VOICES Voices Icon Ideas and Insight From Explorers


David Maxwell Braun

of National Geographic Society

David Braun is director of outreach with the digital and social team illuminating the National Geographic Society’s education, science, and explorer programs.

Justice for Elephants in Kenya: Ivory Smuggler Jailed for 20 Years

Feisal Mohamed Ali, described by the Kenya Wildlife Service as an ivory smuggling kingpin, has been jailed for 20 years and fined U.S. $200,000 (Ksh20 million) for illegal dealing in, and being in possession of, ivory. Four co-accused and Fuji Motor company were acquitted in the case adjudicated in Mombasa, last Friday, KWS said in a statement on its website. “The guilty…

Ecosystems Cannot Be Managed Without Consensus on Human Impact, Scientists Warn

Distinguished environmental researchers, including National Geographic scientist Stuart Pimm, warn that ambiguity and lack of consensus among policy makers about the meaning of fundamental terms used to describe and measure human impacts on the planet could have disastrous consequences for management of the world’s ecosystems.

How Hundreds of Elephants Are Being Relocated Across Malawi

In one of the largest undertakings of its kind, Malawi is moving 500 elephants from parks on one end of the small central African country to a sanctuary on the other end. This infographic shows how they are trying to do it.

Ten Out of Ten BioBlitzes for Bug Scientist Gary Hevel

Smithsonian entomologist Gary Hevel is the only scientist to have attended every one of the ten annual BioBlitzes organized by the National Park Service and the National Geographic Society in the run up to this year’s NPS centennial.

As he did for the previous BioBlitzes, he brought with him thousands of mounted insect specimens he collected in his backyard in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Earth Conservation Corps Raptor Is Wildlife Ambassador at National Mall BioBlitz

Ronnell Blakeney is a team leader with Earth Conservation Corps, an organization with a mission “to empower our endangered youth to restore the Anacostia River, their communities and their lives.”

Nationwide BioBlitz Records 6,481 Species in 126 U.S. Parks

Scientists identified 6,481 species of plants, animals and other organisms from more than 50,000 observations, many of them by citizen scientists, in the #2016BioBlitz this weekend.

Song and Dance Opens National Parks BioBlitz on Washington Mall

“We’re here to honor this beautiful land and the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service, and to find out about the Earth that we need to protect together,” National Geographic President and CEO Gary E. Knell said at the opening of the 2016 National Parks BioBlitz today. Knell was speaking at an event on the National Mall,…

#BioBlitz2016 Takeaway: How Geology Shapes Nature in Washington, D.C.

To know how the U.S. national capital area was created geographically — the basic structures formed by millions of years of Earth’s dynamics — is to better understand not only why certain species of plants and animals flourish there, but also why they (and Washington. D.C.) are there at all. Ford Cochran, a professor of geology and environmental science,…

Meet the Bee Expert who Helped Invent the BioBlitz

Sam Droege is known for his stunning close-up photography of bees, published in National Geographic (magazine and online), and featured also in the video on this post. He’ll be participating in the National Parks BioBlitz in Washington, D.C. this weekend, looking for bees, of course. Droege is also the head of the bee inventory and monitoring…

Akon Music Video Focuses Attention on Energy Access for All

Africa has received its first football pitch with lighting powered by the kinetic energy of the players — and to celebrate, Akon teamed up with DJ Hardwerk to produce a new music video, “Tell Me We’re OK”. The video was released earlier this month in collaboration with Shell to highlight the increasing need to provide innovative options…

#BioBlitz2016 Takeaway: Restoring Nature Restores Benefits for People

Dr. Thomas E. Lovejoy, a National Geographic Fellow, will be participating in the National Parks BioBlitz in Washington, D.C., this weekend, including accompanying a biodiversity inventory on Theodore Roosevelt Island, a natural memorial to America’s 26th President. Lovejoy directed the World Wildlife Fund-U.S. program from 1973 to 1987 and was responsible for its scientific, Western Hemisphere, and tropical…

U.S. Parks ‘Blitzed’ in Celebration of Biodiversity Across America

It’s #BioBlitz2016 — are you ready? More than a hundred U.S. national parks and partner sites are hosting a nationwide BioBlitz across America this weekend. Tens of thousands of people are expected to participate in the National Parks BioBlitz, the tenth in a series of BioBlitzes hosted by the National Park Service (NPS) and the National…

National Geographic Explorer-Correspondent Mireya Mayor Joins Amazon Conservation Team

National Geographic explorer, anthropologist, and conservationist, Mireya Mayor, is joining the Amazon Conservation Team to help communicate news of vital projects and expand global awareness about the plight of the Amazon region, the nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving South American rainforests said in a news statement today. “Dr. Mayor will be lending her expertise, as both scientist and communicator,…

Dutch Police Test Using Raptors to Intercept Errant Drones

With the proliferation of drones has come a rising threat to the security of aircraft as well as the possibility that the aerial devices could be used for crimes, or that they could threaten the safety of stadium crowds. Among the solutions authorities have attempted to deal with the problem have been using drones to…

Lost Lions Found in Northwest Ethiopia Raise Hopes That Big Cats Survive in Sudan

Exciting news for lions is that an expedition led by Oxford University’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit, supported by Born Free USA, has made camera trap images of the big cats in a remote national park in northwestern Ethiopia, an area the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) considered as only a ‘possible range’ for the species. As many as 200 lions may survive across the ecosystem between this part of Ethiopia and the adjacent national park in Sudan, according to the expedition’s analysis. There have been concerns that lions had become extinct in Sudan.