Cypress Hills Provincial Park Lepidoptera Survey

To date, survey work has led to the documentation of 17 families and 150 species in the park. Of those listed 4 are considered rare and are 12 uncommon, of these 1 species only known from this park. As for S-rankings there is 1 S1S2 and 3 is S2S3 species.

To learn more and see the species list visit: https://www.researchgate.net/project/Cypress-Hills-Provincial-Park-Lepidoptera-Survey

Anotado en domingo, 26 de septiembre de 2021 a las 04:59 AM por mothmaniac mothmaniac | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Results from 2021 California Biodiversity Day in the Park

Well, not a huge a huge number of observations were made in the Wilderness Park on California Biodiversity Day – only seventeen. (Actually, it should be "Days", as California counted observations made from September 4 – September 12.)

Among the seventeen observations were 14 different taxa, of which 11 could be identified to species. You can check them all out here. None of the taxa were new this year.

You can also see photos of Friends at the Park on the Friends' blog.

Because the Park was closed on California Biodiversity Day 2020, our only previous Biodiversity event in the Park was in 2019. That year, when the event only lasted for two days, forty-eight new observations were reported to our iNaturalist project, and thirty-seven different species were reported, including 13 species not previously reported to iNaturalist for the Park.

This year's results seem a little disappointing compared to 2019, but I think several factors contributed to the lower numbers this year. One is that the COVID-19 pandemic is still having an effect. At least one person articulated a hesitancy to participate in a potentially crowded situation with people of unknown vaccination status, and at least two of our scheduled volunteers could not attend because they were in quarantine due to a potential COVID-19 exposure. Another factor was the weather. On the weekends, when most people come to the Park, the average high temperature was 87°F in 2019 but 99°F this year. Whew! In addition, access to Evey Canyon, where most of the new species were observed in 2019, is more difficult this year with the closure of the parking lot at the entrance. Lastly, it's not surprising that we are seeing fewer new species, as a lot of species have been filled in during the intervening two years. As our species list becomes more complete, observations of new species will naturally become rarer.

If you have observations from Sept. 4 – 12 that you haven't posted yet, don't worry. We will keep collecting them indefinitely. And all Observations made in California on those days (including the ones from the Wilderness Park) are also collected on the statewide California Biodiversity Day project run by the California Department of Natural Resources.

Our next planned iNat event in the Wilderness Park will be for the City Nature Challenge on April 29 -May 2, 2022. Observations made in the Park will count for LA County, which enters as a "City". We also plan to have an event in the Wilderness Park again next year for California Biodiversity Day. Although the official dates have not yet been announced, we expect it will be September 3 – September 11, 2022. Mark these dates on your calendar now!

Anotado en domingo, 26 de septiembre de 2021 a las 03:47 AM por nvhamlett nvhamlett | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

The cross of the donkey as social makeup

(writing in progress)

Everyone knows that a typical marking in the colouration of the donkey (Equus asinus) is a cross on the withers (https://www.cfgphoto.com/photo-76699.htm and http://llmcalling.blogspot.com/2012/04/do-all-donkeys-carry-cross.html and https://www.primrosedonkeysanctuary.com/donkeyscross.htm and https://www.alamy.com/new-forest-hampshire-uk-2nd-may-2019-uk-weather-overcast-in-the-new-forest-national-park-hampshire-cute-donkeys-at-cadmans-pool-legend-has-it-that-the-cross-on-the-back-of-a-donkey-is-the-shadow-of-the-cross-as-the-donkey-stood-at-the-foot-of-the-cross-when-jesus-died-the-cross-is-clearly-seen-on-the-back-of-this-donkey-as-it-grazes-credit-carolyn-jenkinsalamy-live-news-image245127926.html and https://www.assn9ranch.com/cross.htm and https://morningbrayfarm.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/cross.jpg and https://myfarmtasticlife.files.wordpress.com/2015/04/sweetiepieandthecross.jpg and https://www.istockphoto.com/photo/rear-view-of-donkey-gm119574061-14670197 and https://www.tripadvisor.com.ph/LocationPhotoDirectLink-g186402-d7348820-i275673905-The_Donkey_Sanctuary_Birmingham-Birmingham_West_Midlands_England.html and https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/LocationPhotoDirectLink-g190743-d584768-i281530503-The_Donkey_Sanctuary-Sidmouth_Devon_England.html and https://www.sandrinephotos-espritnature.fr/index-fiche-58531.html).

However, who understands the adaptive value of this pattern?

All equids have a social habit in which two individuals caress each other while facing in opposite directions. This caressing is centred on the withers, although it extends to the neck and rump.

Mutual caressing has been assumed to be a form of grooming, the main value of which is to keep the skin and pelage in good health. However, at least for the donkey, this does not stand up to scrutiny, for the following reasons.

Firstly, close observation shows that the nibbling of the skin and fur tends to be repetitive on the same spot, rather than spreading out (see https://www.shutterstock.com/nb/video/clip-1026897098-two-wild-burros-donkeys-grooming-one-another and https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=10154986477310267).

Secondly, the main method of self-care of the skin and fur in the donkey is by rolling in dust. Unlike the horse (Equus caballus), the donkey does not shake its body after dust-bathing, leaving the fur dusty instead.

This reliance on dust can best be understood in the context of the semi-arid climate to which the donkey remains adapted. Whereas the horse relies for thermoregulation in hot weather on sweating, the donkey sweats little even in the heat, relying instead on reflecting solar radiation by means of the relatively coarse and long fur. It is natural for the pelage of the donkey to function as a combination of hairs and grit.

If so, is it not possible that mutual caressing in the donkey is not about grooming as much as social facilitation, i.e. 'good manners' rather than 'good hygiene'. The idea is that the cross on the withers might serve as a kind of visual reinforcement for an experience that is mainly tactile and olfactory.

The donkey has extremely well-developed senses of sight and smell. It is also more playful in adulthood than is the horse.

Caressing a partner is no doubt as powerful olfactorily as it is pleasant in the tactile sense, something that we humans do not find to be obvious because our sense of smell is minor and we fail to perceive even intimate kissing as the mainly olfactory experience that it objectively is.

If this line of thinking is correct, the pattern of colouration on the withers of the donkey might be called a dorsal semet (please see previous Posts for explanation of the term 'semet').

But why would the donkey alone, among equids, have a well-developed visual feature of this kind?

The answer might possibly lie in the social behaviour of the main ancestor of the donkey. The African wild ass (Equus africanus) is like all equids in tending to be gregarious, but it has special problems.

Partly because the African wild ass is adapted to such a poor environment, its populations are naturally too sparse and subject to the vagaries of the weather to live in permanent groups. Instead, associations among individuals tend to be transient and, to some extent, promiscuous (https://ielc.libguides.com/sdzg/factsheets/africanwildass/behavior).

When two individuals meet and stand, at least temporarily, to benefit from safety in numbers, the same problem arises whether they are strangers or former acquaintances (and please bear in mind that equids have greater longevity than like-size ruminants, allowing a given individual to change companions over many years). This is familiarisation sufficient for mutual tolerance, using whichever mode of 'social lubricant' is appropriate to the species in question (a well-known example is facilitation by genital caressing in the bonobo Pan paniscus, well beyond any sexual function).

The erratic and even promiscuous sociality of the African wild ass may have tended to be perpetuated in domestication, partly because the donkey, used mainly in the poorest of human societies, has traditionally been owned as a single individual rather than a group. Its socialisation has remained opportunistic rather than predictable.

Is it possible, then, that in the following photos we see not just another case of equids grooming each other (as in the horse and zebras), but rather an interaction analogous - in its own way - with kissing and stroking, aided by the visual cue of the cross on the withers?

https://www.canstockphoto.com/2-donkeys-grooming-each-other-41344006.html
http://www.farmgirlfare.com/2008/05/saturday-farm-photo-grooming-session.html
https://www.gettyimages.ie/detail/video/donkeys-grooming-each-other-stock-footage/685114298
https://www.deviantart.com/orlandoseahorse/art/Donkeys-grooming-each-other-799673623
https://www.bedlamfarm.com/2021/03/27/the-annals-of-animal-love-donkey-sisters-grooming-each-other/

Anotado en domingo, 26 de septiembre de 2021 a las 12:11 AM por milewski milewski | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Journal Entry 1

My research experience on Inaturalist was new, exciting and insightful. This app turned out to be an interactive supportive community where many people collectively identified local species of plants, insects, trees and more. I found it very interesting to study local trees in my project and got to see what observations other researchers had made about the local species of trees around Montreal.

One unique adaptation for my selected observation of Basswood tree was that I saw that a few leaves were on the ground and that this was a deciduous tree that loses its trees in the winter. It has adapted to the Montreal cold winter and hibernates in the Winter.

An adaptation that most of my observations have in common is that they were all mostly deciduous trees! That lose their leave in the Winter!

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 11:57 PM por esha_sarfraz esha_sarfraz | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Helpful Tips and Resources for Beginner (Plant) iNatters



First impressions matter.

iNaturalist isn't just a website to post your observations, but a community of people. It can be daunting at first, especially if you don't know the hidden manners and norms. Lots of people will post observations that will never get identified due to minor mistakes, and many get a bad impression and leave.


These images show some common hiccups with rookie users (I'll go over these in detail below): bad photo exposure, unfocused/blurry pictures (though this one can be persistent—my camera focus is evidence), taking photos of cultivated plants, unaware that they should be marked captive/cultivated and that iNaturalist is focused on wild organisms (this can frustrate people when their observations get marked as casual), taking photos of the whole tree/plant, but no closeup of leaves/flowers, By the way, these are all my photos from old observations. I was once one of you!

However, get past the newbie troubles, and you will find a knowledgeable and welcoming community, and a powerful tool that could change your life! This is here to help you get a good introduction.



Making observations count: https://bushblitz.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/BackyardSpeciesDiscovery_Factsheet-2_Make-your-observations-count.pdf
Getting Great Plant Photos in iNaturalist: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/abisko-plants-and-phenology/journal/17621-getting-great-plant-photos-for-identification-in-inaturalist

These two are probably the most useful in my opinion. Some other resources (I'll probably add more):

Official iNat guide: https://www.inaturalist.org/pages/getting+started
Random Tips: https://www.inaturalist.org/posts/5360-tips-for-making-inaturalist-observations



I've noticed a lot of common errors by users that eventually dissuade them from using iNaturalist. For the sake of all of us, I'll address them below. Fix these hiccups, and I guarantee you will get more ID's and enjoy iNaturalist better!

1: Taking pictures of cultivated plants—without knowing the norms for that

This is probably the most common. People will take picture of ornamental flowers in garden beds, planted trees, potted succulents. That's completely fine! Sometimes I'll find an interesting cultivated plant and want to know what that is. With these plants, however, you should mark them captive/cultivated, so that they'll be casual observations. iNaturalist is focused on wild organisms, and a plant in a garden placed there by a human is not Research Grade material. If you're confused on what counts as captive/sultivated, iNaturalist has definitions and examples here: https://www.inaturalist.org/pages/help#captive
In terms of identifying that unknown plant in your garden, you can always use the iNat AI. You just won't be able to verify those observations with other people, since most identifiers don't identify Casual observations.

2: Photos for the same plant spread out in multiple observations.

Unknowing users who take multiple pictures of plants (which is good!) often post each photo in its own observations. I don't understand why. Maybe they aren't familiar with the system, or don't realize they can put multiple photos in an observation. Whatever the case, I'll just say that in most cases, if it's a photo of the same organism, put it in the same observations. Sometimes I'll even put photos of groups of organisms together, (multiple violet ruellias that are near each other, for example) as long as they appear to be the same species .

3:Blurry/Unfocused/Overexposed photos

While technically there's nothing wrong with these, it is definitely a lot more difficult to ID things if it's hard to make out details.
In terms of blurry/unfocused photos, there are some ways to deal with this. If the plant is moving due to wind, let that die down before taking a shot, of if the wind is relatively weak hold it with one hand to keep it steady. For plant parts that are just fine and thin, which will cause the camera lens to focus to the background instead of the foreground, you could put your hand behind the plant so it focuses closer up (or use a piece of paper, or a notebook). If you know how to manually adjust your focus, that will also help.
Sometimes an plant will be contrasted (maybe sunlight hits some leaves but not others, or half of a flower), and that'll cause the camera to adjust the exposure to either the bright area and make everything else really dark, or to the dark area and make the bright area really bright. I make sure to keep my lighting relatively even (all bright under sunlight, or all dim). If I have a problem with exposure I'll usually huddle over a plant with my shadow so that the light is all even.
As for taking pictures at night... I got nothing. Someone help me out here!

4: Photos of the entire plant (the whole tree or bush), but without any close-ups of leaves or flowers

For identification (at least for plants), you'll need close, clear images of leaves and flowers. Overall images showing the entire tree are usually not useful. Sometimes it can be helpful (for distinguishing the multi-trunked Ashe Juniper and the more tree-like Eastern Red Cedar, for example), but most of the time it is not necessary.
Another note: Some plants require more specific features to be identified. You can usually figure that out by asking around the community or checking identification guides—here's a hub for some of those.

If an user corrects you, or marks a observation casual, don't take that personally! Most of them are just trying to help you learn these hidden "rules". Usually when I correct users or point mistakes out I make sure to keep my tone friendly so you don't misinterpret my feelings. Others might not, and tone can be hard to convey in just words. Keep that in mind!



A good way to learn how to make good observations are to look at other people's observations. After all, there are plenty of veteran users who have stellar observations!
Make observations wherever you can—walking to a class during school, around the parking lot of a supermarket, etc. The more observations you make, the more experience you'll get.

About geoprivacy obscuring observations (If you want to obscure observations near your house, for example): https://www.inaturalist.org/pages/help#geoprivacy
Info on how to use Google Photos to back up photos: https://www.businessinsider.com/google-photos-backup
I suggest downloading photos from Google Photos onto your computer, and then uploading them, as iNat can be fussy about Google Photos sometimes.

I also suggest that you do not start identifying plants until you are well versed with them—say maybe 100-200 observations.

I implore anyone who read this to share this with anyone who might find these tips handy!

Adapted from another location for convenience






Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 10:59 PM por arnanthescout arnanthescout | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Oct 16th - Volunteers needed for biosurvey of future Lake Arlington Native Garden site.

Arlington Water Utilities and Tarrant Regional Water District are teaming up to create a native plant demonstration garden and prairie restoration at the Lake Arlington Spillway. Before any construction efforts get underway this fall, we would love your help documenting existing biodiversity on the site. The project site is currently a field of low-growing grasses and forbs, both native and non-native, surrounded by low-lying fields with wetland vegetation and bordered by native trees. The site is owned by Arlington Water Utilities and only accessible with permission via a gated entrance.

We are hosting our first biosurvey on Saturday, Oct. 16th from 8am to 10pm. We would love to have anyone interested to join us in documenting the flora and fauna of the site. You can come anytime throughout the day and stay as long or as little as you like. Snacks will be provided under a covered area with chairs for relaxing and socializing.

If you are interested in volunteering, please sign up at this link: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0f4eaaaa2ea4fcc61-lake. After registration, we will send an email with directions to the site, instructions for entering the gate and signing in, and a map of the area to explore. If you would like more information not included here, please contact Kimberlie Sasan on iNaturalist at @kimberlietx or by email at kimberlietx@gmail.com.

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 09:58 PM por kimberlietx kimberlietx | 4 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Great Kererū Count day 10

Welcome to the very last day of the Great Kererū Count.

As with previous years, we will leave the observation page on the website and the Great Kererū Count 2021 Project page on iNaturalist open until 10 pm Monday the 27th September - So please make sure you get your observations in by then to make them count. We will then pull down all the data Monday night and have preliminary results as soon as possible (hopefully before the end of the week)

On a personal note, we would like to thank everyone that has taken part in the Great Kererū Count over the past eight years - this project could not have happened without you and your love for kererū

Ngā mihi nui,
Tony & Amber

Urban Wildlife Trust | Kererū Discovery | Great Kererū Count

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 09:46 PM por kererucount kererucount | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

-UPDATE- #2 Bioblitz, NEW DATE OCT 2

Hello everyone,

Unfortunately, the weather is looking pretty dicey tomorrow, the trail becomes quite boggy and floods with the rain, because of this we have decided to put off the Archibald Lake hike and bioblitz until this upcoming Saturday, October 2nd at 10am - if it's still a rainy one next Saturday we'll play it by ear, though with the right gear it can still be a lovely wet wander!

The inaturalist polygon: Archibald Lake - Guysborough County is an open project to add any observations if you'd like to head down there on your own time. Check us out on twitter and instagram @ArchibaldLake for updates and news. Please reach out with any questions or concerns.

See you next Saturday, we hope you can make it and let's hope for a fine day for our accompanying artists and a bit less soggy!

Cheers!

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 09:19 PM por zetsybeth zetsybeth | 1 comentario | Deja un comentario

Day 2 of European BioBlitz!

It's been a great Day 2 of the European BioBlitz 2021

You may or may not have known but the observations you have made on the 24th and 25th of September have gone towards the world’s first ever 48-hour continental BioBlitz! So far as of 5pm we have 28,128 Observations, 4,720 Species, 970 Identifiers, and 6,032 Observers.

We just want to say a huge THANK YOU to everyone who has taken part so far and to keep up the fantastic work!!

We would love to know what you think and get your feedback to help us tell our funders why we should be doing this again next year! Please complete this short feedback form to help us with future projects:
https://standrews.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_26owVghTFwpyHOe

We have had lots going on over the past couple of days including live interviews which have been recorded, you can find them here:

Live Interview with Maike Brinksma
https://fb.watch/8eWbc9t9qI/

Live Interview with Eva Perrin
https://fb.watch/8eWaisIQLA/

Live Interview with Buffy Smith
https://fb.watch/8eW9uOUa_x/

Live Interview with Stephanie Seargant
https://fb.watch/8eW8cxPzGa/

Live Interview with Chris Talkin
https://fb.watch/8eW7mVbjI3/

And quizzes which you can find in the highlights sections of our Instagram account (@ern_intersections).

If you see this message before midnight, please adventure outside to snap those last few photos before the clock runs out!

A massive thank you again to everyone who has been involved - your hard work will help shape conservation efforts, support scientific research developments and land management.

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 04:34 PM por festofnature festofnature | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Fall 2021 Nature Walk (ALP)

On Wednesday, September 22, we went on our Nature Walk to Oakland Lake near our campus. We saw a singing unicyclist, a crawfish, geese, turtles, and swans. We even saw some early signs of autumn.

For this assignment, I'm taking you outside of our Blackboard discussion board to the iNaturalist app so you can share your observations and photographs with your classmates. We will go on three Nature Walks, all of which lead up to an essay you will write later on in the semester. We are starting to gather evidence for that project now.

Please respond to this prompt with:

One observation about Oakland lake as an urban greenspace. Use sensory details to describe what you saw. If you took a picture and identified with the iNaturalist app, use the scientific name of your observation.
Upload a picture if you have one.
NOTE: If you are not using your QCC email, please make sure to include your first name and last name initial in your post (ex: Marie J.).

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 03:58 PM por proflago proflago | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Blue Buttons

Blue buttons are making an appearance in Florida this week! Blue buttons are jelly-relatives, and have two main parts: the float, which is the round structure in the middle (the button), and the tentacles radiating out the side, which are usually bright blue! Although Blue Buttons resemble jellyfish with their tentacles, they can’t swim like jellyfish and instead float on the surface, using their tentacles for prey capture. Some of their favorite foods include small shrimp and other crustaceans, and they are often preyed upon by sea slugs and floating snails.

As always, it has been great seeing what everyone is finding! We would love to chat with our iNaturalist members during our first virtual meeting on October 3rd at 2:00 pm EST (11 am PST, 8 am HAST, 7 pm BST) anyone is welcome to join, just message us for the link!

Thanks for sharing your finds!

-Ari Puentes

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 03:45 PM por goseascience goseascience | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Fall 2021 Nature Walk (FN)

On Monday, September 27, we went on our Nature Walk to Oakland Lake near our campus. We saw a singing unicyclist, a crawfish, geese, turtles, and swans. We even saw some early signs of autumn.

For this assignment, I'm taking you outside of our Blackboard discussion board to the iNaturalist app so you can share your observations and photographs with your classmates. We will go on three Nature Walks, all of which lead up to an essay you will write later on in the semester. We are starting to gather evidence for that project now.

Please respond to this prompt with:

  1. One observation about Oakland lake as an urban greenspace. Use sensory details to describe what you saw. If you took a picture and identified with the iNaturalist app, use the scientific name of your observation.
  2. Upload a picture if you have one.

NOTE: If you are not using your QCC email, please make sure to include your first name and last name initial in your post (ex: Marie J.).

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 03:44 PM por proflago proflago | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Расширение проекта

В структуру проекта Биота Самарской области добавлен портал Biota of Samara Oblast: needs ID backlog (https://inaturalist.org/projects/biota-of-samara-oblast-needs-id-backlog). Желающих предлагаю подписаться на новый портал.

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 03:33 PM por vladimirtravkin vladimirtravkin | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Today, just found observations can be accessed by web browsers in Shenzhen, Great! Thanks!

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 12:32 PM por joshua_sz joshua_sz | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Well done everyone!

Thanks to everyone who turned up and gave the Seek and iNaturalist apps a go, and to everyone who volunteered their time to support us in finding things in the field and in identifications. It was a really fun two days and great to meet everyone.

I see that many records are now being commented on by the wider iNaturalist community - with some being upgraded to "research grade". So do keep an eye on your accounts and do see if you can work with the iNaturalist community to maximise the value of your records.

At the moment I can see 162 observations, of 101 species, from 23 observers. A helpful person at iNaturalist has pointed out 3 other accounts to me that were busy logging from Treborth, but who had not joined the project. I have messaged them and am hoping there is a way they can join their records to the BioBlitz project. If they can they will increase our totals. I could manually compare their species listst to the project list, but that'd be quite a lot of work, the automatic proejct reporting tools in iNaturalist are one of the great benefits.

Have a great weekend,
Dr Alison Cameron

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 10:38 AM por bgyaca bgyaca | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Elementary Guide for Mushroom Photography

Deutsche Übersetzung / German translation

Many observations on iNat only show the top view of mushrooms and some observers than might wonder why they never get identifications. The reason is that the top view belongs to the rather uninteresting aspects of mushrooms, the bottom side of the cap is much more exciting.

Example:
© lpsedillo
This picture could stand not only for different species but even for completely different mushroom families.

Only the bottom view of the cap reveals the truth:

© lpsedillo
This is a hedgehog mushroom, with fine spikes on the bottom side of the cap.

© kalomu
And this is a golden chanterelle, with thick gills on the bottom side of the cap.

Remember - viewed from top both mushrooms nearly look identically.

Here are some very elementary rules:

  • Take several pictures so that at least the top and bottom of the cap and the stem are visible.
  • At least one image should show the mushroom in its natural environment (not exclusively in the frying pan).
  • Photograph several fruiting bodies if possible.
  • For many types of mushrooms, a photo with a vertical cut through the fruiting body is helpful, or at least a photo of a crack if there is no knife available.

@kalomu, @lpsedillo Thank you for sharing your photos.

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 10:35 AM por wormsy wormsy | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Like-size dog vs donkey: a contrast in pace of life

Imagine that you live on a small farm where you keep Minidonk, the smallest donkey you know, together with Maximutt, the biggest dog you know.

Your two pets are about the same size, and they play together in the paddock behind your house.

Which pet costs you more to feed, and why?

Your first thought may be 'the dog of course, because the donkey can graze for herself', but the question is much deeper than that. So deep that if you figure out its biological meaning you may never see your pets - or any other animals - in the same way again.

Maximutt burns up energy much faster than Minidonk does. This is not because he is a carnivore but because canids have a fast pace of life in a physiological sense, whereas equids have a slow pace of life in the same sense.

Even if you lived in a waterless area, and you had to buy all the straw needed by Minidonk, feeding your donkey would still cost you much less than feeding Maximutt.

Behold the body size of the smallest-bodied breeds of the donkey: https://soumo.eu/cute-donkeys-10/ and https://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/world-records/shortest-donkey and https://www.dailymail.co.uk/video/news/video-1609300/Video-Tiny-Tim-Mini-Donkey-enjoys-playing-pillows.html and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MIQKlHSD89E and https://www.alamy.com/old-man-riding-a-donkey-in-a-mountain-village-image158358068.html and https://travel.mongabay.com/china/images/china_104-8142.html.

Now behold the body size of the largest-bodied breeds of the domestic dog: https://es.123rf.com/photo_654533_giant-dog-and-woman.html and https://imgur.com/gallery/OhYPphE and https://www.distractify.com/p/wolfdog-kill-shelter-rescue and https://www.dreamstime.com/beautiful-woman-big-fluffy-dog-nature-caucasian-guard-sheepdog-image212481454.

Obviously your pets, one derived from large ancestors and the other derived from small ancestors, have come to converge in body size through selective breeding in domestication. But how close has this brought them in pace of life - the rate at which the animal uses resources physiologically, as reflected by its metabolism, growth, reproduction, and senescence?

The answer is: much less than you might assume.

This thought-experiment is worth doing because body mass is one of the most important descriptors of any organism. Other factors being equal, the smaller the body the faster its pace of life per unit mass of the body. However, Maximutt is an exorbitant pet and like-size Minidonk an economical one because even mammals similar in body size can differ in pace of life as part of their ecological niches.

In the case of the dog, wild ancestors weighing perhaps about 15 kg have been stretched via selective breeding into modern breeds weighing more than 50 kg. In the case of the donkey there has been scant selective breeding for minimal body size, but wild ancestors weighing perhaps about 250 kg have nonetheless been compressed enough to produce individuals weighing as little as 90 kg.

Given that more of the weight of the body is gut contents in donkey than in dog, we should make a discount to correct for the difference in gut-fill. This brings the maximum body mass in the canine species to perhaps 60 kg, comparable with perhaps 75 kg as the minimum body mass of the equine species.

Bone probably also contributes more to body mass in the donkey than in the dog: equine jaws are particularly solid and the bones of hoofed feet are likely to be denser than those of pawing feet. How could miniatures of the donkey carry adult humans if their feet were not made of really strong bones?

So, after discounting both gut-fill and non-metabolising matter in the form of teeth and bone, we probably have the same mass of flesh in Minidonk, the smallest individual of the donkey, as Maximutt, the largest individual of the dog.

Now, why is it that the flesh of Minidonk has a far slower pace of life than the flesh of Maximutt?

Well, African wild asses (ancestors of the donkey) are adapted to stony semi-deserts - poor environments beyond the mainstream of life. They have evolved to cope with a poverty of resources by slowing down their consumption of food and water, and thus even their breathing (though oxygen is not in short supply). And this economical way of life remains in the donkey because selective breeding concentrated on making the animals docile and obedient, and at the same time as cheap as possible to keep.

So it is in the nature of equines - and particularly the donkey - to metabolise, grow, and reproduce more slowly than do canines. The selective breeding of particularly large or small individuals has affected the species-specific physiological processes relatively little because these processes are genetically 'hard-wired' in the wild ancestors with their respective niches.

The body temperature of Minidonk is only about 36.6 degrees Celsius, whereas that of Maximutt is about 38.7 degrees Celsius. This difference of two degrees - which remains even in miniatures of the donkey and giants of the dog - makes a great difference to the rate at which the cells use energy and oxygen, consume food, produce wastes, and wear out.

Partly because his metabolism is so much more rapid than that of Minidonk, you can expect Maximutt to become senile by ten years old (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aging_in_dogs). Minidonk may become senile only after 30 years. This three-fold difference is a biological clue to the cost of life from day to day.

Though you do not intend to breed your pets, consider the divergent gestation periods. If Minidonk were to conceive, she would give birth after about one year. By contrast, any mate of Maximutt would gestate for only about two months regardless of how large-bodied she is (https://www.researchgate.net/publication/276212655_Factors_affecting_pregnancy_length_and_phases_of_parturition_in_Martina_Franca_jenny and https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8122353/).

Despite the donkey gestating so much longer, its litter sizes are about tenfold less. The donkey bears only one at a time, whereas large-bodied breeds of dog bear on average about ten. The maximum, recorded for a Neapolitan mastiff, is 24 newborns (https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/dog-breeding/average-litter-size/#:~:text=A%20normal%20litter%20size%20can,according%20to%20AKC%20registration%20data), compared with a maximum of only two in the donkey. This difference in fecundity is consistent with the donkey being long-lived whereas the dog is short-lived.

So return now to watching your two pets playing in the paddock, and this time imagine that the oxygen they are breathing is being combusted rather than metabolised. Can you see that Minidonk would look like more like a glow, and Maximutt brighter, more like a blaze? The fire of life only smolders, as it were, in the donkey because frugality is its niche in life, just as it was for the ancestral wild asses.

Because money is a proxy for resources, particularly energy, imagine the different paces of life of your two pets as a measure of how rapidly you need to pay to maintain their lives. Do you now see the real reason why Maximutt is likely to be more expensive than Minidonk?

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 08:51 AM por milewski milewski | 2 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Elementare Pilzfotografie-Basics

English translation

Viele Beobachtungen hier zeigen einen Pilz nur in der Aufsicht, und die Beobachter wundern sich dann vielleicht warum sie nie eine Bestimmung erhalten. Der Grund dafür ist, dass ausgerechnet die Aufsicht zu den uninteressantesten Aspekten von Pilzen gehört. Viel spannender ist die Unterseite des Hutes.

Ein Beispiel:
© lpsedillo
Diese Bild kann nicht nur für viele verschiedene Pilzarten, sondern sogar für völlig unterschiedliche Pilzfamilien stehen.

Erst die Unterseite bringt die Wahrheit an den Tag:

© lpsedillo
Hier handelt es sich um einen Semmelstoppelpilz, mit feinen Stacheln auf der Hutunterseite.

© kalomu
Und hier handelt es sich um einen Pfifferling, mit Leisten auf der Hutunterseite.

Wohlbemerkt - von oben betrachtet sehen beide Pilze praktisch gleich aus.

Hier ein paar sehr elementare Regeln:

  • Mehrere Aufnahmen machen, sodass zumindest die Hutober- und unterseite sowie der Stiel sichtbar sind.
  • Zumindest eine Aufnahme sollte den Pilz in seiner natürlichen Umgebung zeigen (also nicht ausschließlich in der Bratpfanne).
  • Möglichst mehrere Exemplare fotografieren.
  • Bei vielen Pilzarten ist eine Aufnahme mit einem vertikalen Schnitt durch den Fruchtkörper hilfreich oder zumindest ein Foto von einem Anbruch, falls kein Messer vorhanden.

@kalomu, @lpsedillo Thank you for sharing your photos.

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 08:11 AM por wormsy wormsy | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Moth Night is back

Moth Night is back
This year as part of the Great Southern Bioblitz Saturday night is Moth Night, set up your fancy gear or just leave the backl ight on and observe and upload to iNaturalist.org all the moths you find and help the #GSB2021 reveal the amazing #biodiversity of the southern hemisphere. learn more 👇👇👇👇
http://ow.ly/l31p50Gf4Yx
join the project here
https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/moth-night-2021-a-great-southern-bioblitz-project
🇪🇸 Moth Night está de vuelta
Este año, como parte del Great Southern Bioblitz, el sábado por la noche es la noche de la polilla, configure su elegante equipo o simplemente deje la luz de fondo encendida y observe y cargue en iNaturalist.org todas las polillas que encuentre y ayude a la # GSB2021 a revelar la increíble #biodiversidad de el hemisferio sur
🇧🇷 Este ano, como parte do Great Southern Bioblitz, sábado à noite é Moth Night, configure seu equipamento sofisticado ou apenas deixe a luz de fundo acesa e observe e envie para iNaturalist.org todas as mariposas que você encontrar e ajude o #GSB2021 a revelar a incrível #biodiversidade de o hemisfério sul

@natthaphat @vicfazio3 @dustaway @erikamitchell @tdavenport @felipecampos @dawicho @ignacio-de-la-torre @eerikaschulz @diegoalmendras @wild_wind @ecoman @davidclarance @petersteward @elliotgreiner @rafnuss @oudejans

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 08:10 AM por stephen169 stephen169 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Fish Egg Sacs / larva

Is there a way of identifying fish from the egg sac or larva? I have found all sorts of colours & shapes washed up on the beaches around Western Port Bay. I've never noticed these before.

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 05:24 AM por mskimh mskimh | 2 observaciones | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Useful Websites to assist with naming marine flora and fauna from WesternPort

Some useful websites for identifying items on the shores of Western Port, Victoria, Australia

https://portphillipmarinelife.net.au
https://seagrass.com.au/discover-western-port/regional-flora/seagrass-species/

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 05:21 AM por mskimh mskimh | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Moth Night 2021 -A Great Southern Bioblitz Project

As part of the Great Southern Bioblitz, let's make October 23rd moth night around the Southern Hemisphere. Moths are totally underrated animals! On the 23rd of October as part of the Great Southern Bioblitz we are exploring this biodiverse group. Hundreds of different species can be attracted and observed in your backyard. They are masters of camouflage and can look almost exactly like objects in nature such as leaves, bark or even dried sap!
You can also join in in the north, if you like
Observe what you can and upload your pictures onto iNaturalist!
Note you need to be a member to contribute to the project, But all observations in GSB areas will go to the respective projects.

@andrewhodgson @anne875 @bewi1dered @bonniemills @botswanabugs @clairecottage @claudiarose @cobaltducks @dgobbett @dianneclarke @dlync @donna391 @econiko @frogmouth07 @gmgoods @hhodgson @ibairdi @larissabrazsousa @mathourston @matilda_c @maxhr54 @moth101 @navin_sasikumar @owen65 @paradisaea @rogitama @sallott @slang1888 @snippy @twan3253

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 05:17 AM por stephen169 stephen169 | 5 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Calling all Mycologists!

We have seen an uptick in mushroom observations this year in the Flora of Chugach State Park project! This is most excellent! Are there any mycologists out there who would be willing to provide some identifications of mushroom observations? If so, we need your help!

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 04:25 AM por aaronfwells aaronfwells | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Resighting of an obscure acoelomorph flatworm in Taputeranga Marine Reserve

On September 24 Jean Roger (@jeanro) photographed a tiny, bright orange flatworm at the Sirens (https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/95958850; https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/96063712). I mistook it for the tiny, similarly coloured dorid nudibranch Vayssierea cinnabarea but after a couple of iterations Geoff Read (@readgb) identified it as the poorly known acoel Polychoerus gordoni Achatz, Hooge, Wallberg, Jondelius & Tyler, 2009 (https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1111/j.1439-0469.2009.00555.x). Jean’s observation prompted Geoff to post his original observation of the species from the Sirens (https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/96033247). He collected the then undescribed species during the 2007 pre-marine reserve Bioblitz. The circularity of these observations is a very good example of the value of citizen science in documenting biodiversity through both the bioblitz concept and the power of iNat to connect naturalists, wildlife photographers, students and other scientists with taxonomists.

More than 480 species have now been recorded from the marine reserve.

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 03:30 AM por clinton clinton | 1 comentario | Deja un comentario

Rabbit

I found this rabbit during my 45 minute walk around campus. It is a rabbit.

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 02:33 AM por jackkramer723 jackkramer723 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

LPS webinar link, timing and date.

Dear Lorikeet Spotters,

Thank you to everyone who made an observation this week and to our new members.

There will be a webinar on 7 October to 6:30-7:30pm Sydney time and 5:30-6:30pm Queensland time to brief you on the importance of this study and to provide you with an update on our findings so far. This will also provide you with a chance to ask questions about the study or the process. All are welcome.

The link to the webinar is : https://uni-sydney.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_Bu20Y0SkT6inQFD0fAcSSg

We look forward to seeing you there.

David, Lauren, and Maya

Anotado en sábado, 25 de septiembre de 2021 a las 12:57 AM por david4262 david4262 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

A Sight of Megabats

September 24, 2021.
I was at Parramatta Park with my family when I noticed an unusual but pretty sight. A very large abundance of megabats hanging off multiple trees, I first saw them as we drove through the one-way road across the park. I've seen the same species many times, typically at night when bats are active, but never in such great abundance and in the daylight.

While my parents prepared the barbeque, I took some time to simply just look at the bats in absolute awe. Although some might be intimidated or frightened in close proximity to such large animals, I didn't feel such, though that might be because of my prior knowledge of flying fox bats being herbivores. To me, these bats are both cool to look at and also really adorable.

Really awesome, but another awesome sight when night came in the evening. Looking up at the dark sky, I saw this brilliant sight of bats. Bats and more bats flying overhead, leaving the trees and going out to their regular nightly activities. Unfortunately due to the nature of smartphone cameras, I was unable to photograph or video the sight of the flying-foxes leaving the park. It was really beautiful.

Anotado en viernes, 24 de septiembre de 2021 a las 11:13 PM por johncroissant johncroissant | 2 observaciones | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Myathropa of the World

So a tangent to a conversation on this observation https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/95937009 inspired me to do the following! Why not?

Anotado en viernes, 24 de septiembre de 2021 a las 11:09 PM por matthewvosper matthewvosper | 4 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Study of Common Fleabanes in Austin Metropolitan Area: Genus Erigeron

[1] Daisy Fleabane (E strigosis) vs [2] Philadelphia Fleabane (E philadelphicus) vs [3] Plains Fleabane (E modestus)

Taxonomy:
Erigeron
-Section Quercifolium
-E. strigosis
-Section Phalacroloma
-E. philadelphicus

-E. modestus

Lady Bird Wildflower Center Info:

Bloom time:

  1. April-May
  2. March-June
  3. February-October

Habitat:

  1. N/A
  2. Rich thickets, fields, and open woods
  3. Dry, open, calcareous uplands, Rocky uplands in West, Central and North Central Texas west to New Mexico and Arizona. Well-drained gravel, limestone.

Flora of North America Info:

Height:
1: 30-70cm
2: 4-80cm
3: 8-40cm

Stems:

  1. Erect or ascending
  2. Erect
  3. Ascending to spreading (often multiple from bases; of previous year often persistent)

Leaves, basal:


  1. a. Spatulate (tapered at base, wider at the end) to broadly or narrowly oblanceolate (lance-shaped, but the point at the base) to linear, 30-150mm
    b. Persistent through flowering (usually)

  2. a. Oblanceolate to obovate (Oval, wider at the end), 30–110mm
    b. Persistent or withering by flowering


  3. a. Spatulate to oblanceolate, 20–50mm
    b. Withering by late flowering

Leaves, cauline:

  1. a. Gradually reduced distally ( thinner further out from attachment area, like the leaf)
    b. Margins entire or shallowly to deeply serrate or crenate


  2. a. Oblong-oblanceolate to lanceolate, Gradually reduced distally. (bases clasping to auriculate-clasping (earlike clasping?))
    b. Margins shallowly crenate to coarsely serrate or pinnately lobed

  3. a. Same as basal, Spatulate to oblanceolate
    b. Margins entire or with 1–2(–3) pairs of teeth

Anotado en viernes, 24 de septiembre de 2021 a las 09:41 PM por arnanthescout arnanthescout | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

September 24, 2021

One of our group members found the Branta canadensis (Canada Goose) on Wednesday September 22, 2021. We found it in Mountain Home ID, around 4 PM while it was slightly cloudy. The elevation was 3, 147' and many other Branta canadensis were present.

Anotado en viernes, 24 de septiembre de 2021 a las 08:47 PM por eyesonthesky eyesonthesky | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario
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