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Tag archives for conservation

Into the Lions Den: Diffusing a Lion Hunting Party

Post submitted by Eric LeFlore and Andrew Stein.  It’s 6am on a Friday morning and the kettle has just boiled for morning tea when the phone rings. After some pleasant introductions in Setswana, the main reason for the call comes up. The conversation is quick but the angst is apparent. I hear from the other…

What Two Decades of Change on Clipperton Island Looks Like

It’s a lucky scientist that gets to visit such a remote and difficult location twice in one career!

Why Clipperton Island Is a ‘Beautiful, Powerful Surprise!’

Explorer Paul Rose looks back at recent discoveries during the final days of the latest Pristine Seas expedition.

Sumatran Tigers, Close to Extinction

Conservationists put the number of Sumatran tigers in the wild at around 300. It’s a devastating statistic, particularly given that Indonesia has already lost the Bali and Javan tiger which were both hunted to extinction. Without a serious overhaul of its present laws on wildlife crime, Indonesia can presume that the Sumatran tiger is in its dying days. It is a heartbreaking notion, but with the right level of deterrence and education, it is one that does not have to become reality.

Sumatra’s Orang-utans: Chocolate’s Road to Freedom

We arrive at the release site and head straight over to see Chocolate who has been in a holding cage for two weeks now, and is fully recovered from the arduous overland trek to get here. I couldn’t believe how confident he had become.

Forests in 25 Words or Less

By Alison Clausen

Today marks the U.N. International Day of Forests. I was asked recently for an “elevator pitch” in 25 words or less on why we should invest resources in saving tropical forests and, in particular, in tropical forests in Madagascar. To those of us working in conservation, this question seems like a no-brainer, so at first I took the question with a grain of salt. However, my questioner persisted and it made me realize both that it is not a no-brainer for everyone – particularly given the competing priorities for peoples’ attention – and that for the conservation community we need to be able to answer such questions if we are to engage people in our work.

Not All Forestry Is Carbon Equal

By Justin Adams, Global Managing Director for Lands at The Nature Conservancy The UN’s International Day of Forests is on March 21. While some people might see this as merely a day for tree-huggers to crunch their granola a little louder, this day is important for celebrating one of the most valuable ecosystems — not…

Island Life

The great man Christian Jost has been camping alone on Clipperton Island for the past four nights. Not entirely alone – he’s had about 100,000 masked boobies, 7,000 brown boobies, 500 red – footed boobies, 1,500 frigate birds, 1million crabs, 2,000 rats, the rusting remains of the guano (bird poop) industry, a mysterious algae and bacteria filled lagoon, 900 coconut palms and…

The Dark Era of Orca Shows is Ending

By Maddalena Bearzi There is light at the end of the tunnel. As Tilikum, the captive killer whale at the focus of the documentary Blackfish, is approaching death from an untreatable drug-resistant lung infection, SeaWorld just announced it will end all orca breeding. No more orcas will be kept in any of their new parks…

Best Job Ever: Collecting Bones in Alaska

Imagine if you could go out walking and easily pick up something that hasn’t been touched for hundreds, or even thousands, of years. Conservation paleobiologist and National Geographic grantee Dr. Joshua Miller does bone surveys on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) in Alaska to study why critical habitats for caribou and other species have changed over time. Miller says, “Anytime we do a survey, we’re finding scores and scores of bones.”

Play It By Ear and Make Friends With the Fish!

The highly energetic, beautiful reefs of Clipperton are dominated by moray eels. I’ve never seen anything like it. Typically, with most of their long bodies hidden inside holes, you only see their heads and the constantly opening and closing of their mouths displaying a fierce array of teeth. It’s different here – they are constantly…

In a Bubble of Air in the Deep Pacific

Three hours might sound like a long dive, but it goes fast and the ascent into the light and these evocative, most beautiful blue waters comes too soon.

The Maya Forest: From the Underworld to the Sky

We are here to fly. Today we begin our 5,000-mile “megaflyover” through Central America to document the state of the region’s great forests, starting in the vast Maya Forest of Guatemala, Belize, and Mexico. We are interested in preserving these forests not only for the vital services they provide to humanity, but also because they provide habitat for some of the world’s most impressive wildlife, including the jaguar, Baird’s tapir, and scarlet macaws.

Watch: Monarch Butterflies Get Tiny Radio Trackers

National Geographic grantee Martin Wikelski tries to put electronic tags on free-flying monarch butterflies for the first time ever in order to track their remarkable migration.

A First Post-Cyclone Look at Coral Reefs in the Vatu-I-Ra Seascape

We knew the eye of Cyclone Winston passed over Ra, destroying up to 90 percent of people’s homes throughout the province while churning up the sea in its path. So we were expecting some damage to the reefs. Heading out to our first dive site, we saw in the distance Vatu-i-Ra – an island of cultural and historical importance to the village of Nasau and home to nine species of breeding seabirds. With more than 20,000 pairs of breeding Black Noddies (Anous tenuirostris), the island is recognized as an Important Bird and Biodiversity Area.