Amazon turtles imperilled by dams, mercury pollution and illegal trade

For as long as people have lived in the Amazon, turtles have likely been on the menu. But what was once low-impact subsistence hunting escalated dramatically after the arrival of Europeans. From the 1700s onward, demand for turtle eggs and meat skyrocketed. And the eggs weren’t just for eating: estimates suggest that more than 200 million … Continue reading Amazon turtles imperilled by dams, mercury pollution and illegal trade

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Amazonian catfish’s 5,000-mile migration endangered by dams

A singular Amazonian catfish is capable of an amazing feat: hidden from human eyes, the species travels vast distances over its lifetime, making a round trip covering more than 8,000 kilometers (nearly 5,000 miles), to return to its natal breeding grounds, a new study confirms. But even as this record-setting feat — the longest freshwater migration … Continue reading Amazonian catfish’s 5,000-mile migration endangered by dams

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Orangutan reintroductions could risk population survival, study warns

An estimated 1,500 orangutans now live in rescue and rehabilitation centers located across Sumatra and Borneo. As habitat loss due to deforestation and forest fires continues, these institutions are struggling to keep up with demand. Release into the wild is the ultimate, urgent, goal for most of these animals, but a new study warns that … Continue reading Orangutan reintroductions could risk population survival, study warns

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Dams threaten future of Amazonian biodiversity major new study warns

Amazonia’s surge in hydropower development threatens numerous species with extinction, and puts unique habitats at risk, warns a recent study. River dolphins, giant otters, turtles, fish, birds and monkeys will all have their habitats altered by hydroelectric dams, with some species likely to be completely wiped out, says an international team of biologists that looked … Continue reading Dams threaten future of Amazonian biodiversity major new study warns

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Rising CO2 is reducing nutritional value of food, impacting ecosystems

Among the myriad impacts climate change is having on the world, one in particular may come as a surprise: heightened atmospheric CO2 levels might be adversely affecting the nutritional quality of the food you eat. As carbon dioxide in the atmosphere continues to increase, you could end up eating more sugar and less of important … Continue reading Rising CO2 is reducing nutritional value of food, impacting ecosystems

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Keeping Amazon fish connected is key to their conservation

Imagine a fish isolated in an Amazonian lake — part of the vast freshwater ecosystem of the Amazon basin, an ever-changing network of rivers, lakes and floodplains that extends to 1 million square kilometers (386,102 square miles). Now imagine that isolated fish as water levels rise during the wet season, and floodplains vanish beneath up … Continue reading Keeping Amazon fish connected is key to their conservation

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Ethics, sustainability, and Amazon hydropower: mission impossible?

Latin America’s largest electrical company operates 45 hydroelectric dams, and is responsible for 34 percent of Brazil’s generating capacity. The company, Eletrobras, makes laudable claims about its corporate values, including a commitment to sustainability, and to “operating through a well-balanced environmental, social and ethical responsibility.” But with grave concerns raised about the environmental and social … Continue reading Ethics, sustainability, and Amazon hydropower: mission impossible?

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Eavesdropping on Cameroon’s poachers to save endangered primates

Researchers are using acoustic monitoring to tune into gunshots and track a most deadly predator – Africa’s wildlife poachers. Cameroon’s Korup National Park is home to elephants, chimpanzees, red colobus monkeys, drill, and a myriad of noisy species, whose squawks, squeals and howls fill the forest air. For more than two years, twelve acoustic monitors … Continue reading Eavesdropping on Cameroon’s poachers to save endangered primates

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Climate change a significant, growing threat to health, says US report

Climate change health effects are wide ranging and include negative impacts on air quality, mental health, nutrition, and insect and microbe transmitted diseases. A Climate and Health Assessment presented at the White House by the US Global Change Research Program revealed wide-ranging climate change health impacts. Every American is vulnerable, but low income people, certain … Continue reading Climate change a significant, growing threat to health, says US report

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Palm oil’s new frontier: averting a Great Ape catastrophe in Cameroon

Cameroon, with its vast bio-diverse forests and key great ape habitat, is being eyed as a prime site for oil palm production, making it a center of agro-industry development in Africa. Conservationists hope to avoid mistakes made in Asia. Conservationists in Africa are working to implement oil palm standards that will limit deforestation, protect biodiversity, … Continue reading Palm oil’s new frontier: averting a Great Ape catastrophe in Cameroon

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