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#341 Mysterious Starling


Though I have designated 1900 as the earliest extinction date for any of the animals I paint, it is unknown when this one disappeared. One was shot in 1825, and at the same time there were noted to be introduced rats on the island as well. Unfortunately, ornithologists did not visit the island again until 1973, and by then the bird was gone. They were from Mauke Island, which is part of the Cook Islands. Most likely the cause for extinction was the rats.

I had said I would be painting from the remaining 2 phyla, and that they were worms. Well, obviously this is not a worm. In researching today I could not find any description or picture or even a set "similar to this species" type thing I could work with. I have put in a request on a research site where I found a paper that might help. The part of the summary I was able to read for free said that they offered a description, but then the actual description was not accessible. I may or may not hear back from the authors of the paper, and I will paint it if I do. Then I researched the other worm, and discovered that while the IUCN lists it as extinct, it has actually been rediscovered elsewhere. There has not been an updated survey done yet though, so the designation on the IUCN has not changed. I do not know if it is even considered critically endangered anymore, so I will not be painting it. Tomorrow's painting will be another extinct animal, but whether it is a worm or not remains to be seen. I am developing a sense of desperation almost. I have such a long list of critically endangered and extinct animals I want to paint, and less than a month in which to paint them. I hate to stop for any time, but I am thinking it really would be best if I take a break until August 1st before starting the second round. It will help me refresh my spirits which have been squashed a little by researching all these animals that have been cared for less than they should have been. It will also let me spend some time truly solidifying what the second round of the project will look like. It won't be a total break, I will be working on the funding of the first round, and figuring out the second round. I will still post regularly, but possibly not daily until August, and not always including art.

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