New orchid species from Japan lives on dark forest floor, never blooms

first_imgResearcher Kenji Suetsugu of Kobe University has found flowering plants of a new species of orchid on Japan’s Amami-Oshima and Tokunoshima islands, now named Gastrodia amamiana.G. amamiana belongs to a group of mycoheterotrophic orchids that live on dark forest floors, do not use photosynthesis to get their nutrients, and steal nutrition from fungi instead. G. amamiana’s flowers likely never open up or bloom.Researchers have already found evidence of tree thinning close to where G. amamiana was discovered, and they worry that logging could dry the soil and consequently the fungi that the orchid depends on. From Japan’s Amami-Oshima and Tokunoshima islands, researchers have described a new-to-science species of orchid that produces dark brown flowers that likely never bloom.Kenji Suetsugu of the Kobe University Graduate School of Science, together with independent scientists Hidekazu Morita, Yohei Tashiro, Chiyoko Hara and Kazuki Yamamuro, came across the flower during a flora survey of the islands’ evergreen forests. When they looked at the orchid closely, they found that it belonged to the genus Gastrodia, a group of mycoheterotrophic orchids that don’t use photosynthesis to get their nutrients, instead stealing nutrition from fungi.Suetsugu, who has been documenting Japan’s mycoheterotrophs and has described new species of such orchids in the past, has named the orchid from Amami-Oshima and Tokunoshima islands Gastrodia amamiana. He described the plant in a new study published in Phytotaxa.Like many mycoheterotrophs, G. amamiana can be found lurking in the dark understory of forests where sunlight hardly penetrates. Without light, the orchid has evolved to find food without photosynthesis by relying on the network of fungi underneath the forest floor.It has another peculiar trait: it bears fruit despite flowers that likely never open. Suetsugu posits that the plant probably self-pollinates because it lives on dark forest floors where insect pollinators like bees and butterflies seldom visit.The act of opening up a flower uses critical resources, and without insect pollinators to open it for, the orchid may have evolved to never bloom, Suetsugu writes.To date, G. amamiana is known from only two locations, one each on Amami-Oshima and Tokunoshima. In both locations, the researchers found some 20 flowering individuals within a dense forest dominated by the evergreen Itajii Chinkapin tree (Castanopsis sieboldii).The Amami-Oshima forest where the species was found, however, could soon become logged, Suetsugu writes. The researchers have already seen evidence of tree thinning close to where G. amamiana was discovered, and the dry soil that results from this could dry out the fungi that the orchid depends on, he writes.“These field surveys rely on cooperation from independent scientists, and our resources are limited, meaning that some species may reach extinction without ever being discovered by humans,” Suetsugu said in a statement. “The discovery of G. amamiana highlights the importance of the forests of Amami-Oshima. We hope that revealing these new species will draw more attention to the environmental threat faced by these regions.”Gastrodia amamiana, a new species that bears fruit without opening its flowers. Image courtesy of Kobe University.Citation:Suetsugu, K. (2019). Gastrodia amamiana (Orchidaceae; Epidendroideae; Gastrodieae), a new completely cleistogamous species from Japan. Phytotaxa, 413(3), 225-230. doi:10.11646/phytotaxa.413.3.3 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 Shreya Dasguptacenter_img Conservation, Deforestation, Environment, Forests, Green, New Species, Orchids, Plants, Research, Species Discovery, Wildlife last_img read more

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The end of the road: The future of the Pan Borneo Highway

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 The construction of more than 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles) of road for the Pan Borneo Highway across Malaysian Borneo holds the promise of spurring local economies for its proponents.But from the outset, conservationists and scientists voiced concerns that the road would displace people, harm sensitive environments, and threaten Borneo’s splendid diversity of wildlife.As construction moves forward, these groups are working with planners to find a way for the highway’s construction to avoid the worst environmental damage. This is the sixth article in our six-part series “Traveling the Pan Borneo Highway.” Read Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four and Part Five.KOTA BELUD, Malaysia — Road building is a messy process. In late July, a friend drove me to see the construction of the Pan Borneo Highway along the narrow road strip of tarmac that currently snakes its way along what’s being billed as the “Gold Coast” of northwestern Borneo. We passed once-forested hillsides that abut the azure waters of the South China Sea, now being vertically scrapped away truckload by truckload to build up the foundation of the highway. Down below, bulldozers packed the tan earth into wide platforms where the road will eventually sit, filling in spots where mangroves once stood. Around one corner, dust rose from the beach below where, apparently, the highway will soon pass within meters of the water’s edge.Driving north of the Malaysian state of Sabah’s capital, Kota Kinabalu, was the culmination of the nearly three weeks I spent traveling along the highway’s path. The project will stretch across more than 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles) in Sabah and the state of Sarawak. In the villages and towns I visited along the way, local officials and many residents eagerly awaited the completion of the roadway to ease travel, speed the flow of goods to and from markets, and bring in tourists, all of which they hoped would invigorate local economies.A section of the Pan Borneo Highway along the northwestern coast of Sabah. Image by John C. Cannon/Mongabay.But from the outset, conservationists and scientists voiced concerns that the road would force people from their homes, harm sensitive environments, and threaten Borneo’s splendid diversity of wildlife. From what I saw in my travels, those concerns weren’t unfounded.Researchers from the Sabah-based NGO Forever Sabah figure that the construction — whether widening existing roadways, “realigning” them on similar but separate paths, or cutting entirely new stretches through the island’s mangroves and rainforests — will displace at least 12,000 households in the state. Spray-painted numbers tag the buildings earmarked for eventual demolition next to the route.Along that span north of Kota Kinabalu, crushed mangrove trees sat piled in the pooling water on either side of the new highway. Narrow culverts run under the highway, but conservation groups worry that they won’t facilitate enough water flow to replace the heaving of the tide that brings a vital influx of nutrients. Scientists also worry that clearing the path for the highway would further carve up the habitat of proboscis monkeys (Nasalis larvatus), which are a major tourist draw.Mangroves cleared for construction of the highway in northwestern Sabah. Image by John C. Cannon/Mongabay.But I also questioned whether it was fair of me to judge such a massive project at this nascent stage, literally before the dust has settled. After all, the society I come from in the United States has benefited wildly, economically and otherwise, from the connectivity that an intricate road network can provide, and that’s no doubt come with huge costs to the environment.It’s difficult to fault a country for pursuing a path toward development or making it easier for people to get from point to point. The 19-hour-long bus ride I took that connects Sarawak’s two largest cities, Kuching and Miri, is exhausting, and my fellow passengers were eager for construction on the Pan Borneo Highway there to be finished, likely slashing the travel time by half. I noticed the stark contrast — especially in my own comfort — between the ruddy, under-construction road currently serving as Sarawak’s major artery, and the smooth-surfaced, recently completed stretch from outside Kuching to Tanjung Datu National Park at Borneo’s westernmost point.But there’s also research demonstrating that the economic potential of infrastructure development often remains unrealized, or at least unequally distributed. Studies have shown that the benefits of roads are often concentrated in the hands of big companies, whether focused on timber, minerals or agriculture, leaving the average citizen behind and sometimes leading to unrest and conflict.An oriental pied hornbill takes flight over the Kinabatangan River. Image by John C. Cannon/Mongabay.With new roads, poachers too face fewer obstacles to reach their quarry (though one conservation-focused local leader I met in Sarawak also suggested that the roads would help wildlife rangers in policing a primate-rich wildlife sanctuary and national park). Borneo has its own species of critically endangered orangutan (Pongo pygmaeus) and a variant of the endangered Asian elephant (Elephas maximus), considered by some scientists to be a distinct subspecies. The elephants’ tusks have become a target for poachers, and wildlife traffickers go after the babies of orangutans and other primates for the exotic, high-value pet trade.What’s more, ecologists like William Laurance from James Cook University in Australia have cataloged the proliferation of deforestation for human settlement, agriculture and industry that follows road construction. That can mean a cascade of the same problems, including increased hunting and a loss of habitat, that ripple through nearby forest ecosystems.Despite these potential drawbacks, some of the highway’s most prominent backers insist it’s possible to build a road that will fulfill its promises for development while minimizing environmental damage. Seated in his Kuala Lumpur office, Baru Bian, Malaysia’s minister of works, seemed to see no contradiction in his desire for both development and environmental protection. Baru describes himself as an environmentalist, and before he became a politician worked as a lawyer fighting for the rights of his own people, the Lun Bawang, and others facing the prospect of losing control of their land to outside interests. Now, his earnestness is focused on creating a booming economy for the people of Sabah and Sarawak, and he sees the Pan Borneo Highway as the way to do it.A hillside cleared of trees next to the Pan Borneo Highway. Image by John C. Cannon/Mongabay.Baru might be overlooking the hazards that come with such a massive infrastructure project — at a cost of around $6.4 billion with a completion date in the mid-2020s — while focusing just on the potential benefits. But he has also shown a willingness to listen. In the days before our interview, he met with scientists to learn more about the threats to the environment that the highway’s construction could pose. And other leaders are following a similar path, if their public comments are any indication: In March, the chief minister of Sabah called for as little destruction as possible during the construction.Alongside these leaders’ apparent openness to outside input, a movement among conservation-focused NGOs and research organizations led by Coalition 3H (Humans, Habitats, Highways) in Sabah has arisen to work with, instead of in opposition to, highway planners. Nearly all I spoke with who were concerned about the impacts of the road insisted that they weren’t “anti-development,” and this collaborative spirit could be seen as a reflection of that sentiment. In that convergence could be what one policy analyst called “win-wins” that would avoid the worst environmental destruction while bringing the benefits that roads can offer.Like the unfinished highway, the fruits of this cooperation remain uncertain. Still, federal budget constraints mean that the second and third phases of the highway, which include controversial sections through central Sabah, likely won’t be budgeted for until 2021 or later under what’s known as the 12th Malaysia plan. That means that groups like Coalition 3H still have time to weigh in on still-unconstructed sections of the road, Baru said.Houses slated for destruction along the path of the highway have been marked with spray-painted numbers. Image by John C. Cannon/Mongabay.In some cases, petitioning the government has gained traction. In early 2019, the coalition discovered that the contractor working on the road heading up Sabah’s Gold Coast was doing so without having its environmental impact assessment approved. In April, the state’s Environmental Protection Department stopped work on part of the road, though it resumed a few weeks later once the department said the issue was corrected. It’s evidence, members of the coalition say, that change is possible — but also shows how difficult it can be to change the course of these projects once they’re underway.The tide of infrastructure development currently rolling across Southeast Asia right now could be terribly destructive, Laurance said during a recent talk at the International Conference of Conservation Biologists. But he also offered a rare, if small, dose of optimism about projects like the Pan Borneo Highway, suggesting that it’s possible to change the outcomes.“I don’t see this as a helpless situation,” Laurance said. “I see this as a dire situation absolutely, but I don’t see it as one in which we can’t have an impact. I absolutely think that we can.”Banner image of a buffalo on a stretch of the highway under construction near Kota Kinabalu by John C. Cannon/Mongabay.John Cannon is a staff writer at Mongabay. Find him on Twitter: @johnccannonEditor’s note: William Laurance is a member of Mongabay’s advisory board.Citations:Ancrenaz, M., Gumal, M., Marshall, A.J., Meijaard, E., Wich , S.A. & Husson, S. (2016). Pongo pygmaeus (errata version published in 2018). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T17975A123809220. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-1.RLTS.T17975A17966347.enChoudhury, A., Lahiri Choudhury, D.K., Desai, A., Duckworth, J.W., Easa, P.S., Johnsingh, A.J.T., Fernando, P., Hedges, S., Gunawardena, M., Kurt, F., Karanth, U., Lister, A., Menon, V., Riddle, H., Rübel, A. & Wikramanayake, E. (IUCN SSC Asian Elephant Specialist Group) (2008). Elephas maximus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T7140A12828813. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2008.RLTS.T7140A12828813.enFEEDBACK: 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. Article published by John Cannoncenter_img Animals, Biodiversity, Community Development, Conservation, Conservation And Poverty, Deforestation, Endangered Species, Environment, Forest People, Forestry, Forests, Green, Illegal Logging, Infrastructure, Logging, Poaching, Poverty, Poverty Alleviation, Rainforests, Roads, Saving Rainforests, Sustainable Development, Threats To Rainforests, Timber, Tropical Forests, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation, Wildlife Trade, Wildlife Trafficking last_img read more

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In other news: Environmental stories from around the web, August 30, 2019

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 Conservation, Environment, Weekly environmental news update There are many important conservation and environmental stories Mongabay isn’t able to cover.Here’s a digest of some of the significant developments from the week.If you think we’ve missed something, feel free to add it in the comments.Mongabay does not vet the news sources below, nor does the inclusion of a story on this list imply an endorsement of its content. Tropical forestsCôte d’Ivoire is trying to increase its vegetation cover by planting trees (Ecofin).Indonesia plans to move its capital to Borneo, which could damage rainforests (Fast Company).The Amazon is reaching a tipping point for its weather system (The New York Times).Other newsResearchers are working to protect a species of bat that lives in a single cave in Cuba (BBC News).U.S. President Trump is trying to allow further logging of the country’s largest temperate forest (The Washington Post).Young climate activist Greta Thunberg has reached New York for the U.N. climate summit after sailing across the Atlantic (The Washington Post).Sea otters in California are dying after contracting parasites from cats (The New York Times).Companies in the United States won’t have to check pipelines for methane leaks if a proposal to relax methane regulations is accepted by the Environmental Protection Agency (The New York Times, The Washington Post).Kenya is cracking down on illegal fishing in its waters (Hakai Magazine).The Atlantic Ocean may soon have the world’s largest marine protected area (National Geographic).The food giant Nestlé wants to take 1.1 million gallons of water from a river in Florida, but environmentalists say that will damage the river’s ecosystem (The Guardian).Climate change, overfishing and land clearing are damaging the Great Barrier Reef, an Australian agency says (Reuters).Banner image of a sea otter by John C. Cannon/Mongabay.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.center_img Article published by John Cannonlast_img read more

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In other news: Environmental stories from around the web, September 13, 2019

first_imgThere are many important conservation and environmental stories Mongabay isn’t able to cover.Here’s a digest of some of the significant developments from the week.If you think we’ve missed something, feel free to add it in the comments.Mongabay does not vet the news sources below, nor does the inclusion of a story on this list imply an endorsement of its content. Tropical forestsIndigenous hunting could help the sustainability of forests (The Revelator).Experts say that climate change has played a part in the exodus of people from Central America (Undark).Companies and scientists are working together toward sustainability in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s timber industry (CIFOR Forests News).New research contends that we need to overhaul how forestry works for the world’s poor (CIFOR Forests News).California’s plan to save tropical forests could be a game changer (Los Angeles Times).Other newsNine black rhinos from South Africa have a new home in Tanzania’s Serengeti (RTL Today).Tanzanian officials confiscated the tusks of 117 elephants (New York Post).Seven million people had to move out of the way of extreme weather in the first six months of 2019 (The New York Times).Beekeepers are suing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency after it OK’d the use of a pesticide known to be harmful to bee colonies (The New York Times).The Maui dolphin is down to just a few dozen animals (Hakai Magazine).Europe’s marine protected areas aren’t adequately protected (Euronews).Young Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg will picket with other activists in front of the White House on Sept. 20 (The Hill) …… While activists have a major climate protest planned for Sept. 23 in Washington, D.C. (Reuters).Wetlands and streams will once again be managed under a 1986 law after Trump repeals a more recent rule (The Washington Post).Engineers have developed a prototype bioreactor to take nitrates out of the waters that flow into wetlands (Hakai Magazine).More Americans now believe that climate change is a crisis, and a majority believe the current administration isn’t doing enough to address it (The Washington Post).Banner image of a black rhino in Namibia by Olga Ernst via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0). 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. Conservation, Environment, Weekly environmental news update 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 overSponsoredcenter_img Article published by John Cannonlast_img read more

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New app tracks down forest fires in Bolivia

first_imgAmazon, Conservation, Conservation Technology, Deforestation, Dry Forests, Environment, Fires, Forest Fires, Forest People, Forestry, Forests, Illegal Logging, Logging, Rainforests, Research, satellite data, Satellite Imagery, Saving Rainforests, Technology, Technology And Conservation, technology development, Threats To Rainforests, Timber, Tropical Forests, wildfires, Wildtech Article published by John Cannon A new app uses aerosol data and recent satellite images to find fires in the forests of Bolivia in real time.The application’s creators, from the Monitoring of the Andean Amazon Project, say the novel use of the aerosol data, originally intended to monitor air quality, represents a significant advance over traditional, temperature-related alerts.According to the NGO Friends of Nature Foundation, more than 41,000 square kilometers (15,800 square miles) of Bolivia has burned in 2019. A new app aimed at tracking forest fires in Bolivia could shake up the way authorities and firefighters battle fires, allowing them to pinpoint their locations more accurately and safely.Called “Amazon Fires — Bolivia,” the application pulls in data on the pollutant particles that get trapped in the air above a fire from a sensor on the European Space Agency’s Sentinel-5 satellite. By combining that “aerosol” data with recent satellite images using Google Earth Engine, app users can plot out the locations of fires in “near real time.” Researchers from the Monitoring of the Andean Amazon Project, or MAAP, which is run by the Amazon Conservation Association, created the app and published a description on Sept. 25.A recent fire in the dry forests of the Bolivian Amazon. Image courtesy of MAAP with data from Planet.Typically, authorities use differences in temperatures measured by satellites to locate fires. But ecologist Matt Finer, director of MAAP and one of the app’s developers, said this method often entails filtering through “a thousand red dots” with a lot of noise that may or may not indicate a fire that’s currently active.“At the same time, we discovered this new tool that’s just blowing our minds, which is this new [aerosol] data from the European Space Agency,” Finer said.The Sentinel-5 satellite’s Tropomi sensor uses the behavior of ultraviolet light in the atmosphere to detect the emissions of pollutants from fires, volcanic eruptions and swirling dust, helping scientists forecast possible public health problems related to air quality.But this new application has the potential to help firefighters react much more quickly — which is critical when natural forests are burning, Finer said.Fires burning near the border of Bolivia and Paraguay. Image courtesy of MAAP with data from Planet.More than 41,000 square kilometers (15,800 square miles) of land have burned in Bolivia in 2019, according to the NGO Friends of Nature Foundation. Thousands of hectares of standing dry forest in Bolivia’s Chiquitanía and Chaco regions have gone up in smoke this year, Finer said. (In contrast, Finer and his colleagues demonstrated that many of the fires that have thrust the Brazilian Amazon into the news recently have occurred taken place on previously deforested land.)In Bolivia, “There arose this need to get information to firefighters and government officials of where the active fires are,” he said, “because you do have these scenarios of fires raging through natural ecosystems.”The app allows users to drag a virtual curtain of the aerosol data over recent satellite imagery. A color gradient from the lowest (black) to the highest (red) aerosol levels indicates the intensity of the emissions in a particular area.Lucio Villa of the NGO Conservación Amazónica in Peru, who led the app’s design, said they used the traditional fire alerts to test how well the aerosol data allowed them to zero in on the largest and most persistent fires. They found that the aerosol data allows more accurate, real-time monitoring. What’s more, clouds don’t interfere with the calculations behind the UV aerosol index.A soy plantation abuts forest in the Bolivian Chaco. Image by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.“You can see in an instant that there are major fires,” Finer said, calling the application a “major advance.”Marcos Terán, executive director of Conservación Amazónica, said he had shared this new tool with park managers in Bolivia.“They are noticing the importance of this kind of tool to try to move the park rangers and the other stakeholders in the area to fight the fire in an effective way,” Terán told Mongabay, both to save forests and the people in charge of protecting them.“The firefighters are really heroes in this case,” Terán said, “and we try to support with some tools … to improve the safety.”Banner image of the Chaco in Bolivia by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.John Cannon is a staff writer at Mongabay. Find him on Twitter: @johnccannonCitation:Villa L. & Finer M. (2019). Fires in the Bolivian Amazon — Using Google Earth Engine to Monitor. MAAP: 111.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.center_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

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Amazon deforestation rises to 11 year high in Brazil

first_imgOfficial data published today by Brazil’s National Space Research Institute INPE shows deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon between August 1, 2018 and July 31, 2019 amounted to 9,762 square kilometers, an increase of 30 percent over last year.The increase in deforestation was expected given global attention to large-scale fires that blackened the skies above Brazil’s largest city this past August. Deforestation tracking systems had been showing increased forest clearing throughout 2019.Deforestation in 2019 was the highest since 2008 and represents a doubling in forest loss over 2012.Environmentalists fear that deforestation could continue to accelerate given Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s push to open the Amazon to more logging, large-scale mining, and industrial agriculture. Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon surged more than 30 percent over the past year according to official data published today by Brazil’s National Space Research Institute, INPE. The data, which confirms the trend detected by multiple deforestation alert systems in recent months, shows that forest clearing in Earth’s largest rainforest stands at the highest level since 2008.INPE’s data, which is preliminary, estimates some 9,762 square kilometers (3,769 square miles) — an area larger than Yellowstone National Park — were cut down between August 1, 2018 and July 31, 2019. That’s over 2,200 square kilometers (849 square miles) more than was cleared the prior year. A final assessment for this year will be released in 2020.Official PRODES data showing annual deforestation (Aug 1-Jul 31 year) in the Brazilian Amazon since 1988.Short-term and long-term deforestation data in the Brazilian Amazon, according to INPE. The short-term data comes from INPE’s DETER deforestation detection system, while the long-term data comes from INPE’s PRODES system.As has been the case every year since 2005, Pará led all states in the Brazilian Amazon at 3,862 square kilometers deforested in 2019. It was followed by Mato Grosso (1,685 square kilometers), Amazonas (1,421 square kilometers), and Rondônia (1,245 square kilometers). Roraima experienced the biggest one-year increase in deforestation, with forest clearance rising 217 percent to 617 square kilometers.Pará has now lost more than 62,000 square kilometers of Amazon forest since 2004, an area the size the nation of Georgia or the U.S. state of West Virginia. The majority of forest clearing in the Amazon is for cattle pasture.The new figures generally exclude areas of forest recently lost to fire, which is potentially significant given the extent and severity of fires in August and September 2019. These fires made global headlines when smoke blackened the skies of Sao Paulo, spurring widespread outcry and calls to boycott Brazilian agricultural products.When fires were at their peak, scientists, conservationists, indigenous rights groups, and environmental activists blamed roll-backs of environmental protections and anti-environmental rhetoric by the Jair Bolsonaro administration for worsening the situation.After initially denying this year’s fires were a problem, and then shifting blame for the blazes to NGOs, Bolsonaro sent in the military to fight fires. But critics say the administration still hasn’t reversed course on its push to cut environmental regulations and encourage conversion of vast swathes of the Amazon for industrial agriculture, mining, and logging. Those complaints suggest that the underlying issues driving the increase in deforestation haven’t been addressed.Aerial view of a large burned area in the city of Candeiras do Jamari in the state of Rondônia. Image by Victor Moriyama / Greenpeace.Scientists have warned that should deforestation continue on its current trajectory, Brazil is unlikely to meet its climate commitments. While deforestation in 2019 only amounted to about 0.3 percent of the forest remaining in the Brazilian Amazon, Brazil’s climate targets are predicated on reducing deforestation. But deforestation has now more than doubled since its low of 4,571 square kilometers (1,765 square miles) in 2012.Researchers are also alarmed that ongoing deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon could have long-term implications for the health of the biome and the wider functioning of critical ecosystem function in the region. Some models suggest the Amazon may be near a tipping point where the combination of deforestation and rising temperatures could trigger a rapid shift in rainfall patterns across vast parts of the Amazon Basin. Such a shift could lead to a die-off scenario where large areas of rainforest could be replaced by a drier woodland savanna akin to the Cerrado ecosystem south and east of the Amazon. Reduced rainfall would affect water availability in southern South America, including the continent’s agricultural heartland and largest cities from Sao Paulo to Buenos Aires.Natural forest covering in the Brazilian Amazon according to data aggregated by MapBiomas. The Brazilian Amazon accounts for nearly two-thirds of the Amazon rainforest. The entirety of this vast biome is shared between eight countries.Header image: Aerial view of a large burned area within the rural portion of Candeiras do Jamari municipality in Rondônia state. Image by Victor Moriyama / Greenpeace. Article published by Rhett Butler Amazon Rainforest, Conservation, Deforestation, Environment, Forests, Green, Monitoring, Rainforest Destruction, Rainforests, Remote Sensing, satellite data, Threats To Rainforests, Threats To The Amazon, Tropical Forests center_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

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New honeyeater species described from Indonesia’s Alor Island

first_imgAnimals, Biodiversity, Birds, Conservation, Deforestation, Dry Forests, Environment, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Land Use Change, New Discovery, New Species, Species Discovery, Tropical Deforestation, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation 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 Scientists have described a new bird species found only on the island of Alor in eastern Indonesia.The Alor myzomela is easily distinguished from other known members of the Myzomela genus of honeyeater birds thanks to its unique call and paler upper wings.A growing human population on the island is already fragmenting the species’ only known habitat, prompting the researchers to recommend it be considered endangered on the IUCN Red List.The bird’s scientific name, Myzomela prawiradilagae, is a tribute to prominent ornithologist Dewi Malia Prawiradilaga from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI). JAKARTA — Scientists have described a new bird species found only on the Indonesian island of Alor, where a growing human population is already encroaching on the bird’s volcanic habitat.The description of Myzomela prawiradilagae — named after prominent ornithologist Dewi Malia Prawiradilaga from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) — is a culmination of field observations by different research groups between 2002 and 2016, according to a paper published in the Journal of Ornithology on Oct. 5.“The presence of an endemic species of Myzomela honeyeater on Alor is of great biogeographic significance,” the authors write.Google Earth images of Indonesia and, inset, Alor Island.The habitat of the Alor myzomela. Image courtesy of Philippe Verbelen.The Alor myzomela is known to inhabit only eucalyptus woodland at elevations above 1,000 meters (3,300 feet) on the island, showing more pronounced differences in ecological preferences and lifestyle than other honeyeaters in the genus. It’s closely related to the crimson-hooded myzomela (M. kuehni) from the nearby island of Wetar, down to the red head, but differs in other physical characteristics and in its calls. These include dusky brown upper wings that are much paler than the black upperwings of other Myzomela species, and a call that researchers have transcribed as “tssip” or “vick.”“The whole team was excited to have scientifically described the new bird species from Alor,” Mohammad Irham, a scientist with LIPI and the lead author of the paper, told Mongabay in an email.He said the team spotted about 20 individuals of the new species during a single observation, but getting a full population estimate for the Alor myzomela will require further research.The field visits were important in collecting a specimen, getting sound recordings and photographs, and characterizing their habitat use, the authors write. They used DNA sequencing to confirm the species is new to science.The Alor myzomela (Myzomela prawiradilagae). Image courtesy of Philippe Verbelen.A population estimate will be critical to assessing any threats to the species. The researchers note that its habitat is undergoing fragmentation by a growing human population on the island, which has prompted them to recommend it be considered endangered on the IUCN Red List.Frank Rheindt, a scientist with the National University of Singapore’s Department of Biological Sciences and co-author of the paper, said most tribes on Alor built their villages on hilltops, from where it was easier to cultivate the surrounding slopes.“The population of these hilltop villages has been steadily increasing with high modern reproduction rates following increasing development,” Rheindt told Mongabay in an email.“Burgeoning human populations will exert ever more pressure on the remaining woodlots in this area,” he added.While the locals have long known of the species, Rheindt said it was a generally small, inconspicuous member of the local birdlife that the villagers didn’t pay much attention to.“Awareness about its existence was a necessary first step to ensure it does not silently go extinct,” he said.In Indonesia, all species in the genus Myzomela are protected under the country’s 1990 Conservation Law and a 1999 government regulation on wildlife.The researchers said the description of the Alor myzomela as the latest species endemic to the island of Alor should elevate the island to the status of an “endemic bird area.”“This status can be a reference for the local government to highlight Alor as an important island for wildlife, especially birds,” Irham said.“The reference hopefully can be a foundation for conservation management there, considering that [species endemic to] small islands have a much higher risk of extinction than big islands, and also for other potential [initiatives] that support the economy, such ecotourism.”The Alor myzomela (Myzomela prawiradilagae). Image courtesy of Philippe Verbelen.Irham, M., Ashari, H., Suparno, Trainor, C. R., Verbelen, P., Wu, M. Y., & Rheindt, F. E. (2019). A new Myzomela honeyeater (Meliphagidae) from the highlands of Alor Island, Indonesia. Journal of Ornithology. doi:10.1007/s10336-019-01722-2FEEDBACK: 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.center_img Article published by Basten Gokkonlast_img read more

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Beneficial and harmful fungi are at the root of forest diversity

first_imgBiodiversity, Forests, Fungi, Rainforest Biodiversity, Symbiotic Relationships, Trees, UCSC If there are many trees of a given species in a tract of forest, a new tree of that same species has a harder time thriving in the same area.This “rare-species advantage” produces diversity in forests.In a Chinese subtropical forest, researchers showed that the balance between beneficial and harmful soil fungi controls the rare-species advantage.This study provides the first look into the mechanism behind the strength of the rare-species advantage and adds to an understanding of how all forests develop. A delicate balance between beneficial and harmful soil fungi associated with tree roots guides the diverse mixture of tree species that thrive in subtropical forests, according to a new study.Scientists had previously hypothesized that forest diversity resulted from a “rare-species advantage” driven by pathogenic, or harmful, fungi. The more trees there were in an area, the more quickly such fungi would accumulate on tree roots, the common model claimed. This would create a deadlier environment for new seedlings.Now, new research suggests that beneficial fungi are closely involved as well. A Chinese-led team recently reported in Science that symbiotic fungi, which associate tightly with roots and help trees by exchanging nutrients, alter the rate that pathogenic fungi accumulate in the soil. This fungal give-and-take is critical in determining which trees grow most successfully in forest plots, the team showed.View overlooking the forest in Gutianshan National Nature Reserve. Photo courtesy of Lei Chen.“Species differ in their sensitivity to having their own kind around,” said Nathan Swenson, a forest ecologist at the University of Maryland in College Park, Maryland, and a co-author of the study. “That sensitivity itself is related to the types of positive associations they have with fungi in the soil.”To unveil these partnerships, a team led by Lei Chen, a forest ecologist at the Institute of Botany of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, studied a subtropical forest plot in Gutianshan National Nature Reserve in Zhejiang Province, China. The researchers collected and analyzed soils from the roots of 322 trees, representing 34 species. They isolated DNA from the samples and used genetic sequencing to identify the species of fungi near the roots of each tree.In addition to soil collection, the researchers tracked the number and sizes of seedlings, saplings and adult trees in the plot over nearly a decade, logging more than 25,000 measurements.The subtropical plot measured 0.24 square kilometers (0.093 square miles). “This is a relatively small area that’s like half of a golf course,” said Daniel Johnson, a forest ecologist at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida, who was not part of the study. “But what they did was look at the entire community of the forest and quantified how the fungi were associating with the trees. They’ve done something on a scale that no one’s ever done before.”Researchers taking a break between experiments in Gutianshan National Nature Reserve. Photo courtesy of Lei Chen.The researchers found that larger trees had a higher concentration of pathogenic fungi than smaller trees. This finding agrees with earlier hypotheses for the rare-species advantage, which posited that older trees would create a deadlier environment for younger seedlings and saplings nearby.The amount of pathogenic fungi was lower around trees that interacted with helpful ectomycorrhizal fungi, which coat the surfaces of roots and exchange nutrients via the soil. In contrast, pathogenic fungi were more common around trees that interacted with a different type of symbiotic fungi, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, that tunnel into tree roots and exchange nutrients directly with the roots, bypassing the soil.The researchers developed mathematical models for which trees survived over a decade in their plot. Tree species with more ectomycorrhizal fungi also had higher-than-average survival rates; this corresponds with a weaker rare-species advantage. On the other hand, tree species with more arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi had lower-than-average survival rates; this corresponds with a stronger rare-species advantage.These findings support a model where symbiotic fungi regulate how pathogenic fungi build up around tree roots. The researchers hypothesize that the root-coating fungi might form a protective barrier that keeps out harmful fungal invaders. In contrast, the root-tunneling fungi create tiny entry points that pathogenic fungi can use to get in.This work extends previous studies, based on tropical forests, that only included pathogenic fungi in a mechanism for the rare-species advantage, said Chen. “There are tropical forests, subtropical forests, and temperate forests,” he said. “So actually, we ecologists want to know a general pattern that can explain all forests.”A canopy crane in the forest in Gutianshan National Nature Reserve. Photo courtesy of Lei Chen.CitationChen, L., Swenson, N.G., Ji, N., Mi, X., Ren, H., Guo, L., Ma, K. (2019) Differential soil fungus accumulation and density dependence of trees in a subtropical forest. Science 366 (6461) 124-128; DOI: 10.1126/science.aau1361Jack J. Lee (@jackjlee) is a graduate student in the Science Communication Program at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Other Mongabay stories produced by UCSC students can be found at https://news.mongabay.com/list/ucsc/. 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 overSponsoredcenter_img Article published by Rhett Butlerlast_img read more

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Youngsters impress at JGA Junior Series finale

first_imgThe fifth and final game of the 2016-17 Jamaica Golf Association Juniors Series climaxed with much excitement, where 17 of the island’s top juniors stamped their class on the competition, taking top prizes at the Caymanas Golf Club, in St Catherine on Saturday. Last Saturday’s curtain-closer of the national junior series also signalled new and upcoming young talents in the classes of Beginners, Intermediate, Semi-Advanced, Red Tees, White Tees and Blue Tees. The youngsters were awarded 100 points for each match won in the series, 90 for second, while third place got 85, and participants earned 50 points for competing. After the five games, a confident Adrian Barnes emerged as the overall winner in the Beginners Class with a score of 365 points, while Cillian Hall (340 points) and Kemari Morris (325) were second and third, respectively. IN PHOTO: Bjorne Dennis takes a practice swing before teeing off The Intermediate Class went to the consistent Lek Drummond, who scored 490 points, to finish ahead of second placed Mattea Issa (445) and Samantha Azan (440) who took home a third-place finish. EXCITING PLAY-OFF In Semi Advanced, Brady Holmes showed his abilities in finishing with a score of 430 points – 40 more than second placed Sebastian Azan, who cleverly nudged Bjorne Dennis into third place in an exciting play-off after he too tallied 390 points. The Red Tees was highlighted by the brilliance of Tristan Brown. Brown won all five games with maximum 500 points, while Rocco Lopez finished a close second with 450. Emily Mayne was third with 385 points. SEE MORE PHOTOS HERE: http://bit.do/JuniorGolfers The White Tees category was won by Tajay Loban with 345 points. Luke Chin copped second with a score of 275, and Elric Li scored 150 for third. The Blue Tees competition went to standout Justin Burrows, who scored 365 points, while Navarra Nelson copped the runner-up spot with 200 points. Jamaica Golf Association (JGA) president Peter Chin praised the junior golf programme for how well it is doing locally, while noting Jamaica could very soon have a championship team in the juniors in the Caribbean. “You are going to lead that charge,” Chin told the youngsters. Game number five class winners Beginners: Cillian Hall 46 Adrian Barnes 47 Kemari Morris 48 Intermediate: Lek Drummond 39 Mattea Issa 39 Samantha Azan 44 Semi-Advanced: Sebastian Azan 86 Trey Williams 88 Bjorne Dennis 99 Red Tees: Tristan Brown 77 Rocco Lopez 81 Emily Mayne 94 White Tees: Luke Chin 77 Kei Harris 81 Tajay Loban 87 Blue Tees: Justin Burrows 85 Navarra Nelson 117last_img read more

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Alcohol, drugs ‘key to violent crime’

first_img20 September 2013The police will step up their fight against alcohol and drug abuse, as these are key factors underlying violent crime in South Africa, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa said after the release of the country’s national crime statistics in Pretoria on Thursday.He said that while the police were doing their utmost to arrest drug lords and destroy drug factories, more needed to be done to tackle substance abuse, as this – combined with poverty and unemployment – was frustrating efforts to reduce levels of serious crime in South Africa.He said the police would step up their efforts to clamp down on liquor outlets that operated without licences and sold alcohol to under-age youngsters.Speaking to SAnews, Mthethwa said that unemployment and lack of recreational and sports facilities contributed to substance abuse, adding that he was concerned at the fact that the users of drugs were becoming younger.He said strong partnerships were needed to beat drug abuse, with government departments and the community having a role to play in steering people away from drugs and rehabilitating drug addicts.He said the Asset Forfeiture Unit was conducting lifestyle audits on alleged drug lords that had been fingered by members of various communitiesDespite crimes like murder going up in the past year, Mthethwa said a reduction in other categories – including sexual assault – was encouraging.Gareth Newham, the head of the governance, crime and justice division at the Institute for Security Studies (ISS), said he was disappointed at the increase in crimes like murder, residential burglary and car hijackings.“The positives are that the overall crime categories are going down and that there has been reduction in thefts and shop lifting and assault. I think we are a bit concerned with the increase in murder and attempted murder and assault [with intent to do grievous bodily harm].”Newham also called on the police to release crime statistics on a monthly basis in order to the public, businesses and other organisations to identify crime trends and so to enhance awareness and safety.Source: SAnews.gov.zalast_img read more

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