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Posts Tagged ‘US Fish and Wildlife Service’

Happy Birthday, Philip Pullman

Posted by havealittletalk on October 19, 2010

October 19 is novelist Philip Pullman’s birthday. I started looking for public domain images on the internet when I was compiling a guide to his trilogy, His Dark Materials. So today I’ve decided to indulge myself and return to have a look at some of these.

The characters in His Dark Materials move between worlds. One of them is ours, and one, the setting of the first novel, Northern Lights in the UK and The Golden Compass in the US, is a lot like ours, but has a number of intriguing differences. One is that the soul or conscience, the essence that distinguishes humans, called a dæmon, is externalized in the form of an animal. In childhood a person’s dæmon can change forms, but once puberty is reached, it settles in one species’ form.

In the course of the story, the main character, Lyra, matures into a young woman. As a child, one of her dæmon Pantalaimon’s favorite forms was that of a pine marten, and that is what Pan settles as. Here, courtesy of the US Fish and Wildlife Service, is a delightful image of a pine marten.

 Pine Marten. By Erwin and Peggy Bauer. FWS

Another wonderful dæmon is Hester, whose person is Lee Scoresby, a brave and compassionate aëronaut. Hester settled as a hare, and this jackrabbit at Yellowstone National Park reminded me of her. 

 

 Jackrabbit. By W.L. Miller for the National Park Service

In Lyra’s world, history has taken a different route as well, but some of the peoples, if not nations, are the same as in ours. Lyra’s father tells her he’ll bring her back a carved walrus tusk from his travels to the Arctic, and one of the windows connecting her world to ours is not far from Nunivak, Alaska. So I was pleased to find this image in the Library of Congress:

The ivory carver--Nunivak

The ivory carver–Nunivak by Edward Curtis, 1929. LC-USZ62-74131

A turquoise ring of his mother’s  is important to Lee Scoresby and Stanislaus Grumman, who in our world was an explorer but when he accidentally found himself in Lyra’s took instruction from a Siberian shaman.

Navajo silversmith

  Navajo silversmith by William J. Carpenter, 1915. LC-USZ62-99580

 Goldi shaman priest and assistant

Goldi shaman priest and assistant by William Henry Jackson, 1895.  LC-USZC2-6391

Posted in Exploration, Fish and Wildlife Service, Historical, Library of Congress, National Park Service, People, Places | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

You Asked for It: Mangroves

Posted by havealittletalk on June 29, 2010

A reader requested a hi-res shot of a mangrove, so I had a look around. On each of these sites there are at least a few — and often many — more images to choose from.

Here are a few from the US Fish & Wildlife Service’s National Digital Library:

WO3690 Black Mangrove Swamp in Texas

Volume1\5CD6962D-A3E0-D2A3-F39EC675A2151B94.jpg (Full Resolution Volume and Filename)

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Posted in Fish and Wildlife Service, National Park Service, NOAA, NOAA Photo Library, Places, Plants | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Louisiana’s Wildlife Refuges Before the BP Oil Assault

Posted by havealittletalk on May 25, 2010

Deepwater Horizon 24Hr Trajectory Map Icon 2010-05-24-2000A good source of information about the areas in Louisiana where the BP oil spill has reached is the US Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS]. They have links to NOAA’s Emergency Response pages, which include PDF maps released daily showing the spread of the spill. To the right is a photo of one of these, not much use in itself, but if you go to this NOAA page, you’ll be able to download the PDF. There are some pictures at these sites of what is happening, but what I have today are images of what is being lost at a few of the 32 refuges FWS manages. 

The brown pelicans of Breton Refuge suffered from the natural disasters of Tropical Storm Arlene and Hurricane Katrina in 2005; what progress had been made in re-establishing their populations will likely be entirely lost by this manmade disaster.

Young brown pelican in nest. Breton National Wildlife Refuge. FWS photo by Donna Dewhurst. Item ID SL-03554

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Posted in Animals, Fish and Wildlife Service, Places, Plants | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

FWS Images of Alaska’s Polar Bears, Walruses and Seals

Posted by havealittletalk on June 27, 2009

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The Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Digital Library  isn’t all about polar bears and Alaska, but since polar bear is one of the search terms by way of which people land on this blog, and because it is just too hot these days, I decided that selections from its Arctic jpg’s would make a good introduction to the FWS as a source for public domain images.  

 But what we need to get our bearings is a map. Here’s one, an 1897 map from the Library of Congress entitled Millroy’s Map of Alaska and the Klondyke Gold Fields. If you visit the site, you can use the zoom feature.

map_image2map_image1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 If you look right below the tip of Siberia as it reaches into the Bering Strait, close to the Alaska-Russia border, you’ll see the island of St. Lawrence.  This area  is where Ellizabeth Labunski took the  picture of the polar bear above. Elsewhere (?) in the Bering Sea she photographed the seals on which they prey, and another huge carnivore of the Arctic, the walrus, for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

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ribbbon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 The first is a ribbon seal; the other, a bearded seal. These walruses also live in northern Bering Sea.

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lisburne

Head north in the Bering Sea and you reach the setting for a few other FWS pictures of polar bears, Cape Lisburne. On the map, if you look directly across from the word Strait, there’s a peninsula, and at its tip is Cape Lisburne, where Gerry Atwell photographed these polar bears:

cape lisburne

In many, maybe most, cases the descriptive information accompanying the FWS images is good. But in others, it is frustrating. Ellizabeth Labunski’s polar bear pictures identify their situation as 40 miles southwest of St. Lawrence Island, but the walruses and seals are far more vaguely documented as found somewhere in the northern Bering Sea. And consider this shot of two polar bear cubs. There is no indication of where the photo was taken, and the photographer is not credited.

getimage

I’m sure you’ve noticed by now a lot of ice in these pictures. The FWS categorizes polar bears as marine mammals. They have their young on land, but follow the drifting ice to hunt. As the ice in the Arctic decreases, their survival prospects diminish.

Look below for some sites I came across to learn more about polar bears.

→ → → → → → → → → →

Departing from public domain materials: 

The following are either certainly or perhaps copyright-protected — that is, not public domain.

A video graphic showing how polar bear migration routes off the North Slope are linked to the Arctic ice pack off the North Slope is featured in the polar bear pages of  Wandering Wildlife: Satellite and Radio Telemetry Tracking Wildlife Across the Arctic at theUS Geological Survey’s Alaska Science Center. I don’t know the copyright status of this. There is also a disturbing picture and account of the first documented case of cannibalism among polar bears, likely caused by the receding ice fields’ impact on hunting grounds for the bears.

US Geological Survey: a blog , Arctic Chronicles, has a posting with video of a polar bears taken during a 2008 expedition to map the Arctic seafloor. Although this video was shot by a government employee, I’m not certain if it is public domain or  if the copyright is held by their creator, Jessica Robertson, Public Affairs Specialist for the U.S. Geological Survey.

Ever wonder what would happen if a walrus and polar bear battled to the death? Then check these videos out (note: Videos are not in the public domain).  Polar Conservation has video of an actual battle. Much blood is involved. For a different outcome, head over to Animal Planet and watch its virtual battle.

Posted in Animals, Fish and Wildlife Service, Places | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

 
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