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For Bhutan, it Takes a Community to Save the Snow Leopard

The snow leopard, like most of the world’s big cats, survives by keeping a low profile. Yet its secretive nature and penchant for living among some of the steepest, remotest mountain ranges on the planet have not saved the cat from human intrusions throughout most of its range.

Fumbling Cougar Kittens: Learning to Hunt

We recently captured F99, a now 1-year old, orphaned, female cougar kitten followed by Panthera’s Teton Cougar Project (see post Why Adult Cougars Kill Each Other? for how she was orphaned and Orphaned Cougar Kittens and Their Inspiring Will to Survive for some of her adventures since). We swapped out the tiny, expandable collar that…

Rapa Expedition: Fish Finding Their Footing

The Pristine Seas Expedition gets its first dive in at Rapa, and brings us photos from beneath the waves of the far-flung island.

Legalizing Ivory Trade: Taking to New Heights a Dangerous Policy Proposal

From Alejandro Nadal and Francisco Aguayo: Debate around the policy response to the current elephant poaching crisis has been polarized around the issue of market-based instruments, and as a result a lot of attention has focused on some form of regulated legal trade. We examine first the proposal for legalizing international trade and establishing a high-end market model in China as a means to reduce illegal trade. Second, we analyze the assertion that speculative stockpiling is the core driver of elephant poaching.

Mars Spacecraft Snag Comet Views

A comet cruises past Mars, and a rover there catches a snapshot.

Wildlife Trafficking: Beyond Elephants and Ivory

By Susan Lieberman

In the wildlife trafficking policy debate in the U.S., the majority of attention to date has been on elephant ivory and rhino horn from Africa. However, elephants and rhinos are not the only species threatened by illegal international trade. Numerous other species of mammals, birds, reptiles, and others are also subject to trafficking, and they too need increased attention and political and financial support. In testimony I submitted to a meeting of the President’s Advisory Council on Wildlife Trafficking, I detailed some of the species whose illegal trade is under the radar, but still are suffering the effects of wildlife trafficking.

Is Your Salmon Small Because of Hungry Cavemen?

Stone Age fishermen in northern Spain selected the biggest whoppers, leaving us with a smaller catch, a new study claims.

Rapa Expedition: An Ancient Secret for Protecting the Future

People have survived for centuries on the tiny island of Rapa, carefully managing their resources through an ancient system known as rahui. What lessons does it hold for the rest of the world today?

Corn Belt Pollution: Louisiana Shrimp And Oysters Pay The Price

By Meg Wilcox Senior Manager, Communications, Ceres The Croatian Pride pushes off the dock and cuts slowly through the grey Gulf of Mexico, its engine growling. The air hangs thick and steamy, and the movement of the 40-foot oyster boat brings relief as it breezes past marshy areas where blue herons stand sentinel. The boat’s…

Industrial-Scale Tiger Farms: Feeding China’s Thirst for Luxury Tiger Products

Young, healthy tigers jump through rings of fire, sit upright on cue, clawing at the air, and perform other well-choreographed circus tricks. Enthusiastic crowds cheer. After the show, some pay extra to hold small, cuddly cubs. But those who visit these tiger attractions in China have no idea of the suffering behind the scenes or the dark commerce that keeps them afloat.

Antarctica 2014: Success at Lewis Bay

Join Ken Sims as he tackles perilous ice-encrusted volcanoes in the attempt to study their geological past in Antarctica.

October 19, 2014: Creating Electricity From Food Waste, Arresting Poachers and More

This week on National Geographic Weekend radio, join host Boyd Matson and his guests as they unearth the habits of the world’s largest-ever carnivore, digest kitchen waste to cook dinner, eat like a 500 year old king, stalk Chernobyl’s ruins, trace tree rings’ roots, write a novel about elephants with a plot twist, kayak to protest dams, prosecute poachers in Mozambique, and see the unseen as a large format film.

Puppy-Size Tarantula Found: Explaining World’s Biggest Spider

The world’s largest spider has crept back into the spotlight, thanks to a scientist who described harrowing arachnid encounters on his blog.

Why a Swordfish’s Sword Doesn’t Break

A swordfish’s “sword” is its most prominent feature, but scientists have only now discovered the unusual properties that keep the sword strong and ready to slash.

5 Sky Events This Week: Orion’s Meteors, Hidden Sun, and Zodiacal Light

October’s skies delight the eyes, for stargazers this week.