’ is thriving, but a little too well, as the beaver population is expected to grow from 700 to 7,000 by 2032.  A group of experts is warning that this could actually threaten the stability of the Netherlands’ sea defenses.













The Mammal Society has brought together other wildlife groups to work out how to protect the Netherlands’ important water-blocking dykes from the potentially destructive semi-aquatic rodents without infringing on the beavers’ natural development in the ecosystem.
















Beavers play an very important ecological role in the Netherlands and they increase biodiversity.  In forests, they gnaw through trees, creating space for other species to survive; in water they build dams, which allow insects and plants to thrive.









The Netherlands’ famous dykes protect the land from being flooded.  Without these sea defenses huge swathes of the country would be underwater, and in areas where the dykes are directly connected to the water, the beavers are starting to burrow through the ground.
















Vilmar Dijkstra has been hosting a symposium on related topics and said this about some of the protective methods available.

“People can put down mesh grids underwater to stop the beavers from being able to get to the dyke, or use stones to protect them.  It is only really a problem when the slope from the dyke is going steeply down into the water. That is when the beavers will like to burrow, because it is in their nature.”

Mr Dijkstra says he is asking all the regional representatives one crucial question:

“Are you beaver ready?”


Giant Otter Pups Go Swimming at Chester Zoo


Two baby Brazillian giant river otters, the first to ever be born at Chester Zoo in Chester, England, are growing up and are taking their first swimming lessons from mum, Icana, and dad, Xingu, as the duo makes their first public appearance, after being born in mid-September.








Having been looked after in their dens by the parents for the last seven weeks, each of the youngsters is now being individually taught how to swim now that mum and dad are confident that they are ready.

Happy Ottersday ^_^


The World’s Smallest Dog


Meet Meysi, a tiny terrier the size of a coke can, who’s vying to be named the world’s smallest dog.  She is 7 cm tall, 12 cm long and weighs just 150 grams, about the same as a hamster.  The puppy, now three months old, was born 16 times lighter than the heaviest of her five siblings in Jarocin, Poland.

The Mystery Monkey of Tampa Bay Captured

You might remember back in August there were reports (including my own: of the so-called Mystery Monkey, a rhesus macaque freely wandering the streets and parks of Tampa Bay, Florida.












Now, that “folk hero” simian has been caught, after three years on the run, by freelance animal trapper Vernon Yates, who was called in by state wildlife officials to help wrangle the critter.  He told the New York Times that he was struck by how “streetwise” this particular monkey seemed to be.

Mystery Monkey’s elusive nature and general cuteness made him somewhat of a local celebrity in Florida. He once garnered National attention when he was mentioned in The Colbert Report.

But while many Floridians are amused by the creature, coming to his defense calling him a resident of the neighborhood, an incident occurred earlier this month in which the monkey bit a St. Petersburg woman and officials decided to take action and get outside help.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission spokesman Baryl Martin confirmed to local reporters that the monkey was captured Wednesday when trappers spotted him sitting on a low-hanging branch.  The monkey is now under quarantine at a veterinarian’s sanctuary, but officials plan to reunite him with others of his kind when the time is right.












Many are celebrating the rogue primate’s capture, but others are crying fowl according to the men who captured it.


Happy Monkday.

The Rabbits of Australia


In October of 1859, Thomas Austin released 24 wild rabbits on his property called Barwon Park, near Winchelsea, Victoria, Australia, for hunting purposes. When Austin moved from England to Australia, which had no native rabbit population, Austin asked his nephew in England to send him 12 grey rabbits and 5 hares so that he might continue his hobby in Australia by creating a local population of the species…. and things got, out of hand….

…the nephew sent grey rabbits and domestic rabbits to meet his uncle’s order. One theory as to why these Barwon Park rabbits adapted so well to Australia is that the hybrid rabbits that resulted from the interbreeding of the two distinct types were particularly hardy and vigorous.

Theses Australian rabbits now live in sandy burrows, along a wide fence to keep them contained; and the Australian golden eagles have taken notice…

… Happy Bunday ^-^

Scotty the Cat

This made me LOL, Star Trek and cat humor combined into one hilarious gag….oh, and the look on the cat’s face is priceless.

















Happy Caturday ^o_o^

Otters Doing their Part to Save the Environment













Sea otters may be nature’s secret weapon for battling the rise of carbon dioxide levels in the earth’s atmosphere and slowing down the effects of global warming. According to a new study out of the University of California, Santa Cruz, the mammals play a big part in allowing quantities of kelp blooms to amass and survive in open water. These kelp blooms help to reduce CO2 levels by absorbing the compound through photosynthesis and releasing oxygen back into the atmosphere.

It all comes down to the sea otter diet: sea urchins; a delicacy most preferred by the otters, they feed voraciously on them in kelp forests.  Sea otters help to keep populations of sea urchins at bay, so kelp is given a greater chance to thrive.














In order to get a better idea about the impact sea otters have on kelp forests, researchers from UCSC took a look at 40 years of data concerning otter activity and kelp blooms in an area spanning from Alaska’s Aleutian Islands to Canada’s Vancouver Island.  After examining the data, the researchers found that where sea otters were most populous sea urchins were less prevalent and kelp was better able to bloom.  Although it is an indirect effect, it is important one nonetheless. Kelp forests where sea otters frequent are able to absorb up to 12 times more carbon dioxide then in areas with less of the furry animals.

Funded by both the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the full scientific report has been published in the newest (September 7) edition of Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment.


Happy Ottersday! ^_^

Dog & Deer


With all the election coverage, I’ve gotten tired of competing and arguing politicians, so here’s a feel-good video about two unlikely friends from the Animal Kingdom.


Have a peaceful and cooperative day :-)