Ayam / Chicken / (Gallus gallus domesticus)

Friday, July 30, 2010
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The chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus) is a domesticated fowl, a subspecies of the Red Jungle Fowl. As one of the most common and widespread domestic animals, and with a population of more than 24 billion in 2003,[1] there are more chickens in the world than any other bird. Humans keep chickens primarily as a source of food, consuming both their meat and their eggs.
Conventional wisdom has held that the chicken was domesticated in India, but recent evidence suggests that domestication of the chicken was already under way in Vietnam over 10,000 years ago. From India the domesticated fowl made its way to the Persianized kingdom of Lydia in western Asia Minor, domestic fowl were imported to Greece by the fifth century BC. Fowl had been known in Egypt since the 18th Dynasty, with the "bird that lays every day" having come to Egypt from the land between Syria and Shinar, Babylonia, according to the annals of Tutmose III.

General biology and habitat


Chickens are omnivores. In the wild, they often scratch at the soil to search for seeds, insects and even larger animals such as lizards or young mice.
Chickens may live for five to eleven years, depending on the breed. In commercial intensive farming, a meat chicken generally lives six weeks before slaughter. A free range or organic meat chicken will usually be slaughtered at about 14 weeks. Hens of special laying breeds may produce as many as 300 eggs a year. After 12 months, the hen's egg-laying ability starts to decline, and commercial laying hens are then slaughtered and used in processed foods, or sold as "soup hens". The world's oldest chicken, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, died of heart failure when she was 16 years old.
Roosters can usually be differentiated from hens by their striking plumage, marked by long flowing tails and shiny, pointed feathers on their necks and backs (the hackles and saddle)—these are often colored differently from the hackles and saddles of females.
However, in some breeds, such as the Sebright, the rooster has only slightly pointed neck feathers, the same color as the hen's. The identification must be made by looking at the comb, or eventually from the development of spurs on the male's legs (in a few breeds and in certain hybrids the male and female chicks may be differentiated by color). Adult chickens have a fleshy crest on their heads called a comb or cockscomb, and hanging flaps of skin either side under their beaks called wattles. Both the adult male and female have wattles and combs, but in most breeds these are more prominent in males. A muff or beard is a mutation found in several chicken breeds which causes extra feathering under the chicken's face, giving the appearance of a beard.
Domestic chickens are not capable of long distance flight, although lighter birds are generally capable of flying for short distances, such as over fences or into trees (where they would naturally roost). Chickens will sometimes fly to explore their surroundings, but usually do so only to flee perceived danger.
Chickens are gregarious birds and live together as a flock. They have a communal approach to the incubation of eggs and raising of young. Individual chickens in a flock will dominate others, establishing a "pecking order", with dominant individuals having priority for access to food and nesting locations. Removing hens or roosters from a flock causes a temporary disruption to this social order until a new pecking order is established. Adding hens—especially younger birds—to an existing flock can lead to violence and injury.
Hens will try to lay in nests that already contain eggs, and have been known to move eggs from neighboring nests into their own. Some farmers use fake eggs made from plastic or stone (or golf balls) to encourage hens to lay in a particular location. The result of this behavior is that a flock will use only a few preferred locations, rather than having a different nest for every bird.
Hens can also be extremely stubborn about always laying in the same location. It is not unknown for two (or more) hens to try to share the same nest at the same time. If the nest is small, or one of the hens is particularly determined, this may result in chickens trying to lay on top of each other.
Roosters crowing (a loud and sometimes shrill call) is a territorial signal to other roosters. However, crowing may also result from sudden disturbances within their surroundings. Hens cluck loudly after laying an egg, and also to call their chicks.
In 2006, scientists researching the ancestry of birds "turned on" a chicken recessive gene, talpid2, and found that the embryo jaws initiated formation of teeth, like those found in ancient bird fossils. John Fallon, the overseer of the project, stated that chickens have "...retained the ability to make teeth, under certain conditions..."
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Katak / Frog

Wednesday, July 28, 2010
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Frogs are amphibians in the order Anura (meaning "tail-less", from Greek an-, without + oura, tail), formerly referred to as Salientia (Latin salere (salio), "to jump"). Most frogs are characterized by long hind legs, a short body, webbed digits (fingers or toes), protruding eyes and the absence of a tail. Frogs are widely known as exceptional jumpers, and many of the anatomical characteristics of frogs, particularly their long, powerful legs, are adaptations to improve jumping performance. Due to their permeable skin, frogs are often semi-aquatic or inhabit humid areas, but move easily on land. They typically lay their eggs in puddles, ponds or lakes, and their larvae, called tadpoles, have gills and develop in water. Adult frogs follow a carnivorous diet, mostly of arthropods, annelids and gastropods. Frogs are most noticeable by their call, which can be widely heard during the night or day, mainly in their mating season.
The distribution of frogs ranges from tropic to subarctic regions, but most species are found in tropical rainforests. Consisting of more than 5,000 species described, they are among the most diverse groups of vertebrates. However, populations of certain frog species are declining significantly.
A distinction is often made between frogs and toads on the basis of their appearance, caused by the convergent adaptation among so-called toads to dry environments; however, this distinction has no taxonomic basis. The only family exclusively given the common name "toad" is Bufonidae, but many species from other families are also called "toads," and the species within the toad genus Atelopus are referred to as "harlequin frogs".
The name frog derives from Old English frogga, (compare Old Norse frauki, German Frosch, older Dutch spelling kikvorsch), cognate with Sanskrit plava (frog), probably deriving from Proto-Indo-European praw = "to jump"
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Rusa / Deer

Tuesday, July 27, 2010
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Deer are the ruminant mammals forming the family Cervidae. They include for example Moose, Red Deer, Reindeer, Roe and Chital. Animals from related families within the order Artiodactyla (even-toed ungulates) are often also considered to be deer – these include muntjac and water deer. Male deer of all species but the Chinese Water deer and female reindeer grow and shed new antlers each year. In this they differ from permanently horned animals such as antelope; these are in the same order as deer and may bear a superficial resemblance. The musk deer of Asia and Water Chevrotain (or Mouse Deer) of tropical African and Asian forests are not usually regarded as true deer and form their own families, Moschidae and Tragulidae, respectively.

he word "deer" was originally quite broad in meaning, but became more specific over time. In Middle English der (O.E. dēor) meant a wild animal of any kind (as opposed to cattle, which then meant any domestic livestock, from the idea of ownership and related to chattle and capital).[1] This general sense gave way to the modern sense by the end of the Middle English period, around 1500. Cognates of English "deer" in several other languages still have the general sense of "animal" – for example German Tier, Dutch dier, and Scandinavian djur, dyr, dýr. "Deer" is the same in the plural as in the singular.
For most deer the male is called a buck and the female is a doe, but the terms vary with dialect, and especially according to the size of the species. For many larger deer the male is a stag and the female a hind, while for other larger deer the same words are used as for cattle: bull and cow. Terms for young deer vary similarly, with that of most being called a fawn and that of the larger species calf; young of the smallest kinds may be a kid. A group of deer of any kind is a herd.The adjective of relation pertaining to deer is cervine; like the family name "Cervidae" this is from Latin: cervus, "deer".
The word 'hart' is an old alternative word for "stag", especially in a (British) Medieval hunting context.
Deer are widely distributed, and hunted, with indigenous representatives in all continents except Antarctica and Australia, though Africa has only one native species, the Red Deer, confined to the Atlas Mountains in the northwest of the continent.
Deer live in a variety of biomes ranging from tundra to the tropical rainforest. While often associated with forests, many deer are ecotone species that live in transitional areas between forests and thickets (for cover) and prairie and savanna (open space). The majority of large deer species inhabit temperate mixed deciduous forest, mountain mixed coniferous forest, tropical seasonal/dry forest, and savanna habitats around the world. Clearing open areas within forests to some extent may actually benefit deer populations by exposing the understory and allowing the types of grasses, weeds, and herbs to grow that deer like to eat. Additionally, access to adjacent croplands may also benefit deer. However, adequate forest or brush cover must still be provided for populations to grow and thrive.
Small species of brocket deer and pudús of Central and South America, and muntjacs of Asia generally occupy dense forests and are less often seen in open spaces, with the possible exception of the Indian Muntjac. There are also several species of deer that are highly specialized, and live almost exclusively in mountains, grasslands, swamps, and "wet" savannas, or riparian corridors surrounded by deserts. Some deer have a circumpolar distribution in both North America and Eurasia. Examples include the caribou that live in Arctic tundra and taiga (boreal forests) and moose that inhabit taiga and adjacent areas. Huemul Deer (taruca and Chilean Huemul) of South America's Andes fill an ecological niche of the ibex or Wild Goat, with the fawns behaving more like goat kids.
The highest concentration of large deer species in temperate North America lies in the Canadian Rocky Mountain and Columbia Mountain Regions between Alberta and British Columbia where all five North American deer species (White-tailed deer, Mule deer, Caribou, Elk, and Moose) can be found. This region has several clusters of national parks including Mount Revelstoke National Park, Glacier National Park (Canada), Yoho National Park, and Kootenay National Park on the British Columbia side, and Banff National Park, Jasper National Park, and Glacier National Park (U.S.) on the Alberta and Montana sides. Mountain slope habitats vary from moist coniferous/mixed forested habitats to dry subalpine/pine forests with alpine meadows higher up. The foothills and river valleys between the mountain ranges provide a mosaic of cropland and deciduous parklands. The rare woodland caribou have the most restricted range living at higher altitudes in the subalpine meadows and alpine tundra areas of some of the mountain ranges. Elk and Mule Deer both migrate between the alpine meadows and lower coniferous forests and tend to be most common in this region. Elk also inhabit river valley bottomlands, which they share with White-tailed deer. The White-tailed deer have recently expanded their range within the foothills and river valley bottoms of the Canadian Rockies owing to conversion of land to cropland and the clearing of coniferous forests allowing more deciduous vegetation to grow up the mountain slopes. They also live in the aspen parklands north of Calgary and Edmonton, where they share habitat with the moose. The adjacent Great Plains grassland habitats are left to herds of Elk, American Bison, and pronghorn antelope.
The Eurasian Continent (including the Indian Subcontinent) boasts the most species of deer in the world, with most species being found in Asia. Europe, in comparison, has lower diversity in plant and animal species. However, many national parks and protected reserves in Europe do have populations of Red Deer, Roe Deer, and Fallow Deer. These species have long been associated with the continent of Europe, but also inhabit Asia Minor, the Caucasus Mountains, and Northwestern Iran. "European" Fallow Deer historically lived over much of Europe during the Ice Ages, but afterwards became restricted primarily to the Anatolian Peninsula, in present-day Turkey. Present-day Fallow deer populations in Europe are a result of historic man-made introductions of this species first to the Mediterranean regions of Europe, then eventually to the rest of Europe. They were initially park animals that later escaped and reestablished themselves in the wild. Historically, Europe's deer species shared their deciduous forest habitat with other herbivores such as the extinct tarpan (forest horse), extinct aurochs (forest ox), and the endangered wisent (European bison). Good places to see deer in Europe include the Scottish Highlands, the Austrian Alps, and the wetlands between Austria, Hungary, and Czech Republic. Some fine National Parks include Doñana National Park in Spain, the Veluwe in the Netherlands, the Ardennes in Belgium, and Białowieża National Park of Poland. Spain, Eastern Europe, and the Caucasus Mountains still have virgin forest areas that are not only home to sizable deer populations but also for other animals that were once abundant such as the wisent, Eurasian Lynx, Spanish lynx, wolves, and Brown Bears.

The highest concentration of large deer species in temperate Asia occurs in the mixed deciduous forests, mountain coniferous forests, and taiga bordering North Korea, Manchuria (Northeastern China), and the Ussuri Region (Russia). These are among some of the richest deciduous and coniferous forests in the world where one can find Siberian Roe Deer, Sika Deer, Elk, and Moose. Asian Caribou occupy the northern fringes of this region along the Sino-Russian border.
Deer such as the Sika Deer, Thorold's deer, Central Asian Red Deer, and Elk have historically been farmed for their antlers by Han Chinese, Turkic peoples, Tungusic peoples, Mongolians, and Koreans. Like the Sami people of Finland and Scandinavia, the Tungusic peoples, Mongolians, and Turkic peoples of Southern Siberia, Northern Mongolia, and the Ussuri Region have also taken to raising semi-domesticated herds of Asian Caribou.
The highest concentration of large deer species in the tropics occurs in Southern Asia in Northern India's Indo-Gangetic Plain Region and Nepal's Terai Region. These fertile plains consist of tropical seasonal moist deciduous, dry deciduous forests, and both dry and wet savannas that are home to Chital, Hog Deer, Barasingha, Indian Sambar, and Indian Muntjac. Grazing species such as the endangered Barasingha and very common Chital are gregarious and live in large herds. Indian Sambar can be gregarious but are usually solitary or live in smaller herds. Hog Deer are solitary and have lower densities than Indian Muntjac. Deer can be seen in several national parks in India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka of which Kanha National Park, Dudhwa National Park, and Chitwan National Park are most famous. Sri Lanka's Wilpattu National Park and Yala National Park have large herds of Indian Sambar and Chital. The Indian sambar are more gregarious in Sri Lanka than other parts of their range and tend to form larger herds than elsewhere.
The Chao Praya River Valley of Thailand was once primarily tropical seasonal moist deciduous forest and wet savanna that hosted populations of Hog Deer, the now-extinct Schomburgk's Deer, the Eld's Deer, Indian Sambar, and Indian Muntjac. Both the Hog Deer and Eld's Deer are rare, whereas Indian Sambar and Indian Muntjac thrive in protected national parks such as Khao Yai.
Many of these South Asian and Southeast Asian deer species also share their habitat with various herbivores such as Asian Elephants, various Asian rhinoceros species, various antelope species (such as nilgai, Four-horned Antelope, blackbuck, and Indian gazelle in India), and wild oxen (such as Wild Asian Water Buffalo, gaur, banteng, and kouprey). How different herbivores can survive together in a given area is each species have different food preferences, although there may be some overlap.
Australia has six introduced species of deer that have established sustainable wild populations from acclimatisation society releases in the 19th century. These are Fallow Deer, Red Deer, Sambar Deer, Hog Deer, Rusa deer, and Chital. Red Deer introduced into New Zealand in 1851 from English and Scottish stock were domesticated in deer farms by the late 1960s and are common farm animals there now. Seven other species of deer were introduced into New Zealand but none are as widespread as Red Deer.

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Burung Helang / Eagle

Monday, July 26, 2010
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Eagle

Eagles are large birds of prey which are members of the bird family Accipitridae, and belong to several genera which are not necessarily closely related to each other. Most of the more than 60 species occur in Eurasia and Africa.[1] Outside this area, just two species (the Bald and Golden Eagles) can be found in the United States and Canada, nine more in Central and South America, and three in Australia.

Eagles are different from many other birds of prey mainly by their larger size, more powerful build, and heavier head and beak. Even the smallest eagles, like the Booted Eagle (which is comparable in size to a Common Buzzard or Red-tailed Hawk), have relatively longer and more evenly broad wings, and more direct, faster flight. Most eagles are larger than any other raptors apart from the vultures. Species named as eagles range in size from the South Nicobar Serpent-eagle, at 500 g (1.1 lb) and 40 cm (16 in), to the 6.7 kg (14.7 lbs) Steller's Sea Eagle and the 100 cm (39 in) Philippine Eagle.
Like all birds of prey, eagles have very large powerful hooked beaks for tearing flesh from their prey, strong muscular legs, and powerful talons. They also have extremely keen eyesight which enables them to spot potential prey from a very long distance.[2] This keen eyesight is primarily contributed by their extremely large pupils which ensure minimal diffraction (scattering) of the incoming light.
Eagles build their nests, called eyries, in tall trees or on high cliffs. Many species lay two eggs, but the older, larger chick frequently kills its younger sibling once it has hatched. The dominant chick tends to be the female, as they are bigger than the male. The parents take no action to stop the killing.
Major new research into eagle taxonomy suggests that the important genera Aquila and Hieraaetus are not composed of nearest relatives, and it is likely that a reclassification of these genera will soon take place, with some species being moved to Lophaetus or Ictinaetus.[3]
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Merak / Peafowl

Sunday, July 25, 2010
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The term peafowl can refer to the two species of bird in the genus Pavo of the pheasant family, Phasianidae. The African Congo Peafowl is placed in its own genus Afropavo and is not dealt with here. Peafowl are best known for the male's extravagant tail, which it displays as part of courtship. The male is called a peacock, and the female a peahen,[1] although it is common to hear the female also referred to as a "peacock" or "female peacock". The female peafowl is brown or toned grey and brown. The two species are:
The Indian Peafowl is a resident breeder in the Indian subcontinent. The peacock is designated as the national bird of India and the provincial bird of the Punjab (Pakistan).
The Green Peafowl breeds from Burma east to Java. The IUCN lists the Green Peafowl as vulnerable to extinction due to hunting and a reduction in extent and quality of habitat.

Plumage


The male (peacock) Indian Peafowl has iridescent blue-green or green colored plumage. The so-called "tail" of the peacock, also termed the "train," is not the tail quill feathers but highly elongated upper tail coverts. The train feathers have a series of eyes that are best seen when the tail is fanned. Both species have a crest atop the head.
The female (peahen) Indian Peafowl has a mixture of dull green, brown, and grey in her plumage. She lacks the long upper tail coverts of the male but has a crest. The female can also display her plumage to ward off female competition or danger to her young.
The Green Peafowl is different in appearance from the Indian Peafowl. The male has green and gold plumage and has an erect crest. The wings are black with a sheen of blue.
Unlike the Indian Peafowl, the Green Peahen is very similar to the male, only having shorter upper tail coverts and less iridescence. It is very hard to tell a juvenile male from an adult female.
Many of the brilliant colours of the peacock plumage are due to an optical interference phenomenon, Bragg reflection, based on (nearly) periodic nanostructures found in the barbules (fiber-like components) of the feathers.
Different colours correspond to different length scales of the periodic structures. For brown feathers, a mixture of red and blue is required: one colour is created by the periodic structure, and the other is a created by a Fabry–Pérot interference peak from reflections off the outermost and innermost boundaries of the periodic structure. White peafowls are sometimes bred.
Such interference-based structural colour is especially important in producing the peacock's iridescent hues (which shimmer and change with viewing angle), since interference effects depend upon the angle of light, unlike chemical pigments.
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Burung Tiong Mas / Common Hill Myna (Gracula religiosa)

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The Common Hill Myna (Gracula religiosa), sometimes spelled "mynah" and formerly simply known as "Hill Myna", is the myna bird most commonly seen in aviculture, where it is often simply referred to by the latter two names. It is a member of the starling family (Sturnidae), resident in hill regions of South Asia and Southeast Asia. The Sri Lanka Hill Myna, a former subspecies of G. religiosa, is generally accepted as a separate species G. ptilogenys nowadays. The Enggano Hill Myna (G. enganensis) and Nias Hill Myna (G. robusta) are also widely accepted as specifically distinct, and many authors favor treating the Southern Hill Myna (G. r. indica) from the Nilgiris and elsewhere in the Western Ghats of India as a separate species also.

This is a stocky jet-black myna, with bright orange-yellow patches of naked skin and fleshy wattles on the side of its head and nape. At about 29 cm length, it is somewhat larger than the Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis).[1]
It is overall green-glossed black plumage, purple-tinged on the head and neck. There are large white wing patches which are obvious in flight but mostly covered when the bird is sitting. The bill and strong legs are bright yellow, and there are yellow wattles on the nape and under the eye. These differ conspicuously in shape from the naked eye-patch of the Common Myna and Bank Myna (A. ginginianus), and more subtly vary between the different hill mynas from South Asia: in the Common Hill Myna they extend from the eye to the nape, where they join, while the Sri Lanka Hill Myna has a single wattle across the nape and extending a bit towards the eyes. In the Southern Hill Myna, the wattles are separate and curve towards the top of the head. The Nias and Enggano Hill Mynas differ in details of the facial wattles, and size, particularly that of the bill.[1]
Sexes are similar; juveniles have a duller bill.[1]
With the Southern, Nias and Enggano Hill Mynas as separate species, the Common Hill Myna has seven or eight subspecies which differ only slightly. They are:[2]
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Biawak Air / Water Monitor

Thursday, July 8, 2010
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The Water monitor, (Varanus salvator) is a large species of monitor lizard capable of growing to 3.21 metres (10.5 ft) in length, with the average size of most adults at 1.5 metres (4 ft 11 in) long.[1] Maximum weight of Varanus salvator can be over 25 kilograms (55 lb), but most are half that size. Their body is muscular with a long, powerful, laterally compressed tail. Water monitors are one of the most common monitor lizards found throughout Asia, and range from Sri Lanka, India, Indochina, the Malay Peninsula and various islands of Indonesia, living in areas close to water.

Etymology
The generic name Varanus is derived from the Arabic waral (ورل), which translates as "monitor" in English. The specific name is the Latin word for "Saviour" denoting a possible religious connotation.[2] The Water monitor is occasionally confused with the Crocodile monitor (V. salvadorii) because of their similar scientific names.[3]
In Thailand, the word water monitor or actually local word 'เหี้ย' (hia) is used as an insulting word for bad and evil things including a bad person. Its name is also considered a word bringing a bad luck, so some people prefer to call them 'ตัวเงินตัวทอง' which means 'silver and gold' in Thai to avoid the jinx.
The origin of this offensive meaning can be traced back to a time when more people lived in rural areas in close proximity to monitor lizards. Traditionally, Thai villagers lived in 2-story houses, the top floor was for living while the ground floor was designed to be a space for domestic animals such as pigs, chickens, and dogs. Water monitors would enter the ground floor and eat or maim the domestic animals, also hence the other name 'ตัวกินไก่' (Tua kin kai - chicken eater).
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