species rediscovery

From saddle cover to media sensation: the story of the yellow-tailed woolly monkey

During his famous 5 year-long expedition to Latin America (1799-1804), Alexander von Humboldt collected,  together with his naturalist partner, Aimé Bonpland, around 60,000 plant specimens and an unknown number of animal specimens that we can safely assume to be in the thousands. Some of these specimens were being shown and described to the scientific world for the first time, including the peculiar yellow-tailed woolly monkey. However, the monkey specimens weren’t caught by Humboldt or Bonpland. They were the flat skins…

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Now you see it, now you don’t: the troubled tale of the estuarine pipefish

The estuarine pipefish, has been playing a frightening game of hide-and-seek for decades.  Not only was this pipefish thought to be extinct once, it was feared to have disappeared from the world a second time… only to be discovered yet again by scientists. You may wonder, just as we did, why this species has been lost and found so many times. What is it about this fish that makes it so vulnerable to extinction and why is it struggling to…

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Searching for the Santa Marta Toro: A tale of a Roach & a Rat

Off the coast of northern Colombia lies a formidable mountain, which towers over the small Caribbean city of Santa Marta. The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta (SNSM) is the tallest coastal mountain range in the world, rising from sea level to over 5,700 m. Older than the Andes, the Sierra Nevada’s dramatic topography has made this mountain the crown jewel of the Colombian coastline. Aside from its majestic beauty, the SNSM boasts high levels of cultural and biological diversity. There…

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