Category Archives: conservation

Trump administration weakens Endangered Species Act

Everything the Trump administration does seems aimed in the wrong direction, but as a biologist, I’m really pissed off at this latest bit of stupidity. Read the NPR or NYT articles below (click on screenshots) to see the latest debacle: NYT: Here are some of the changes. The new regulations: weaken protections for species listed […]

Giant stick insects to be re-introduced to Lord Howe island

Seven years ago (that long???!), I wrote about the giant stick insects (phasmids) found on a pinnacle of rock (“Ball’s Pyramid”) near Lord Howe Island, which lies between New Zealand and Australia. (See the posts here, here, and here.) Lord Howe is an oceanic island—the remnants of an ancient volcano—and home to many endemic species […]

THAT’S a bee!

JAC: In lieu of Reader’s Wildlife Photos today, I’ll take a break and importune you to keep sending me photos (I have a reasonable backlog, but I get nervous. . . .). In its place Greg has contributed a short piece about an enormous bee just rediscovered after several decades. by Greg Mayer There are […]

Cheetah urine may help save the species

The song at the beginning of this cheetah video shows what it would sound like if Barry White got involved in saving wildlife. Here’s a cool video from VICE about breeding cheetahs (Acinonyx jubata), and I hope they’re breeding them for release. I still get queasy about saving a species by keeping it permanently in […]

The Crest-tailed mulgara is alive!!

Yes, today we have a species long thought to be extinct, that, like Lazarus, has returned from the dead. It’s the Crest-tailed Mulgara (Dasycercus cristicauda), a small carnivorous marsupial that was thought for more than a century to be extinct, and whose existence was based on bone fragments. As Roaring Earth and the University of New […]

A new paper confirms six subspecies of tigers, promoting conservation of the species (with some curmudgeonly comments on conservation genetics by Professor Ceiling Cat)

It’s a sad situation that the tiger (Panthera tigris), the world’s largest and arguably most magnificent wild cat, is heading towards extinction in nature. Fewer than 4,000 of them remain in the wild, and there are more in captivity than are roaming free in nature. Their current range is only 7% of the territory they […]

What was the animal that inspired Dr. Seuss’s lorax? Biologists suggest a hypothesis

The New York Times from two days ago has an article about one of Dr. Seuss’s most famous books, The Lorax (you can see a preview of the book’s contents at the Amazon site). Here’s the article: And the book at issue: The book’s plot involves a man called the Once-ler visiting a beautiful forest […]

Bat rescue: Kali the flying fox

Make sure you enlarge and turn the sound up on this video, which I purloined from Facebook. It’s the story of how an endangered fruit bat (“flying fox”) named Kali was rescued by keepers at the Oregon Zoo. As the video notes, Kali is a Rodrigues flying fox (Pteropus rodricensis), endemic to the 108 km² […]

Should we bring wolves back to Scotland? A video and a questionnaire

by Matthew Cobb It used to be standard practice for final year science students to do a lab-based research project. At the University of Manchester we have broadened the choice of final-year projects so that biology students can also choose to do a Science Media Project. This involves creating a portfolio of writing and other […]

New panda movie opens in April

Yes, I’m a sucker for cute animals, and everyone—save my friend Melissa Chen, who hates pandas and thinks they should be allowed to go extinct—thinks the panda is among the Top Five Cutest Animals.  On April 6, Warner Brothers will release the IMAX movie “Pandas”, which follows the life of  Qian Qian, a panda born […]