Hundreds of local grade school students joined scores of scientists today in the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve to look for as many species of plants and animals as they can find in 24 hours. It is the seventh annual BioBlitz organized by the National Park Service and the National Geographic Society, forming…
The annual BioBlitz hosted by the National Park Service and the National Geographic Society is underwritten in part by the Harold M. and Adeline S. Morrison Family Foundation, a private grant-making philanthropy based in Chicago. Every year for five years the Morrison Family Foundation helps make the event possible. And every year the foundation’s executive director, Lois Morrison, participates in the BioBlitz with her husband Justin Daab and their daughters Josephine and Addie Daab.
News Watch interviewed Lois Morrison about her passion for both nature and education, and why she sees the BioBlitz as a special opportunity to reinforce our connection with the natural world.
Over a dozen scientists have come to the Goronogosa National Park in Mozambique, a country in southeastern Africa. “It’s the largest all-taxa survey of a complete ecosystem in Africa,” says lead scientist Piotr Naskrecki, a Polish-born entomologist (insect-expert) now working at the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoology.
National Geographic won four 2013 National Magazine Awards, including two for digital media, the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) announced last night. The National Geographic Society’s flagship journal won awards for General Excellence, Print (October, November and December issues), Photography (August, September and December), Tablet Magazine (May, November and December iPad Editions), and Multimedia…
National Geographic captured three prizes for international stories of 2012, the Overseas Press Club of America announced in New York yesterday.
Wildlife conservationist Paula Kahumbu writes that Kenya stands at the crossroads of turning things around for elephants. The authorities need to recognize that poaching and ivory trafficking are serious crimes and immediately elevate penalties for wildlife crimes.
In a fitting setting for America’s national bird, a pair of bald eagles is raising two chicks high on a tree in Washington, D.C. And it’s all been monitored live by a webcam provided by the National Geographic Society. This is an opportunity to not only observe these iconic birds in the wild, but also to learn more about them and their recovery in the Chesapeake Bay region.
California condors Sisquoc and Shatash welcomed a baby chick this week, in full view of the world watching them via webcam. “With just over 400 California condors in existence, this endangered species is still an uncommon sight, making this hatching all the more significant,” San Diego Zoo Safari Park said in a news statement about…
Big data is helping to paint a more distinct picture of today’s eco-criminals, pinpointing links between seemingly unconnected criminal groups and illegal activities. It can cover trading in the skins and bones of endangered Asian big cats such as tigers, the trafficking of illegal timber, and uncover trends that were previously obscured, or suggest new approaches to combating the escalating worldwide onslaught on endangered species and biodiversity.
The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), along with a coalition of wildlife groups, has petitioned to list the African lion ((Panthera leo leo) under the U.S. Endangered Species Act (ESA). Listing the species as Endangered would prohibit lion trophy importation into the U.S., an essential step to reversing the current decline of the population, according to IFAW. The African lion is the only big cat not protected under the ESA.
The large number of mature and experienced African elephants being killed illegally for their ivory is exposing younger surviving elephants to a higher risk of mortality from predation and other risks, wildlife conservationists said today.
Genovesa was for me the most enchanting of all the islands we saw, not only because we got to walk along the rim of the caldera, but because of the birds in tremendous profusion. And what birds they were: boobies of every kind, frigate birds, gulls, owls, mockingbirds, finches. They were mating, nesting, roosting, sleeping, hunting, fighting. The sky was full of them arriving and departing from their feeding grounds. The noise they made, especially at sunset, was cacophonous.
Green turtles were mating in the water in front of us when our Zodiac pulled up to Bartolome, a mound of lava less than half the size of New York’s Central Park, just off Santiago Island in the Galapagos. Bartolome is a breeding and nesting ground for the turtles. It’s also favorite stop for visitors to the Galapagos because of its fantastic geology, an energetic climb up 376 wooden steps to a commanding view from the summit of the islet’s biggest volcanic cone, and spectacular snorkeling with sharks and rays in the clear water around postcard-famous Pinnacle Rock.
The king of the African savannah is in serious trouble because people are taking over the continent’s last patches of wilderness on unprecedented scale, according to a detailed study released this week. The most comprehensive assessment of lion (Panthera leo) numbers to date determined that Africa’s once-thriving savannahs are undergoing massive land-use conversion and burgeoning human population growth. The decline has had a significant impact on the lions that make their home in these savannahs; their numbers have dropped to as low as 32,000, down from hundreds of thousands estimated just 50 years ago.
Day five of our expedition to the Galapagos islands took us to the northwest slope of Santa Cruz for a walk up Cerro Dragon, “Dragon Hill.” This place was once home to a thriving colony of the massive Galapagos land iguana, Conolophus subcristatus. The lizard is making a comeback here after being nearly wiped out by cats, rats, and dogs introduced to the Galapagos by humans.
Five young men and women who embody the spirit of enterprise, the ideas and will to make the world a better place, were named today the 2012 Young Laureates of the Rolex Awards for Enterprise. The awards carry more than a check for 50,000 Swiss francs (U.S.$54,000) and a Rolex chronometer; A jury of distinguished scientists, explorers, conservationists, doctors, educators and entrepreneurs from around the world recognized them as young people who exemplify hope for the future of humanity.
The Rolex Awards were founded out of a conviction that the company had a responsibility to make a contribution to making the world a better place and to foster values it believes in; ingenuity, determination, excellence and above all, spirit of enterprise. News Watch talks to Rebecca Irvin, the company’s head of philanthropy, to learn more about the awards and the impact they have had on effecting positive change.
Swiss watchmaker Rolex announced five awards for Young Laureates at a press conference in New Delhi, India, today “to encourage leadership and excellence in the next generation and to acknowledge a surge of applications from young people for the Rolex Awards for Enterprise this year.”
Earlier this year Rolex announced the five winners of the 2012 Rolex Awards for Enterprise, who are being honored in New Delhi, India, on November 27. This profile looks at the work of Mark Kendall, bioengineer and innovative scientist who is developing the Nanopatch, a syringe-free method of giving people vaccines.
Earlier this year Rolex announced the five winners of the 2012 Rolex Awards for Enterprise, who are being honored in New Delhi, India, on November 27. This profile looks at the work of Aggrey Otieno, founder of the grass-roots organization Pambazuko Mashinani and recipient of an award from the Clinton Global Initiative University and funding from the Ford Foundation Fellowships Program. An advocate of a variety of social causes for nearly a decade, Otieno was motivated to tackle the high rates of maternal and neonatal mortality in Nairobi’s slums when his sister developed serious obstetric problems while in labor at home at night.
Earlier this year Rolex announced the five winners of the 2012 Rolex Awards for Enterprise, who are being honored in New Delhi, India, on November 27. This profile looks at the work of 2012 Laureate Erika Cuéllar, a conservationist who is training local people in three countries to protect South America’s Gran Chaco. “Cuéllar has already proved herself as an inspirational and innovative negotiator who has gained the respect of indigenous people and political leaders alike. Her Rolex Award for Enterprise recognizes these attributes and will support this extension of Cuéllar’s participatory approach to preserving one of South America’s last truly wild places,” Rolex says.
Earlier this year Rolex announced the five winners of the 2012 Rolex Awards for Enterprise, who are being honored in New Delhi, India, on November 27. This profile looks at the work of Marine Biologist Barbara Block, who has developed innovative electronic tagging techniques that enable following fish beneath the sea. Block’s aim is to build the technology that will enable monitoring of ocean hotspots where nutrient-rich waters form attractive hunting grounds for predators, and to engage the public on the plight of marine predators that roam along the west coast of North America.
Earlier this year Rolex announced the five winners of the 2012 Rolex Awards for Enterprise, who are being honored in New Delhi, India, on November 27. This profile looks at the work of 2012 Laureate Sergei Bereznuk, director of the Phoenix Fund, a small environmental NGO in Russia. Bereznuk and his team of six people are carrying out an impressive range of activities to preserve the endangered Siberian tiger over a territory of 64,000 square miles (166,000 square kilometers).
Video of Sprinting Cheetahs a First in Wildlife Photography Reporting by Roff Smith with Glenn Oeland The slow-motion video is entrancing, revealing the fluid grace of the world’s fastest land animal. Every part of the sprinting cat’s anatomy—supple limbs, rippling muscles, hyperflexible spine—works together in a symphony of speed. The extraordinary footage—captured last summer…
In this post I interview Terry Goss, who was on our expedition as the 2011 winner of the Ocean in Focus Photo Contest, a competition that focuses on the human impacts on marine environments and species, positive and negative, in an attempt to advance ocean conservation through the power of imagery. Terry shares his impressions of the Galapagos beneath the waves, and some advice for how to get the best underwater photographs.