Posts made in December 9th, 2012

Burrowing Parrots in the Desert

Posted by on Dec 9, 2012 in Birds, Wildlife Moment Of The Week | 0 comments

When you think of parrots, what do you see? Bright colours, squawking calls, luscious rainforests…. The first two definitely apply to the screeching, colourful flocks flying over us, but the last; NOT. Here in one of the most menacingly arid and hostile lands either of us have run through; where thorns the size of chop-sticks threaten to skewer a badly placed step; where rivers are dust; the soil is crunchy and tormenting winds curdle and spit out of nowhere. Here where you would think nothing should live; certainly not choose to live. Here live the burrowing parrots!! In the crumbling...

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Endangered Animals: Patagonian Huemul Deer

Posted by on Dec 9, 2012 in Big Toe Blog, Waddle on the Wildside | 0 comments

Key words: Endangered, habitat, threatened, decomposition, extinct, over-grazing One evening whilst running over a mountain pass in  southern Chile, with snow on either side of the road, we noticed some mammals grazing on the hillside. We stopped to look through our binoculars and guess what we found: PATAGONIAN HUEMUL DEER!!! The Mountain pass, Chile Although we had not quite run our daily 20 mile quota, we decided to find flat ground to camp near the river and take the opportunity to watch these very rare deer. We had been searching for weeks for these beautiful animals and felt very...

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Poo Glorious Poo!!

Posted by on Dec 9, 2012 in Big Toe Blog, Big Toe Noticeboard | 0 comments

Key word: Decomposition We spend lots of time looking down as we run, as we need to avoid the boulders and thorns. What we also see is poo- don’t worry not David’s or mine! No, sheep, horse and cattle dung. Have you ever examined the dung of your local cow or horse? Well you should! What we find is a whole community, a city if you like of worms, beetles, bugs and all manner of insects. They are busily converting the lovely moist brown stuff into nutrient rich soil. This is called decomposition. Sometimes you can find grasses and plants already taking up residence in this magical kingdom...

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Q: Can you speak to birds???!

Posted by on Dec 9, 2012 in Big Toe Blog, Questions | 0 comments

From 12 year old Leila, Montevideo, Uruguay. “Can you speak to birds?” Answer: Yes. When we were working in the Eastern Caribbean surveying seabirds, we would get into our kayak at night and paddle to the little islands close to us. Once we were close enough, we would drift on the waves and play the call through a loud speaker of the “Audubon’s Shearwater”, a type/ species of seabird that lays its eggs in the area we were studying. If the shearwater was at home, it would reply! Often it would come down to our kayak and swoop over us screaming its cackling call, as he thought we...

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Posted by on Dec 9, 2012 in Big Toe Blog, Questions | 0 comments

Question From George, Longhorsley, UK “Why didn’t you take Wellington boots with you?” Answer: Yes, we would have loved to have a pair of Wellington boots each to keep our feet dry. A very good idea. The problem is we are pulling all our gear with us and so have to be very careful not to carry too many things. For example: I only have four pairs of pants (knickers) and David only has two, we have one tooth-brush between us with the handle cut off and can’t even carry a reading book! Everything we are pulling has to “win” it’s place. Our knees, hips and feet are too sore to...

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