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National Geographic Photo Ark Spotlight: Key Largo Woodrat

World Day For Animals In Laboratories (also known as World Lab Animal Day) is observed every year on April 24, today. It is an opportunity to think about the animals that spend and sacrifice their lives in pursuit of science, often with the goal of finding safe medical treatments for humans.

One animal that comes readily to mind when you thin k of the term “laboratory animal” is the venerable rat, an animal that is as ubiquitous as it is reviled. Not all rats are “guinea pigs” for the lab, however. Some are highly prized for their rarity, such as Florida’s Key Largo woodrat.

Unique Encounters at the Charles Darwin Research Station in Galapagos

A visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station on the Island of Santa Cruz in the Galapagos is a lifetime dream for our visitors, according to Dennis Ballesteros, a Senior Guide with Metropolitan Touring, an organization that brings thousands of tourists to the islands every year. “The expectation of meeting real people who work on the ground, and to learn about their work in conservation, is a highlight for many people who come to these magical islands,” he says.

National Geographic Photo Ark Spotlight: Golden Snub-nosed Monkey

Assessed as Endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the Golden snub-nosed monkey (Rhinopithecus roxellana) is considered to be facing a very high risk of extinction in the wild. The species is found only in west-central China, in montane forests where snow cover can last for up to six months of the year, IUCN says on its profile for the monkey. Although the species is protected in nature reserves, a major threat for its survival is forest loss due to agricultural expansion, especially outside of the protected areas, IUCN says.

Marching For (Cat) Science

I grew up catching animals of all sorts. I kept buckets full of jumping spiders, turtles and snakes. At five-years-old, under the careful instruction of my grandfather, I miraculously caught a rabbit in a flimsy butterfly net attached to the end of a bamboo shoot. After parading it proudly about the house, I released it…

Protecting Our Waterways from Plastic Pollution Starts with Your Straw

“Only within the moment of time . . . has one species — man — acquired significant power to alter the nature of the world.” Rachel Carson’s poignant words spurred the environmental movement of the 1960’s. When her book, Silent Spring, was published she was studying the effects of chemical pesticides on environmental and human…

Where There’s a Bear, There’s a Big Cat

By Liu Mingyu, PhD Student, Peking University One morning last July, I woke just outside the Zhaxilawu monastery to the sound of howling dogs. The monastery lies in China’s Qinghai province, where Panthera, the Snow Leopard Trust, and Shan Shui have partnered to research and protect snow leopards and their landscapes. In addition to working…

Nature Is Making a Comeback. It’s Time to Celebrate.

Legendary conservation biologist Tom Lovejoy shares his thoughts on the progress we’ve made in protecting the wild, and the reasons for continued hope as the Smithsonian’s Earth Optimism Summit gets under way.

This boat shows the way to a clean energy future

The Race for Water, a revolutionary vessel entirely propelled by a mix of clean energies has departed for its five-year round the world odyssey. Running on a mix of solar power, batteries, hydrogen, and a high-altitude kite, the ambassador vessel to the Race for Water foundation is first heading to Bermuda at the end of…

Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week #84

Yet another week of 2017 has flown by and with that comes our Friday treat – The Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week #84! Thank you to all the bird lovers and photographers across the globe who have contributed so wonderfully to this movement. You and your beautiful photographs are what drive the…

Sciencetelling Bootcamp: Communicating Science Through Photography

Natural history photographer Anand Varma led today’s photography workshop at the National Geographic Sciencetelling Bootcamp in the Galapagos.

“My goal is to empower scientists and conservationists to tell their own stories using photography, because photography is one of the most powerful ways to communicate science,” Varma, a National Geographic Young Explorer, explained in an interview. “It should be the practitioners, the people on the ground doing the work, that should have the ability to do that, rather than always relying on people like me to translate their work for them.”

EPA Administrator Says United States Should Exit Paris Agreement

In an interview last week, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator (EPA) Scott Pruitt said that the United States should “exit” the Paris Agreement—the first time such a high-ranking Trump administration official has so explicitly rejected the global accord to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts…

This Earth Day, Let’s Stand Up for Canadian Wildlife

By Gabriel Wildgen, Humane Society International/Canada

Canadians take pride in wild animals as symbols of our country’s deep connection to nature. Images of beavers, caribous, loons and polar bears adorn Canadian coins. Canada’s major airports welcome visitors with murals of breathtaking landscapes, complete with magnificent bears, whales and birds. These same visitors might also be shocked, however, to learn how abysmal many of Canada’s wildlife policies are, and that they’re made all the more glaringly apparent during April, when the world celebrates Earth Day.

Sciencetelling Bootcamp Focuses on Research and Conservation Stories for Impact

Science and exploration that’s not shared with the world is science and exploration that won’t change the world, says Denise Prichard, senior director of training and development of the National Geographic Society. Denise directs the National Geographic Sciencetelling™Bootcamp, an intense workshop that focuses on a core curriculum of photography, videography, public speaking, social media, and writing, that was created for scientists and conservationists to elevate their work for greater impact.

A four-day bootcamp in the Galápagos this week is being attended by more than two dozen representatives of conservation, research, and tourism organizations, all eager to learn from experienced National Geographic storytellers.

Galápagos Sciencetelling™ Bootcamp

The Galápagos Islands are a living laboratory for science and conservation, which is why my colleagues and I are here to host a National Geographic Sciencetelling™Bootcamp for some of the people who have devoted their lives to studying and protecting this paradise.

The Search for Lost Species

Global Wildlife Conservation today embarks on the first phase of the Search for Lost Species, the largest-ever global quest to find and protect species that have not been seen in the wild in decades. The campaign will work with local partners to send scientific expeditions around the world to some of the most remote and…