Saving threatened habitats worldwide

Some Christmas fun

9 December, 2010 - 11:55 -- John Burton

What animal names can you think of which sound more like a medical condition?

A few years ago, I had been birdwatching on the island of Lesbos, in the Aegean, and reported back to Vivien (my wife) that we had been out and seen Kruyper's Nuthatch and Cretzchmar's Bunting. Sounds nasty she responded, sounds like some sort of horrible disease.

We then started to compile a list of other bird names that sounded more like a nasty affliction. There was the Zitting Cisticola for starters, which really sounded quite painful. Since I am a sufferer of Dupuytren's Contracture, Sharpe's Long Claw seemed to be a possible related condition.

Christmas Party game?

It's the sort of thing Bill Oddie and his mates would have had a whale of a time on a radio programme, describing the symptoms. So my idea of a Christmas party game for naturalists and conservationists, is to think of a name of an animal that sounds a bit weird, and describe the symptoms.

What's the connection to the World Land Trust? Well you could make a donation to our Kenyan Grasslands Appeal for the Sharpe's Longclaw commensurate with how good you think your entry is.

Just for fun

My entry would be the Sharpe's Longclaw: It's a painful condition, induced by the removal of its harsh mountain grassland habitat. Having nowhere to scratch around, its claws continue to grow, eventually impairing flight and leading to extinction.

Can you do better? Enter your idea below as a comment.

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