I’ve been deeply immersed in dissertation writing, so sorry I haven’t posted anything in a while! The next few months are going to be crazy, but after that I hope to get back on a regular schedule.
I wanted to share just a couple of tidbits today. First, there was a Washington Post article yesterday about a new threat to some of the DC Metro Region’s amphibian and box turtle populations: ranavirus. Apparently 26 radio-tagged box turtles have died from ranavirus recently (they were tagged as part of a study looking at survival rates of turtles moved to new locations when construction for the new Inter-County Connector highway displaced them). The disease has done a lot of harm to the amphibian population in the same area, although because amphibians breed a lot and quickly, the researchers interviewed were more concerned about its impact on box turtles.
Eesh. As they point out, ranavirus has probably been around for a long time, but hasn’t caused any known major outbreaks until recently. This might be a sign of the overall declining health of our ecosystems.
No sign of ranavirus in Rock Creek Park yet — here’s hoping it doesn’t make it this far!
In happier news, viewers of a local news show in New Orleans were treated to an impromptu show by a peregrine falcon who decided to hang out next to their “Sky Watch” camera for several hours. How cool is that??