January 2009 Archives

Clash of the Giant Salamanders

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The National Geographic Channel featured "Clash of the Giant Salamanders" last night (January 17, 2009) on Dangerous Encounters. Dr. Brady Barr sought out the world's four largest salamanders: Hellbender, Japanese Giant Salamander, Greater Siren and Two-toed Amphiuma. Initially, he sought out the Chinese Giant Salamander and not surprisingly was denied access to the salamander's native habitat by the Chinese government. The closest he was able to get to the threatened salamander was watching it being enjoyed as a dish in a restaurant in Beijing. The National Geographic Channel web site posted two videos from the show which have been embedded below.
To complement the recent posts regarding wine - wine companies helping with salamander conservation or a winery naming themselves after a salamander, I've come across a listing of a brewer, Rahr & Sons Brewing in Fort Worth, Texas, naming a beer after a salamander, the Texas Blind Salamander, Eurycea rathbuni. The brewer is donating a portion of the Blind Salamander Pale Ale proceeds to the Texas Parks & Wildlife Foundation to help with species recovery. For those who care more about the drinking of the beer, I've checked ratebeer.com and Blind Salamander Pale Ale scored a 53 out of 100.