Critically endangered staghorn corals are benefiting from coral gardening in the Caribbean

first_imgNew research finds that “coral gardening,” which involves planting fragments of nursery-raised coral on reefs in the wild to replenish depleted coral colonies, is playing a key role in the restoration of staghorn coral reef systems in the Caribbean.A study published in the journal Coral Reefs in June looks at how successful restoration efforts have been at several sites in Florida and Puerto Rico over the first two years of a staghorn coral (Acropora cervicornis) gardening program.Researchers collected data on the survival and productivity of thousands of individual A. cervicornis colonies within six different geographical regions in order to develop benchmarks that can be used to assess coral reef restoration efforts and their impacts on the overall ecosystem. It’s not just the Great Barrier Reef — coral reefs around the globe are in decline due to climate change, ocean pollution, and a number of other impacts of human activities on marine environments.But new research finds that “coral gardening,” which involves planting fragments of nursery-raised coral on reefs in the wild to replenish depleted coral colonies, is playing a key role in the restoration of staghorn coral reef systems in the Caribbean — and might just help inform strategies to ensure the long-term survival of the world’s coral reefs in the future.A study published in the journal Coral Reefs in June looks at how successful restoration efforts have been at several sites in Florida and Puerto Rico over the first two years of a staghorn coral (Acropora cervicornis) gardening program. The researchers behind the study — a team led by scientists with the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science at the University of Miami (UM) — say they found that current restoration methods do not cause excessive damage to donor colonies (from which coral tissue is taken and propagated in a nursery), and that once the coral fragments are planted back out in the wild, known as being “outplanted,” they behave just like wild colonies.Particularly susceptible to bleaching, staghorn coral populations have declined more than 80 percent over the past 30 years due to higher incidence of disease and the impacts of global warming, especially higher ocean temperatures and ocean acidification, according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). The species was listed as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act in 2006 and is currently listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List.Staghorn corals (Acropora cervicornis) are propagated within underwater coral nurseries to create a sustainable source of corals for use in coral restoration activities (inset). Outplanted corals have similar survival and productivity values as wild colonies, thereby indicating that coral gardening methodologies are successful in creating healthy corals for restoration. Photo Credit: Stephanie Schopmeyer, UM Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.There have been efforts to propagate and reintroduce A. cervicornis in waters near the Dominican Republic, Florida, Honduras, Jamaica, and Puerto Rico, the IUCN reports.“Coral reefs are declining at an alarming rate and coral restoration programs are now considered an essential component to coral conservation and management [planning],” Diego Lirman, a professor of marine biology and ecology at UM and co-author of the study, said in a statement.Lirman and the rest of the team collected data on the survival and productivity of thousands of individual A. cervicornis colonies within six different geographical regions in order to develop benchmarks that can be used to assess coral reef restoration efforts and their impacts on the overall ecosystem. “Our findings provide the necessary scientific benchmarks to evaluate restoration progress moving forward,” Lirman added.“We propose that up to 10% of the biomass can be collected from healthy, large A. cervicornis donor colonies for nursery propagation,” the researchers write in the study. They also propose a number of benchmarks for the first year of staghorn coral restoration efforts: greater than 75 percent live tissue cover remaining on donor colonies; greater than 80 percent survival of nursery corals; and greater than 70 percent survival of outplanted corals.The world’s wild coral reef systems provide habitat for fisheries, supply food for humans and numerous marine species, and help protect shorelines against hurricanes and other extreme weather events. That’s why coral restoration is coming to be seen as an effective means of ensuring coral reef systems are still capable of providing those ecosystem services as well as for mitigating the impacts of rising sea levels and storm surges on coastlines, according to UM coral biologist Stephanie Schopmeyer, lead author of the study.“Our study showed that current restoration methods are very effective,” Schopmeyer said in a statement. “Healthy coral reefs are essential to our everyday life and successful coral restoration has been proven as a recovery tool for lost coastal resources.”Staghorn coral. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.CITATIONSAronson, R., Bruckner, A., Moore, J., Precht, B. & E. Weil. 2008. Acropora cervicornis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T133381A3716457. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2008.RLTS.T133381A3716457.en. Downloaded on 08 August 2017.Schopmeyer, S. A., Lirman, D., Bartels, E., Gilliam, D. S., Goergen, E. A., Griffin, S. P., … & Walter, C. S. (2017). Regional restoration benchmarks for Acropora cervicornis. Coral Reefs, 1-11. doi:10.1007/s00338-017-1596-3Follow Mike Gaworecki on Twitter: @mikeg2001FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Climate Change, Climate Change And Coral Reefs, Coral Bleaching, Coral Reefs, Environment, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Impact Of Climate Change, Marine Conservation, Marine Ecosystems, Oceans And Climate Change Article published by Mike Gaworeckicenter_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

How small is too small? The uncertain fate of Madagascar’s forest fragments

first_imgMany of the largest trees in the protected area didn’t recover after being scorched by a fire in 2014. Photo by Rowan Moore Gerety for Mongabay.Sohisika trees, represented by roughly 200 to 300 mature plants all told, are considered to be at high risk for extinction. Ankafobe holds just 15 of them, protected since 2005 as the centerpiece of the 150 hectare community reserve The reserve is supported by the Missouri Botanical Garden (MBG) and is now in the process of achieving legal designation as a New Protected Area.The other sohisikas are scattered on the savannah surrounding the reserve and in a handful of green slivers that mark the clefts between neighboring hills — areas with no environmental protection and that face the constant threat of brush fires during the dry season. Until 2014, another 50 of the trees could be found a few miles away at a site managed by the Antananarivo-based group Madagasco Environnement. But recent satellite imagery shows that the valley where the sohisika were concentrated is now mostly bare.As logging, charcoal production, and the clearing of woods for farmland took their cumulative toll on Madagascar’s forests in the second half of the 20th century, the country’s total forest cover fell by 40 percent. But fragmentation of the forests that remained progressed even more quickly. Between 1950 and 2000, there was an 80 percent reduction in the area covered by “core forests,” which lie at least one kilometer from the nearest edge, a trend mirrored in forests around the world.The result has been a splintering of remaining habitat for endangered species across Madagascar, and a scramble among conservationists to figure out how best to protect what’s left.Map courtesy of Google Maps.“The tragedy of Madagascar is that the forest there is in pieces,” said Stuart Pimm, an expert on the biology of fragmentation and extinction who teaches at Duke University in North Carolina. “When it comes to fragmentation, there’s bad news, there’s worse news, and there’s worse news still.”As the size of a given patch of forest dwindles, Pimm explained, its basic geometry changes too, so that there is much more “edge,” or perimeter, for each hectare of forest. It’s similar to what happens when a child cuts a single sheet of paper into a paper snowflake. These multiplying forest edges make it easier for predators to reach their prey under the canopy, expose trees more readily to the effects of drought, and give brush fires purchase in forests they wouldn’t otherwise burn. Madagascar’s total forest cover fell by 40 percent in the second half of the 20th century, but fragmentation of the forests that remained progressed even more quickly.Conservation groups are working to conserve a number of small fragments. In Ankafobe, the local community has come together to reconnect three scraps of forest and defend them against fire.The risk that both animates this work and threatens to make it obsolete is that fire, agriculture, or other pressures could reduce the size of these fragments below some basic threshold of ecological viability.This is the third story in Mongabay’s multi-part series “Conservation in Madagascar.” ANKAFOBE, Madagascar — When he first told colleagues at the Missouri Botanical Garden that lemurs still lived in the forest in Ankafobe, Jean Jacques Rasolofonirina said he was met with disbelief. “The forest is too small,” he recalled one saying—just 27.76 hectares, to be exact, split into three fragments scarcely larger than three or four New York City blocks.But these narrow wooded valleys still hold three species of lemurs, and owls, frogs, and bats besides. Solofo, as friends and colleagues call him, rattled off their Latin names as he walked down the narrow path that enters the forest from the main road. He stopped to mimic the call of a Malagasy paradise flycatcher (Terpsiphone mutata) perched on a nearby branch, and pointed out seedlings planted to fill in a small clearing beside a stream.After a few minutes, he gestured at a gnarled, windswept tree at the edge of the woods with smooth gray bark and small, waxy leaves. “That,” Solofo said, “is the sohisika,” or Schizolaena tampoketsana, one of a handful of plant species found nowhere on the planet outside the rolling grasslands here, in a single district northwest of Madagascar’s capital city, Antananarivo.last_img read more

Interoceanic Highway incites deforestation in Peru, threatens more to come

first_imgArticle published by Morgan Erickson-Davis Between July and August, 435 hectares of forest were lost around Iberia, a Peruvian town that has been turned into a deforestation hotspot.The Interoceanic Highway is threatening forests in eastern Peru’s Amazon rainforest where many residents depend on sustainably harvesting rubber for their livelihoods. IBERIA, Peru — Saturnino Cuchama is proud of the business he runs in the middle of a lush tropical rainforest. Every day at 4 a.m., the 42-year-old rubber gatherer walks through the trails in the forest extracting latex from the bark of wild rubber trees (Hevea brasiliensis), which grow naturally in this part of the Peruvian Amazon.It’s an exhausting job. Cuchama has to collect latex from three trails every day; each one consists of about 100 individual trees. Since the rubber trees grow sporadically throughout the terrain, a single trail in the tropical rainforest can measure up to five kilometers in length.The Shiringa Concession in Iberia. Ecological leather is made from the latex from the Shiringa trees. Saturnino Cuchama Puma works in the concession. Photo by Rochi León.I follow Cuchama through the forest. He stops at each tree to make an incision with a sharp knife, letting the rubber fall into plastic bottles that he will later collect. It is a practice that has existed for centuries in this part of the Amazon, especially during the Amazon Rubber Boom at the end of the 19th century, in which hundreds of thousands of people worked as slaves in the tropical rainforest.But times have changed. Cuchama leads a social enterprise of 22 traditional rubber workers who live around the Peruvian town of Iberia in Madre de Dios, close to the borders of Bolivia and Brazil. The communal rubber company, Ecomusa, helps protect the rights of the rubber workers and lets them collectively sell their latex at fair prices on the market.Saturnino Cuchama shows a rubber tree and demonstrates how latex is extracted. Photo by Rochi León.Last year, the rubber workers, or shiringueros, as they are known locally, produced a total of more than 2,000 kilograms of natural latex, valued at $4 per kilogram. After being dried and pressed, the latex is sent to Portugal to make shoe soles. It’s a sustainable forest practice: people extract goods, but they don’t destroy the forest. Ecomusa’s work wouldn’t be possible if the company didn’t have the right to use the tropical jungle for rubber extraction. In 2008, the Regional Government of Madre de Dios awarded the rubber worker collective about 7,900 hectares of rubber trees in a concession.However, almost ten years later, only half of that area remains. Over the years, 4,000 hectares of low-lying tropical forest, which is about half of the original concession of rubber trees, has been invaded and burned by farmers.“They keep taking our lands,” Cuchama said. “The biggest part of the forest has been converted into cornfields, but they also use it to plant bananas, papaya, or for livestock grazing.”The Interoceanic HighwayCuchama’s rubber trails are only 15 kilometers away from the Interoceanic Highway, a road completed in July 2010 that goes through the Peruvian Amazon from the Andes on the west to the Brazilian border on the east. The monumental project —one of the largest and most expensive roads in Peru— was intended to connect Brazil’s economic strength with Lima and other strategic ports along the Pacific coast.Travelers on the Interoceanic Highway from Puerto Maldonado to Iñapari, on the Peruvian-Brazilian border. Photo by Rochi León.However, this 2,400-kilometer highway, built by Brazilian companies like Odebrecht (which is currently part of an investigation into allegations of bribery of Peruvian civil servants to win a bid) opened the doors to other social and environmental problems.One of those problems: the rapid advancement of deforestation in the area where Ecomusa’s rubber concessions are located. Between 2012 and 2014, the area around Iberia had low to medium levels of deforestation. In 2015, the levels passed from medium to high.Between 2013 and 2015, the deforestation surrounding the town of Iberia and on both sides of the Interoceanic Highway totaled 1,830 hectares (MAAP #28). This loss of forest, which is evidenced by small patches visible in satellite images, is situated within the forest concessions set aside for the use of wood and rubber collection. The satellite images concur with on-the-ground observations made by Mongabay Latam.A map showing the increase of newly-deforested areas for small-scale agricultural use within the Shiringa concession area. Image courtesy of USGS, PNCB/MINAM, UMD/GLADAccording to a report recently published by the Monitoring of the Andean Amazon Project (MAAP #68),  the town of Iberia continues to be one of the most deforested areas in the Peruvian Amazon. Based on the latest high-resolution satellite data, MAAP calculated that between June and August 2017, 435 hectares of low-lying tropical rainforests were deforested around this town bordering the Interoceanic Highway.Satellite data show deforestation of 435 hectares of land (the size of 595 soccer fields). MAAP’s report indicates that a large part of the deforestation occurred in areas designated as forest concessions. Photo courtesy of MAAP and Planet Labs.Evidence of deforestation is obvious when traveling to Iberia. Large expanses of forest have recently been burned, leaving vacant land that will soon be turned into fields for growing papaya or corn. On portions of the land, active fires continue to burn.A large part of this new deforestation is occurring within the forest concessions set aside for the use of rubber collection, such as those used by Saturnino Cuchama.Roadside deforestation along the Interoceanic Highway. Photo by Rochi León.However, until the first half of 2017, in the middle of July, Ibera was not considered a big deforestation hotspot. Because of this, those working in the area say the recent forest losses are probably associated with the beginning of the dry season, which generally starts in June and creates the best conditions for local farmers to practice slash-and-burn agriculture.Deforested and burned land that will soon be converted into agricultural fields. Photo by Rochi León.During last year’s dry season —which resulted in one of the most severe droughts in decades— the portion of the Interoceanic Highway along the Brazilian border, from Iberia to Iñapari, was the scene of many forest fires. These forest fires led to deforestation, with almost 600 hectares lost in this area during the dry season of 2016.The National Forest and Wildlife Service (SERFOR), part of the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation of Peru, confirmed to Mongabay Latam that there were indeed 435 hectares of forest recently deforested around Iberia. According to SERFOR, Peru is establishing a department for the control and vigilance for forests in Madre de Dios, which will coordinate the activities of various public institutions to confront the area’s deforestation.Deforestation continues around the town of Iberia, where those who depend on the forest fear losing their land. Photo by Rochi León.Low demandThe Interoceanic Highway, which has facilitated this increase in deforestation, has played a central role in the corruption scandal that continues to torment Peruvian politics. Brazilian construction company Odebrecht won a contract for the construction of the highway after bribing former president Alejandro Toledo with $20 million. This is according to a declaration by financial collaborators from Panama, Costa Rica, and the U.S. Department of Justice.This wasn’t the only case of bribery. Today it is known that the Brazilian construction company paid $788 million in bribes in 11 Latin American countries in order to gain the rights to construct large-scale profitable infrastructure projects.A part of the route connecting Puerto Maldonado and Iñapari, on the border with Brazil. Photo by Rochi León.The Interoceanic Highway, which passes through Iberia, was one of the most expensive of all. The total cost of the project tripled from $658 million to almost $2 billion upon completion (IIRSA), much of which was paid by the Peruvian government and by Brazilian development banks.The hopes that the new highway would allow Peru to export agricultural products —like potatoes— to Brazil were high. However, the demand for Peruvian products continues to be low in the western Brazilian states of Acre and Rondônia. The Brazilian states closest to Peru are also its most populated states. The increase in population means that the demand for Peruvian food products should also increase, but Peruvian exporters still prefer to send their products for less money to the east coast of Brazil, which has more demand.However, the disappointing level of demand hasn’t stopped farmers from using the new highway to put Madre de Dios’ “virgin territories” to use. When driving outside of the capital, Puerto Maldonado, one can see burned forests for miles and miles. The empty fields are only interrupted by tall, blackened chestnut trees. These solitary trees are a reminder of what was once a lush tropical rainforest.Burned forests are part of the scenery in the town of Iberia. Photo by Rochi León.Papaya has been the preferred crop for this area. In 2015, papaya fields covered 204 hectares, more than half of the total annual deforestation along the Interoceanic Highway from Puerto Maldonado to the Brazilian border. Papaya coverage has increased significantly since 2014, when the crop only covered 55 hectares.Papaya fields in Iberia. Photo by Rochi León.Fieldwork conducted by the Peruvian Ministry of the Environment confirmed that all papaya crops in the area are small (less than five hectares) or medium (between five and 50 hectares), which is consistent with the type of small-scale deforestation indicated by satellite imagery.However, since 2016, papaya has suffered from low prices because of overproduction and viral diseases, such as papaya ringspot virus. Cuchama told Mongabay Latam that the majority of the newly cleared forest that threatens his rubber trails is now used to grow corn, which suggests a transition from papaya to this new crop. Rubber as an alternative“Of course, the Interoceanic Highway has had a big impact,” said Alejandro López, a colleague of Cuchama. López is a chemical engineer who helps Ecomusa process latex and turn it into products like bags, shoes, and toys.The road, which was once just a small dirt trail, has improved access to markets. It allows the rubber worker collective to send their rubber to the Peruvian coast, from where it is sent on to Portugal. “The road has brought progress,” says López, “but also destruction.”López isn’t only referring to slash-and-burn agriculture, which each year brings more destruction to Ecomusa’s rubber. “At the moment, it’s much more easy to cut wood.” The State itself has granted logging concessions close to the Shiringuero land, so there is not much they can do about it, he explained.A small farm in the area bordering forest concessions like that of Ecomusa. Photo by Rochi León.Logging not only threatens Ecomusa’s rubber concessions, but also conservation areas like Rodal Semillero Tahuamanu, which is only a few kilometers from the Interoceanic Highway. Cuchama is sure that the loggers are illegally taking wood from this protected area. “Ever since they built a logging trail in the forest three years ago, the loggers regularly enter with trucks,” he said.Luis Espinel is the vice president of International Conservation Peru, an institution that owned this protected area until June 1, when the Ecological and Environmental Association of Tahuamanu (Ecomath) took charge of it. Espinel confirmed to Mongabay Latam that illegal logging is the main threat to Rodal.“During the [past] 10 years, we have suffered from at least three illegal entrances with the goal of cutting down mahogany trees, which were reported to the respective authorities in Madre de Dios,” he explained. “These events generally occurred in the rainy season, when activities like control and vigilance are made more complicated, since the concession has flooded areas that are inaccessible at those times.”The Rodal Semillero Tahuamanu conservation area functions as a refuge for wildlife coming from neighboring areas where agriculture or other activities have altered the ecosystem, says Espinel. The area also serves as a seed bank for many species. “Its 12,000 hectares house a sample of the biodiversity in the Madre de Dios region,” Espinel said.According to SERFOR, the conservation concession is particularly important for its diversity of bird species (at least 124), including macaws and toucans.López believes that the only way to protect the forest is to give it a different economic value. “The State tells us that we should protect the forest, but it doesn’t tell us how to live. With rubber we can do both.”Saturnino Cuchama cuts the Shiringa trees carefully to extract rubber without killing the tree. Every day, they cut into up to 100 trees and collect the latex in recycled bottles. Photo by Rochi León.López and Cuchama hope to expand Ecomusa’s rubber business to include more high-quality products. They know that only the increase in income will allow them to open more rubber trails.“If we don’t work in the forests, the loggers and farmers will enter. With rubber, we try to give people an alternative.” Agriculture, Agroforestry, Corn, Crops, Deforestation, Environment, Featured, Forest Loss, Forests, Infrastructure, Logging, Protected Areas, Rainforests, Research, Roads, Rubber, Tropical Forests Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored This story was first published in Spanish by Mongabay Latam on October 24, 2017.Banner image by Rochi León.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the editor of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.last_img read more

Entanglements hamper reproduction as right whale population slides

first_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored Article published by John Cannon Just 451 North Atlantic right whales remain, down from 458 in 2016 and 483 in 2010.Entanglements in fishing gear and ship strikes remain the two most important threats to right whale survival.A study published in November in the journal Ecology and Evolution finds that fewer females are surviving than males and the interval between calving is growing longer. It’s been a rough year for North Atlantic right whales. Fifteen died in the first 10 months of the year, concerning scientists enough that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration declared this past summer an “unusual mortality event.” And recently, a team of scientists reported that this year is part of a longer decline over the past several years.Critically, female right whales are struggling to reproduce, the study found.“They’re dying too young, and they’re not having calves often enough,” said ecologist Peter Corkeron of NOAA’s Northeast Fisheries Center in Woods Hole, Mass., at the North Atlantic Right Whale Consortium annual meeting in Nova Scotia in October. Corkeron is one of the paper’s authors.Right whale (Eubalaena glacialis) skim feeding, with baleen clearly visible. Photo by NOAA Fisheries/Elizabeth Josephson, NEFSC.Marine mammal scientists have long identified the two main threats to the North Atlantic right whale (Eubalaena glacialis), an IUCN-listed Endangered species: getting hit by massive cargo ships, and getting snared in the ubiquitous fishing gear found off the eastern coast of Canada and the United States. Prior to those issues, the species had been decimated by centuries of hunting; as slow-moving whales that bobbed to the surface once dispatched, they were the “right” whales to kill, and by 1990 the population had dropped to just 270 animals.Twenty years of research and strategies to keep more whales alive buoyed the population to 483 in 2010. But the current study, published in the November issue of the journal Ecology and Evolution, confirms what scientists in the field have observed in the past decade: that right whale numbers are trending down. Employing a unique method of modeling, the team found with near-100 percent certainty that there were 458 animals in 2015. The current estimate: 451 North Atlantic right whales.“Although our work directly reveals a relatively small decrease, the subtext is that this species is presently in dire straits,” Richard Pace, a biologist at the Northeast Fisheries Center who is also the lead author of the report, said in a statement.The study also uncovered another worrisome trend: Female right whales are dying faster than males, further complicating an already difficult road to recovery.When it comes to increasing the number of individual animals, Corkeron said, “What really matters is the number of females in a species.”A female whale must sustain herself and a fetus throughout a 12-month pregnancy, and she has to protect and feed an infant that can be 4.5 meters (15 feet) long and weigh 900 kilograms (1 ton) at birth. A population that is hemorrhaging females could help create what Scott Kraus, a biologist at the New England Aquarium in Boston, calls the “cliff of reproduction” that scientists have observed since 2010.“There are two explanations for this where there’s solid scientific evidence,” said Kraus, one of the study’s coauthors, at the October event.It could be that the females are not getting enough to eat because their prey — the tons of krill and zooplankton that they rely on — isn’t in the same place that it used to be, or the whales can’t find it in adequate amounts to support their own enormity.For potential right whale mothers, “You got to be fat to have babies,” Kraus said.Another, more insidious possibility is that tangling with fishing gear causes enough problems, whether from the drag that toting the gear around causes or the injuries inflicted, to keep whales from bulking up and breeding the way they have in the past.Kraus said they expect a breeding-age female to have a calf every three to six years. But a recent report card on North Atlantic right whales recorded an average of more than 10 years between calves for the five females who gave birth in 2017.One of the right whale boater awareness signs displayed at marinas and harbors in the Northeast, pictured here at the Boston Harbor Shipyard and Marina. Photo by Caleb Gilbert, NOAA Fisheries/NEFSC Protected Species Branch.At the same time, few right whales remain untouched by gear entanglements.“It’s such a common event for right whales and all of them are suffering from a certain amount of damage,” Kraus said. “It’s very likely to have a substantial impact on reproduction over time.”If that weren’t bad enough, in July a rescuer trained to remove entangled fishing gear that seems to be hindering the animal’s recovery was killed while trying to cut a whale free in Canada’s Gulf of St. Lawrence.For male whales, an entanglement handicap could just mean they don’t get to breed if they’re not fit enough to compete for a mate, Corkeron said. For a female, it’s causing a spike in the interval between calves in what’s already become a truncated lifespan because of the threats the whales face.Researchers know of one female North Atlantic right whale that lived to be 69 years old, and she was killed by a ship strike, not natural causes. Bowhead whales, also members of the Balaenid family, live for two centuries or more, and southern right whales (Eubalaena australis) also have long lives. In that context, the North Atlantic right whales’ current 30-year average lifespan seems all the more perplexing.“This seems to be way too short for what a Balaenid should live to, and it’s an awful lot shorter than what southern right whales from South Africa live to,” Corkeron said. “If you’re [starting reproduction] at 10 and dying at 20 or 30, the reproductive intervals we’re seeing at the moment help explain why the decline’s happening.”North Atlantic right whales photographed by the NEFSC aerial survey team in May 2016. Photo by NOAA Fisheries/Tim Cole, NEFSC.The takeaway is that scientists and fisheries managers must find a way to cut down on entanglements. But it’s a problem that’s proven to be trickier to address than ship strikes, Kraus said.Through a combination of moving the busy shipping lanes that cut through prime right whale habitat and getting captains to slow their ships down, the Canadian and U.S. governments have curbed collisions with whales “by tremendous amounts,” Kraus said. In some instances, the chance of a collision with a ship is down by as much as 90 percent.But research and efforts to tackle the problem with fishing gear haven’t been as successful, he said.“We have been working for 20 years to try to reduce entanglements in fishing gear. We have tried all kinds of things,” Kraus said. “And yet, it hasn’t made a single difference in the rate of entanglement or the severity of entanglement.”“We’ve been guessing for 20 years, and we haven’t been very good at guessing,” he added.CITATIONPace, R. M., Corkeron, P. J., & Kraus, S. D. (2017). State-space mark-recapture estimates reveal a recent decline in abundance of North Atlantic right whales. Ecology and Evolution, 7(21), 8730-8741.Banner image of North Atlantic right whales by NOAA Fisheries/Tim Cole, NEFSC.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.Follow John Cannon on Twitter: @johnccannoncenter_img Animals, Conservation, Ecology, Endangered Species, Environment, Extinction, Mammals, Marine Conservation, Marine Mammals, Oceans, Research, Whales, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation last_img read more

Indonesian parliament pushes for passage of palm oil legislation this year

first_imgArticle published by Hans Nicholas Jong Indonesian legislators have prioritized deliberations of a bill regulating the country’s palm oil industry, hoping to have it passed this year.The bill in its current form conflicts with the government’s own recently adopted measures to protect peatlands, a point that legislators have acknowledged must be addressed.While its proponents say the bill is needed to protect the industry, citing a Western conspiracy against Indonesian palm oil, environmental activists say it will do little to address the ills attributed to the industry. JAKARTA — Lawmakers in Indonesia are adamant about passing new legislation on the palm oil industry this year, amid concerns from activists and even the executive branch of government.Environmental groups warn that the bill, in its current form, favors large corporations at the expense of smallholders and rural and indigenous communities. A key criticism is that it advocates the clearing of peatlands  for plantations — a position at odds with the administration of President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, which has rolled out measures to protect peat areas.Those measures, introduced following massive land fires in 2015 that blanketed much of the region in a choking haze for months, oblige companies with land concessions that overlap onto peatlands to conserve and restore those areas. The large-scale draining of carbon-rich peat swamps by oil palm and pulpwood planters renders the land highly combustible, and the annual burning has made Indonesia one of the world’s biggest emitters of greenhouse gases.Legislators backing the bill appear to acknowledge the issue, but insist that economic growth must be prioritized.“These are regions that have to be protected,” Hamdani, a legislator with the Nasdem Party, who serves on the parliamentary commission discussing the bill, said of peat areas. He added the proposed article implying that palm oil companies were entitled on plant on peatlands “has to be changed.”Nevertheless, Hamdani, whose constituency covers Central Kalimantan, a province that is home to vast expanses of oil palm plantations, said the legislation would promote economic growth. He said he hoped it could be passed before September 2019, when a new crop of lawmakers takes office.“This bill serves the public interest,” said Hamdhani, who like many Indonesians, goes by just one name.Senior administration officials, though, see things differently. Darmin Nasution, the coordinating minister for the economy, has questioned the need for the new legislation.“Based on a comprehensive study that we’ve done, and after consultation with stakeholders, the government concluded that the bill is not needed yet,” he told a parliamentary hearing in July last year.The palm oil bill has been included in parliament’s docket of priority legislation for 2018, after getting the same treatment last year. (The fact that it failed to pass in 2017 despite being a “priority” is not unusual; parliament typically achieves only a fraction of the legislative target that it sets itself every year.)That it’s been prioritized once again in light of the administration’s misgivings has left its critics “surprised and confused,” said Maryo Saputra, campaign head at Sawit Watch, an NGO that monitors the palm oil industry.One of the bill’s main backers, Firman Soebagyo of the Golkar Party, says it will help protect Indonesia’s palm oil industry from foreign intervention — the argument being that Western stakeholders are behind a smear campaign aimed at boosting their own soybean and rapeseed oil industries. It’s the same theme espoused by the Indonesian Palm Oil Association, known as GAPKI, which often speaks of a conspiracy by foreign vegetable oil interests to undermine Indonesia’s palm oil industry.United at the other end of the debate are Indonesia’s environmental NGOs, who caution that the bill will benefit the large firms that dominate the industry. They also say it will do little to address the real problems in the industry, including the grabbing of indigenous lands, or the widespread failure on the part of companies to provide local communities with smallholdings as required by law.Andi Muttaqien, deputy director of the Institute for Policy Research and Advocacy, or ELSAM, says critical voices are being excluded from the public hearings on the bill, during which outside groups are supposed to be invited by legislators to have their say.“Each year, the bill is always included on the legislative priority list,” Andi said. “But whenever there’s a public hearing, the meeting doesn’t involve many stakeholders.”Public consultations are being carried out in some regions. But Andi said this in itself was problematic, because it would lend more weight to the views of businesses and local government officials — who have historically sided with the interests of palm oil companies — over those of ordinary citizens. It also undermines the work being done to “harmonize” the bill — a part of the legislative process to ensure the bill doesn’t overlap or conflict with existing laws, regulations or regional bylaws.“Even though the bill is in the harmonization period, the legislative body keeps conducting public consultations in some regions,” Andi said, adding it was important for the harmonization to be completed before regional consultations began.“We’re worried that when the bill enters the next stage, which is open hearings, it will have already gained lots of support from the regional level,” he said. Banner image: An oil palm plantation adjacent to tropical forest in Borneo. Photo by Rhett A. Butler. Agriculture, Environment, Environmental Law, Forestry, Forests, Governance, Indonesia, Law, Oil Palm, Palm Oil, Peatlands, Plantations, Politics, Rainforest Destruction, Rainforests, Threats To Rainforests Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

150 years after being discovered, African monkey with handlebar moustache becomes its own species

first_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsored An African monkey first described to science more than 150 years ago has now been elevated to full species status.The Blue Nile patas monkey is found in the Blue Nile basin of Ethiopia as well as in eastern Sudan. Its range is geographically distinct from that of other patas monkeys, as Sudan’s Sudd swamp region and the Ethiopian highlands isolate the Blue Nile patas in the extreme northeast end of patas monkeys’ known distribution range.Patas monkeys are ground-dwellers and the fastest runners amongst all primates, capable of reaching more than 30 miles per hour. They were, up until now, considered to be one species, Erythrocebus patas — the only species within the genus Erythrocebus. Or at least it was the only recognized species in the genus until Erythrocebus poliophaeus, the Blue Nile patas monkey, was recently elevated to full species status by Spartaco Gippoliti, a scientist with the IUCN SSC Primate Specialist Group.The Blue Nile patas monkey has a black face and nose as well as a tuft of fur below its nose that looks distinctly like a white handlebar moustache. The species does not, however, have the band between ears and eyes that is characteristic of other patas monkeys.Gippoliti wrote in a recent study published in the journal Primate Conservation that “New data on the distribution and physical appearance of patas monkeys in Ethiopia, together with a review of the old taxonomic literature, allows to us disentangle some questions concerning the taxonomy of Erythrocebus in northeast Africa.”Adult male Blue Nile Patas Monkey (Erythrocebus poliophaeus), Beijing Zoo. Photo courtesy of Jonas Livet.The Blue Nile patas monkey was first described and given the name Erythrocebus poliophaeus in 1862. But a taxonomic revision of Erythrocebus was done in 1927, and it was erroneously determined at that time that the genus was monotypic, meaning it consisted of just one species.According to Gipolliti, “Given the huge distributional range of Erythrocebus, it seems unlikely that the current monotypic classification describes the diversity of the genus correctly, all the more since other savannah dwelling African primate genera, such as Papio and Chlorocebus, comprise multiple species.” Even in 1927, there were enough differences observed among various populations of patas monkeys that three subspecies were identified — and a fourth subspecies was added in 1950.In 2008, the IUCN assessed Erythrocebus patas as a monotypic genus with no subspecies and classified it as a species of Least Concern. This was “undoubtedly the result of the deficient current taxonomy, the ample geographic range and the scarcity of research,” Gippoliti writes in the study. “Further, savannah primate species are generally believed to be less at risk than forest primates, but this is clearly an oversimplification that may be encouraged by an excessively-lumped alpha taxonomy.”Gippoliti adds that, though the results are still unpublished, Erythrocebus patas was reassessed as Near Threatened by the IUCN in 2016. The conservation status of the three subspecies initially recognized in 1927 were also assessed, for the first time ever. Erythrocebus patas patas was found to be Near Threatened, E. baumstarki to be Critically Endangered, and E. pyrrhonotus to be Vulnerable.Blue Nile Patas Monkey (Erythrocebus poliophaeus). Illustration by Stephen NashGippoliti notes in the study that Erythrocebus poliophaeus is threatened by habitat loss, and that while we still know very little about the extent of its range, the species’ distribution is “certainly limited” and therefore “the species is a cause for conservation concern.” But Gippoliti also argues that, now that it’s been established as taxonomically distinct, the monkey could serve as something of a flagship species to help spur the conservation of the wildlands of Ethiopia and Sudan.“Refining the taxonomy of the patas monkey was particularly rewarding for two main reasons,” he said in a statement. “The basic concept of the genus Erythrocebus was unchanged for about 100 years now, and the discovery of a distinct species living in eastern Sudan and western Ethiopia will put in the spotlight a little-known region of Africa, offering opportunities for new conservation projects in the area.”Gippoliti detailed his findings in an issue of Primate Conservation published at the end of 2017. The Blue Nile patas monkey is just one of several discoveries reported in that issue. Among the others is Grove’s dwarf lemur, found in Madagascar, and two new species of tarsier found on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi.Anthony Rylands, primate conservation director for Global Wildlife Conservation, also serves as deputy chair of the IUCN SSC Primate Specialist Group, which publishes the journal Primate Conservation. He said in a statement that “Patas monkeys occur west to east across sub-Saharan Africa, and there is notable variation in these remarkable primates. It’s only through this kind of painstaking research that we get a proper handle on their diversity so that we can more effectively protect these species from the threats they face.”Adult male Blue Nile Patas Monkey (Erythrocebus poliophaeus), Beijing Zoo. Photo courtesy of Jonas Livet.CITATIONS• Gippoliti, S. (2017). On the Taxonomy of Erythrocebus with a Re-evaluation of Erythrocebus poliophaeus (Reichenbach, 1862) from the Blue Nile Region of Sudan and Ethiopia. Primate Conservation, 31, 53-59.• Kingdon, J., Butynski, T.M. & De Jong, Y. 2008. Erythrocebus patas. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T8073A12884516. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2008.RLTS.T8073A12884516.en. Downloaded on 16 March 2018.Follow Mike Gaworecki on Twitter: @mikeg2001FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Animals, Conservation, Environment, Mammals, Monkeys, New Discovery, Primates, Rediscovered Species, Species Discovery, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation center_img Article published by Mike Gaworeckilast_img read more

The Baby Who Was Kept in the Closet

first_imgThe touching story of Dynasty, who in 2004, sat behind bars pregnant in Westminster, Maryland, USA, and wasn’t released until her deportation back to Liberia two years after the child was born, just went viral after her daughter found her through Facebook.“I have been searching for her through adoption searches and stuff but never knew that she was looking for me, too. I created a Facebook page using my real name months back in hopes of attracting all friends, not knowing that something so special to me would be found,” she added.Destiny, the shy and timid teenager who bears a strong resemblance to her mother, was on February 9, 2017 reunited with her mother while searching through the internet. Destiny says she has been ‘dying to see her mother’ and wasn’t upset about how they were reunited.“When my mother answered the call, my heart dropped. There she was, and smiling with one of the most beautiful smiles I have ever seen. Then she started crying, and then she disappeared. I could hear her but could only see a wall. I thought to myself, my mother must really miss me,” Destiny shared.For Dynasty though, seeing her child so calm, happy and anxious to see her again despite putting Destiny through the things she had to go through, was overwhelming.“I thought I would start off by saying sorry, but instead there she was smiling and glaring into my eyes with love, satisfaction and I couldn’t help it. I cried hard,” Dynasty said.In 2004, while Dynasty faced a ‘nasty’ court battle to stay in America, she discovered that she was pregnant the day she was placed behind bars. For the whole nine months of her pregnancy, she said she went through trauma, assault and constant depression.According to Dynasty, there came a time when she was placed in solitary confinement for her own good.“I remember having one of my court hearings and begging my lawyer to allow me to be deported so I wouldn’t have to leave my child behind. They told me about the law that prohibited me from going anywhere at the time and I was forced to have my baby while handcuffed and shackled,” she recalled.“We spent four days in the hospital after I had the caesarean section and I couldn’t stop crying. The nurses said I was the saddest mother they had ever come across and I was sedated almost the entire time I was on bed. But I remember her touch, rubbing her feet and fingers. No mother should have to go through that ever,” she sadly said. Destiny was released and picked up by Dynasty’s grandmother Adel, who was not allowed under any circumstances to have children or pets residing at her ‘special’ residence for elders.Sneaking the sleeping infant into her apartment building on a cold and icy day in January 2004, Destiny lived behind closed doors for two years without anyone knowing she was there. But Latter Day Saints church members and a small close-knit group of friends knew the story behind the child that appeared out of nowhere, and they did all they could to help Adel.“Destiny had nothing and we could not locate her father because her mother refused to show who he was for fear that his family would take her away from me. Dynasty tried so hard to keep the child a secret, even her family did not know about the baby living in my house.“Whenever the housing owners would check on us the elders, I’d hide baby Destiny in my room, or in a closet until the coast was clear. She lived like this until one day I fell ill and there was no way to even pick Destiny up, so I called on the church to find a family to take the child,” Adel added.Meanwhile, Dynasty never knew who had her daughter, while she lived half a world away. She fought to survive in a place that she said makes no sense to her. Dynasty said she set aside thinking of her daughter to focus on how to survive in Africa.“I have spent many days searching for my daughter at the internet café where I work but after some time I gave up. Luckily I decided to open a Facebook account using my real name when I received a message asking if I was ever living in Maryland. The account name was that of girl and I knew right away that it was important that I answer the call; and there she was,” added Dynasty.Destiny said she knows that her grandmother is now resting in peace.“Being here with everyone is as if I am here physically with my mother,” Destiny captioned on Facebook.Although Dynasty was not around when Destiny was with her nana, she was however there to see her baby girl smile and shed tears with her through Skype.“I’ve spent hours, days and years searching for this child not knowing that she was searching for me, too. It is a good thing that I used my real name on my Facebook page where she was able to trace me,” Dynasty added.Due to the nature of this story, all names have been changed.Destiny was a little over two years old when she was put up for adoption. “The church didn’t want us to lose her so they did everything they could to find a family for her,” her great grandmother said.Two years before Destiny was adopted, her mother Dynasty had a complicated life, one that started Destiny’s seclusion and adoption.“When I became pregnant with her, INS (now Homeland Security) decided I should be deported. I had messed up and they wanted me gone,” Dynasty shared.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

File sent to Police Legal Advisor – SOCU Head

first_imgNew Demerara bridge corruption probe…as Unit completes investigationThe Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) has completed its investigation into the sole-sourced feasibility study contract for the new Demerara River bridge, with the file now in the hands of the Police Legal Advisor.The contract for the feasibility study was awarded to Dutch company LievenseCSOThis was confirmed by SOCU Head, Assistant Police Commissioner (retired) Sydney James on Monday. In a brief interview with Guyana Times, James noted that the file has been in the hands of the Legal Adviser, Justice (retired) Claudette Singh, for several weeks.The contract in question was awarded to Dutch company LievenseCSO, for a feasibility study into the new Demerara River bridge. The Opposition requested that the Public Procurement Commission (PPC) investigate the award of the $148 million sole-sourced contract.In its report on the matter, the Commission flagged Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson for requesting from Cabinet that the contract be sole sourced, instead of being processed through the Procurement Board as the law says should be done.After agitation from the parliamentary Opposition, SOCU had begun investigating the contract award. Right from the start, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo had stressed the need for the Unit to avoid showing favouritism to Patterson, particularly at a time when Opposition politicians were being brought into SOCU for questioning on other matters.For some time, the Opposition criticised the fact that Minister Patterson was not summoned for questioning, but was instead allowed to provide statements to SOCU – in contrast to the treatment meted out to the Opposition during the Pradoville probe. Eventually, however, SOCU did bring the Minister in for questioning on November 19, 2018.Besides the LievenseCSO contract, probes were also requested by Opposition Chief Whip Gail Teixeira and Opposition parliamentarian Juan Edghill, into the D’Urban Park Project and the Sussex Street drug bond. In a letter to the Commission’s Chairperson, Carol Corbin, Edghill had identified aspects of the project the Party was most concerned about.The Opposition had noted that despite promises to the contrary, no account of donations received between September 2015 and January 2016 was made public. It, therefore, queried the procurement process used for works on the project.The scope a private company has to engage contractors and receive funding for a public project also came into question. The party queried the budgeted and actual costs throughout the project, as well as the final cost. In addition, the Party had demanded information on what payments were made to individuals and contractors up to June.In the case of the controversial Sussex Street, Albouystown bond Government has since ceased renting, Edghill also approached the PPC to call for an investigation into the contract inked between the Public Health Ministry and a known financier of the coalition Administration.The former Government Minister had wanted the Procurement Commission to investigate specifically how a contract for a bond for the storage of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies was sole-sourced from an entity that did not own and/or operate such a facility and further “how was the company’s primary Director, Larry Singh, made aware that a drug bond was needed”.last_img read more

Ipswich v Norwich Preview: The Neil Adams Verdict

first_imgNorwich boss Neil Adams joined the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast to look ahead to this weekend’s East Anglia derby against Ipswich at Portman Road.And the Canaries chief insists this match is as fiercely contested as any derby anywhere in the country.last_img

Classic transfer: Liverpool sign best young goal scorer in the country

first_img Ian Rush scored 346 goals in 660 games for Liverpool 1 Nobody is more aware of Liverpool’s need for a striker than manager Brendan Rodgers.The Reds’ lack of a goal scorer was highlighted further on Friday, with it being exactly 35 years ago – 1 May, 1980 – since the club signed Ian Rush from Chester.His £300,000 transfer fee was a British record for a teenager, but if the player had gotten his way, the club would have missed out on one of football’s greatest strikers.Not long after joining Bob Paisley’s team he wanted out, feeling he was not being given a chance to prove himself, but the manager had no intention of letting him go.It took Rush nine games to finally score for Liverpool and he soon establish his importance, helping the club to dominate at home and in Europe during the 1980s.In addition to his well stocked trophy cabinet, the result of five league titles, three FA Cups, five League Cups and two European Cups, Rush had to make room for a string of personal awards, too.Three years after his move, he was the PFA Young Player of the Year and Player of the Year in 1984, while his goals saw him win countless top scorer awards – in total he scored 346 in 660 games for Liverpool in two spells for the club.It’s not going to be easy for Rodgers to find someone as prolific as Rush, but players like Danny Ings and Christian Benteke are a start. Anything is better than Mario Balotelli and Fabio Borini, right?last_img read more