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Indestructible Predators or Vulnerable Species: Shark Week at Shedd

While sharks have the reputation of being indestructible, their populations are actually decreasing and some species are endangered or vulnerable to extinction. As apex predators, sharks play an important role in the ecosystem by maintaining populations of lower trophic levels and serving as an indicator for ocean health.  For Shark Week, Shedd Aquarium is raising…

Indonesia Shark Diaries

Reflecting on my last year in Indonesia, and on the diversity of experiences and interactions I have had, illustrates multiple sources of conflict around shark and ray conservation and management. Going forward, we need to accept that designing practical solutions will necessitate some hard choices and trade-offs. I believe that conservationists would benefit from putting aside our pre-existing values and assumptions about the “right” approach and taking time to understand other people’s values and priorities.

Carl Safina joins board of nonprofit working to improve lives of captive cetaceans

By Erica Cirino There are many people who believe whales and dolphins do not belong in aquariums and marine parks, and for good reason: When you put a large, highly intelligent animal that naturally travels a hundred or more miles a day into a small concrete tank, the results aren’t pretty. The animals suffer increased mental…

It’s Time for the World Heritage Convention to Step Up Protection of Globally Significant Wilderness Areas

Despite being irreplaceable and increasingly threatened, wilderness areas remain under-valued, under-protected, and have been almost completely ignored in international environmental policy. Immediate pro-active action is required to save them. The question is where such action could come from. In a paper just published in Conservation Biology, we argue that the World Heritage Convention has the ability to protect wilderness areas by improving coverage within Natural World Heritage Sites (NWHS). This is something very much in the World Heritage Convention’s best interests if it is to meet its core objective to identify and conserve the world’s most valuable sites.

1Frame4Nature | American Icon in the Alaskan Horizon

These photos come from Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve. And by all means, if you ever have a chance to visit the snowy shores of the Chilkat outside Haines, Alaska, I encourage you to do it, especially after the tourists have left, and the temperature now causes ice crystals to form inside your nostrils. This preserve represents the best of who we are as a country. And I think, with everything going on right now, we can at least agree, that we need to remember the things we’ve done right.

Sushi Roulette: Is the Fish You Ordered the One You Got?

Have plans this summer to visit your favorite sushi restaurant? You might order spicy tuna roll. Or maybe salmon or halibut. But is the fish you selected the one you got? If you’re in Los Angeles or many other cities around the globe, it’s a flip of the coin. Scientists at Loyola Marymount University, the…

Minding the Gap: Energy Sprawl and Access in India

By Joe Kiesecker, Scientist for Lands Conservation, The Nature Conservancy Note: this article is the first in a series on “energy sprawl,” the conversion of new land for energy production. New installments will appear approximately every other week. On my very first trip to India I experienced some of its most iconic and most infamous…

The bird and the dolphins

By Safina Center Fellow Ben Mirin Notes from the Field: The first of three vignettes A vignette from Expedition Echo, a 7-day sailing journey to record marine mammal vocalizations along the coast of Belize. It was a fisherman’s worst nightmare. As Captain Eggy frantically reeled in his line, the crew congregated at the back of the…

Smartphones and drones launch ConservationFIT on the International Day for Biological Diversity.

Submitted by Zoe Jewell and Sky Alibhai of ConservationFIT   Today, May 22, is the 2017 International Day for Biological Diversity. In the beautifully-phrased words of E.O. Wilson, world-renowned conservationist, biodiversity is “the assembly of life that took a billion years to evolve. It has eaten the storms, folded them into its genes, and created the…

Belize’s Cockscomb Basin’s Howler Monkey Translocation Is Declared a Success

For 30 days in April and May, 2017, a team of researchers surveyed the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary and its surrounding environs for Central American black howler monkeys (Alouatta pigra). The Cockscomb monkeys are descended from animals that were first brought into the sanctuary 25 years ago in an effort to reintroduce howler monkeys to the area.

Impressive Lagoonal Coral Formations in a Community ‘Tabu’ Area

Lagoons have always fascinated me. The size, shape, and length of a lagoon – and the number of channels that connect inner lagoonal waters with the open ocean – influence the types of coral communities that form within. Because of the amount of sand in the lagoon that sits between the two islands of Kaibu and Yacata in northern Lau Group, I had fairly minimal expectations about what I might see. But nature has a way of surprising us, even the more seasoned coral ecologists!

Exploring Coral Reefs in the Northern Lau Group

On 8 May, 2017, a team of made up of fish and coral experts set off to the untouched waters and lush limestone islands of the Northern Lau Group. Vatuvara Private Islands, along with Vatuvara Foundation have partnered with WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society) to conduct marine baseline surveys to assess the health of diverse coral reefs, 12 months after Category 5 Cyclone Winston passed through Fiji caused widescale damage.

The WCS Climate Adaptation Fund: Supporting Climate Solutions That Work

WCS designed its Climate Adaptation Fund to test and verify solutions to protect the ecological integrity of natural systems. After five years of investing in adaptation projects across the country, our new 14 Solutions report categorizes some of the most common climate challenges impacting diverse landscapes and pairs them with the solutions our grant partners have deployed across the United States.

While you were celebrating Earth Day, the President’s son was out killing a keystone species

On Earth Day 2017 when millions were busy conserving and celebrating nature, President Donald Trump’s son was out killing a keystone species.

Why do we have a World Tuna Day?

By Shelley Dearhart One of the most incredible predators in our Ocean is in danger of being lost. Pacific Bluefin tuna populations have been in jeopardy for years and new allegations of illegal and overfishing activity by Japanese fleets create a dire need for conservation measures to be taken to protect this species. Populations have…