A-Z OF ENDANGERED SPECIES - TUNA

This week is my 20th week and, I cannot believe how quickly the time has gone, Week 20 means it is the letter T and I hve decided to feature an animal that everyone will have heard of, it is the Tuna. "Wait" I hear you say? "Tuna? that fish I have in my sandwiches every Tuesday and Thursday? I thought this was a project about animals at risk? surely the tuna is not endangered?" well yes I am sad to say that the Tuna is another animal at risk from us pesky humans. 

There are 8 main species of Tuna and the ones I am going to tell you about are the Atlantic and the Pacific Bluefin Tuna. As you might guess these 2 types of Tuna can be found in the Atlantic and the Pacific (no prizes for guessing that). Tuna are basically built for speed, they are the torpedoes of the sea, from birth they start to hunt other fish and can travel at high speed at depths of up to 4000 ft, Tuna also migrate across entire oceans in search of food. 

Most of the tuna we find in our supermarkets comes from the Atlantic bluefin Tuna in the Mediterranean Sea, this is the most important tuna fishing ground in the world. Being a predator of the seas the Tuna is very important for maintaining a balance in the ocean environment. Over fishing is causing major problems in our oceans and new fishing techniques are just making things worse. 

The WWF has been working to help regulate the fishing of Tuna and is also monitoring the population by tagging and tracking the fish, you can find out more about their work here - https://www.worldwildlife.org/species/bluefin-tuna

One of the main reasons I am doing this project is to raise awareness for many of the threatened animals on our delicate planet, one way you can help is to share this and any of my posts on social media. You can also donate to my just giving page. It is a safe secure method of donating money to the WWF and ALL of the money goes directly to the charity - https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/EndangeredSpecies

A-Z OF ENDANGERED SPECIES - SEAHORSE

It is week 19 of my Endangered Species made from balloons, I am a little bit late for this one as I have had a hectic few days but here is this weeks sculpture, it is a Seahorse. I love seahorses, in fact doesn't everyone? they are such lovely little creatures. 

Did you know there are 54 different types of seahorse and they can be found all around the world, here in the UK we have 2 species of Seahorse that live all along the south and west coast all the way up to the Shetland islands. Seahorses generally live amongst sea grasses and seaweeds, they have a prehensile tail and use it to grip onto the grasses and weeds. 

It is fairly well known that the seahorse is the only animal in the world where the male carries the eggs before birth, the female will transfer the eggs into the males egg pouch where they will stay until hatching time, usually about 3 weeks. 

Seahorses have many predators in the wild, crabs, fish and rays being the most common, one of the main problems however is of course the worst predator of them all, Humans. The Traditional Chinese Medicine Trade is the main culprit, it takes in excess of up to 150 million seahorses a year from the wild and these are used for all types of medicines.

Other problems include the Curio Trade, taking one million seahorses from the wild and the Pet Trade taking another estimated one million seahorses from the wild, Finally as usual, habitat loss is another massive problem for these delicate little animals. 

One of the main reasons I am doing this project is to raise awareness for many of the threatened animals on our delicate planet, one way you can help is to share this and any of my posts on social media. You can also donate to my just giving page. It is a safe secure method of donating money to the WWF and ALL of the money goes directly to the charity - https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/EndangeredSpecies

http://www.bowtieballoonguy.co.uk/blog/
 

A-Z OF ENDANGERED SPECIES - RED PANDA

I am into my last 9 weeks of my Endangered Species made from balloons and it is getting progressivly more difficult to choose what to make each week, this week however was an easy one, On a recent trip to Essex I was lucky enough to visit Colchester zoo, the home of many amazing animals and a lot of excellent conservation work. While at the zoo I happened to be near the Red Pand area while a keeper was in the enclosure and it was the first time I had actually seen Red Pandas up and about doing things rather than laying on a branch asleep. We had a nice chat with the keeper and he told us lots of useful information which made me want to feature these cute little chaps in my project

Just like the Giant Panda, Red Pandas eat mostly Bamboo, in fact the name panda is said to come from a Nepali word meaning bamboo or plant eating animal. Bamboo is a very difficult plant to digest and more of the nutrients passes straight through the Red Panda digestive system, during the summer months the Red Panda makes up for this by eating insects and fruit. 

The Red Panda can be found in mountainous areas from Nepal to Myanmar and in parts of western China, because of their dependence on bamboo they live only where the plant can be found, usually on the southern slopes of mountains. Many zoos around the world have Red Pandas and take part in management programs to ensure the survival of this species for future generations.

The WWF is working hard to help the Red Panda populations in the wild, they are helping to monitor the animals and keep track of them and are working towards reintroducing them back into some areas.  As with many of the species I have featured the Red panda populations are affected by human and in the case of these animals a major problem are the Nepalese Yak herders, the WWF are working with Yak herders to help reduce the human impact on the fragile habitat, they also encourage alternative means of income such as tourism and the production of yak dung briquettes.


Check out more about the Red Panda here - http://www.worldwildlife.org/species/red-panda
One of the main reasons I am doing this project is to raise awareness for many of the threatened animals on our delicate planet, one way you can help is to share this and any of my posts on social media. You can also donate to my just giving page. It is a safe secure method of donating money to the WWF and ALL of the money goes directly to the charity - https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/EndangeredSpecies

A-Z of Endangered Species - Poison Dart Frog

This week for the letter P I am heading to the jungles of South America and I am featuring my second amphibian of the series, it is the Poison Dart Frog. There are well over 100 different types of Poison Dart Frog, they come in all kinds of amazing colours and patterns with unusual names such as the Strawberry Poison Frog and the Golden Leaf Folding Frog. Beautiful as they are this cute little frog is actually one of the worlds most poisonous animals with one type of frog containing enough poison to kill over 100 people, some of the frogs are so poisonous they are lethal to touch.

The Poison Dart frog can be found exclusively in the Amazon rain forest, living mainly on the forest floors, the eat various insects such as ants, flies and termites. as you can imagine living in the Amazon rainforest the main threat to these beautiful little creatures is habitat loss, vast areas of the rainforest are constantly being cleared and turned into farmland while the trees are turned into timber. over the last 40 years over 20% of the Amazon rainforest has been cleared.

To find out more about the Poison Dart Frog and many other animals at risk from extinction check out the WWF website here – http://www.worldwildlife.org/species/poison-dart-frog

One of the main reasons I am doing this project is to raise awareness for many of the threatened animals on our delicate planet, one way you can help is to share this and any of my posts on social media. You can also donate to my just giving page. It is a safe secure method of donating money to the WWF and ALL of the money goes directly to the charity.

Thanks go to the WWF for supporting my project and thanks to those who have donated so far.

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A-Z of Endangered Species – Hairy Nosed Otter

This week I am taking a look at Otters, in particular one of the least known animals on the planet, the Hairy Nosed Otter. This little chap was thought to be extinct up until 1998, since then a few small populations have been discovered in Southeast Asia. Because there are so few of the animals and they are very similar to other otters in the area very little about them is known. They live in coastal areas and rivers in Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia and Vietnam plus a few other remote areas. and feed on Fish and Crustaceans.

Otters can be found all over the world and range in size from the giant South American Otter which is nearly 2 meters long to the Oriental Small Clawed Otter which is just 70cm long. All Otters are at risk from various different threats, the usual suspects being habitat loss, pollutants and poaching. The Japanese River Otter sadly became extinct in the late 20th century do to hunting and then habitat loss, there are constant efforts to prove the existence of any of these animals in the wild in the hope that like the Hairy Nosed Otter some may have survived however none have yet been discovered. 

One of the main reasons I am doing this project is to raise awareness for many of the threatened animals on our delicate planet, one way you can help is to share this and any of my posts on social media. You can also donate to my just giving page. It is a safe secure method of donating money to the WWF and ALL of the money goes directly to the charity.

Thanks go to the WWF for supporting my project and thanks to those who have donated so far. 
Next week it is the Letter P, any guesses?


www.bowtieballoonguy.co.uk/blog