The beautiful, liquid song of the Palila was once thought a sign of rain. Now the distinctive sound is rarely heard.
The Palila and the māmane tree are two of Hawai’i’s many species found nowhere else. The tree is essential to the bird: The Palila’s hooked bill is just right for opening the tough, fibrous seedpods of māmane, the bird’s primary food.
Common milkweed isn’t a particularly finicky plant—it has “weed” in its name for a reason and can be found growing on roadsides, empty lots, and old fields. But over the last two decades, Asclepias syriaca, which is primarily found in the Midwest and eastern United States, has disappeared from most agricultural landscapes. Along with it, the population of the iconic migratory monarch butterfly, Danaus plexippus plexippus, which relies on the plant for reproduction, has also crashed, so much so that it is being considered for endangered status.
According to researchers, 1.3 billion stems of milkweed have disappeared from Midwestern farmlands over the last 20 years. This has led to an 80 percent crash in the migratory monarch, which winters in the mountains of Mexico and breeds in the central and eastern United States during the spring and summer. Since hitting an estimated high of 682 million monarchs in 1997, the species dropped to just 42 million in 2015. According to another study, milkweed in and near cropland in Illinois, prime monarch habitat, has dropped by 95 percent over the same period—representing a 50 percent drop in the total milkweed population.
Gray whales have one of the longest migrations of any mammal, traveling each year from calving lagoons along Mexico’s Baja Peninsula up to feeding grounds in Alaska’s Beaufort Sea. Similarly impressive migrations along the Pacific Coast are made by other whale species, as well as elephant seals, sea lions, sharks, tuna, and the millions of birds that traverse the Pacific Flyway.
The promise of large open spaces drew the emerging photographer to North America, where he discovered that even large areas of protected wilderness like Yellowstone National Park aren’t safe from fragmentation. For example, the artificial boundaries of large parks don’t necessarily take the migrations and dispersal of wildlife into account. Schulz argues that parks can become prisons rather than preserves, especially as climate change causes ecological boundaries to shift. Schulz is a proponent of wildlife corridors, which he believes can correct the fragmentation caused by human-designated wilderness areas by acting as land or water bridges that allow wildlife to move between parks and ecosystems.
Joint UNHCR and EU scheme offers Syrian refugees and other children a safe space to learn and play.
The ‘Fun Bus’ initiative is jointly funded by UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and the European Union, and implemented by the Makhzoumi Foundation, a Lebanese NGO. It provides support and recreation to street children in Lebanon, thereby reducing the amount of time they spend working outside.
Right now, the New Zealand bottom trawling fleet is setting out for yet another season of destruction. Each year, out of sight, the NZ fishing fleet go on the hunt for orange roughy using one of the most destructive forms of fishing ever devised. They have to be stopped, and one of the first things we need to do is make people aware of what’s really going on out there.
New Zealand trawl fleet to continue destruction of deep-sea ecosystems in South Pacific on the high seas.
New Zealand and Australia to adopt a deeply flawed regulation that will allow continued degradation and destruction of biologically rich and diverse ecosystems in the deep-sea from the Louisville Ridge in the western central South Pacific all the way across to the Tasman Sea.
We’ve stopped environmental crimes in the past and held companies to account. Together in our thousands, we’re forcing change and seeing results.
More and more people are saying ‘no’ to trashing the oceans, forests and climate – and standing up to protect our air, land and water from pollution.