A total of 158 lots will be offered in the annual Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association of Jamaica (TOBA) yearling sale to be held in the official car park at Caymanas Park on Sunday, November 15, starting at 10 a.m.Lots are available for inspection at 8 a.m., and the accepted opening bid for any lot shall not be less than J$100,000.Prompted by TOBA for the umpteenth year, the sale usually attracts a significant number of buyers from the Eastern Caribbean, notably Trinidad and Tobago.In the past decade, the Trinidadians have been responsible for a number of record-priced yearlings with a view to racing them in Trinidad. Some have become champions, notably two-time ‘T & T Horse of the Year’ BIGMAN IN TOWN, who raced here early in his three-year-old career before he was shipped off to Trinidad by his high-profile owner, Baskaran Basswah. The rest is history.Yearlings from some of the island’s leading stud farms and from private breeders will be on show. They include leading stud farms such as HAM Stables Limited, Everglades Farms Limited, Orange Valley Estates, Lakeland Farms, Spring Park Stud Farm, Y.S. (1955) Limited, New Blue, and Argyll Farms.record priceLast year, a chestnut colt by Performing Magic out of Sea Treaty, bred by Everglades and purchased by noted Trinidadian owner Vishan Ali, fetched the record price of $4 million, surpassing the previous record of $3.8 million paid for BALLON D’OR in 2013.Meanwhile, TOBA and the Breeders Association of Jamaica, in association with Driveline Enterprises, has joined hands to host the inaugural pre-yearling sale awards dinner tonight at Jade Gardens, Sovereign Centre, starting at 7 p.m. Contribution is $5,000.- O.C.
Forget the phrase “blind as a bat.” New experiments suggest that members of one species of these furry flyers—Myotis myotis, the greater mouse-eared bat—can do something no other mammal is known to do: They detect and use polarized light to calibrate their long-distance navigation. Previous research hinted that these bats reset their magnetic compass each night based on cues visible at sunset, but the particular cue or cues hadn’t been identified. In the new study, researchers placed bats in boxes in which the polarization of light could be controlled and shifted. After letting the bats experience sundown at a site near their typical roost, the team waited until after midnight (when polarized light was no longer visible in the sky), transported the animals to two sites between 20 and 25 kilometers from the roost, strapped radio tracking devices to them, and then released them. In general, bats whose polarization wasn’t shifted took off for home in the proper direction. But those that had seen polarization shifted 90° at sunset headed off in directions that, on average, pointed 90° away from the true bearing of home, the researchers report online today in Nature Communications. It’s not clear how the bats discern the polarized light, but it may be related to the type or alignment of light-detecting pigments in their retinas, the team suggests. The bats may have evolved to reset their navigation system using polarized light because that cue persists long after sunset and is available even when skies are cloudy. Besides these bats (and it’s not known whether other species of bat can do this, too), researchers have found that certain insects, birds, reptiles, and amphibians can navigate using polarized light.