Hey, guys! Signups close in a little under 4 days @ 11:55 PM PDT on Thursday, July 27. Here's a countdown.
As a reminder, if you choose more than 2 fandoms for a single request/offer, you can match on any combination of those fandoms. We strongly encourage you to spread out your prompts and other optional details across all those possible combinations. We've seen a few signups with holes in those areas.
We also wanted to remind everyone that you can choose only 2 fandoms per request/offer. So if you'd like to see Pacific Rim crossed with Alias OR Stranger Things, but you aren't interested in a crossover between Alias and Stranger Things, you should put Pacific Rim/Alias in one request and Pacific Rim/Stranger Things in another request.
All of that said, optional details are ultimately a courtesy to your artist or author. We strongly encourage the use of optional details/prompts, particularly in an exchange like this one, but we can't force you to use them. If you choose not to leave optional details for a particular crossover match, your artist or author will be free to create whatever they want, so long as they mind your DNWs.
On June 25, the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Mammal Rescue Centre admitted a tiny male Sea Otter pup as a patient. The fuzzy-faced otter pup, now estimated to be about two months old, was found swimming alone in open water off northern Vancouver Island and brought to the Rescue Centre by a concerned citizen.
You first met the pup on ZooBorns when he was just a few weeks old. Since his arrival at the Rescue Centre, the tiny otter has received 24-hour care from staff and volunteers who feed, bathe and groom him, just as his mother would in the wild. Baby Sea Otters cannot survive on their own, and depend on their mothers for the first six months of life.
Photo Credits: Vancouver Aquarium (1,3,4,5); Meighan Makarchuk (2)
Care and rehabilitation of rescued marine mammals is very labor-intensive, and it takes a whole team of dedicated staff and volunteers to care for this tiny pup.
The little Otter continues to gain weight steadily and has been growing stronger and more active. He now weighs nearly nine pounds and is growing quickly. He is still nursing from the bottle, and drinks 25 percent of his body weight per day in a special Otter pup formula made by the animal care team. This week, the baby Otter was offered his first solid food – five grams of clams, which he gobbled up enthusiastically. He eats every three hours, 24 hours a day.
The care team says the pup is curious and enjoys exploring. He pup is now grooming himself a little bit, but still needs help from the care team to remain clean and fluffy. They also report that the pup is learning to dive and can dive to the bottom of his swim tub to retrieve toys.
Sea Otters are and Endangered species. They were hunted for their fur until the early 20th century, when their population fell to just a few thousand individuals in a tiny portion of their former range. Bans on hunting and other conservation measures have helped, but Sea Otters are still threatened by fishing net entanglement and oil spills.
After nominations close, a post will be made on the comm to discuss unaccepted freeforms so that people can suggest ways they can be modified to fit, or alternate tags that are similar but more conducive to the theme of the exchange. Sign-ups will open on the 28th as scheduled.
Nominate your fandoms and freeforms here!
Stage of Fools on LJ | Stage of Fools on Dreamwidth
Sign-up post on LJ | Sign-up post on Dreamwidth
Sign-ups: July 22 through August 18, 2017
Assignments go out: around August 20, 2017
Assignments due: October 20, 2017
Madness/prompt claiming time: October 20 through 31 - as soon as all assignments are in, all unwritten prompts will be revealed for everyone to write fic of any length. You don't have to sign up as a Stage of Fools participant to participate in Madness.
Go-live: November 1, 2017
Author reveal: November 5, 2017
A record 51 Tasmanian Devil joeys were born this season at Devil Ark, a free-range breeding facility aimed at saving this iconic Australian marsupial from extinction.
This brings the total number of joeys born at Devil Ark to more than 250 since it was founded in 2010 to establish an insurance population for the now-endangered Tasmanian Devil.
More than 90% of the wild Tasmanian Devil population has disappeared in the past 20 years due to an aggressive, transmissible cancer called Devil Facial Tumor Disease (DFTD). The Australian island state of Tasmania is the only wild home of these unique creatures.
Tasmanian Devils are marsupials, so like all marsupials, the jellybean-sized babies are born in a very underdeveloped state. About 30-50 are born, and they must crawl from the birth canal into their mother’s pouch immediately - a distance of about three inches. But female Devils have only four teats, so only the first four to attach to a teat will survive. The babies remain attached to a teat constantly for about three months. When they emerge from the pouch, they will ride on mom’s back.
The Devils at Devil Ark are one of dozens insurance populations in Australia and at zoos around the world. DFTD is a fatal condition and has spread rapidly across Tasmania, driving the need for disease-free, genetically diverse populations as possibly the only way to save Devils from extinction.
DFTD is one of only four known naturally occurring transmissible cancers. It is transmitted like a contagious disease through biting and close contact, which occurs when wild Tasmanian Devils feed in groups, battling for access to a carcass. Devils develop large facial tumors which make eating difficult. Affected animals die from starvation.
Tasmania Devils play a vital role in Tasmania’s ecosystems by scavenging on dead animals. They are listed as Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List. Researchers are working to better understand DFTD, which was only identified in 1996.
The Memphis Zoo happily announced the arrival of a male Reticulated Giraffe calf on July 12. Giraffe mom, Wendy, chose to remain outside on-exhibit during her labor. Her new calf, Wakati, was born in the open area of the Zoo’s giraffe lot.
Wakati arrived after 15 months of gestation and is Memphis Zoo’s second giraffe birth in three months. His parents are first-time mom, Wendy, and experienced father, Niklas (who is also dad to Bogey, born April 3 of this year). Wendy was also born at Memphis Zoo in 2010 to mother, Marilyn, who remains part of the Zoo herd. Eight-year-old Niklas arrived at the Memphis Zoo in 2015 from the Naples Zoo in Florida.
“We are thrilled to welcome Wakati to our giraffe family, as we’ve been waiting a while for this new baby,” shared Courtney Janney, Area Curator. “Wakati means “time” in Swahili, and we felt it was a good fit for our new arrival. Wendy immediately began showing appropriate maternal instincts, and we anticipate her keeping a close eye on Wakati as he integrates into the herd and begins to show independence.”
After 24 hours of acclimation and close monitoring, Wakati’s first medical check-up was performed. This first examination ensured that the new baby was healthy and nursing, while providing the baseline needed to assess future growth.
“Wakati’s neonatal exam went great! He looks strong and healthy,” reported Dr. Felicia Knightly, senior veterinarian at Memphis Zoo Animal Hospital. “Wakati is 5’10” in height and weighed in at 125 pounds. He’s nursing well and Wendy is already taking good care of him.”
Wakati was welcomed into the herd by another female, Angela Kate, who was in the yard during Wakati’s first steps. Although Wendy started to bond with Wakati moments after the birth by licking him clean and encouraging first steps, Angela Kate remained close by to help.
The giraffe herd at Memphis Zoo has now climbed to a total of nine with the birth of Wakati. From 1996 to 2006, Memphis Zoo did not have a single giraffe birth. Since 2006, at least one new giraffe calf has been born every year. Memphis Zoo has kept Reticulated Giraffes in their facility since August 1957.
The Reticulated Giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis reticulate) is one of nine recognized subspecies of giraffe. Easily the tallest species on the planet, the giraffe can browse on leaves that Africa’s other grazing herbivores can’t reach.
Giraffes travel in loose, informal herds and can be found in eastern, central and southern Africa. They range across savannah, grasslands, and open woods in search of trees (especially their favorite, acacias) to feed upon.
It's primarily directed at film writing, but I think it can be used for all types of narrative storytelling. I've been listening to The Art of Storytelling video series.
It starts out with "We are all storytellers," (I'm there still) which I think is an admirable point and has a number of their creators talking about their amateur efforts and how they got started, like Betty and Veronica fashion fanart. :)
It leads to characterization and story structure, and while I don't know that visual language is going to be terribly helpful to us print writers, it might give good ideas for descriptions of scenery to go around dialogue. There are also lessons and activities that you can do, should you choose.
(I can't find closed captions on Khan Academy, though. That's my one quibble thus far.)
One of my favorite pieces of writing advice is still this graphic: Pixar's 22 Rules of Storytelling.
No, I'm not saying they have to be YOUR rules too. I'm just saying I find the list as a useful set of way to help me go through one of my stories and figure out what's not working and what I need to do to make it work. Or sometimes, for me to just let go and stopy worrying at something, and maybe come back to it later.
The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium is excited to announce the May 23rd birth of a Pallas’s Cat kitten. The kitten’s birth marked the second live offspring ever produced with artificial insemination in Pallas’s Cat.
Columbus Zoo's Pallas’s Cats breeding pair, Manda and Paval, were observed mating in the winter. However, the Zoo determined that the female, Manda, was not pregnant. Animal care staff and veterinarians worked with the Carl H. Lindner Jr. Family Center for Conservation and Research of Endangered Wildlife (CREW) at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical garden to conduct an artificial insemination procedure in mid-March, near the end of the pair’s winter breeding season. The subsequent birth of the Pallas’s Cat kitten is the first offspring produced by Manda and Paval.
“CREW scientists have been working in collaboration with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) Pallas’s Cat Species Survival Plan (SSP) and the Columbus Zoo for several years to apply reproductive sciences, such as semen freezing and artificial insemination (AI), to improve Pallas’s Cat propagation and conservation,” said Dr. Bill Swanson, Director of Animal Research for CREW. “We are pleased with the results and look forward to continuing to build an understanding of our role in the preservation of this threatened species.”
Animal care and animal health staff have only recently determined that the kitten is a female. While the kitten and her mother are venturing into the habitat, father, Paval, will not be back on view with Manda again until the kitten is ready to be on her own at around nine-months-old.
The Pallas's Cat (Otocolobus manul), also called the ‘manul’, is a small wild cat with distribution in the grasslands and mountains of Central Asia.
Since 2002, the species has been classified as “Near Threatened” on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. It is negatively affected by habitat degradation, predation from species (including domestic dogs), poaching, and secondary poisoning from farming pesticides and rodent control.
The Pallas's Cat was named after the German naturalist Peter Simon Pallas, who first described the cat in 1776 under the binomial Felis manul.
I'm going to be trying to figure out what city I should be setting my urban fantasy in. (Or at least, what it should be an analogue to, geography-wise.)
I'll be on Discord for a couple of hours, if anyone wants to join me:
(This time I'll remember to edit the post to say when I log off Discord!)
After a two-year pregnancy, the wait is over for the Houston Zoo’s Asian Elephant, Shanti. On July 12, the 26-year-old gave birth to a 305-pound female.
The calf has been named Joy by the zoo team that has dedicated their lives to the care, wellbeing, and conservation of these incredible animals.
Baby elephants are quite wobbly when they’re first born, so the harness seen on the images and video of Joy assists the elephant team to help her stand-steady while she’s nursing.
Shanti gave birth in the Houston Zoo’s McNair Asian Elephant Habitat cow barn under the supervision of keepers and veterinary staff. She and her calf underwent post-natal exams and are now spending several days bonding behind the scenes. During this important bonding period, the elephant team is watching for the pair to share key moments like communication and hitting weight goals.
“Our animal team is thrilled that the birth has gone smoothly,” said Lisa Marie Avendano, Vice President of Animal Operations at the Houston Zoo. “We look forward to continuing to watch Joy and Shanti bond, and introducing her to Houston.”
Since 1986, the species has been listed as “Endangered” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). The population has declined by at least 50 percent over the last three generations. Primary threats are degradation, fragmentation, loss of habitat, and poaching.
*By visiting the Houston Zoo, guests help save baby elephants and their families in the wild. A portion of each zoo admission and membership goes straight to protecting an estimated 200-250 wild elephants in Asia.
Since the Houston Zoo started its work in Borneo in 2007, there has been a doubling of the elephant population on the island. The Houston Zoo also provides funds for elephant conservationist, Nurzhafarina “Farina” Othman and her team in Asia, to put tracking collars on wild elephants. This group uses collars to follow wild elephants, conducting valuable research that aids in protecting the elephants as they travel through the forests. Farina also spends time working with farmers that grow and produce palm oil, offering her guidance in responsible cultivation practices that are wildlife-friendly.
Palm oil is an ingredient in many foods and cosmetics, typically grown in areas that were previously home to animals like wild elephants. Converting pristine forests into oil palm plantations has caused extensive deforestation across Southeast Asia. Luckily, a growing number of producers are working to protect these areas and the animals that live there.
The Houston Zoo encourages people to protect elephants in the wild by supporting companies that use responsibly sourced palm oil, increasing demand for palm oil that is grown and produced without destroying the forested homes of elephants.
The Northern Spotted Owl (NSO) is one of Canada’s most endangered species. Its entire Canadian range occurs in southwestern British Columbia.
Though historic estimates suggest that as many as 1,000 Spotted Owls occurred in the province pre-European settlement, currently fewer than 30 individuals remain in Canada, with more than half of those owls residing at the NSO Breeding Facility in Langley, BC.
The primary threat to Spotted Owls is habitat loss and fragmentation through industrial activities and human expansion. Additional threats include competition from the similar Barred Owl that has invaded the Spotted Owl’s range in recent decades.
The NSO Breeding Program began in 2007 with a founding population of six adult Spotted Owls. There are currently 20 Spotted Owls residing at the breeding facility, including four breeding pairs.
As this is the first and only breeding program for this species in the world, the team has had to overcome challenges to better understand the behaviors and husbandry techniques required to successfully breed this species. The Program applies husbandry techniques such as: double clutching, artificial incubation, and hand rearing to increase the number of eggs produced and to give chicks the best chance for survival.
The Program's mission is to prevent this species from becoming extirpated from Canada by releasing captive-raised Spotted Owls back into habitat protected for the species in the province.
During the 2017 breeding season the NSO Team welcomed two chicks, Chick B and Chick D. Chick B is the first offspring for newly formed pair, Sally and Watson. Chick D is the second born to Scud and Shania. Both chicks are second-generation captive born Spotted Owls, which gives the Program confidence that captive born owls will be able to reproduce successfully.
Both chicks were artificially incubated for 32 days prior to hatching, which took an additional 85 hours! The chicks finally hatched on April 12 and April 19, 2017 and were hand raised before being returned to their parents.
The chicks have continued to grow more and more each day and left their nests in late May. As of July, the chicks are now able to fly all over their aviaries, but still rely on Mom and Dad to bring them food. They will be full grown and independent from their parents in the Fall, at which time they will undergo a routine veterinary exam and the team at the facility will find out if they are male or female.
DEAR CROSSOVERING CREATOR | FAQ
If you're new to exchanges at AO3 and confused about how sign-ups work, read this tutorial about signing up for gift exchanges.
As a reminder: You're allowed to choose multiple fandoms from within a greater franchise in a single request/offer, but we cannot prevent AO3 from matching on those 2 fandoms. For example, you might offer Stargate Atlantis, Stargate SG-1, and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, but if someone else requests Stargate Atlantis and Stargate SG-1, AO3 might pair you.
Put short, if you prefer to receive or create a crossover/fusion between 2 distinctly separate franchises, we encourage you to refrain from putting 2+ sub-franchise fandoms in a single request/offer.
For more information about requests and offers for this exchange, please continue reading. ( … )
These letters are 100% optional but highly encouraged (particularly due to the nature of this exchange). If you've never participated in an exchange like this before, a Dear Creator Letter is a post at your DW/LJ/Tumblr/Blog, etc. detailing your requests and giving your assigned creator ideas for possible art or fic. These letters also include your likes, dislikes, and any triggers you migh thave. You can link them here, as well as in your sign-up form. How you format or write them is entirely up to you.
If you have any triggers (things that may cause you harm if you read about them), we highly recommend that you make that clear in your letter as well as in the optional details on your signup. Not every participant clicks through to letters, and this is the best way to cover your bases so that your creator will not unintentionally use your triggers.
For more info and great examples of what we mean check out the following links: The Yuletide FAQ or letters from previous years.
Keep in mind that letters are completely optional, which also means that creators are in no way required to follow the optional details. The only requirements are that they use the fandoms you matched on and that they respect your DNWs. Essentially: Optional details are optional.
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Nominations are now open for the Fandom Growth Exchange! The Fandom Growth Exchange is a multi-fandom exchange for fandoms, relationships, and characters that have ten or fewer complete fics (or five or fewer contributing authors) on AO3. Check out the tagset!
Nominations close: July 31st at 11:55 PM UTC
Sign-ups open: August 3rd at 11:55 PM UTC
Sign-ups close: August 17th at 11:55 PM UTC
Assignments sent: August 22nd at 11:55 PM UTC
Default deadline: October 8th at 11:55 PM UTC
Assignments due: October 22nd at 11:55 PM UTC
Works revealed: November 3rd at 11:55 PM UTC
Authors revealed: November 8th at 11:55 PM UTC
Belfast Zoo keepers have said ‘hello deer’ to a new arrival as one of their Southern Pudu has given birth!
The latest arrival was born to father, Mr Tumnus, and mother, Susan, on June 18.
The Southern Pudu originates from the lowland forests of Southern Chile and Southwest Argentina and is the smallest member of the deer family! Adults measure only 43 centimeters in height when fully grown and, at birth, a fawn is so small that it weighs less than a bag of sugar.
Senior keeper, Allan Galway, said “Although small in size, our fawn is massively important to Belfast Zoo and to the European breeding programme for the Southern Pudu. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) considers this species to be vulnerable to the threat of extinction and numbers in the wild have dramatically declined in recent years due to loss of habitat through deforestation, hunting and predation.”
Allan continued, “We have been giving Susan and her new arrival some space to bond, so have not yet determined the sex of the new arrival or given the fawn a name. When fawns are born they are a light brown color, and their fur is covered with small white spots. This helps the infant to camouflage in the undergrowth especially when they are left alone while the mother feeds.”
Belfast Zoo’s Southern Pudu family share their home with some other South American “amigos” including: Southern Screamers and Red Howler Monkeys.
Belfast Zoo visitors can now experience a new reptile and amphibian house. Summer visitors can also witness daily feeding times, a new visitor photography base camp, the Adventurers’ Learning Centre and can visit all the latest zoo babies.
"Oh, Beverly!" called Miss Fritton from her office, leaning over and waving one hand. Beverly could see one her out of the corner of one eye.
"What's that little knobbly thingummy you're pointing at the door?"
"It's a sonic screwdriver, miss!"
"What's it for?"
"Nothing, miss!" There was Dalek invasion and the First Years were busy lobbing explosives from the tower while Beverly - the Doctor, really, but she'd been undercover for years and thought of herself as Beverly still - remodulated the alarm system to broadcast a frequency that would short-circuit their disruptor beams. The Daleks, not the First Years.
Though Beverly privately thought the First Years infinitely more dangerous to let loose upon the human race than the Daleks, but she did have standards after all, and centuries of enmity with the Daleks to uphold.
"So what you're saying," said Miss Fritton, appearing in her doorway with an empty bottle of vodka in one hand, "is that we're out of vodka and you forgot to stock up, is that it?"
"Get the gin, miss," said Beverly, holding back a sigh.
We approved 534 nominations this year. That's 329 more than last year! Please check the list even if your fandom was rejected, as it may have been approved under a related tag.
For those who like to keep track year-to-year, this year's most nominated exchange was Leverage with 9 nominations.
We rejected only 3 fandoms:
Signups open Tuesday, July 18th @ 8:00 AM PDT. (Compare to your time. See the current time in Los Angeles.)
If you have any questions or concerns about the tagset, please comment here or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Otherwise, we'll see you at signups! We look forward to taking advantage of all the changes to this year's exchange—and we hope you are, too!