For a number of years, I’ve owned the slice of Brazilian Agate pictured below left. In the US northwest, these kinds of enclosed agates are called thundereggs (a Native American name), because they originate in volcanoes. The pattern here resembled a rodent, I always thought, albeit one with glowing eyes. But, being an animal- and bird-lover with a notoriously soft heart, I found its pose distressing. Was it injured? Dying? Was it imprisoned?
Almost every day, I drop in on the English Wikipedia site (I’ve gone to other languages as well; the Turkish one has been helpful with my costume collection). And yesterday’s featured picture (reproduced below right, with due credit to LuÃs Funez) was of Drymoreomys, “a genus of South American rodent represented by a single species, D. albimaculatus.
First formally described in 2011, the species prefers dense, moist, montane and premontane forest. Morphological evidence suggests they are tree dwellers.” They’ve been found only in Brazil to date, and are so rare that their discoverers have recommended they be added to the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List as “near threatened.”
So: Hi, Dry. Happy to have found you. I promise I’ll leave you alone. But hang in there, huh?