Mozambique Diary: Shooting bats

My entire last month was a blur of hectic activity, related mostly to the opening of the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Laboratory in Gorongosa National Park. This kept me from updating the blog, but it was definitely worth it – the Lab is a fantastic facility that will serve as a research base to current and…

Empusids

In about a week I should be back in Mozambique and this blog will likely get more interesting. We have an exciting project developing in Gorongosa National Park, one that is bound to generate a lot of good data and influence biodiversity science in the country for years to come. More about it soon. But…

Night callers

At first I didn’t know what woke me up. The night was silent and nothing but a faint warble of tree crickets could be heard outside my tent. For a few of minutes I just lay there, foggily trying to figure out what disturbed my sleep but soon started to drift off. Suddenly, there it…

Mozambique Diary: Somebody has to clean this mess

A friend of mine once compared holding a dung beetle in your hand to kissing a dog on the snout – both feel kind of good, until you think of the last thing they have probably been rubbing against. At least with dogs there is some room for other options, but there is no such…

Mozambique Diary: The Abominable Frogman

If frogs tell their children scary stories, one of them certainly must be about the Abominable Frogman, a strange, giant creature that comes in the middle of the night to snatch unsuspecting frogs and take them away. And, like so many scary stories, this one would have a kernel of truth in it, for the…

Mozambique Diary: The Lizard Quest

Sitting on the dusty floor of a makeshift laboratory tent Harith Farooq carefully folded a piece of fine, steel mesh into a foot-long cylinder, then weaved in a stretch of a thick wire along its edge. Finally, he carefully attached a neck of an empty water bottle to one of the ends and looked at…