Top Ten Animal Stories of 2006 From National Geographic News

December 18, 2006

It's been a roller coaster year for biologists, who were elated by treasure troves of new species in Indonesia, a bizarre dolphin with "legs," and India's first new bird in half a century. But scientists also warned that humans are slaughtering elephants by the hundreds and could even strip the oceans of seafood by 2048.

Relive some of 2006's most amazing, bizarre, and heartbreaking tales with National Geographic News's most popular animal stories of the year.

10. "Walking" Sharks Among 50 New Species Found in Indonesia Reefs (September 18)
Sharks that "walk" with their fins across coral reefs are among more than 50 new species discovered recently off the coast of Indonesia, scientists announce. Full Story and Photo Gallery>>

9. Seafood May Be Gone by 2048, Study Says (November 2)
Unless humans act now to better manage and protect marine areas, the increasing loss of biodiversity will spell the end for the fish and seafood many people rely on, scientists say. Read the Full Story >>

8. Giant Catfish Protected From Fishing in Thailand (July 10)
In honor of the King of Thailand's 60th year on the throne, fishers in northern Thailand have promised to stop catching the world's largest freshwater fish. Read the Full Story >>

7. New Bird Discovered in India (September 12)
An amateur bird-watcher has found the first new bird species to be discovered in India in over 50 years, experts say—a vibrant babbler at home in felled forests. Read the Full Story >>

6. Hippo and Tortoise Pals May Find Three's a Crowd (January 5)
The strength of a unique bond between a young hippo and a 130-year-old tortoise will be tested later this spring when conservationists introduce a female hippo to the mix. Read the Full Story >>

5. Dolphin With Four Fins May Prove Terrestrial Origins (November 8)
Proving that showing a little "leg" can really grab attention, a dolphin with four fins has scientists speculating about the marine mammal's evolutionary past. Read the Full Story >>

4. African Elephants Slaughtered in Herds Near Chad Wildlife Park (August 30)
An airborne biologist and his team have found the remains of large-scale elephant slaughters, evidence of a major poaching problem on the borders of a central African wildlife park. Story, Photo Gallery, and Video >>

3. Carolina Mystery Beast Is a Rare Abnormal Fox, Experts Say (March 21)
There's an unidentified creature roaming the grassy fields near a North Carolina company—is it an exotic species, a mythical vampire dog, or simply a fox with a rare genetic abnormality? Read the Full Story >>

2. Monster Rabbit Stalks U.K. Village (But No Sign of Wallace or Gromit) (April 11)
A dog-size bunny is ravaging prize vegetable gardens, reports say. Rabbit experts speculate that the suspect is a pet gone wild. Read the Full Story >>

1. "Lost World" Found in Indonesia Is Trove of New Species (February 7)
Deep in a South Pacific island jungle, explorers have uncovered an Eden thriving with unknown kangaroos, birds, bugs, and more, the scientists announced today. Full Story and Photo Gallery>>

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