Environmental Protection

Endangered Species


New Approach Challenges Old Ideas About Plant Species and Biomass

For decades, scientists have believed that a relationship exists between how much biomass plant species produce and how many species can coexist. Stanley Harpole, assistant professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology at Iowa State University, was part of the team researching productivity and richness, and he says the research doesn’t support that relationship.

U.S. Takes Diplomatic Action Against Icelandic Whaling

U.S. President Barack Obama announced diplomatic measures the United States will take against Iceland to condemn its whaling activities.

Protecting Wild Species May Require Growing More Food on Less Land: Study

In parts of the world still rich in biodiversity, separating natural habitats from high-yielding farmland could be a more effective way to conserve wild species than trying to grow crops and conserve nature on the same land, according to a new study published today in the journal Science.

Analysis Shows Namibia's Seals are Worth More Alive Than Dead

It reveals that, in 2008, the seal hunt generated only $513,000 – a poor comparison to seal-watching, which netted $2 million in direct tourism expenditure in the same period

Are New England's Iconic Maples At Risk?

Results from the first study of the Asian longhorned beetle (ALB) in forests show that the invasive insect can easily spread from tree-lined city streets to neighboring forests.

Panda Poop May Be a Treasure Trove of Microbes for Making Biofuels

Panda poop contains bacteria with potent effects in breaking down plant material in the way needed to tap biomass as a major new source of “biofuels” produced not from corn and other food sources, but from grass, wood chips and crop wastes, scientists reported.

Mich. Man Pleads Guilty to Illegally Importing Polar Bear Trophy from Canada

Rodger Dale DeVries, 73, a resident of Jenison, Mich., has pleaded guilty to illegally importing a polar bear trophy mount in 2007 from Canada into Michigan in violation of the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

Grassland Plant Species Play Import Roles in Biodiversity

Recent study of grasslands shows that species variety more important to ecosystem services than previously thought.



Another Study Finds Bluefin Tuna In Need of Protection

The team’s analysis—published in a recent issue of Science magazine’s Policy Forum—is the first study of global tuna and billfish populations using the methods of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Map Identifies Important Coral Reefs Exposed to Stress

The study, say the authors, will help to conserve some of the world’s most important coral reefs by identifying reef systems where biodiversity is high and stress is low, ecosystems where management has the best chance of success.

Is Hunting Wolves Key to Their Conservation?

Hunters have been credited with being strong conservation advocates for numerous game species in multiple countries. Would initiating a wolf hunt invoke the same advocacy for the carnivores?

Legal Sharks Aim to Protect Real Sharks

The University of Denver (DU) Sturm College of Law Environmental Law Clinic filed a federal lawsuit aiming to protect the porbeagle shark from overfishing that has pushed the species to the brink of extinction and left it in need of federal protection, the students say.

Study Finds Artificial Reefs are Friendly to Fish, Economy and Public

The reefs, which provide habitat for popular sport fish and other marine life, pulled more than $253 million into the region during one year, the study found. Though it costs nothing more than a saltwater fishing license to use the submerged structures as a fishing spot, anglers spend money on food, lodging, fuel, tackle and other necessities.

Study: Stocks of Tuna, Other Fish Threatened with Extinction

A new study by top global fisheries experts presents an alarming assessment of several economically important fish populations. The analysis of 61 species of "scombrids," which include tunas, bonitos, mackerels and Spanish mackerels, and billfishes, which include swordfish and marlins, classified seven as threatened with extinction and four as "near threatened" for the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

Snow Leopard Population Discovered in Afghanistan

The Wildlife Conservation Society has discovered a surprisingly healthy population of rare snow leopards living in the mountainous reaches of northeastern Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor, according to a new study.

Court Upholds Endangered Species Act Protection for Polar Bears

A federal judge upheld a May 2008 decision that polar bears throughout their range should be protected as a “threatened” species under the U.S. Endangered Species Act.

Discovery of Disease-Resistant Oysters Brings Call for Shift in Preservation Strategies

Development of disease resistance among Chesapeake Bay oysters calls for a shift in oyster-restoration strategies within the Bay and its tributaries.

Wildlife Surviving Ongoing Conflict in Afghanistan

A new survey conducted by WCS scientists, supported by the U.S. Agency for International Development, reveals that large mammals, including Asiatic black bears, gray wolves, markhor goats, and leopard cats, are surviving in parts of Afghanistan after years of conflict.

Honduran President Lobo Sosa Announces Shark Sanctuary

The designation encompasses the 92,665 square miles of the country's exclusive economic zone on its Pacific and Caribbean coasts.

Native Bees, Essential to Plant Pollination, Are Picky About Where They Live: Study

The study found that, overall, composition of a plant community is a weak predictor of the composition of a bee community, which may seem counterintuitive at first, said USGS scientist and study lead Ralph Grundel

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