My Favorite River

Originally posted on Jet Eliot:
Elephants in Chobe River Our California winter this year has been blessed with abundant rain. As I walked in my neighborhood park last week, I marveled at the numerous rivers and streams. ? I pondered what my favorite river on earth was, thought about it all week. ? Rivers traverse all the continents. Over the centuries,…

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ACTION ALERT: Please Comment by March 17 to Save the Wild Horses and Burros of Warm Springs in Oregon

Originally posted on Straight from the Horse's Heart:
by Carol Walker Director of Field Documentation for Wild Horse Freedom Federation We won our lawsuit to prevent the gruesome sterilization experiments that the BLM proposed conducting on 100 mares from the Warm Springs HMA, which is almost 500,000 acres.  I, American Wild Horse Campaign, the Cloud Foundation and Animal Welfare…

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Californian sea otters and archaeology

Originally posted on Dear Kitty. Some blog:
https://youtu.be/De8vZW8ws6o This September 2018 says about itself: Cute Sea Otter Behaviour Decoded From holding paws to rubbing their faces, sea otters are otter-ly adorable. But why do they do it? Discover the science behind the cute. From the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Germany: Sea otters’ tool use leaves behind distinctive archaeological evidence Researchers used an interdisciplinary approach combining ecology and archaeological methods to study sea otters’ past behavior March 14, 2019 An international team of researchers has analyzed the use by sea otters of large, shoreline rocks as “anvils” to break open shells, as well as the resulting shell middens. The researchers used ecological and archaeological approaches to identify patterns that are characteristic of sea otter use of such locations. By looking at evidence of past anvil stone use, scientists could better understand sea otter habitat use. Sea otters are an especially captivating marine mammal, well known for their use of rocks to break open shells. Sea otters are estimated to have once numbered between 150,000-300,000 individuals and their range stretched from Baja California, Mexico, around the northern Pacific Rim to Japan. Their numbers were dramatically reduced by the fur trade. In California, the southern sea otter population was reduced to around 50 individuals, but a massive conservation effort has resulted in increasing their numbers to around 3000 today. However, the southern sea otter is still considered…

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RESTORING ARCTIC ICE IS THE KEY TO CURBING CLIMATE CHANGE—SO WHY ARE WE IGNORING IT?

Originally posted on The Extinction Chronicles:
This dangerous ice loss can be reversed, and the emerging field of climate restoration is yielding surprising solutions to the challenges of global warming. PETER FIEKOWSKY MAR 6, 2019 https://psmag.com/ideas/we-already-have-effective-ways-of-restoring-arctic-ice The crew of patrol vessel KV Svalbard and scientists from the Norwegian Institute of Marine Research play football on a floe of offshore ice on March 22nd, 2018, in the sea around Greenland, while two armed guards keep watch for polar bears. (Photo: Marius Vagenes Villanger/AFP/Getty Images) A series of scientific reports released in the last few months found that Arctic ice is melting at an accelerated and catastrophic rate—the fastest rate in the last 350 years. If it continues at that rate, the Arctic could be completely free of summer ice by the year 2030, or even sooner. The most recent study, which concentrated on the southwest part of Greenland—a region with few large glaciers, and one which was previously not expected to be a significant source of ice loss—found that if the atmosphere continues to warm, southwest Greenland will become “a major contributor to sea level rise.” What has not been reported widely is that this dangerous ice loss can be reversed, and the emerging field of climate restoration is yielding surprising solutions to vexing problems. HOW ARCTIC SEA ICE DISAPPEARED—AND WHAT IT MEANS Arctic sea ice has lost 80 percent of its volume since 1979, and the Arctic Ocean is increasingly ice-free in…

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Fin whales and mountain gorillas back from the brink of extinction thanks to conservation efforts

Originally posted on Exposing the Big Game:
‘With sustained, long-term conservation action, we can not only prevent extinctions, but also achieve considerable population recoveries’ Josh GabbatissScience Correspondent @josh_gabbatiss Wednesday 14 November 2018 13:00 https://www.independent.co.uk/environment/fin-whales-mountain-gorillas-extinction-endangered-red-list-whaling-poaching-iucn-a8633211.html https://d-39424918881667842552.ampproject.net/1902072121410/frame.html Click to follow The Independent Anti-poaching efforts have helped boost mountain gorilla numbers by hundreds in recent decades ( Getty ) There is hope for the survival of fin whales and mountain gorillas after conservationists announced both species have been pulled back from the brink of extinction. After decades of persecution by whaling vessels and poachers, modern efforts to protect these mammals appear to be working as their numbers have started to recover. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) maintains a “red list” to monitor the status of the world’s wildlife, and in its latest update both whales and gorillas have shifted one step further away from becoming new entries on the long list of species wiped out by humanity. After a recent WWF report revealed 60 per cent of monitored animal populations had been obliterated in the space of decades, the announcement shows concerted international action can yield results. Watch more Global wildlife has declined 60% in 40 years, says WWF Previously listed as endangered, fin whale numbers have roughly doubled since the 1970s when an international ban on commercial whaling was introduced. The population now stands at 100,000 mature individuals. There has also been a marked improvement in western populations of grey whales, which are no longer considered critically endangered. Fin whales…

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Life thrived on Earth 3.5 billion years ago, research suggests

Originally posted on The Extinction Chronicles:
Scientists use stable sulfur isotopes to understand ancient microbial metabolism Date: February 8, 2019 Source: Tokyo Institute of Technology Summary: Three and a half billion years ago Earth hosted life, but was it barely surviving, or thriving? A new study provides new answers to this question. Microbial metabolism is recorded in billions of years of sulfur isotope ratios that agree with this study’s predictions, suggesting life throve in the ancient oceans. Using this data, scientists can more deeply link the geochemical record with cellular states and ecology. Electron microscopy image of microbial cells which respire sulfate. Credit: Guy Perkins and Mark Ellisman, National Center for Microscopy and Imaging Research https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/02/190208085855.htm Three and a half billion years ago Earth hosted life, but was it barely surviving, or thriving? A new study carried out by a multi institutional team with leadership including the Earth-Life Science Institute (ELSI) of Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) provides new answers to this question. Microbial metabolism is recorded in billions of years of sulfur isotope ratios that agree with this study’s predictions, suggesting life throve in the ancient oceans. Using this data, scientists can more deeply link the geochemical record with cellular states and ecology. Scientists want to know how long life has existed on Earth. If it has been around for almost as long as the planet, this suggests it is easy for life to originate and life should…

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