Environmental Protection

Endangered Species

Plans for Guam Wildlife Habitat Project Move Forward

After 25 years, former waste dump converted to endangered wildlife habitat in Guam.

Genetic Survey of Endangered Antarctic Blue Whales Shows Surprising Diversity

More than 99 percent of Antarctic blue whales were killed by commercial whalers during the 20th century, but the first circumpolar genetic study of these critically endangered whales has found a surprisingly high level of diversity among the surviving population of some 2,200 individuals.

Federal Officials Announce Nationwide Crackdown on Black Market Rhino Trade

The Department of Justice and the Department of the Interior recently announced the arrest of seven people charged with trafficking endangered black rhinoceros horns.

Penn State Research Finds Humans and Climate Contributed to Extinctions of Large Ice-Age Mammals

Both climate change and humans were responsible for the extinction of some large mammals, according to research that is the first of its kind to use genetic, archeological, and climatic data together to infer the population history of large Ice-Age mammals.

Researchers: Apply Public Trust Doctrine to 'Rescue' Wildlife from Politics

When a species recovers enough to be removed from the federal endangered species list, the public trust doctrine – the principle that government must conserve natural resources for the public good – should guide state management of wildlife, scientists say.

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

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.

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.

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.

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