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Category archives for Environment

Palau’s Reefs: Journey from Destruction to Recovery

Written by Alison Barrat and Andy Bruckner On a scientific expedition to Palau this January we saw thriving coral reefs that contained many species of large, healthy corals, and only a few miles away we found desolate looking reefs that had virtually no coral at all. Our science team recorded conditions that were optimal for…

Great White Sharks of Gansbaai: No Hooking, No Handling, No Harm

On board with Lindblad Expeditions Southern Africa and Indian Ocean tour. March 23, 2015 – As we began our cruise up the southeast coast of Africa aboard the ship National Geographic Orion, we departed Cape Town, South Africa. Several of us spent the day on an outing with Marine Dynamics out of Gansbaai to see…

“Beyond Boundaries” Into The Wilderness

INK Talks is an inspirational conference platform committed to spreading disruptive ideas and inspiring stories from the most unexpected sources. At INK 2014, the speakers were asked to describe why and how they were going “beyond boundaries” in their own work and daily lives… Please watch and share this INK talk: https://youtu.be/Z5RLTzya0v8

The Azores: First Witness to Global Marine Plastic Pollution

Having left Bordeaux on March 15, the Race for Water Odyssey arrived in the Azores on Friday afternoon, the location of the expedition’s first scientific analyses. It is estimated that 80% of pollution in the ocean is plastic. This debris has devastating effects on marine ecosystems and, as a consequence, on human beings. Entanglement, lacerations,…

Shark vs. Cameraman, Ancient Islands, More!

We dive with full grown adult sharks most days and so we are relaxed with these little ones—but it’s not so easy if you are a cameraman and get caught unaware.

Revealing a “Modern-Day Velociraptor”

Peek behind the scenes as science illustrator Jane Kim paints a huge mural showing all the bird families in the world.

March 22, 2015: Understanding Wild Fires, Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail in Winter and More

This week on National Geographic Weekend, join host Boyd Matson and his guests as they hitch hike from Tasmania to London, study sleep’s science, count India’s tigers, protect the world’s oceans, hike the length of the Pacific Crest Trail in winter, cook the world, understand forest fires, study the real ingredients of processed foods.

Documenting Endangered Species in the Remote Mountains of Laos

We have been in the mountains for fifteen days and the team is weary but triumphant. We have crossed lakes and traversed rivers, camped in the rain and trekked through the dense forest in search of the endangered Chinese swamp cypress tree.  After adventurous road travel and even sinking boats, we have located remote forests and found…

Swimming With a Hawksbill Turtle, Barracuda, and More

This is the largest raised coral atoll on Earth: remote, inhospitable, spared from human interference, home to 100,000 giant tortoises, and surrounded by pristine reefs. This is Aldabra! It is truly one of the wonders of the world. And we on this Pristine Seas expedition to study and record its wildlife are thrilled to be…

Let’s Change our Water Story

Our human story has always been a water story. The earliest civilizations developed and grew along rivers – from the Tigris and Euphrates in the Middle East, to the Nile in Egypt, to the Yellow River in China. Rivers have been the lifelines for the growth and evolution of societies, providing the essentials of food,…

Nile River Nations Agree to Cooperate, but Danger Lurks for One of Planet’s Great Wetlands

Earlier this month, the foreign ministers of Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia reached agreement on basic principles for managing what will be Africa’s largest hydroelectric dam, which is now under construction on the Blue Nile near the Ethiopian-Sudanese border. While the unilateral building of big dams is often a trigger for conflict in international river basins,…

Tropical island conservation: Rat eradication for species recovery

Having just returned from Fernando de Noronha the plight of tropical islands under attack from invasive species is still at the forefront of my thoughts. Can the techniques we have developed in temperate latitudes on uninhabited islands be applied so readily to inhabited tropical islands? This was exactly the question that was asked in 2013…

Warming Lakes: New Global Database Sets the Stage for Research on the Ecological Effects of Climate Change

Global assessments based on satellite data have found that the world’s largest lakes have steadily warmed in the last 25 years, and some lakes are warming more rapidly than air temperature. I wrote about this in an earlier post, noting that studies of individual lakes, using temperature data gathered in the traditional way, confirmed these…

Pitcairn Islands Become World’s Largest Single Marine Reserve

Relive the adventures and stunning photos of the expedition behind the announcement of the world’s largest contiguous marine protected area.

Madagascar in the Season of Lightning

The rain patters on outside my window, but there is something magical and mysterious about Madagascar that makes me as happy as I have ever been.