Rainy-day thoughts

Muntjac pop into my head at the oddest times: while drinking coffee with friends, or at the grocery store stocking up on supplies for the week, or while driving my motorbike along the winding streets of Hue, which poses a not-inconsiderable traffic hazard to the other drivers. But most often when I am alone. Like now. It’s early afternoon, the rain is falling steadily, Read more…

Evolutionary artwork

We stepped into the hut. Inside it was cool, damp, and dark. It took a moment for my eyes to adjust, as it does when we step from the brightness of an agricultural clearing into the daytime twilight of the jungle. The inside of the hut was simple like other Katu huts that I have seen. There was a central wooden altar, ringed by ornate blue-and-white patterned vases. Read more…

Camera trapping in Quang Nam

From our base camp we set off in the early morning and hiked through forest still gripped by the coolness of night. We hiked single file without speaking for two hours and then stopped to rest in an open clearing where the amber-tinted new morning light fell warm and bright. One of the team members took a drink from a nearby mountain stream. Read more…

Rare colugo sighted

Bet, our Katu guide, freezes and points into the trees. I try to follow his line of sight, expecting to see a giant black squirrel or a troop of macaques. Or, if we are really lucky, it could be red-shanked douc langur, that color-splashed species that is arguably the most stunning primate on the planet. But I don’t see anything. The canopy is still and quiet: only the droning of a cicada gives life to the forest scene. Read more…

Ghosts of the Saola

Mr. Tren led me to a house at the far end of the courtyard. Long thin strips of amber sunlight filtered through the wooden slats of the hut, creating an eerie play of light and dark. As I stepped inside, it struck me that this was a room filled with caged shadows, a sun-splintered prison for the ghosts within. And there were ghosts here: Read more…

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