Monday, 2 September 2013

Elephantulus gaffs

My publisher assures me Pygmy Elephants will be out in time for Christmas. I can expect the proofs in about a month.

Meanwhile, a couple of revisions and additions have been agreed.

There's one photo of an alleged pygmy elephant from Gabon in the 1950s whose copyright owner I couldn't trace. A global expert on copyright has assured my that my unsuccessful attempts to trace the French copyright owner constitute "due diligence", and that it's an anonymous work and I can include it in the book as such. So there's another photo that'll go in.

Prof. Sukumar Raman in Bangalore emailed me a short comment about the elephant captured in Kerala said - by some - to be a pygmy, which will be included.

And thanks to the "wild talents" for librarianship of Richard Muirhead, I have a new, short section on "Thai water elephants," tiny, fist-sized shrivelled bodies of miniscule elephants said to have venemous tusks. This is nonsense of course. They are almost certainly "gaffs," fake monsters made from the body parts of real dead animals. In this case they are thought to be elephant shrews (one genus of African elephant shrews, aka sengis, aka jumping shrews) is Elephantulus.

Shown here are my "artist's impressions" of Elephantulus gaffes passed off as miniature Thai "water elephants", and their X-rays.

Drawings copyright Matt Salusbury

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