Norwich release Fahrmann for SK Brann

first_img Loading… Fahrmann is tied to S04 until 2023, but with no prospect of first team football he left for Norwich at the start of the season. Read Also:Norwich City fan banned for three years after throwing phone onto pitch However, the German has found himself behind Tim Krul at Carrow Road and is now leaving for Brann to become their new No1. FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 Promoted ContentWho Earns More Than Ronaldo?Did You Know There’s A Black Hole In The Milky Way?You’ve Only Seen Such Colorful Hairdos In A Handful Of AnimeCan Playing Too Many Video Games Hurt Your Body?9 Iconic Roles That Could Have Been Played By Different Actors6 Incredibly Strange Facts About Hurricanes6 Extreme Facts About HurricanesThese Are The Best Stargazing Locations You Can Find On Earth11 Most Immersive Game To Play On Your Table TopCouples Who Celebrated Their Union In A Unique, Unforgettable Way10 Risky Jobs Some Women Do7 Famous And Incredibly Unique Places In Thailand Norwich City are set to lose goalkeeper Ralf Fahrmann. The on-loan Schalke shot-stopper is set to leave the Canaries to join SK Brann on a three-month temporary transfer. Aftenposten says the deal is due to be secured this week.Advertisementlast_img read more

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What happens to an ecotourism town when the wildlife doesn’t show?

first_imgArticle published by Rebecca Kessler Animals, Biodiversity, Community-based Conservation, Conservation, Ecotourism, Endangered Species, Environment, Fish, Fishing, Marine Animals, Marine Biodiversity, Marine Conservation, Migration, Oceans, Sharks, Sharks And Rays, Tagging, Tourism, Whale Sharks, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation Since the mid-1990s, the town of Donsol in the Philippines has based its economy around tourists viewing whale sharks.Whale sharks are migratory fish. And while they showed up in reliable numbers during the first decade of Donsol’s venture into shark tourism, their numbers have become highly unpredictable in the past decade for reasons still unknown.Tourism has declined as well, with 2018 registering the fewest visitor arrivals since whale shark tourism started. The local economy, which it had buoyed, is now flagging, although 2019 seems off to a strong start for both whale sharks and tourists.Wildlife tourism, by nature, is susceptible to biodiversity loss and changes in animal behavior; it places host communities on a thin line between profit and loss. DONSOL, Philippines — Omar Nepomuceno is looking for the whale sharks, as he has for over 20 years. Ask him what the odds are of finding one, and he’ll answer with “Swertehan”: a Filipino word for “a game of luck.”On the boat, it doesn’t present as luck, but as labor. He uses one forearm to protect his eyes from the sun, the other to level his vision. He peers through the sliver of space in between like binoculars. The whites of his eyes have darkened over the years, likely from sun damage.As a butanding (whale shark) interaction officer with the local government, Nepomuceno’s job is to guide tourists and protect the sharks, so that they can swim together in Donsol, a coastal town on Luzon, the Philippines’ main island.Whale sharks (Rhincodon typus) are only observed here during certain months of the year. But “swertehan” is always Nepomuceno’s answer, even when the sightings in his hometown take steep falls, affecting his — and the entire community’s — income. According to records from the Philippine office of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF-Philippines), sightings in Donsol fell from 1,790 in 2017 to 589 in 2018, a 68 percent drop. Whale sharks are highly mobile, so sightings tend to be erratic, but the discrepancies year on year (sometimes even month on month) have gotten increasingly unpredictable for Donsol, a town that in 1998 had more shark sightings than they could care to count.Omar Nepomuceno, a butanding (whale shark) interaction officer employed by the Donsol government. Image by Nina Unlay.The sharks can be seen by eye in silhouette when they are within 3 meters (10 feet) of the water’s surface. At tourist sites with more developed infrastructure, like Australia’s Ningaloo Reef, technology alleviates the hard labor of searching for them: scouts in planes spot sharks from above. Here, though, the roof of the boat is the highest viewing point, where a second spotter has fashioned a T-shirt into a mask protecting his head from the heat and wind. Only his eyes remain uncovered.On this day, luck isn’t present. A single shark comes and goes within the span of 10 minutes. Nine other boats, all carrying tourists, come swarming from all directions. The shark dives deeper than the eye can see.Wildlife tourism can be a lucrative industry, when it works as expected. Whale sharks make up around one-third of the $300 million global shark-viewing industry, which is growing globally. Even so, luck remains its mistress. There are fewer than 10,000 whale sharks in the world, with a declining population trend, and entire communities like Donsol depend on them to show up.Unpredictable whale sharksWWF-Philippines reports that at least 653 known individual whale sharks have been documented off Donsol since 2007, the largest concentration of the endangered animal in Southeast Asia.The town’s decline in sightings from 2017 was steep, but not a unique occurrence. Whereas whale sharks showed up in reliable numbers during the first decade of Donsol’s venture into shark tourism, which started in the mid-1990s, numbers have proven highly unpredictable in the past decade.In 2013, there were only 53 sightings the entire year, an anomaly that has yet to be explained. That started a steep decline in tourist arrivals, impacting the community’s then-steady stream of revenue: an estimated $300,000 annually from whale shark interactions alone, at its peak.A spotter looks out for whale sharks aboard a tourist boat in Donsol, the Philippines. Image by Nina Unlay.As a coastal town, fishing is a primary source of income in Donsol. But a fisherman’s daily wage ranges anywhere from a few dollars to nothing at all. An interaction officer can make $10 on a single three-hour boat trip, plus tips.“We had the highest number of tourists in 2012,” Desiree Abetria, the town’s tourism officer, told Mongabay. “But that was also when the decline in sightings started. So, the following year, the tourist arrivals declined as well. 2018 was our lowest record for arrivals.”The impact is felt throughout the town.“So many things changed because of tourism. It uplifted this town. Before the tourists, we had no roads. We rode boats to get to the city center. Now, even the wives of the fishermen have jobs,” said Imelda Montaño, who has lived in Donsol all her life. She works as a cook in a backpacker’s hostel. “Things have changed again,” she added, referring to the town’s economy.Those who previously shifted to tourism as a sole source of income have started going back to old jobs; they take on part-time work as fishermen, construction workers or drivers.Fishing boats at rest on a Donsol beach. Image by Nina Unlay.The whale shark capital of the Philippines“I don’t need to be a scientist to know that things are not right,” Nepomuceno said, referring to more than the day at hand. He claimed the water is much colder now than it was when they started two decades ago; the tide, not right for sharks.There isn’t a lot of scientific data to prove or disprove his observations. Back in 1998, when Donsol’s tourism industry was just starting, the whale sharks’ status on the IUCN Red List was “data deficient.” No one had reason to keep tabs on the sharks; only the fishermen, who considered the big fish pests for breaking their nets and ramming into their boats.WWF-Philippines, the sole NGO that has an official partnership with the local government, only began monitoring sightings in 2007.But the counting had begun, unofficially, in 1998. Carina Escudero, a marine cinematographer based in the Philippines, was pursuing a book project about Philippine marine life and received the tip about the large population of whale sharks in Donsol. She started calling the office of the local government every day to ask for the number of sightings, and kept a log of what she heard. According to Escudero, the numbers back then could go up to 23 sightings in a single day.“During that point in history, a whale shark was a really rare thing,” she said. “No one [in Donsol] believed me at the time, but I knew what I was seeing was earth-shattering. To them, it was just normal.”Escudero is credited with pushing the development of the tourism industry in Donsol; many interaction officers still refer to her as their “mother.” “It’s a miracle that the sharks even survived,” she said. “People were offering 600,000 Philippine pesos [$11,700 at current rates] for three dead sharks in a place where people are earning less than 100 pesos [$2] a day.”A mural in Donsol, the Philippines, shows some of the benefits of whale shark tourism. Photo taken in 2012. Image by 533338 via Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0).In 1998, a national ban on whale shark hunting took effect almost simultaneously with the burst of tourism in Donsol. Unlike the sudden ban, the transition on the ground was slow.“No one was interested in tourism,” Nepomuceno said. “They didn’t understand what it was.”But in time, through a partnership with WWF-Philippines and with support from other organizations, the local government trained the community to believe whale sharks were worth more to them alive than dead. Rules and guidelines, such as how close tourist boats could get to whale sharks or how many tourists could swim near them, were established to ensure the influx of visitors didn’t harm the sharks, and the interaction officers were charged with upholding them.Luck, gambles and guaranteesThe recent scarcity of whale shark sightings has had a profound, almost existential, effect on the community, one with a learned pride in its sharks. Most of those who work in tourism (vendors, tour officers, boatmen, and the like) gather in the mornings to send tourists off, promising to keep their fingers crossed for sharks or, in some instances, keep them in their prayers.But, like Nepomuceno with his principle of answering with “swertehan,” they make no guarantees. It’s a well-integrated standard, as dictated by the ethics of responsible wildlife tourism.“We can’t give an advisory that declares sharks are present in our waters, until such time that there have been sightings for three days straight,” said Abetria, the tourism officer. “That’s when we inform the Department of Tourism that they can start ‘advertising’ that our season is open. We don’t want to give a ‘false’ tourism, we don’t guarantee. It’s a wild animal.”Tourism dominates Donsol’s economy. Image by Nina Unlay.It’s when times are hard that the principles become blurry: “The interaction officers feel a sense of ownership over the sharks because they are the ones in the water with them every day,” said Alessandro Ponzo, executive director of the Large Marine Vertebrates Research Institute Philippines (LAMAVE). “It’s good, but it also means they regulate one another. And right now, the interaction officers are the ones pulling the tourists closer to see the shark.”Rules are broken more often when the sightings are scarce and the money thin. And not just by the interaction officers and boatmen; Sali Salahudin, 61, migrated with his son from a southern island to sell pearls to tourists. On average, he said, he makes roughly $14 a week, usually selling only one or two items. Salahudin said it’s not enough.He has started making guarantees, adapting to a system that no longer works for him, selling his intuition along with his wares. “Just make sure you go out the time I tell you to,” he said, “then there will be one.”Sali Salahudin, a migrant to Donsol, earns about $14 a week selling pearls to tourists. Image by Nina Unlay.These changes happened, not at once, but over time, in the face of a decline in income from tourism. But wildlife tourism, by nature, is susceptible to biodiversity loss and changes in animal behavior; it places host communities on a thin line between profit and loss. Though they make no guarantees, making apologies to tourists for these losses has become a part of their job.Donsol’s new normalNo one has figured out why the number of whale sharks in Donsol has been fluctuating so greatly of late. Researchers only have theories: the plankton they feed on may have been affected by changes in the water, luring them outside the designated interaction areas; they might also be lurking deeper underwater for some reason.The lapses in information are many, including where the sharks go when they’re not in Donsol. WWF uses a global archive of photos, Wildbook.org, to give the community some idea of where its sharks have been. Every time a shark is discovered or re-encountered, it’s registered. But the record is far from complete, because not all tourism sites participate. A shark can “disappear” for years if it migrates to an area where people aren’t looking; worse, to an area that still practices hunting.A whale shark in Mexico. Image by MarAlliance2018 via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0).“You can’t just protect whale sharks from your backyard,” Escudero said. “You have to protect the whole world.”In Donsol, at least, they continue to be looked for, beloved, even prayed for. There’s too much at stake.“This should be a good year because sightings started early, but we never know for certain,” Abetria said. She’s working on a plan to entice tourists to stay even if there are no sharks. At the moment, the only other attraction is firefly watching and diving in waters much farther out.Tourist arrivals have begun to increase: this year’s number has already surpassed last year’s.It is impossible to say for certain if this will last. For better or worse, though, Nepomuceno refuses to leave Donsol, despite the offers he receives for better-paying jobs abroad. “I am happy here. In the beginning, people thought we were crazy for believing in tourism. But now, I make good money. I make people happy,” he said.He remains hopeful, as always, for the next year. In 2019, already 104 new sharks have been registered in the archive. It’s a strong start, but still a gamble, a game of luck.Formerly the features editor for travel magazine GRID in the Philippines, Nina Unlay is currently based in London as a business reporter for IntraFish Media. She tweets at @ninabiscuit.Banner image: A tourist boat in Donsol joins several others in search of whale sharks. Image by Nina Unlay. A tour boat crew member, left, on the look out for whale sharks. Image by Nina Unlay.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.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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Deadly virus detected in wild frog populations in Brazil

first_imgResearchers have detected the first case of ranavirus infection in both native frog species as well as the invasive American bullfrog in the wild in Brazil.While the study cannot attribute ranavirus as the cause of death for the observed American bullfrog tadpoles, the findings suggest that ranavirus is spread in the wild, the researchers say.Ranavirus infections could be far more widespread in Brazil, and may have simply gone unnoticed until now, the researchers add. In November 2017, Joice Ruggeri and her colleagues came upon a pond with several dead tadpoles and a few dead fish in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, in southern Brazil. All the dead and dying animals had skin ulcers, with signs of hemorrhaging and edemas.When the researchers analyzed some of the dead tadpoles, they found that the animals were infected with ranavirus, a pathogen known to have contributed to mass die-offs of amphibians, fish and reptiles across the world. In Brazil, though, ranavirus infections have been linked to mass die-offs of only farmed tadpoles of the North American bullfrog (Lithobates catesbeiana).A new study has now recorded the first case of the deadly virus in wild frog populations in the country, researchers report in the Journal of Wildlife Diseases.“There are not many reports on dead frogs in the wild, at least in Brazil, and I personally don’t recall of any report on a mass mortality event,” Ruggeri, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Campinas and lead author of the study, told Mongabay. “However, as ranavirus infection usually leads to a quick death, I wonder how many events like this one we have been missing.”Two killer diseases have been wiping out amphibians across the world. The chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), has contributed to the decline of more than 500 amphibian species. And now, ranavirus is emerging as yet another deadly threat to wildlife; the virus is known to infect at least 175 species of amphibians, reptiles and fish.The American bullfrog, a species native to North America and introduced to more than 40 countries, has been implicated in the spread of both chytrid and ranavirus around the world.Brazil is a major producer of the bullfrog, with most farms located around the Atlantic Forest between Rio de Janeiro and Rio Grande do Sul. Several farms were abandoned in the early 1990s, however, and numerous captive bullfrogs are said to have escaped into the environment. Ruggeri and her colleagues suspect that feral bullfrog populations could be spreading ranavirus to frogs in the wild.After they chanced upon the pond with dead tadpoles, the researchers collected 18 seemingly healthy tadpoles of native species and four American bullfrog tadpoles — two dead and two lethargic individuals — from two separate ponds, and found that both the native and bullfrog tadpoles tested positive for ranavirus DNA. But whether the virus is definitively harming the animals is hard to say.“Our findings indicates that ranavirus is spread in the wild,” Ruggeri said. “But, no, we cannot attribute ranavirus as the cause of death [in case of the bullfrogs] without histopathologic examination.”Moreover, while the researchers detected the presence of ranavirus in tadpoles of native species, nothing is known about how susceptible they are to ranavirus infection. “We still have a lot to investigate in order to understand the real threat of ranavirus in Brazil,” Ruggeri said.Amanda Duffus, an associate professor and ranavirus expert at Gordon State College, who was not involved in the study, said the sample size of tadpoles analyzed was small but “diverse in terms of what families of amphibians were found to contain ranavirus DNA.”“It is not uncommon to find multiple species infected with ranavirus in an amphibian community and I am not surprised by this finding,” Duffus told Mongabay. “It is likely that ranavirus infections in Brazil are far more widespread and are potentially causing mortality events that are going unnoticed. Ranaviruses are globally distributed infections and with the global trade in amphibians, fish, and reptiles, no area is likely to be truly safe from this group of pathogens.”Ruggeri agreed that ranavirus infections may have gone undetected until recently because no one was looking for them. “Especially as chytridiomycosis has been the major concern to conservationists worldwide,” she added.Ruggeri and her colleagues are examining their samples in greater detail and hope to have some answers soon. “This ranavirus lineage could potentially be native to Brazil, which might explain why we detected low viral copies on native specimens,” she said. “We are working on genotyping some samples to see its phylogenetic position in the group.”Despite the small sample sizes in the study, the results are useful, Duffus said.“A high prevalence of Ranavirus in invasive populations of bullfrogs is a problem,” she said. “Ranavirus infection can lead to severe disease. It has been likened to ebola for ectotherms. In amphibians, the emergence of this infection can lead to population declines and even has the potential to lead to extinctions. This is something that needs to be taken quite seriously, as we are only beginning to understand the full extent of the effects of ranavirus infections and disease, and their potential interactions with other disease causing agents.”Researchers say that American bullfrogs that escaped from captivity in Brazil could have something to do with the spread of ranavirus in wild populations of frogs. Image by Carl D. Howe via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 2.5).Citation:Ruggeri, J., Ribeiro, L. P., Pontes, M. R., Toffolo, C., Candido, M., Carriero, M. M., … Toledo, L. F. (2019). First case of wild amphibians infected with Ranavirus in Brazil. Journal of Wildlife Diseases. doi:10.7589/2018-09-224 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 Amphibians, Animals, Biodiversity, Conservation, Diseases, Environment, Forests, Frogs, Infectious Wildlife Disease, Research, Tropical Forests, Wildlife center_img Article published by Shreya Dasguptalast_img read more

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Orangutan habitats being cleared in areas near palm oil mills, report finds

first_imgArticle published by mongabayauthor Agriculture, Animals, Biodiversity, Conservation, Deforestation, Endangered Species, Environment, Forestry, Forests, Green, Logging, Mammals, Orangutans, Palm Oil, Plantations, Rainforests, Tropical Forests, Wildlife A new study identifies the palm oil mills in Indonesia with the most clearance of orangutan habitat happening around them.The top 10 mills are all on the island of Borneo and are producing palm oil that makes its way into the supply chains of consumer goods giants such as Nestlé, Procter & Gamble, Kellogg’s, General Mills, Avon, Mars, Mondelēz and more ⁠— companies that promised long ago to stop buying palm oil linked to deforestation.Just because deforestation is happening around a palm oil mill does not mean it is being done by an entity supplying that mill with palm fruits. But it is a strong red flag that this may be the case.Several of the consumer goods giants contacted by Mongabay said they were either actively investigating the deforestation or suspending trading with the mills. Others were more vague in their responses. Rainforest clearance during the month of May destroyed orangutan habitat near 144 different palm oil mills in Indonesia, according to a report by MapHubs, an open-data platform and technology company that monitors natural resources.The top 10 mills, all located on the island of Borneo, lost an average of 104 hectares (257 acres) each. Among the companies that source their palm oil from these mills are household names such as Avon, Colgate-Palmolive, General Mills, Hershey, Kellogg’s, Mars, Mondelēz, Nestlé, Pepsico, Procter & Gamble, PZ Cussons, Reckitt Benckiser and Unilever.“The report is a risk analysis,” said Leo Bottrill, the founder and CEO of MapHubs. It’s intended to “highlight that both major traders and buyers with NDPE [no deforestation, no peat, no exploitation] policies, are buying from mills located in high risk areas for orangutan habitat clearance.”The 10 palm oil mills in Indonesia with the most orangutan habitat being destroyed around them are circled in red. Image courtesy of MapHubs.Just because the forest clearance takes place near a palm oil mill doesn’t mean it is being done in order to supply that mill, or even to plant oil palm. While some major buyers of palm oil have mapped out their supply chains to the mill level, untangling the ever-shifting networks of farms, plantations and brokers that sell to third-party mills is something no large firm has yet managed to do. But achieving this “full traceability” is critical if palm oil users are to prove their supply chains are free of deforestation and other ills.While some of the deforestation identified in the report occurred on lands licensed out to oil palm planters, others are happening in the surrounding forests, making it difficult to track who is responsible. Many mills process palm fruits sourced from smallholder plantations where ownership and land management agreements are often unclear.However, given that palm fruits begin to spoil within 24 hours of harvest, most are processed by mills within a 25-to-50-kilometer (15-to-30-mile) radius. Therefore, there is a high degree of probability that those responsible for clearing the forest, if they are doing so to plant oil palm, are banking on being able to sell their product to nearby mills. By identifying those mills now, the entities engaged in deforestation will learn that there is no nearby market for their crop, since most major consumers purchasing from those mills have established strongly worded zero-deforestation commitments that apply to their entire supply chain.In practical application, however, the level of engagement in the process — and response to allegations — varies significantly among the companies buying palm oil from these mills. While some rely on third-party certifications, other companies have signed on with monitoring systems that give them direct oversight of their entire supply chain. This additional step, they say, allows them respond more quickly and effectively to reports like this one.A palm oil mill in Indonesia. Image by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.Colgate-Palmolive, Nestlé, PZ Cussons and Reckitt Benckiser have each signed on with Starling, a service that uses satellites and remote sensing to monitor a company’s supply chain. Each of these companies told Mongabay they were actively investigating the deforestation, using their own satellite data to directly engage suppliers and clarify what actions will be taken.Nestlé said it had suspended trading with two of the mills, and was investigating the others named in the MapHubs report. PZ Cussons said it had already stopped sourcing from two mills, and was speaking with its suppliers about the others. Both Colgate-Palmolive and Reckitt Benkiser also said they were verifying the reports, and would terminate business with any company falling short of their no-deforestation commitments.While several other companies may not have the benefit of live monitoring, they did indicate they were actively responding to the MapHubs report. Unilever said it had already suspended one of the mills as a supplier due to previous violations, and was conducting further investigations to ensure the other mills are complying with its zero-deforestation commitment. Procter & Gamble also previously ended trading with three of the mills identified by MapHubs, but said it would look more closely at the others it still deals with. PepsiCo said it would thoroughly investigate the issue.Meanwhile, Kellogg’s responded to the report by simply reaffirming its commitment to sustainable palm oil, while General Mills said that since it had no evidence that the mills it sources from owned the concessions where deforestation was occurring, it did not consider the problem to be part of its supply chain.Avon, Mars and Mondelēz did not respond to Mongabay’s inquiries, while Hershey said it needed time to look into the issue.Palm oil producers Bunge, Musim Mas and Fuji Oil confirmed they were actively investigating the areas of deforestation identified in the report, and a few had entered the concerns into their formal grievance processes.Sime Darby, Bunge and Archer Daniels Midland each told Mongabay that while they had already suspended some of the mills for previous violations, they would make sure that those in proximity to these deforestation areas were not trading with third-party suppliers who were not in their tracking systems.An adult male Sumatran orangutan in Mount Leuser National Park. Image by Rhett A. Butler/Mongabay.Palm oil giant Wilmar said that any deforestation activities occurring on land directly within its supply chain were already being addressed as part of Wilmar’s grievance procedure, but that the firm could not be reasonably expected to investigate deforestation occurring near its mills without a clear understanding of land ownership and management oversight of an area.“As there continues to be a leakage market,” a spokesperson for Wilmar said, “where there is no scrutiny on those purchasing these excluded volumes, we will continue to see deforestation happening. This is not something that Wilmar alone can influence or stop.”Wilmar also said MapHubs’ reliance on mill proximity was “highly erroneous and misleading,” differing from its own monitoring program provided by Aidenvironment, a nonprofit consultancy that works with large firms.Golden Agri-Resources was also skeptical of the “guilty by proximity” link, pointing out that an area with a 25-kilometer radius was nearly three times the area of Singapore.“The result is predictable,” a spokesperson for Golden Agri said, “numerous incidents of deforestation will be detected around these mills. Investigating every single incident detected is neither practical nor a productive exercise.”While this sentiment may not be shared by every company, it gets at the heart of the issue: tracing the supply chain to just the mills is not sufficient. The web of middlemen, smallholders and interconnected companies makes it difficult but vital that palm oil consumers ensure accountability for the product from seed to shelf. And although mill proximity is a useful indicator for high risk of non-certified product leaking in, using proxies can shift focus from achieving true accountability.For example, PT Jabontara Eka Karsa (PT JEK), a mill located in Indonesian Borneo that supplies nearly all of the companies named above with palm oil, has the greatest amount of orangutan habitat in its vicinity. The MapHubs report flagged PT JEK due to the 442 hectares (1,092 acres) of forest that have been cleared this year by a nearby plantation owned by the Palma Serasih Group. PT JEK’s parent company, Kuala Lumpur Kepong, stringently denies that it sources palm oil from anyone but its own concessions, which finished their forest clearing in 2015. This leaves open the question of who Palma Serasih intends to sell its fruits to.Although there are limitations to using proximity as a proxy for responsibility, Bottrill said that since some 40 percent of oil palm fruits are supplied by smallholders, establishing direct links can be virtually impossible. However, he said he wishes that more companies with source data would be transparent about where their oil palm is being grown.“Companies and their consultants such as Aidenvironment have accurate concession data,” Bottrill said, yet “few, if any, have made this concession data publicly available, citing [intellectual property] concerns.” Palm oil producers Socfin and Neste have both publicly released concession maps, a trend Bottrill hopes catches on.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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Microplastic waste fouls up beaches on Sri Lanka’s southern tourism coast

first_imgMicroplastics Beaches along Sri Lanka’s southern coast, a tourism hotspot, are increasingly being contaminated with microplastic pollution, a survey has found.The study found that 60 percent of sand samples and 70 percent of surface water samples from 10 survey sites contained an abundance of microplastics up to 4.5 millimeters (0.18 inches) in size.The researchers have called for meticulous waste management initiatives, regulating the use of plastics, and further studies to ascertain the magnitude of the pollution caused by plastic waste. Sri Lanka’s southern coastline is dotted with popular resorts and beaches, but this once pristine landscape hasn’t been spared by the global plastic waste crisis, a study finds.The authors of the paper, published in the Marine Pollution Bulletin, studied 10 locations along a 91-kilometer (57-mile) stretch of the Indian Ocean island’s southern coast to assess the magnitude of the problem.They found that 60 percent of the sand samples and 70 percent of the surface water samples they collected contained an abundance of microplastics, or MPs, compounding the environmental pressure on a coastline ravaged by the 2004 tsunami and constantly battling against coastal erosion.The problem is just the tip of the iceberg, says lead author J.  Bimali Koongolla, a marine scientist at the  University of Ruhuna in Sri Lanka.“Microplastic waste is becoming a serious environmental problem in Sri Lanka, once considered an island state with unblemished pristine beaches,” she told Mongabay. “The seas are getting contaminated, and beyond environmental, this poses a severe health hazard as it impacts food chains.”She attributed the rising levels of microplastics in the seas and beaches to be poor waste management and an inability to break away from age-old littering practices.“The use of plastics is increasing non-biodegradable waste production. These plastics eventually get washed into the seas, polluting the very environment [local communities] depend on for sustenance,” Koongolla said.The sand sampling sites for the study on the southern coast of Sri Lanka. Image by Earth View Maps.Recreational beaches under threatThe sites worst affected by plastic pollution were Dondra, Weligama and Ambalangoda, all in Southern province, due to significant recreational activity as well as fishing.While recreational beaches had high levels of MPs, more remote beaches and fishing ports also exhibited large amounts of microplastic pollution as well as plastic debris, the researchers found.The size of MPs in surface water and beaches ranged from 1.5 to 2.5 millimeters (0.06 to 0.1 inches) and 3 to 4.5 millimeters (0.12 to 0.18 inches), respectively. Most were identified as polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), with some polystyrene (PS) foam being also being discovered at a few sites.Researchers found an overall higher abundance of MPs on the beaches than in the waters, while samples from the ports indicated higher levels of MP pollution in the surface water.When sediments were analyzed, the popular and congested recreational beaches appeared to have more microplastic litter. The busy public beach of Weligama was the most polluted by count (157 microplastic items per square meter) as well as weight (5.98 grams per square meter).Though busy recreational beaches like Weligama are cleaned routinely, the process only removes the larger debris and risks burying microplastics even deeper in the sand.The fishing ports in Dondra and Ambalangoda also showed high concentration of MPs by count and weight in the surface water. “This is due to high levels of gear handling and other activities,” Koongolla said.She added that at the three sites classified as remote beaches, there was little or no polystyrene found, and only one of them yielded high counts of MPs in the sand. “This is largely due to storm activity depositing water-borne and land-based debris via runoff,” Koongolla said.Researcher J. Bimali Koongolla conducts a beach survey near the Dondra Harbor. Image courtesy of Kasun Indika.Role of riversKoongolla said that while tourism had flourished in Sri Lanka’s south, good waste management practices have not been introduced.“South has traditionally had a high density of tourist activity, along its coast,” she said. “While we cannot confirm if any MP samples we collected originated in the sea from fisheries or commercial vessels or on land, we can confirm that these beaches are used heavily due to increased tourist activity and tend to leave a lot of visible plastic debris.”Researchers also say there is a dire need to identify the sources of microplastic pollution. This includes determining the role of rivers in transporting MPs into the ocean. “Once we narrow down the localities that are particularly polluting, it is easier to introduce waste management initiatives and to take other preventive action. These can vary from restriction of single-use plastics to having better recycling centers,” Koongolla said.The study came out just before findings from a 2018 survey — commissioned by the National Aquatic Resources Agency (NARA) and supported by Norway’s Institute of Marine Research (IMR) and carried out on the Norwegian research vessel Fridtjof Nansen — were published in January.The survey, the first of its kind in 40 years, found that nearly four-fifths of small pieces of the plastic waste in Sri Lanka’s territorial waters arrived via rivers and canals, said Terney Pradeep Kumara, general manager of the Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA).“This means only about one fifth of waste is sea-originated microsplastic wastage, caused by fishermen dumping plastic in mid-sea and oil spills from ships,” said Kumara, also a co-author of the southern coastal study.Following the Nansen survey, Kumara called for collective and effective waste management mechanisms and stricter laws to prevent extensive marine pollution.The polluted Dondra Harbor, a place that converges communities and faiths, but now also microplastic waste. Image courtesy of J. Bimali Koongolla.Further studies neededThe team of researchers point to the absence of sufficient coastal studies as a key reason for selecting the south, a top tourist destination.So far, only two studies have looked at microplastic pollution in the island’s coastal regions. A 2018 study looked at three beaches in Western province, while a 2016 study focused on the north coast.Koongolla said this new study offers only a glimpse of the microplastic problem in Sri Lanka. Ideally, she said, research should be conducted over different seasons and across several years. Sampling volumes should also be much larger to improve the quality of the data, she said.Banner image of a harbor in southern Sri Lanka studded with microplastics, an emerging environmental problem in the Indian Ocean island, once known for its pristine beaches, courtesy of J. Bimali Koongolla.Citation:Koongolla, J. B., Andrady, A. L, Terney Pradeep Kumara, P. B., & Gangabadage, C. S. (2018). Evidence of microplastics pollution in coastal beaches and waters in southern Sri Lanka. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 137, 277-284. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2018.10.031 Article published by dilrukshicenter_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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Reef fish are faring fine in eastern Indonesia, study suggests

first_imgAnimals, Biodiversity, Conservation, Coral Reefs, Environment, Fish, Fishing, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Marine Animals, Marine Conservation, Marine Protected Areas, Oceans, Overfishing, Protected Areas, Wildlife 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 A new study examines the health of reef fish populations in the lesser Sunda-Banda seascape, a part of the Coral Triangle, which overlaps with Indonesian waters in the western Pacific.In remote areas far from large human populations, reef fish are generally doing well, the researchers found.The researchers propose turning one area in Southwest Maluku, Indonesia, into a marine protected area. The coral reefs of the lesser Sunda-Banda seascape in southeastern Indonesia host some of the planet’s most biodiverse marine ecosystems, which remain relatively untouched even as overfishing ravages sea life to the country’s west and all over the world. New research suggests reef fish inhabiting understudied sections of the lesser Sunda-Banda are doing well overall in terms of species present and total numbers.“This study seems to be the first assessment ever of all species of consumable reef fishes for this area in the peer-reviewed scientific literature,” said Hawis Madduppa, head of the Marine Biodiversity and Biosystematics Lab at the Bogor Institute of Agriculture (IPB), who was not affiliated with the study.“It’s not all bad news for Indonesian marine conservation. We still have hope for good, sustainable reef fisheries.”The paper, published in IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, intends to inform reef management in the far-flung lesser Sunda-Banda seascape, which lies in the Coral Triangle, a vast region of the western Pacific that’s home to the highest diversity of corals and reef fishes anywhere on the planet.From 2014 to 2015, the researchers conducted three expeditions involving underwater surveys of reef fish communities in the Indonesian districts of East Flores, Alor and Southwest Maluku, where people catch a vast variety of fish to feed their families or sell at markets. The census covered 1,800 square kilometers (695 square miles) throughout 62 spots at a depth of 10 meters (33 feet). Divers collected and classified exploitable reef fish into 5-centimeter (2-inch) intervals of length, from 3 to more than 50 centimeters (1 to 20 inches). Then the scientists derived fish biomass figures by means of known relationships between the size and weight of the species they observed.In this way, lead author Fakhrizal Setiawan and his colleagues recorded 176 reef fish species that support the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of Indonesians. More than half the fish the team encountered were plankton-eating dark-banded fusiliers (Pterocaesio tile), but they concluded that the ranges and counts of species in the reef systems were generally sound and balanced.“Southwest Maluku has the highest biomass and quite a lot of abundance, very different from Alor and East Flores because pressure in fisheries is very low there,” said Fakhrizal, who at the time of the research was working as a reef fish ecologist for the Wildlife Conservation Society. Fakhrizal collaborated on the study with researchers from WWF-Indonesia and the Fisheries Diving Club at IPB.“Many islands in Southwest Maluku are very remote, so fish live happy and healthy with little contact with humans,” he said.A school of dark-banded fusilier of the coast of northern Sulawesi, Indonesia. Image by Bernard Dupont/Flickr.The lowest stocks occurred in East Flores, which has been subject to intensive reef fishing associated with a larger human presence. The harvested fish community in Alor looked stressed as well, a condition possibly resulting from harmful extraction methods, including potassium cyanide poisoning.The wealth of reef fish in Southwest Maluku, where fishers typically practice old-style, low-impact handlining, makes this place ecologically significant, so Fakhrizal proposed turning it into a marine protected area (MPA) to bolster biodiversity throughout the lesser Sunda-Banda. Because diversity is comparable across the three regions, he said, Southwest Maluku can “give fish to the areas with high-pressure fishing and supply spillover fish to sustain the ecosystem.” Hawis added that with MPA designation, “the important spawning and nursery area can be protected, and the degraded area can have a chance to recover.”There are, however, limits to reef fish resilience that could devastate the local fishing industry and national economy dependent on it, Fakhrizal noted.“When one area is open to more and more destructive fishing, at some point, it cannot recover from pressure,” he said. “Fishermen get more money using poison or bombing to get a lot of reef fish, but maybe their children cannot get fish from the area, move far away, then need money for fuel. An area like Southwest Maluku with small fisheries may not be high-value, but it’s economically sustainable enough for long-term opportunity. In Alor and East Flores, there could be a decrease in fisheries in a few years.”A scorpionfish in Alor, Indonesia. Image by prilfish/Flickr.Fakhrizal’s paper echoes monitoring work completed in 2017 by Reef Check Indonesia, a nonprofit based in Bali. It also determined that fusilier fish were the most abundant ones in East Flores and Alor, since upwelling transported plentiful nutrients to this species there.Altogether the current findings provide reason for optimism, said Hawis. “In Indonesia, the farther east you go, the higher the abundance and biomass due to the remoteness,” he said. “I’m very glad we still have an area with a high abundance of natural fish stock, more than 2,000 kilograms per hectare,” or about 1,800 pounds per acre.To maintain stocks, strong multi-scale laws should be established and enforced to prohibit damaging fishing equipment and the removal of breeding or developing fish, said Sila Sari, data and knowledge coordinator with Reef Check Indonesia. Alongside intensifying surveillance to reduce offenses in Southwest Maluku, she recommended enhancing rules with traditional knowledge that has for millennia moderated fishing and preserved Indonesian reefs.“Eastern Indonesia is rich with different local wisdoms that can be engaged through management and protected area regulation,” said Sari, who was not involved in the study. “It’ll be great to see changes between each area and between inside or outside the MPA and assess how effectively it works by assessing fish stocks. Each year or two, we need to repeat the same survey at the same sites.”Hawis emphasized the broad research on lesser Sunda-Banda marine biodiversity required to safeguard the target reef fish, too. To create an MPA, he said, biologists must investigate connectivity across islands or populations by harnessing molecular mechanisms, such as environmental DNA and population genetics, and evaluate the relatedness of organisms in reef ecosystems.“Mostly, people in Indonesia want faster, easier reef restoration,” Fakhrizal said. “But to be conserved effectively, coral reefs need time to recover without human disorder. We should give reefs in the lesser Sunda-Banda time to rebuild with MPAs.”Citation:Setiawan, F., Muhidin, Agustina, S., Pingkan, J., Estradivari, Tarigan, S. A., . . . Sadewa, S. (2019). Stock estimation, species composition and biodiversity of target reef fishes in the lesser Sunda-Banda Seascape (East Flores, Alor and South West Maluku regencies), Indonesia. IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, 278, 012070. doi:10.1088/1755-1315/278/1/012070Banner: A bluestreak fusilier fish. Image by Rickard Zerpe/Flickr. 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 mongabayauthorlast_img read more

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In other news: Environmental stories from around the web, September 6, 2019

first_imgArticle published by John Cannon 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 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 forestsMore than two-thirds of the world’s forests are at risk, according to a U.N. report (Down to Earth).Research suggests that we might be expecting trees to carry more of the carbon load than they can handle (Undark).To save Mexican rosewood, China needs to act (Dialogo Chino).Ethiopia is embarking on a quest to boost the cultivation of bamboo (Ezega).Illegal loggers are going after a rare tree in the Democratic Republic of Congo that’s highly valued in China in what one local leader calls an “ecological disaster” (Phys.Org).Tackling deforestation in the Amazon is only part of the solution to climate change, one commentator argues (New Republic).The biggest trees in the forests are the most likely to be felled by drought, pests and lightning (Science Magazine).Other newsA baby Masai giraffe was born at a wild animal park in Ohio in a win for the endangered species (Richland Source).Calls for freshwater protection follow the discovery of eight new species of mussels in Myanmar (Fauna & Flora International).Scientists say they’ve found a new species of beaked whale off the coast of Japan (Science Daily, Gizmodo).The spawning rhythms of coral species in the Red Sea are out of step (The Atlantic).Observers in fish markets could make a difference in protecting sought-after species around the world (Hakai Magazine).Woolly mammoth ivory is filling the gap left by the subsidence of the outlawed elephant ivory trade (Undark).Banner image of a painting of woolly mammoths by Mauricio Antón via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 2.5).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.last_img read more

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As climate crisis deepens, wildlife adapts, maybe with lessons for us

first_imgAdaptation To Climate Change, Animal Behavior, Animals, Arctic Animals, Birds, Climate Change, Climate Change And Biodiversity, Mammals, Orangutans, Wildlife Shifts in the timing of lifecycle events, like reproduction or migration, are widely thought to be the most common response of wildlife to global warming.In recent years, pikas have been observed modifying their foraging habits in ways that may be behavioral adaptations to a changing climate.A long-term study in Kutai National Park on the island of Borneo in Indonesia has shown how extreme weather, brought by the intensifying El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) cycle, is affecting the behavior, habitat requirements, feeding ecology and birth intervals of orangutans.Researchers have discovered that African penguins, may be falling into a sort of “ecological trap,” one that humans created through overfishing and climate change. Recent studies of Twitter posts have shown that people can be quick to shrug off extreme weather as normal. However, researchers are also finding that some wildlife — maybe better attuned to changes in the natural world around them — are adapting successfully to climate change.As the United Nations prepares to convene for the 2019 Climate Action Summit on September 23 in New York City, and for Climate Week (Sept. 22-29), Mongabay has gathered here some of our reporting, showcasing how three animals: the American Pika, orangutan and penguin are shifting their behaviors to face the challenges of a rapidly altering world.The American Pika beats the heatIt may be a tiny tailless mammal, but the American pika could teach humans a thing or two about adapting to the impacts of global climate change.Shifts in the timing of lifecycle events, like reproduction or migration, are widely thought to be the most common response of wildlife to global warming, and according to research in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, the scientific literature on the subject mostly bears that assertion out. Since behavioral responses were most noticeable in species with a lifespan of at least three years, the American Pika (Ochotona princeps) provides an apt example to explore.American pikas can alter their body temperature somewhat via posture, squeezing into a fluffy ball, a body posture with minimum surface area, to hold in heat during winter, or stretching out the surface area of their bodies to cool down in summer. In recent years, pikas have also been observed modifying their foraging habits in ways that may be behavioral adaptations to a changing climate. Photo Credit: J. Jacobson, from figure 4 of Beever et al (2017). doi:10.1002/fee.1502.Pikas don’t dig burrows and typically make their homes in alpine rockpiles at the base of cliffs, known as talus slopes, at high-elevations in western North America’s mountains. These relatives of rabbits and hares inhabit an expansive range as a species, but individuals don’t typically stray more than a kilometer from their stony habitats. And that has led to several distinct populations, which makes the pica an especially good species to study — population comparisons offer us a better understanding of localized responses to quick changing environmental conditions.For example, one population of more malleable pikas turned out not to be home bodies, but instead appear willing to seek out new cooler places to live as temperatures rise. They give up their old, hotter rockpiles and seek out new favorable and cooler microclimates nearby. This move allows the animals to remain more active during the daytime when ambient temperatures at their original talus habitat — frequently subjected to full sun — had turned much higher.Scientists think that pikas capable of adapting their behavior in this manner might have better chances of surviving as global warming advances.Another important area of adaptation that’s been observed in American pikas is thermoregulation. In the more northern parts of the species’ range, freezing temperatures in winter are severe. In response, pikas moderate their body temperature to some degree through posture — squeezing into a fluffy ball, a pose with minimum surface area, to hold in heat during winter; or stretching out their body surface area to cool down in summer.Read more at: The American pika: A case study in wildlife acclimating to climate changeOrangutans adjust their birth cyclesA long-term study in Kutai National Park on the island of Borneo in Indonesia has shown how extreme weather, brought by the intensifying El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) cycle, is affecting the behavior, habitat requirements, feeding ecology and birth intervals of orangutans.Kutai’s protected habitat is one of the driest regions on the island and also the driest, least productive rainforest where orangutans can be found — in fact, it is the least wet of all current orangutan research sites. In this part of Borneo, the ENSO cycle is marked by periods of drought, interspersed with periods of normal rainfall and unusually heavy rains.Researchers found that the ENSO cycle influences the lives of Kutai’s orangutans in a surprising way. Much like humans, orangutan females don’t ovulate when their bodies are malnourished, especially during an El Niño drought, so bear no young during such periods.Interestingly, El Niños occur every six years on average, and Kutai orangutans possess an average inter-birth interval of 6.1 years — roughly in sync with the ENSO cycles. In comparison, orangutans in Sumatra reproduce every 8.75 years, and every 7.7 years in wetter central Borneo, meaning that orangutan mothers are still caring for their previous infant when the next El Niño comes along. This phenomenon is known as infant stacking and is rarely recorded in orangutans.Female and infant orangutan in Kutai National Park. The morio orangutans of east Borneo are usually much darker than their Sumatran cousins. Image by Orangutan Project Kutai.Because the Kutai great apes live in the most challenging and variable conditions of any orangutans, these findings could help conservationists understand how orangutans are currently adapting to difficult climatic conditions — a potentially invaluable insight as the human-caused climate crisis escalates in future.Read more at: For orangutans affected by El Niño, change unfolds over timePenguin survival depends on following food and breeding cuesThe emperor penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri) is the largest of all living penguin species and the only one that breeds during the Antarctic winter. A recent study gives a sneak peek into how the penguins might respond to disappearing stable sea ice conditions brought by climate change — for good or ill.Female emperor penguins lay their single eggs early in the Antarctic winter, around May, then take turns with their partners incubating the eggs and subsequently raising the chicks through the extremely cold winter months. That’s to ensure chicks are ready to leave their nesting ground by the summer months of January or February.Emperor penguins are the only known bird to never breed on dry land, preferring to hatch and rear chicks on frozen sea. But in 2016, following abnormally stormy weather, the sea ice of the emperor penguin colony at Halley Bay on the Weddell Sea broke up in October, long before the chicks had fledged and were ready to go out to sea. In 2017 and 2018, too, the ice broke up early, leading to the likely death of all the chicks at Antarctica’s second-largest colony of emperor penguins.But it’s not all gloom. Between 2016 and 2018, satellite images picked up a massive increase in the numbers of emperor penguins at the nearby Dawson-Lambton Glacier colony, located 55 kilometers (34 miles) to the south of Halley Bay. While the estimated number of adult penguin pairs at Dawson-Lambton had steadily decreased from 3,690 in 2010, to 1,280 in 2015, those numbers jumped up to 5,315 pairs in 2016; 11,117 in 2017; and 14,612 pairs in 2018 — a surprise to scientists.“It appears that many of the birds from Halley Bay have relocated to Dawson-Lambton, with the rest remaining at Halley Bay, but not breeding successfully,” the authors explained.So it seems that some penguins are using migration successfully as a fundamental climate change strategy. But alter surroundings too much or too quickly, and suddenly such adaptations might point organisms in the wrong direction. For example, across the ocean from Antarctica, on the southern tip of Africa, researchers have discovered that African penguins (Spheniscus demersus), an Endangered species according to the IUCN, may be falling into a sort of “ecological trap,” one that humans created through overfishing and climate change.Emperor penguins need intact sea ice until the chicks are ready to leave their nesting grounds. Image by Christopher Michel via Flickr (CC BY 2.0).Penguin numbers in South Africa’s Western Cape have plummeted by around 80 percent in recent decades. Biologists chalked this decline up to the disappearance of their favorite prey species, anchovies and sardines, from the Western Cape, the penguins’ preferred feeding ground to the west of their nesting sites. Overfishing and water chemistry changes — knock-on climate change effects — pushed breeding shoals of these fish eastward or wiped them out entirely.In the past, penguins in search of their favorite foods adapted by picking up on cues, such as the chemicals that plankton release and water temperature, to tell them where to find food. But now, when they follow cues to formerly reliable feeding spots, they’re more likely to find jellyfish and low-calorie gobies, rather than energy-dense sardines and anchovies. Without the right cues, they go hungry.Researchers used satellite monitoring to follow the movements of young penguins as they left their breeding grounds in Namibia and South Africa and headed into the open ocean to feed. The data revealed that the fledgling penguins’ behavior wasn’t flexible enough to accommodate the change to their environment, and instead led them to a subpar food source.Again, there could be a lesson here for humanity: escalating climate change is complex, and it may take ongoing trial and error to find the right survival response — with some individuals making viable choices, and others not.Read more at:Large emperor penguin colony suffers ‘catastrophic’ breeding failureEcological trap ensnares endangered African penguinsBanner image caption: Emperor penguin colony. Image by IIP Photo Archive via FlickrThis story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 300 news outlets worldwide to strengthen coverage of the climate story. 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 Willie Shubertlast_img read more

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Saving Aru: The epic battle to save the islands that inspired the theory of evolution

first_imgIn the mid-1800s, the extraordinary biodiversity of the Aru Islands helped inspire the theory of evolution by natural selection.Several years ago, however, a corrupt politician granted a single company permission to convert most of the islands’ rainforests into a vast sugar plantation.The people of Aru fought back. Today, the story of their grassroots campaign resonates across the world as a growing global movement seeks to force governments to act on climate change. This story was co-published with The Gecko Project. Additional support was provided by Earthsight.I. The movement beginsLate one rainy night in August 2013, a college student named Collin Leppuy arrived at the doorstep of Father Jacky Manuputty, a church minister in the coastal city of Ambon, Indonesia. He had come to ask for help; his homeland was under threat.Collin, then 23, had grown up in the Aru Islands, a heavily forested archipelago in the eastern margins of the world’s largest island nation. He was studying social welfare policy at a university in Ambon, the capital of Maluku province. Collin had recently organized rallies in the city against a corrupt politician who had governed Aru for nearly a decade. Convicted of siphoning off millions of dollars in state funds, the politician had absconded before law enforcers finally caught up with him. Collin had felt proud of the outcome, but this gave way to a renewed sense of urgency when he discovered what else the politician had done before his arrest.For decades, Aru had escaped the attention of the companies clearing Indonesia’s rainforests. But as the jungles of Java, Sumatra and Borneo dwindled, those in search of timber and agricultural land began to look east. Aru now lay in the sights of a company called the Menara Group. Collin had learned that before he was ousted from office, the politician had secretly approved a plan by Menara to plant sugarcane across nearly two-thirds of Aru. If it went ahead, the firm would reap billions of dollars by logging Aru’s forests and replacing them with what could be the world’s biggest sugar plantation. But it would destroy the existing livelihoods and food supplies of tens of thousands of people, including Collin’s friends and family. It would ruin the habitats of Aru’s unique wildlife, of animals like the ethereal birds-of-paradise, and the natural world from which the Aruese drew their identity.Male greater birds-of-paradise (Paradisaea apoda) display their plumage in the Aru Islands. Image by Tim Laman/courtesy of Tim Laman and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.Jacky welcomed Collin into his house and listened to his appeal for help. Then in his late 40s, with closely cropped, curly black hair, a thick mustache and a gentle but stern demeanor, Jacky held a senior position in the Protestant Church of Maluku, which had more than 700 parishes across the region. As a younger man, Jacky had been inspired by the ideas of liberation theology, a Christian movement that emerged in Latin America to aid the poor and oppressed, and by popular uprisings against authoritarianism. He had spent decades helping rural communities in eastern Indonesia fend off unsolicited advances from extractive companies. Now Collin wanted Jacky to do the same for the Aruese.Jacky was wary. He knew how fraught things could get for indigenous groups who resisted government-backed projects. On his home island of Haruku, a short boat ride from Ambon, his own community had fractured when a mining firm tried to gain a foothold. Clashes between neighboring villages for and against the project had turned violent. Jacky’s side had tried to sue the company, but the conflict reached a decisive end only when villagers burned the firm’s camp to the ground. Now, Jacky wondered if the Aruese would be strongly united in their opposition to the sugar plantation, or if he might be walking into a situation that could spiral out of control.As the rain pattered down, Jacky and Collin formed a plan. They would invite Aruese students in Ambon to a candlelight vigil as an act of solidarity. Collin would gather his peers in a classroom at his school, and Jacky would lead them in prayer. Then they would all discuss how best to proceed.The Aru Islands’ total area is 8,570 square kilometers (3,310 square miles), about the size of Puerto Rico.The following night, Collin arrived with a dozen students. During Jacky’s service, they asked if they could sing a folk song that told the origin myth of Aru’s people. Jacky listened as they murmured the lyrics, recounting a quarrel between two brothers over a golden spear with supernatural powers for catching fish. The brothers’ infighting prompted God to strike their island with an earthquake and tidal wave, splitting it in two and forcing its inhabitants to set sail for the archipelago known today as Aru.But Jacky soon cut them off. The song had a deep cultural resonance, but the students sung it as if they were ashamed of their heritage. To Jacky, it spoke of a lack of spirit — spirit that would be direly needed if they were to confront the forces ranged against Aru.“Don’t start this struggle if you’re not proud of your identity as Aruese,” he warned. “If you are not, then the company will come and pay you, and pick you off one by one.“Sing it again,” he said. “More dynamic than you sing the national anthem.”They did, this time with more verve.At the end of the evening, they wrote two words on pieces of paper: SOS ARU.Jacky, center, stands with Collin, third from right, and the other students at the candlelight vigil in August 2013. The signs say, “Pray for Aru!”Over the coming months this phrase, and others like it, would become a clarion call for a grassroots movement that reverberated from Aru to Ambon, to Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, and far beyond.It brought together indigenous men and women of all ages, a cast of outsiders who rallied to their cause, and supporters from around the globe. At stake were competing visions of development. The company and its political backers told the Aruese they were backward and poor, and that the only way out was to trust their fate to a faceless conglomerate. But the people of Aru took stock of the natural world that surrounded them, and they said no.It would soon become clear they were fighting not just against a plantation, but for something more fundamental — to make government accountable to the people, in a country where business interests have widely co-opted the levers of state power. It was a battle whose outcome would decide the fate of one of the world’s last great tracts of rainforest, and of the people whose lives and culture were entwined with it. Today their struggle resonates across the planet, as a growing global movement seeks to confront the same binary choice between prosperity and the environment that the Aruese decided, to profound effect, was false.But at first, it was just a dozen students, a priest and two words on paper.“That’s the movement starting,” Jacky would later say. “In that room.”II. ‘In the end, it comes down to power’last_img read more

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A scramble for solutions as fall armyworm infestation sweeps Africa

first_imgAgriculture, Environment, Health, Insects, Pesticides Fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda). Image courtesy G. Goergen/IITA via Flickr (CC-NC-SA-2.0) An infestation of fall armyworm has spread rapidly across Africa since it first appeared on the continent in 2016; it’s now been reported in 44 countries, with 80 different types of crops affected.For farmers and policymakers, the go-to solution has been to spray crops with pesticides, but researchers have warned of harm to farmers from unsafe use of the pesticides, as well as impacts on other insects that would otherwise keep the pests in check.Researchers have suggested a biocontrol solution — releasing large numbers of a wasp species known to infest fall armyworm eggs — but doubts remain about how effective it will be in a region with small farms and high crop diversity.There are also calls for better agronomic practices, such as more regular weeding of farms and crop rotation, to deny the pest a year-round supply of its preferred food. Early one morning in April 2017, Anne Anyole found strange caterpillars feeding on her maize crop. At first she thought it was stalk borer, a pest familiar to farmers in western Kenya’s Kakamega county, especially when the weather is dry.Maize is usually planted in March during the onset of the long rains that usually continue into August. But in 2017, it was still dry until early April, and the maize was still low to the ground, barely knee height.Anyole went to the local agrovet, as rural shops supplying agriculture and veterinary products are known in Kenya. They sold her a pesticide commonly used in spraying vegetable pests. Anyole doesn’t usually use pesticides on her farm. She plants maize in March and then weeds it diligently until it’s ready to harvest four or five months later.The caterpillars disappeared after she sprayed her field, but reappeared two or three days later. It was fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda).“I realized that the damage to the crops was increasing and more devastating than ever,” Anyole said. That year, farmers across Kakamega county turned desperately to every alternative, including spraying their crops with laundry detergent and painstakingly picking worms off their crops by hand and crushing them, but nothing proved effective.“Since 2017, I have been harvesting low yields,” Anyole says. “I cannot get surplus to sell and pay school fees for my kids as it is my main source of income.” Where she says she would have harvested 800 kilograms (1,760 pounds) of maize after each of Kenya’s two growing seasons, her fields have yielded barely 250 kilos (550 pounds) per season since the armyworm appeared. Article published by terna gyuse FAW made its first appearance in Africa in Nigeria in 2016. Scientists have not yet established how it reached the continent from Latin America, but once it arrived, it spread rapidly. S. frugiperda moths can migrate more than 500 kilometers (300 miles) before mating and laying their eggs — and can fly much longer distances with favorable winds.In an alarmingly short span of time, the pest spread from West Africa to Southern Africa and then into East Africa. It has now been reported in 44 countries with infestations affecting 80 different crops.“There was a lot of panic by farmers and governments,” says MaryLucy Oronje, a specialist in insects and crop production at the Centre for Agriculture and Bioscience International (CABI).An agricultural extension worker in Zambia demonstrating spraying pesticides against fall armyworm. Image by Tigana Chileshe via Wikimedia Commons (CC-SA-4.0)Across the continent, governments urged farmers to protect their crops by spraying them with insecticides. In Rwanda and Zambia, soldiers were deployed to spray maize fields in the fight against FAW.“Most of the insecticides that have been used against FAW are not specific to armyworm, but are broad spectrum chemicals,” Oronje told Mongabay. “They will also kill off bees and other beneficial insects, such as predators and parasitoids that reduce insect pest populations and benefit indirectly as they help reduce other insect pest populations.”Marc Kenis, head of risk analysis and invasion ecology at CABI, says that the problem of using insecticides is exacerbated by the fact that many smallholders do not protect themselves adequately when using insecticides, or else use banned insecticides.Kenis told Mongabay that insecticides could also affect natural enemies of the FAW and other pests on farm, which may favor the emergence of secondary pests and oblige farmers to use more and more insecticides.Oronje adds, “It’s possible that other animals are also affected and will continue to be affected by these insecticides. The extensive use of pesticides in Africa will later have impacts on biodiversity.”She told Mongabay that no studies have been carried out to evaluate the impact on farmers themselves of the heavy use of insecticides since FAW’s appearance, but she worries that few smallholders know how to use these toxic chemicals safely or have the right protective equipment.Kenis is among the researchers looking for ways to control fall armyworm that will be both cheaper and less risky to human health and the environment than hugely increased insecticide use. One such solution is what is known as biological control, in this case attacking fall armyworm with another species. This can be done either by introducing a new predatory species or by stimulating local populations of natural enemies.T. remus parasitizes fall armyworm eggs. Image courtesy CIMMYT via Flickr (CC-NC-SA-2.0)Earlier this year, Kenis was the lead author of a study published in the April 2019 issue of the journal Insects, which announced that at least one natural predator of fall armyworm is already present in Africa. Telenomus remus is a tiny black wasp with a shiny body less than a millimeter long. It injects its eggs into fall armyworm eggs, where they develop into tiny white larvae barely visible to the naked eye. These larvae may be small, but they have a big appetite: they eat their hosts, and an adult wasp emerges instead of an armyworm caterpillar.Kenis says deploying T. remus or another local parasitoid against fall armyworm poses hardly any risk.“There is no health risk since a parasitoid cannot harm humans. The environmental risk is also limited since T. remus already occurs in Africa and has already found its place in the ecosystem,” he says.There’s a catch, though: some predatory insects of this type naturally reach high levels of parasitism (sometimes above 50 percent), but studies of T. remus in the Americas have found the parasitoid is not an effective biocontrol agent by itself, says Kenis, because its natural parasitism rates are very low.Deploying the tiny wasps as an effective biological control would involve breeding batches of hundreds of thousands of them on cardboard trays of FAW eggs, and releasing them into afflicted fields as they hatch. In the Americas, this method has achieved parasitism rates of greater than 90 percent.“We can hope that in Africa, they may be able to do the same, thus inflicting high mortality in each FAW generation, which T. remus cannot do,” Kenis says.The main challenge for using T. remus will be to find cost-effective methods to deploy it in the field. It has been used successfully in large-scale commercial operations in Mexico and the Bahamas to protect high-value vegetable crops grown in relatively small areas. Effectively controlling fall armyworm across much larger areas will be difficult, says Kenis: “But we hope to find very cheap ways to produce T. remus which could make it affordable as well for smallholders.”Frederic Baudron, a senior scientist and systems agronomist from International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre-CIMMYT Zimbabwe, is skeptical. “When an exotic pest is introduced to a new continent, it generally comes without its suite of natural enemies (think of the massive rabbit problem in Australia for example). It takes time for local natural enemies to control the pest (and doesn’t always happen). In addition, compared to the Americas, African agriculture is characterized by its very low input use, small farms, high diversity and high heterogeneity. Most solutions are thus not transferable,” Baudron says.He tells Mongabay that biocontrol is not the focus of most interventions in Africa. There are calls for better agronomic practices such as more regular weeding of farms and crop rotation, to deny the pest a year-round supply of its preferred food, but as fall armyworm spreads rapidly, most interventions in the continent have turned to pesticides — for farmers and policymakers alike, it feels like a familiar and decisive intervention, despite the cost.Fall armyworm infestations leave crops looking devastated. Image by Peter Steward via Flickr (CC-NC-2.0)“This year, cases of FAW in Kenya, for example, are expected to be higher because of the delay in onset of rainfall, different planting times by farmers and high temperatures recorded this year,” Oronje says. The warmer the weather, the faster fall armyworm passes through its life cycle. Infestations have been recorded across the western part of the country where maize is a popular crop; the extent of the damage will only be assessed after September’s harvest has been tallied.“There is a need to make scientific decisions on the risks of biocontrols and ensure that it only kills FAW,” Oronje says. “African governments need to hasten trials because the increasing temperatures will escalate the reproduction of FAW.“We hope that this is something that can be upscaled after approvals from governments,” she adds.As research into biological controls and other environmentally friendly solutions continues, Oronje says there will need to be increased education for farmers and agricultural extension officers about which insecticides work best, and how to use them safely.“The consensus in the continent is that a combination of these three approaches — pesticides, biocontrol and agronomic practices — will be required to effectively control FAW,” Baudron says.Banner image: Field inspection for fall armyworm in Kakamega County, Kenya. Image by Gilbert Nakweya for Mongabay.CitationKenis, M., Du Plessis, H., Van den Berg, J., Ba, M. N., Goergen, G., Kwadjo, K. E., … Polaszek, A. (2019). Telenomus remus, a candidate parasitoid for the biological control of Spodoptera frugiperda in Africa, is already present on the continent. Insects, 10(4), 92. doi:10.3390/insects10040092 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 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.last_img read more

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