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See Inside April 2006

Finding a Lost World

ORANGUTAN



PERRY VAN DUIJNHOVEN FROM AMONG ORANGUTANS: RED APES AND THE RISE OF HUMAN CULTURE, BY CAREL VAN SCHAIK. THE BELKNAP PRESS OF HARVARD UNIVERSITY PRESS, ¿ 2004 BY THE PRESIDENT AND FELLOWS OF HARVARD COLLEGE

On an expedition to one of Asia's most isolated jungles in the misty Foja Mountains of western New Guinea, scientists uncovered a vast trove of new species, giant flowers and rare wildlife. The December 2005 voyage revealed nearly two dozen previously unknown species of frogs, four new butterflies, what may be the largest rhododendron flower on record (at nearly six inches across), and a novel breed of honeyeater, the first new bird discovered on the island in almost 70 years. Also seen were the golden-mantled tree kangaroo, formerly known from only a single mountain in neighboring Papua New Guinea, and little-known long-beaked echidnas, a primitive egg-laying mammal. These discoveries suggest the nearly 2.5 million acres of the Foja jungle could be the largest essentially pristine tropical forest in Asia, announced expedition co-sponsor Conservation International on February 7.

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