The Sauropods, a dinosaur clade, were the tallest animals that ever lived. Some were more than twice the height of a giraffe. (They also include some of the largest animals to have ever lived on land.)

Well Done New Zealand

New Zealand was the first country to have its top three positions of power held simultaneously by women. These were Prime Minister Helen Clark, Governor General Dame Silvia Cartwright, and Chief Justice Sian Elias from 2001 to 2007. (New Zealand also has repeated this, with three women in the top positions of power since 2017.)

Moths Once Supplemented Ancient Australians' Diets

Microscopic remains of Bogong moths were detected on a grindstone recovered from Cloggs Cave, which is located in southeastern Australia. Utilizing residue analysis, independent archaeologist and pharmacologist Birgitta Stephenson was able to identify wings and legs of moths that had been ground to make food 2,000 years ago. Australia's ancient GunaiKurnai people traveled to the region each summer to harvest the billions of high-fat moths that migrated to the cooler alpine area of Cloggs Cave. The moths were harvested and cooked over fire or ground into cakes or paste that could be smoked and preserved for weeks.

While we know this from the oral traditions of the GunaiKurnai, the actual practices and techniques have been lost, since Australia was colonized. And unfortunately Bogong moth populations have severely dropped in recent years. Pollution, drought, and city lights are all thought to have contributed.

Maria Ann Smith -- or as you might know her, Granny Smith -- propagated the ancestor of all modern Granny Smith apples from one tree near Sydney, Australia in 1868.

Sea lions, walruses, and seals are members of the pinniped clade. The name comes from Latin "pinna" for fin, and "ped" for foot. So basically "flipper feet" or "fin feet."

This is the song of the last male Kauaʻi ʻōʻō, recorded in the Alaka’i Wilderness Preserve on Kauaʻi in 1987. Rats, pigs, hurricanes, and disease-carrying mosquitoes had reduced the species to a single pair by 1981, and the female was not found after Hurricane Iwa in 1982. The male was last seen in 1985. This appears to be his song, overheard two years later, the last trace of a vanishing species.

Due to being an island, New Zealand has no native snakes. However, the sea off of New Zealand is often home to sea snakes. While not native to the area the warm subtropical currents carry them south from out of the tropics.

Bali's Unique Mourning Ritual

Bali is the only place that has been observed to consistently have funerals with no tears. In Bali, funerals are held two years after the person has died.

Images of the Sulawesi warty pig (Sus celebensis) found at Leang Tedongnge Cave in Indonesia have been dated to at least 45,500 years ago with uranium-series dating of calcite minerals deposited on the artwork. The largest of the drawings in the cave measures about 4.5 feet long and 1.8 feet tall. Two human hands were painted over the pig’s rump. Less well preserved are two or three pig faces placed near the main pig. Another pig illustration measuring more than six feet long was found on the ceiling of a nearby cave known as Leang Balangajia 1. Humans in Indonesia have apparently been interacting with pigs for millennia! Now we just need evidence of prehistoric bacon...

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    HISTORICAL NON-FICTION

    By Lillian Audette

    This blog is a collection of the interesting, the weird, and sometimes the need-to-know about history, culled from around the internet. It has pictures, it has quotes, it occasionally has my own opinions on things. If you want to know more about anything posted, follow the link at the "source" on the bottom of each post. And if you really like my work, buy me a coffee or become a patron!

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