Stumbled upon some thrilling news today. That the Marbled Cat was spotted in Yunnan Province (southwestern China) after 30 years of absence!

http://www.china.org.cn/china/Off_the_Wire/2015-03/06/content_34979315.htm

Images of the rare marbled cat have been captured in a remote nature reserve in southwest China’s Yunnan Province, researchers said on Friday.

This is the first time researchers with Gaoligong Nature Reserve, which was founded in 1983, have managed to obtain photographic evidence of the endangered animal.

The discovery was jointly announced by Kadoorie Conservation China (KCC) and Gaoligong Nature Reserve.

Images were captured on Oct. 7, 2014 and Nov. 11, 2014 by infrared cameras installed at the Datang station of the nature reserve, according to researchers.

Wang Yingxiang, researcher with Kunming Institute of Zoology of Chinese Academy of Sciences, and Doctor Will Duckworth with the World Conservation Union confirmed it was the rare marbled cat.

According to Wang, the first records of the marbled cat in Yunnan were a few specimens found in 1976. The animal was last seen in 1984.

“The images captured this time give us proof that the marbled cat is still alive in Yunnan,” Wang said.

Marbled cats, whose scientific name is pardofelis marmorata, has been listed as vulnerable by IUCU. It is mostly distributed in southeast Asia, along the Himalayan foothills and on the island of Borneo.

“We believe the existence of a marbled cat shows the biodiversity of the nature reserve,” said Chen Beile, a department manager of KCC. “It indicates the possibility of discovering more rare animals in the area.”

First, I’ve always had a soft spot for cats, which might have something to do with the fact that I was born in the Year of Tiger (By the way, Maomee means ‘kitten’ and ‘kitty’ in Chinese). Second, Yunnan is where Dad was born and lived until he was forced to flee by the age of 9 due to the civil war.

Marbled Cats (http://www.wildcatconservation.org/wild-cats/asia/marbled-cat/ ) exist in naturally low densities. And the fact that their habitat has been undergoing the world’s fastest deforestation rate due to logging, palm oil plantations, human settlement and agriculture doesn’t help.

Sometimes, I do wonder what the world would be like if humans didn’t exist. Surely, nothing lasts forever, history has proved that extinction is just part of the natural order and evolution. But, when it comes to human-caused extinction, it’s a completely different thing.

I somehow recall a post Beam and I read last night (We were watching Godzilla 2014 with Waffle and got curious about the robot-like MUTO couple), titled ‘Sympathy for Female MUTO‘, discussing the scene in where the humans set off the bombs to destroy the MUTO eggs, and the female MUTO started crying.

I read the post before this happend. Just the description itself was enough to make me avoid that particular scene. Yes, it sounds stupid; ‘No animals were harmed in the making of this film’, and Mutos are not even real anyway. But! I am a mother myself and losing own child is simply heartbreaking.

‘But she’s trying to kill Godzilla!’ Obviously siding with Godzilla, Beam protested, eyes rolling,

‘I am a mother and I know!’ I hissed back. Yes, very childish, I admit.

And when Godzilla sent the female MUTO to hell with the  atomic breath, I couldn’t help but feeling sooooo upset with Godzilla (Mind you, I cried for Godzilla as well when her eggs were destroyed in the 1998 film).

*roarrrrrrrrrr*

*roarrrrrrrrrr*

I know, I know. Silly. Just like how the thread eventually turned into a debate about who you were siding with — Godzilla, or MUTOs? Actually, very entertaining. we did have a good laugh reading the whole thing.

One netizen named Daikaiju Daniell sums it up perfectly, ‘You know human character development is bad when I cry more for the monsters than the main humans.’

Well, let’s not lose hope, shall we?!

或許本身屬虎的緣故,我向來對於貓科動物有難以言喻的喜愛,甚至我的暱稱「貓咪」、「滇貓」都與貓有關。而後者這個「滇」字,也說明了我的血緣:雲南 — 那是爸爸從出生到九歲之前的故鄉。

因著這兩點,今天讀新聞的時候,立馬被這個標題吸引了目光:睽違三十年,大陸雲南再現雲貓蹤跡

(中央社台北8日電)睽違30年,中國大陸雲南再現雲貓蹤跡。

香港文匯報報導,香港嘉道理中國保育部與雲南高黎貢山國家級自然保護區保山管理局騰沖分局日前在聯合記者上表示,在雙方聯合進行的生物多樣性監測與評估活動中,由紅外線相機兩次拍到雲貓的蹤跡。

這也是自1984年12月、30餘年後,雲貓重現大陸雲南。

報導指出,在生物多樣性監測與評估活動中拍攝到的貓科動物影像,經世界自然保護聯盟的專家,及中國大陸哺乳動物專家、中國科學院昆明動物研究所研究員王應祥確認是雲貓。

報導指出,雲貓被列入瀕臨絕種野生動植物國際貿易公約(CITES,又稱華盛頓公約)附錄中,禁止商業性貿易,並被世界自然保育聯盟列為易危(VU)級別。

雲貓廣泛分布於喜馬拉雅山東部、東南亞和印尼婆羅洲,但由於行蹤隱秘、數量稀少,科學界至今並未對其進行專門研究。

真是令人振奮的一則消息!

有時候,我會忍不住想,如果這個世界沒有人類的存在,究竟會是什麼樣?當然,沒有什麼是永久不變的,物競天擇乃至於物種滅絕,畢竟都是大自然演化的一部分,歷史已經一再地證明了這點。但是,當這個滅絕部分摻入了「非自然」的干擾因素,又另當別論了。

這讓我想起昨晚。我跟梅小獸到鬆餅家看2014年新版的酷斯拉,影片進行到一半,我們都對劇中那一對苦命鴛鴦 Muto 很好奇,於是很沒品地開始咕狗;因而,誤打誤撞讀到了一篇名為「同情媽媽 Muto」的帖子,討論的是媽媽 Muto, 在面對辛苦產下的寶貝蛋蛋被炸彈摧毀時,那哀痛欲絕的畫面。不少網友都同感,當然也還是有少數發言是不以為然。

當時片子還沒進行到此,但僅僅這些文字敘述,就足夠我下決心拒絕觀看這個情節。是,我承認這個理由滿蠢的,不過是電影罷了,沒有任何動物受到傷害,更何況還是道具加特效。BUT!我自己當媽媽的,我能夠想像那種失去孩子的椎心之痛呵~

梅小獸聽到我的決定,馬上翻白眼:「她要殺酷斯拉耶!」很顯然已經選邊站了。

「老娘自己是當娘的,所以最清楚!」這個老娘嘶嘶叫著。

當酷斯拉對著媽媽 Muto 噴出原子能火焰奮力一擊時,我又生氣了,你不知道 Muto  只是要保護她的蛋蛋嗎?!虧我1998年的版本有為你掉眼淚,因為看到你辛苦呵護的寶貝們同樣被人類炸光光。吼!

是滿沒營養的啦,就像那篇貼文,最後變成爭論誰支持誰,誰才是真正的壞蛋。坦白說,整個討論的娛樂性很高,讀得我們哈哈大笑。

倒是,一位署名 Daikaiju Daniell 的網友,下了最佳註解:「當你掉淚是為了怪獸而不是人類時,你就知道人類有多可惡了。」

Well, 我們繼續努力吧,希望尚在人間!