Angelfish Shrews Squirrels and Vegan Ice Cream

Jenna: Welcome back Creature Feature friends. We hope you are enjoying your week. If you are craving a little more creativity, we’ve got you covered. Here’s a huge shoutout to John Delconte for sending in this piece from CNN Travel about a home-made squirrel bar to provide neighborhood squirrels with nuts. I know what craft I’ll be doing this week….

AJ: As we all probably know, hunting and poaching has had a massive negative impact on environments around the world, and recent findings and evaluations in Asia only support this claim. Science Daily explains that some of the poorest areas in Asia are experiencing low numbers of big mammals, including elephants and rhinos, as a result of exotic meat trade and meager conservation enforcement. The loss of these animal species could have catastrophic effects on natural order and balance. Without more funding and stronger protection Asia will lose these impressive animals to poachers. 

Jenna: It’s always good practice to keep tabs on endangered wildlife around the world and educate others when we can. I wanted to talk about something strangely beautiful going on with angelfish. Researchers are studying a phenomenon happening under the sea: some fish are becoming more colorful. This article from The New York Times says, these colorful fish are mashups of two different species of angelfish. Easily spottable due to their vibrant colors, the fish adopt a color scheme that resembles both of their parents patterns. Hybridization of reef fish have been documented for some time now and is considered rare; however, in recent years, researchers are spotting more and more. The article features some incredible photographs of these fish and explains that this occurrence is possibly due to many female angelfish mating with one male. One of the most striking mashups is the offspring between the Emperor and Bluering angelfish. 

AJ: Now, you might have seen this next piece featured on Fanimal’s Facebook page recently, but it is just too cute to only mention once. According to Live Science, the somali sengi, or elephant shrew, was recently rediscovered after a long period of no sightings. Hiding skills are key traits for little animal survival, this little animal was spotted for the first time in half a century. The somali sengi is a very strange looking animal with its long noses and tuffy hair and really does resemble a teeny tiny elephant.  

Jenna: And if you haven’t read the Black Lives Matter edition of Creature Feature, we encourage you to take a look at it here to learn about some amazing BIPOC animal activists. This week, we want to highlight Kai Nortey and Nee-Neuh Nortey, as featured in this LiveKindly article. This couple created “kubé,” a vegan ice cream company. The Nortey’s explain the hurdles Black-business owners are faced with constantly. Together they are tackling social justice issues all while delivering delicious vegan ice cream. We love what they do! See you next week. 

Animals in the news:

Country diary: a young buzzard finds its heart-rending voice from The Guardian 

Big mammals at higher risk of extinction in world’s poorest countries from Science Daily

Why Some Tropical Fish Are Gettin’ Squiggly With It from The New York Times

One of the world’s rarest animals, African wild donkey, born at English zoo from FOX News

‘Death screams’ of swarming bacteria help their comrades survive antibiotic attacks from Live Science

This palm-sized elephant relative was just sighted for the first time in 50 years from Live Science

Several critically endangered species are vulnerable to coronavirus, scientists warn – Mirror Online from Mirror.Co

An Ohio man built a backyard squirrel bar with seven varieties of nuts on tap from CNN Travel

20 amazing animal tongues from Live Science

Wildlife Photographer of the Year: How many crocodiles can you see? from BBC News

‘SharkCam’ Reveals Secret Breeding Life Of The Endangered Basking Shark Species from Good News Network 

Flamboyant cuttlefish keep a low profile in the wild from ScienceNews 

This Vegan Ice Cream Brand Shows Why Social Justice IS Food Justice from LiveKindly 

Burger King Launches Vegan Chicken Nuggets in Germany from VegNews

Thank you to John Delconte for sending in articles! 

Photo credit to Frans Daniels from Unsplash

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