Przewalski’s Horse

Przewalski Horse

In the Chinese calendar, 2014 is the Year of the Horse. People born in horse years are innovative communicators, clever, cheerful, and are triumphant in what they do. (Sam, you are a Rooster and your next “Year” will be in 2017.) I bring this up because the Przewalski Horse is indigenous to Central Asia.

However! It is extinct in the wild due to hunting, interbreeding with domesticated horses, the regular things that humans do to make animals extinct. However! There are about 1,500 P. Horses in captivity and they are being reintroduced into the wild again to graze the windswept steppes of central Asia. The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute successfully bred a foal through artificial insemination, which gives hope to increasing herd numbers. Go SCIENCE!

The real question is, “How do you pronounce Przewalski?” (The name of the Russian explorer who “discovered” the breed.)

shuh-VAL-skee 

Still unsure of the pronunciation? Just use ‘P. Horse.’ It is acceptable among smart people and people who can’t pronounce Polish.

Endangered

Red Panda

Red Panda

What do you get when you mix a cat, a raccoon, a panda(?), and a wheelbarrow full of CUTE? Dat is wight. A wittle wittle wed panda. Srlsly, dees itty bittle faces are so umpy bumpy cuteypants. It’s wediquwous. 

The Red Panda is known by various names in Asia (where it “immigrated” from) such as the “Lesser Panda” (which I feel is unfair and unreasonable), the “Red Cat-Bear” (thanks, Captain Obvious), and my favorite the “Fire Fox.” The Red Panda is a nocturnal and omnivorous animal. They live in cold mountain climates and keep warm by using their BUSHY WUSHY STRIPEY tails as a pashmina and wrap themselves up. They also like to play Mahjong and listen to spoken word beat poetry.

Oh. And of course, like all cute animals who don’t kill for fun, they are considered vulnerable on the IUCN conservation list. Once again, deforestation threatens to make these unique and ADORABLE animals extinct in the wild.

Come on, people, let’s get our acts together.