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#226 Kurdistan Newt

Critically Endangered

Around the World in 80 Days - Day 18

We are still on the water on the way to India with Phileas Fogg. No possible way of seeing the newt but I'm just showing what is in the general areas along the travel route.

This newt is still found in Iran, and possibly there are some in Iraq and Turkey, but by all accounts I saw they are uncertain there are or aren't any there. In 2013 and 2015 a few more small populations were found. They are small populations, almost seeming as if it is what once used to be a large population and is now more of a single population that has become severely fragmented. Insecticides, herbicides, and pesticides have had a serious negative impact on the newts. They live in dry shrub-land, but need clean water in streams or rivers for breeding. That means pollution run-off is a deadly problem, but also the extraction of water to use on crops creating man-made droughts, along with natural droughts. The newt has disappeared from some of its old habitats. A more recent and growing problem is being collected for illegal pet trade.

I was going to share progress pictures of the turtle I did the other day, but I forgot, so I decided to show progress pictures of this one. I only took 2 pictures, but here you go. The first one, I find I am able to keep the bright colour more clean looking if I've painted the yellow before I add the dark around it. If I do the dark and then add in the light colour it usually ends up

muddy looking. The black mixing with yellow ends up turning the yellow a weird green. In the second progress picture I did a little black and then a dark chocolate colour, before I was done I did more of both black and dark chocolate, some pink, orange, and other colours. I obviously ended up adding feet! As always, I start with the eyes. I do a whole sketch, but the eyes are the first to get the actual painting done and all the colour done.

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