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1 hour ago, bcl05 said:

I'm in Costa Rica right now and got great shots of the red-headed barbet yesterday.  The wildlife here is breathtaking.   Some of my favorites so far:




Fun fact:  Sloth fur has symbiotic relationship with green algae


Sloth hair is long and coarse and depending on the species can contain either a number of grooves or irregular transverse cracks that increase in number and size with the age of the animal. These features are ideal for inhabitation by a wide variety of organisms, ranging from moths, beetles, and ****roaches to ciliates, fungi, and algae.


It is a popular assumption that algae in particular form a symbiotic relationship with the sloth, obtaining shelter and a good supply of water as sloth fur absorbs water extremely readily, and providing in return camouflage and extra nutrients via diffusion and absorption through the hair and skin.


New research published recently in BMC Evolutionary Biology is the first to use molecular methods to explore evolutionary relationships among the algae inhabiting the fur of all six sloth species.


Milla Suutari and colleagues found that the predominant algae inhabiting sloth fur was Trichophilus welckeri. It is passed directly from mother to offspring and young sloths gain the algae and other parasites by the time they are a few weeks old. This species of algae is host specific and has not been found to occur in any other environment. 


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Here’s an unusual sunrise that was captured a few days ago in Qatar. A solar eclipse was underway as the Sun began rising above the horizon, making the Sun look like it was split into two pieces (and like red horns rising into the sky).

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Good morning! This bird is so colorful! Below is the text of the photo.


~ Plum-headed parakeet (Psittacula cyanocephala) 
~ photo by 👉 Santhosh kumar 
~ The plum-headed parakeet is a parakeet in the family Psittacidae. It is endemic to the Indian Subcontinent and was once thought to be conspecific with the blossom-headed parakeet (Psittacula roseata) but was later elevated to a full species.





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Here in the valley folks are revving up for the annual Bald Eagle festival. Okay. It's not really called that but it does appear to like that. For the next month or so folks will be driving around looking to get pics of the Eagles as they prep for their nesting season. This means hanging out near the cows waiting for calves to be born so they can feed on the afterbirth. Yeah. I know.  It's not uncommon to see cars lined up along side of the main North/South highway going through the valley hoping to get pics of them. Cattle ranches line both sides of the highway for about 10 miles and when the cows get in close to the highway,(or the numerous back roads in the area),folks are stopping.  The annual touring event called Eagles and Agriculture is sold out already.  Got the camera in the car right now just in case. :) One of many pics folks have taken over the years. 


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  • 2 weeks later...





The fall itself only flows when the snow has built up enough and begins to melt. The snow conditions also have to line up with the last two weeks of February, when the Sun shines just right across the edge of El Capitan to illuminate the water. The sky itself also has to be very clear for the light to react correctly.


The temperamental conditions of the Firefall meant that very few knew about it for decades. Renowned National parks photographer Ansel Adams snapped images of the fall in the mid-century, but because he used black and white, historians aren’t even sure he knew the flow turned red. It wasn’t until the 1970s that the first picture of the Firefall is known to exist, but, since then, photographers from all over the world have gathered each February hoping for a chance at seeing the Firefall for themselves.

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Photo of mice squabbling on subway platform wins prestigious photography award.


London (CNN) — The sight of two mice scurrying across a London Underground platform in the evening is, to many, an unwelcome feature of life in the city.


But a young photographer is hoping his award-winning shot changes that perception.

Sam Rowley's "Station Squabble" has been picked from more than 48,000 images to claim a wildlife photography award from London's Natural History Museum, voted for by the public.
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