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Help Me Define (Bio)Diversity

Dear Educators, I never learned what diversity really is. Maybe I was taught that it is the concept of having differences — like various opinions, races, ages. That might be what diversity looks like on the surface, but what does it mean? When we talk about diversity in ecosystems, we use the term “biodiversity” (shortened…

Can Tourism Save the Countryside?

Backyard Tourism Wow, this place is jumping! At 5:30 pm, my wife and I thought we’d walk down our gravel road and have a quiet glass of wine and some nibbles at the local winery last Saturday. We forgot about the effect of unseasonably warm weather on a three-day weekend. Perhaps 200 people filled the…

Young Traditional Navigators Aim for One of the Most Isolated Islands on Earth

“The leg to Rapa Nui presents a unique learning opportunity for the young navigators to test their wayfinding abilities and refine the skills needed to navigate aboard Hokulea,” said Pwo navigator and captain Nainoa Thompson. “Even if you’re extraordinarily precise, you could still miss it. And so it is one of the ultimate navigational challenges of all time.”

Big Cat Week Spirit Comes to a Big Apple School

Happy Big Cat Week! In the spirit of celebration, Explorers-in-Residence Dereck and Beverly Joubert just paid a special visit to students at P.S. 205 the Fiorello Laguardia School, a National Geographic Big Cats Initiative Sister School in the Bronx.

KopeLion: protecting wild lions for future generations

Post submitted by Rose Hinson and James MacCarthy While out exploring the Ngorongoro Conservation Area in Tanzania, Ingela and Stuart came across something quite extraordinary. They found all the signs of a lion kill, but the body was missing. Instead of a carcass, all they found was a trail of blood leading off into the…

Pruitt Confirmed to Head EPA

Friday, in a 52-46 vote, the Senate confirmed Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma attorney general to head the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Pruitt was sworn in that evening. As Oklahoma’s attorney general, Pruitt filed 14 lawsuits challenging EPA regulations, including limits on carbon emissions from fossil fuel-fired power plants. Many of the cases are pending in…

A Preventable Nuclear Threat You Most Likely Don’t Know About

Vilnius, Lithuania–A tiny European country at the edge of the western world worries that it is in the path of what could be the next Chernobyl-level disaster. The government of Lithuania fears a Russian nuclear reactor under construction in its eastern neighbor, Belarus, poses a risk to security to the entire Baltic region. The controversial…

Asia’s Last Cheetahs

The cheetah’s speed is legendary. As possibly the swiftest mammal that has ever lived (extinct relatives of the cheetah were likely not as speedy), there is nothing on earth it cannot out-run. Nothing in nature, that is. Unfortunately, for all its extraordinary high-speed adaptations, the cheetah has no evolutionary solution for modern traffic. Among the many dangers faced by cheetahs, collisions with vehicles rank among the top threats to an especially endangered population: the unique Asiatic cheetahs of Iran.

Where Have Zimbabwe’s Cheetahs Gone?

Post submitted by Alex Rudee Esther van der Meer looks right at home amid all the five-star luxuries of the Victoria Falls Hotel. As she relaxes in a wicker chair on the red-brick porch of the famous resort, Esther seems for all the world like just another high-end tourist soaking up the African sun. Donning…

Unleashing the Wild Soul of the Cat

Domestic cats outnumber big cats more than 600 to 1. Can our love of kitties be the key to saving the kings?

After Alarmingly High Radiation Levels Detected, What Are the Facts in Fukushima?

Six years after three nuclear reactors were crippled in Fukushima, Japan, when a tsunami knocked out power to their cooling units, there is still conflicting information, real and fake, about the levels of radiation in the area. To find out more about what’s really happening, I contacted Safecast, a citizen science network that bills itself as neither pro-, nor anti-nuclear.

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How to Use the Ocean Without Using it Up

This TED talk was developed while I was in residence at TED headquarters in New York City. The transcript is below. _______________ When I was five, my parents took me from Brooklyn, NY to Key West, Florida. They taught me to swim, and showed me my first a coral reef. I feel completely in love…

Population Effects From Snared Lion Rescues

Post submitted by Zamiban Carnivore Programme. Photo by Luke Dollar

Arctic Sea Monster’s Hips Don’t Lie

A new ichthyosaur species is described from the Cretaceous on Spitsbergen, and tell us about hip evolution in these fast-swimming marine reptiles.