#250 Yanbaru Whiskered bat

Critically Endangered

Around the World in 80 Days - Day 42

We are leaving Japan and heading to the United States now on a rather long sea voyage.


These bats were discovered in 1996 and then were not seen for 22 years,. It brought on fears of extinction. They were found though in an area that had been used as a US military training area, creating an accidental sort of nature preserve. A good bit of the forest was given back to Japan in 2016 though. The bat needs mature forests, and the trees are at risk, but there is hope that the bat being found will help bring about conservation efforts. There has been very little studying of them, but there have been a few caught and tagged. Though there are no conservation methods implemented as of yet, with studying and gaining attention, maybe they can get something in place to protect them soon. I am assuming they are insectivores, though others of their genus actually eat fish. I was unable to find any information about these, it is possible that nobody knows, or they don't feel it is important I suppose.


I took Japanese for 2 years and would have continued if it would have worked for me to do that. It is a beautiful language in my opinion. I found it easier than German which I took just a few lessons in. I am so out of practice now unfortunately. I can still read Katakana and Hiragana, but I've lost almost all of the Kanji I used to know, as well as much of the spoken language. I feel a little proud of myself whenever I am watching something and someone is speaking in Japanese and I recognize some of what they are saying. I would love to take it again, but do not have the time or money for classes or the good apps out there. It always helps to have someone around you to practice with too. I would love to learn a lot of different languages really, but I fear it is a bit too late for me to become a polyglot. My mother's cousin I've been told knows 10-15 languages. If I could get to where I am able to make my way around Japan and be sure I was not going to get gluten in my food, I would be happy. The ability to tell people I can't have gluten in any country I might go to is unfortunately very important. It would not be good for me to have seizures on any trip to another country! I know much of the country speaks English and I'm sure I'd be able to make it work even if I didn't know Japanese, but I like the idea of being able to speak at least a bit of the language of the country you are going to visit. I am torn what language I would learn next if I was able to have no problem learning more languages. Probably I would learn Gaelic even though it is not at all required if you travel to Ireland. As an artist, you are more expected to learn German or French. I would be thrilled to learn them too. I would like to learn Albanian, since I spent time there and want to go back some day. I have a friend in Norway, so I would love to learn to speak Norwegian and then go visit her too. For that matter, I would really like to learn Hawaiian and Korean too! See, this is my problem, I have too many languages that I want to learn, and limited brain space for them. What languages would you learn if you could learn any language tomorrow?

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