Author Archives: joshkilleen

Missing the thylacine

Two thylacines in Washington D.C. National Zoo / Credit Smithsonian Institution 1904

Two thylacines in Washington D.C. National Zoo / Credit Smithsonian Institution 1904

I was just reminded by a recent paper of a video clip from Hobart Zoo of a thylacine, sometimes called a Tasmanian tiger or Tasmanian wolf. I have always found it very moving. It’s believed to show the last of the species – it’s not actually known if it was male or female, but the nickname Benjamin seems to have stuck. I find myself wishing that I could see one, study one, that it was still here. Read the rest of this entry

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Clingfish lives up to its name

Image

Northern Clingfish / Don Loarie / CC BY-NC-SA

This slightly disgruntled looking individual is a Northern Clingfish (Gobiesox maeandricus). These unassuming fish live on the Pacific coast of North America inhabiting the rather dangerous area known as the rocky intertidal zone. Making your home on a rocky seashore comes with quite a few hazards – crashing waves, strong currents, all the sorts of things that turn lost sailing ships into driftwood. The clingfish though comes prepared with a nifty adhesive disc on the belly, formed from modified pelvic fins, which allows for a remarkably firm attachment to slippery wet rocks. Read the rest of this entry