Animals
Coronavirus Stops Wildlife Trade In China In Its Tracks

Coronavirus Stops Wildlife Trade In China In Its Tracks

The Chinese government announced on Sunday several drastic measures to attempt to stop the spread of the coronavirus in China, including China banning the trade of wild animals until the coronavirus epidemic has been eliminated across the country — the ban was deemed necessary because it appears that the disease was transmitted to humans through a “wet” market that traded in game meat.

Why This Matters:  There have long been calls for the Chinese to crack down on illegal wildlife trade — the question is whether the rapid spread of this virus and the fear and disruption it is causing will finally lead to an end to a permanent end to the wild animal trade there

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Yellowstone’s Wolves: 25 Years After Successful Reintroduction They Are a Star Attraction

Yellowstone’s Wolves: 25 Years After Successful Reintroduction They Are a Star Attraction

In January 1995, the National Park Service undertook a project to re-introduce wolves into Yellowstone National Park — wolves had been driven out early in the 20th century — and from the 14 animals who were relocated from Canada into the Park, there are now 14 packs (more than 100) make the Park their home. 

Why This Matters:  It was hugely controversial at the time, but looking back now, the successful re-introduction shows, once again, the power of the natural world to regenerate if given the chance

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Most Earthworms Are Invasive, What Does that Mean for Ecosystems?

Most Earthworms Are Invasive, What Does that Mean for Ecosystems?

We generally think of earthworms as beneficial and essential to healthy soils–and in many ways they are! But did you know that much of the United States isn’t actually supposed to have any earthworms? As the Atlantic reported, “Until about 10,000 years ago, a vast ice sheet covered the northern third of the North American […]

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Heroes of the Week: The Team Trying To Save An Injured Right Whale Calf

Heroes of the Week: The Team Trying To Save An Injured Right Whale Calf

Baby North Atlantic Right Whales are sadly rare — this species of whales is on the brink of extinction with the death rate exceeding the birth rate — the population is now hovering at about 400.  In early January, local scientists off the coast of Georgia were encouraged to spot 27-year-old female Derecha with a […]

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Acidifying Oceans Could Dissolve Shark Scales

Acidifying Oceans Could Dissolve Shark Scales

South African researchers published a new study showing that increasing concentrations of CO2 in the ocean are damaging shark scales, known as denticles.

Why This Matters: These scales protect sharks and allow them their unique ability to move through the water.

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10 (!) New Bird Species Discovered in Indonesia

10 (!) New Bird Species Discovered in Indonesia

Discovering new species is always exciting but researchers in Indonesia have made a species discovery that’s setting records. As NatGeo reported, In the past two decades, an average of fewer than six new bird species have been described every year in the entire world. But 2020 will be different, as scientists have just announced 10 […]

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Trump’s Endangered Species Rollbacks Target Hawaiian Royal Hawk

Trump’s Endangered Species Rollbacks Target Hawaiian Royal Hawk

For native Hawaiians the Hawaiian hawk, or ‘io is a symbol of royalty and is considered an “‘aumakua”—a family or personal god—which made harming or killing this bird taboo. The hawk has also been in a battle for its endangered status listing since the George W. Bush administration. And while most Hawaiians oppose its delisting, […]

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One Cool Thing: Pangolins Protected From Poaching In South Africa

The pangolin is the most highly trafficked mammal on Earth — they are poached at a higher rate than elephants, rhinos and tigers combined. Their scales are what the poachers want — they are ground up and used for medicine in China and Southeast Asia. Pangolins are on the brink of extinction — 120,000 were […]

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A Very Sexually Active Galapagos Tortoise Helps Save His Species

A Very Sexually Active Galapagos Tortoise Helps Save His Species

There’s no summing up CNN’s reporting on this story, you have to read for yourself: “A womanizing tortoise whose rampant sex life may have single-handedly saved his entire species from extinction has retired from his playboy lifestyle, returning to the wild with his mission accomplished.” The playboy in the story is Diego, the giant Galapagos […]

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Scientists Unveil a Roadmap to Stop Insect Extinction Crisis

Scientists Unveil a Roadmap to Stop Insect Extinction Crisis

In 2019 we learned that the world’s insects are facing an extinction crisis: more than 40% of insect species are declining and a third are endangered. When insects disappear, entire ecosystems suffer as a result. That’s why more than 70 scientists from around the world have put together a new “roadmap to insect recovery” that […]

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One Cool Thing: Costa Rican Wildlife

One Cool Thing: Costa Rican Wildlife

Recently Costa Rica made news because it hosts one of the world’s five “Blue Zones,” the places where people live the longest.  I (Monica) got to visit that region of the country last week, but what was more striking to me was all the ways that Costa Rica is a “Green Zone.”  Everywhere you look […]

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Top Stories of 2019: Our Impact on Wildlife

Top Stories of 2019: Our Impact on Wildlife

It wasn’t news in 2019 that humans are pushing animals to the brink. However, a landmark report released in May ran the alarm bells: 1 million species are at risk of extinction unless we take drastic action to reverse our actions.

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