Manchuria, aka northeast China

Trees and forests of continental Asia

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Neil
Posts: 143
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 2:17 pm

Re: Manchuria, aka northeast China

Post by Neil » Wed Nov 23, 2011 7:19 am

Dear NTS,

Apologies for dropping off for a bit. My wife and I are in the midst of baby bliss. You all are gonna love his birthdate: 10:10 am on 11|11|11. Anyhow, wanted to post this; apologies if it is already posted.

A wild Amur tiger was caught on camera in the
Heilongjiang Province in the mountainous Wandashan area of the Amur-Heilong eco-region
: http://goo.gl/6WsWq

This region is a good bit further north than where I was last month. But, besides being good news for conservation, it drives home the point, for me, that this part of China - http://goo.gl/uVBXp - is truly hinterland.

neil

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dbhguru
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Re: Manchuria, aka northeast China

Post by dbhguru » Wed Nov 23, 2011 9:07 am

Neil,

Thanks for posting this. The Amur (or Siberian) tiger is one of my all time favorite animals. It is an awesome predator. It is interesting to observe how often one sees the tiger as a symbol in Asian culture, from Thailand east to Japan. The species once roamed all the way west to Iran. While tigers there have long been gone there, genetic analysis has shown that the Caucasian subspecies is the same as the Siberian. The original home of the species is disputed, although China is frequently mentioned. It is fascinating to consider why stripes evolved in the tiger, whereas the lion developed a solid, tawny coat. In Asia, they often occupied the same habitat.

Interestingly, the big cats present us with another area where measuring often goes awry. Measuring for height and length and weighing big cats presents obvious challenges well beyond what we accept in NTS with trees, but the comparison is valid in terms of the propagation of misinformation. I once remember a nature show on the Asiatic lion, which is almost extinct except for a small area in India, the Gir Forest. The program was discussing the challenges to survival faced by the lions in Gir. One threat mentioned was competition with tigers. The program showed a lone tiger walking, probably a male around 375 lbs, judging by its appearance. It was lank. The narrator said that the tiger, "weighing a hundred lbs more than the lion, could easily kill the latter." Foolish statements and comparisons such as these seem to be the norm in nature shows targeted for the general public. There probably isn't much difference in the average weights for the two species in that area of India, and male lions are incredible fighting machines. I wouldn't bet money either way on the outcome of a brawl.

I still hope you'll consider stuffing us into your luggage on your next trip to the Orient. All my travels there were courtesy of Uncle Sam. Not the same thing.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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Neil
Posts: 143
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 2:17 pm

Re: Manchuria, aka northeast China

Post by Neil » Fri Nov 25, 2011 12:34 am

whoa Bob! aficionado on tigers, too. who knew? [though i am not too surprised you are on the 'potential for mis-measuring line].

good stuff!

neil

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Chris
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Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2011 7:52 pm

Re: Manchuria, aka northeast China

Post by Chris » Fri Nov 25, 2011 11:33 pm

Seriously off topic, but has anyone else read "Monsters of God" by David Quammen [of Song of Dodo fame]? In it he not only discusses the biology of large predators that with some regularity kill and eat people, but also how people that live in their habitats interact with them. The Siberian Tiger of east Russia and the Lions in Gir Forest are two examples. Really good book if anyone gets a chance.

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dbhguru
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Re: Manchuria, aka northeast China

Post by dbhguru » Sat Nov 26, 2011 8:40 am

Chris,

Thanks for the tip. That book is a must read for me. Along with mountains, waterfalls, forests and trees, the big predators have always been a show stopper for me. Naturally my measuring gene kicks in and I have to know facts and figures about them and how the data were collected. For example, zoologists maintain that the bite pressure of the jaguar is the greatest for all the big cats. How that was determined is not clear to me. You can't ask a jaguar to: "Hey buddy, give it your best chomp. We're measuring your bite pressure and your in competition with lions, tigers, leopards, and mountain lions." I suppose they give each part of carcass with heavy bones and see how quickly they can crunch through. I've seen experiments on documentaries to determine bite pressure exerted by alligators and crocodiles. Those experiments seem fairly credible. Hmmm, oh well, back to trees.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

Joe

Re: Manchuria, aka northeast China

Post by Joe » Sat Nov 26, 2011 1:59 pm

dbhguru wrote:Chris,

Thanks for the tip. That book is a must read for me. Along with mountains, waterfalls, forests and trees, the big predators have always been a show stopper for me. Naturally my measuring gene kicks in and I have to know facts and figures about them and how the data were collected. For example, zoologists maintain that the bite pressure of the jaguar is the greatest for all the big cats. How that was determined is not clear to me. You can't ask a jaguar to: "Hey buddy, give it your best chomp. We're measuring your bite pressure and your in competition with lions, tigers, leopards, and mountain lions." I suppose they give each part of carcass with heavy bones and see how quickly they can crunch through. I've seen experiments on documentaries to determine bite pressure exerted by alligators and crocodiles. Those experiments seem fairly credible. Hmmm, oh well, back to trees.

Bob
how about the extinct cats like the saber tooths? now that's a cat I'd like to see when I build a time machine.....
Joe

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Jess Riddle
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Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 10:59 am

Re: Manchuria, aka northeast China

Post by Jess Riddle » Fri Dec 02, 2011 12:21 am

Neil,

Absolutely fascinating posts! I grabbed a few of your photos for a brief class discussion of paleoflora.

Congratulations to you and Karen on the new addition to your family!

Jess

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