Month: October 2010

Eastern North American Destroying Angel

Also known as the Eastern North American Destroying Angel, this dastardly sounding ‘angel’ is actually a poisonous species of fungi from the family Amanitaceae. Its latin name is Amanita bisporigera. It is also known as the Destroying Angel, but this name is shared with other lethal species of the white Amanita such as the Amanita

Alpine Chough

Also known as the Yellow-billed Chough, the Alpine Chough is a bird that belongs to the crow family. It is only one of two species in the genus Pyrrhocorax, and it has two extant subspecies that breed from the high mountains from Spain through to southern Europe and North Africa to Central Asia, India, and


The Ichthyosaurs is an order of dinosaur meaning “fish lizard”. They were giant marine reptiles that resembled dolphins and fish. Based on fossil evidence, they thrived during the Mesozoic era and first appeared about 245 million years ago and disappeared only about 90 million years ago – 25 million years before the dinosaurs became extinct.


The Kosmoceratops was only recently discovered. It was a herbivorous chasmosaurine certopsian dinosaur, that lived in the Campanian time of the Late Cretaceous period. It was discovered on what was the island continent of Laramidia, which is now Utah in the United States of America. Its fossils were recovered from the Kaiparowits Formation at the


The Albertosaurus is a tyrannosaurid theropod dinosaur that lived in the western part of North America during the Late Cretaceous Period, which was more than 70 million years ago. In English, it’s name means Alberta Lizard. The Albertosaurus was restricted to the range of the modern-day province of Albreta, Canada. However, some Scientists disagree on


Aiphanes are a type of spiny palm trees that are native to the tropical regions of Central and South America, as well as the Caribbean. There are 26 species in the genus Aiphanes, which range from small understorey shrubs with subterranean stems, to sub-canopy trees that can be as tall as 20 metres. A tree

Tree of Heaven

Also known as chouchun or ailanthus, the Tree of Heaven is a deciduous tree that is native to north-east and central China and Taiwan. Unlike this tree’s other family members in the genus Ailanthus, it prefers to live in temperate climates rather than in tropical environments. This tree is a large, rapidly growing tree that


Originally from the land now known as North America lived a ‘high spined lizard’ called Acrocanthosaurus. This theropod dinosaur lived during the Aptian and early Albian stages of the Early Cretaceous period. Fossils of this dinosaur have been found in Texas and Oklahoma. Don't mess with an Acrocanthosaurus! It was a bipedal predator. It is

Superb Fairywren

Also known as the Blue Wren or the Superb Blue-wren, the Superb Fairywren is a bird that is common around the south-eastern part of Australia. This bird is territorial and sedentary, and exhibits a high degree of sexual dimorphism. There are 2 sub-species of Superb Fairywrens – one from Tasmania, and the other from the

Great Auk

The Great Auk was a large and flightless bird that became extinct in the mid-19th century. It was formerly of the genus Alca, and the only modern species in the genus Pinguinus, which is a group of birds that are from the Atlantic Ocean region. When this species was alive, the bred on rocky and

Australian Sea Lion

The Australian Sea Lion is the only sea lion species that breeds only in the west and southern coasts of Australia. It is an endangered species, with only 10,000 individuals left after the introduction of the Australian National Parks and Wildlife Act of 1972. This Act prohibited harvesting the sea lions which began as soon

Yellow-eyed Penguin

Also commonly known as the Hoiho in its native land, the Yellow-eyed Penguin is native to New Zealand. It breeds all around New Zealand’s South Island, as well as in Auckland, Stewart, and the Campbell Islands. Tourists can see these penguins at the Otago Peninsula, where they can closely observe penguins from trenches, hides, or