Sunday, April 6, 2008

Rare rabbit spotted (striped actually)

I already mentioned some of the problems of working with and counting rare species. Here's one of the rarest, the Sumatran striped rabbit. This photograph from last year was taken in Bukit Barisan National Park in Sumatra and is only the third photograph ever taken of the species, the first dating from 1998 and the second taken in 2000. Before that, the last confirmed sighting by scientists of a living animal dated from 1972, and only 15 specimens exist in museums, all dating from before1929. It is currently listed as ‘Critically Endangered’ by the World Conservation Union (IUCN). The story was picked up by a few news outlets such as the BBC.

"This rabbit is so poorly known that any proof of its continued existence at all is great news".

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