The Painted Dog has roamed the earth for millions of years. They lived throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. Less than 100 years ago, they were about 500,000 strong. Today less than 5000 remain and their very existence is threatened forever.
The Pink Dolphin is a fresh water RIVER dolphin living in the Rivers of Bolivia. This amazing mammal is threatened by civilization, the debris from building and sediment that clogs the rivers that hold them hostage. Both of these incredible creatures have a champion. For 25 years, Dr. Greg Rasmussen has studied and lived among the Painted Dog. For 12 years, Dr. Enzo Aliaga Rossel has been the lone voice advocate to keep the pink dolphin not just as a treasured icon of Bolivia but a ALIVE too!

Host Frankie Picasso had the pleasure of interviewing  two incredible Conservationists who have dedicated their lives to saving endangered species, Dr. Greg Rasmussen and Dr. Enzo Aliaga Rossel  on FrankieSense & More!

Both scientists have their respective projects featured on the website of an organization called Endangered Species or ES REVENGE

ES Revenge, was founded and is run by it’s President  Peter Gottesman, who felt strongly that bringing humor to wildlife conservation would attract millions of people to join the fight to save animals. The organization creates cute videos like the one’s below that make people laugh while teaching them about animal biology and behavior, and it seems to be working.

Their goal is to partner with leading conservation scientists to raise money for urgent projects that protect endangered animals and help local people economically and specifically seek out  scientists who lead small to medium-sized grassroots non-profits, which spend nearly all their money on fieldwork, with little overhead, like my Two guests today. Both are featured on ES REVENGE… Dr. Rasmussen and Dr.  Aliaga Rossel,

Dr. Greg Rasmussen is a British Wildlife Conservationist Biologist who has been studying the African Painted Dog  for over 25 years in the  Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe . In  2002, he founded and directed the Painted Dog Conservation project but has now moved on the Painted Dog Research Trust, whose goal is to  continue with research into the highly endangered painted Dog but also build for the future of conservation by making sure that  Zimbabwean graduates become conservationists and  are  mentored, given appropriated training and opportunities, as well as financial support.

Painted Dogs, also known as African Wild Dogs, are unique to Africa and they are among this continent’s most endangered species. It is estimated that less than 7,000 remain in the wild. The Painted Dog population in Zimbabwe is one of the last strongholds of the species and its imperative that man be committed to their conservation. The Painted dog has been around for about 40 Million years. They once had numbers of about 500,000 and lived in about 39 countries but now man has threatened them to the point of extinction.  The African Dog is are incredibly social creatures. They live in carefully organized packs in which each dog has a specified job, from hunter to pup baby-sitter. The dogs rely on each other and are one of the only wild species to care for their sick and old. In fact, you will never see them fight with one another.

Unfortunately, with Unemployment rates at an all time high, the people in Zimbabwe hunt the dogs for food and leave snares out for bush meat. These African poachers hide thousands of deadly snares every day to catch antelope – but beautiful, endangered painted dogs suffer miserable deaths when they are caught by the snares instead. Now, Dr. Greg Rasmussen has designed a cutting-edge collar to save the last 4,500 dogs but he needs our help. Instead of the wire acting as a noose and strangling the dog, the wire catches on the collar saving the animal.  Each collar costs approximately 250.00 but for 500 dollars, they can add gps system, allowing scientists to KNOW where they animals are, how they travel and with solar power, it can last up to 6 years.

Two interesting facts about these pack animals, are 1. they look after their sick and dying. They will feed and nurse them back to health.  2. only the alpha female has babies. Check out the Videos below.

Dr. Enzo Aliaga Rossel is a Bolivian Biologist who has been  involved in research and conservation of river dolphins in Bolivia and Peru, for about the last twelve years. DID YOU KNOW THERE WERE RIVER DOLPHINS? I had not idea and guess what, they are PINK!!!! These beautiful Cetaceans are dying in Rivers as the pink river dolphins in Bolivia become stranded and die each year due to shallower river levels – and this year’s record-setting drought threatens to cause even more dolphin deaths. Dr. Enzo Aliaga Rossel oversaw the miraculous rescue of 26 stranded river dolphins! Now, he desperately needs our help to create an emergency rescue fund to save more dolphins. WATCH THE VIDEO BELOW TO LEARN MORE

Dr Aliaga Rossel has been working as an Associate Researcher in the mammal department of in the Colección Boliviana de Fauna (Bolivian Wildlife Collection) were he participated in various projects of conservation for different areas of the  country. With his focus on mammal biology and ecology . he has conducted scientific studies in Bolivia, Peru, Panama, Costa Rica often under very challenging field conditions, contributing to the knowledge and conservation of different mammal species. He has been published  in a variety of scientific and popular formats (peer-reviewed journals, competitive poster sessions at conferences, invited talks, popular field guides, children’s books, and educational web sites.

Dr. Aliaga Rossel received his PHD  in Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Biology from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. where he studied the effects of mammal defaunation (indigenous people hunting on mammals) and how this affects the survivorship of a key stone palm species.

The main contribution to the knowledge and conservation for a species is his research on the only cetacean present in Bolivia, the pink river dolphin (Inia boliviensis). He started to study the Pink Dolphin when he was an undergrad in 1998  and despite the lack of support and funding, he  accomplished his research; this study was the first survey using standardized methods in the country, covering four different hydrological seasons. His study also identified and highlighted the threats on this population and determining the conservation status of this species in the country.  For this work, Dr. Aliaga Rossel received an award from the American Society of Mammalogy – The William T. Hornaday Award that recognizes outstanding graduate student who have made a significant contribution as a student to the conservation of mammals and their habitats.

Today, he is the only cetacean specialist of the country recognized by  International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and  the current  president of the Bolivian Network of mammologist….