conservation

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Finding Dory Could Spell Doom for Her Real-Life Counterparts

But an online petition is hoping to change that

(Newser) - Disney's upcoming film Finding Dory will likely be a hit with kids around the world, and that's got fish-lovers worried. “Now that Disney knows the effect Finding Nemo had on clownfish, they should prepare for the effect Finding Dory will have on blue tang by doing their... More »

Extremely Rare Rhino Found Last Month Dies

Najaq proved Sumatran rhinos aren't extinct in Borneo

(Newser) - A Sumatran rhino, whose discovery in the wild last month was "hailed as a landmark conservation success," has died only weeks later, AFP reports. According to National Geographic , the rhino, named Najaq, was captured March 12 in Indonesian Borneo in a trap set by conservationists hoping to move... More »

Obama Grants Protection to 1.8M Acres of California Desert

He's now protected more land and water than any other president

(Newser) - A huge swath of breathtaking California desert just got federal protection courtesy of President Obama. The Los Angeles Times reports Obama named three new national monuments—Mojave Trails, Sand to Snow, and Castle Mountains—Thursday using a 1906 law letting presidents create such monuments to protect "objects of historic... More »

The US' Only Wild Jaguar Caught on Video

El Jefe lives in the mountains just miles outside of Tucson

(Newser) - America got a good look at the United States' only known wild jaguar in a 41-second video released Wednesday. "The dramatic footage provides a glimpse of the secretive life of one of nature’s most majestic and charismatic creatures," the Center for Biological Diversity states in a press... More »

Researchers Stumble on 'Hidden' Lion Population

Study confirms lions live in Ethiopia park, possibly another in Sudan

(Newser) - Conservationists say they have confirmed the existence of lions in a remote national park in Ethiopia, a rare piece of good news for a threatened species whose numbers have plunged in many parts of Africa, the AP reports. Born Free, a charity based in Britain, said in a statement Monday... More »

No More Cecils: African Lions Now on Endangered Species List

And US hunters will need special permit to bring back 'trophies'

(Newser) - Minnesota dentist Walter Palmer caused an uproar when he killed Cecil the lion —and he may have expedited the latest Obama administration mandate. The US Fish and Wildlife Service is set to announce Monday that as of Jan. 22, lions in Africa will be protected under the Endangered Species... More »

Libido-Less White Tiger Frustrates Zoo, Lady Tiger

Zookeepers hope a sexy new female tiger will do the trick

(Newser) - Male tigers are a lot like human men when it comes to sex. They're shy and awkward about their bodies if they haven't spent a lot of time around female tigers. They take libido enhancers when they get older. And, if a partner their own age isn't... More »

Fungus Mysteriously Killing America's Rattlesnakes

Conservation efforts 'overwhelmed' by disease's spread

(Newser) - Though rattlesnakes once occupied much of the US, humans have shrunk their populations—and now an insidious fungal disease is doing further damage. Ophidiomyces ophiodiicola surfaced here roughly 10 years ago, and it has since been found in nine eastern states, reports the AP . The eastern massasauga rattlesnake in Illinois... More »

Study Has Bad News for Reindeer

Reindeer populations experiencing rapid decline

(Newser) - The iconic reindeer is in peril, according to a new study analyzing population trends in China. While their numbers have been in decline for decades, dropping by at least 28% since the 1970s, the rate of decline has increased dramatically since 1998, reports UPI . The study, published in the Journal ... More »

World Lost Half Its Wildlife in 40 Years

WWF finds decline is even worse than it thought

(Newser) - The World Wildlife Fund has improved its methods of measuring the world's wildlife populations—and discovered that the situation is even worse than previously thought. In its Living Planet report , the numbers are stark: Populations of vertebrate species—including mammals, birds, fish, and reptiles—fell by a staggering average... More »

California Blue Whales Show Big Rebound

Population returns to 'sustainable levels'

(Newser) - After decades of deadly whaling, the California blue whale population has come back with a vengeance. A study in the Marine Mammal Science journal says that the once-endangered mammal, which can be found from Alaska all the way down to Costa Rica, has bounced back to "sustainable levels,"... More »

More Elephants Being Killed Than Born

35K killed annually since 2010; deaths driven by illegal ivory trade

(Newser) - A new study tallying the African elephant population has made a stark finding: If poaching continues at its current rate, the animal may be extinct in a century, the BBC reports. "We are shredding the fabric of elephant society and exterminating populations across the continent," says the study'... More »

Artist Creates Trees That Grow 40 Different Fruits

Sam Van Aken grafts fruit buds onto a base tree

(Newser) - A tree with 40 different fruits sounds like something out of fairytale. But Syracuse University artist Sam Van Aken is turning plum trees into orchards unto themselves, reports Time . Most of the year, his trees appear to be common fruit trees, but they eventually bloom in different colors and bear... More »

Endangered Florida Habitat Getting a Walmart

Dwindling rockland is home to many rare species

(Newser) - A South Florida forest that's home to a trove of endangered and almost-endangered plant and animal species, including the bald eagle, indigo snake, and Florida bonneted bat, is about to be invaded by a far less rare creature: Walmart. The University of Miami this month sold 88 acres of... More »

Herd of Hybrid Bison on Rampage in Grand Canyon

Officials trying to figure out what to do about it

(Newser) - There's a menace on the loose in the Grand Canyon, and it is very large, and very hairy. A herd of between 350 and 450 hybrid bison are running amok in the area, federal and state park officials revealed at a news conference yesterday, announcing a series of public... More »

Rare Croc Killed in Zoo Mating Gone Wrong

Male false gharial suffocated female

(Newser) - A Dutch zoo's attempt to breed a rare, endangered crocodile went terribly wrong when the female half of the horizontal tango died in the act, the zoo revealed yesterday. While mating, the male false gharial crocodile usually holds the female down with his mouth "to show his superiority,... More »

Shark Eggs Rescued From Fish Market Grow Into Pups

Three are released at sea in Malta

(Newser) - Three baby sharks swimming off the coast of Malta got there in incredible fashion. Members of the conservation group Sharklab Malta came across dead nursehound sharks being sold at a local fish market, and got permission from vendors to remove the eggs, reports Malta Today . They brought the eggs to... More »

Plan OKed to Dredge, Dump in Great Barrier Reef Park

Environmental groups warn of dangers

(Newser) - The authority in charge of Australia's Great Barrier Reef Marine Park has given the final approval to a plan to dump millions of tons of dredging spoils into the park's waters, despite howls of protest from environmental groups and scientists. The dredging is part of a plan to... More »

West African Lions on Brink of Extinction

There are fewer than 250 adults left, surprise study finds

(Newser) - Lions are on the verge of extinction in West Africa, a stunning new survey has concluded, after years of harrowing treks in search of them. When researchers started their search in 2005, the lions, a distinct species from their east and south African brethren, were believed to inhabit 21 protected... More »

To Give Birth, Sharks Return to Own Birthplace

Even if they're away for years: study

(Newser) - A mother shark can be away from her birthplace for years—but she'll still return there when it's time for her to have babies, scientists have found in a 17-year-study. Researchers suspected as much, but to confirm their suspicions, they decided to follow individual lemon sharks starting in... More »

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