Mongabay News

A feed from Mongabay, which seeks to raise interest in and appreciation of nature and wildlife, while examining the impact of emerging trends in climate, technology, economics, and finance on conservation and development.


23 January 2018. New app hopes to reduce wildlife deaths on India’s roads, railway lines India’s growing network of roads and railway lines, often crisscrossing forests and wild lands, has turned deadly for wildlife. In December last year, for example, an 8-year-old male tiger died in a road accident on a four-lane-highway in the state of Maharashtra, while a speeding train killed five elephants in the state of Assam. Countless […]

22 January 2018. Pope’s message to Amazonia inspires hope, but will it bring action? Visit by Pope Francis to Peru brought needed attention to Amazon deforestation and indigenous suffering due to illegal mining, but will the pontiff’s words be a game changer?

22 January 2018. Crowdsourcing the fight against poaching, with the help of remote cameras For the last two years, a U.S. non-profit and local partners in South Africa have quietly been catching wildlife poachers using remote cameras connected to a unique cross-continent volunteer monitoring system. The program’s cutting-edge technology allows volunteers at their home or office to monitor images from remote cameras concealed in reserves across the globe. Volunteers […]

22 January 2018. Mesoamerican Reef gets improving bill of health A recent report tracking the health of the Mesoamerican Reef indicates that conservation efforts might be helping to turn the tide for the reef itself and the people who depend on it. “Reefs face ever increasing stress which is outpacing that of our management actions,” Melanie McField, an ecologist at the Smithsonian Institution, said in […]

22 January 2018. Thai police bust leading wildlife trafficker Police in Thailand last week detained a key figure in one of the world’s most notorious wildlife trafficking syndicates, accused of smuggling large numbers of rhino horns and elephant tusks from Africa to Asia. Boonchai Bach, who also goes by the name Bach Van Minh, was arrested Friday at his operational base in Nakhon Pathom […]

19 January 2018. To Counter Wildlife Trafficking, Local Enforcement, Not En-Route Interdiction, Is Key (commentary) The global poaching crisis has induced large segments of the conservation community to call for far tougher law enforcement. Many look to policing lessons from decades of counter-narcotics efforts for solutions. Boosting enforcement of wildlife regulations is overdue, as they have long been accorded the least priority by many enforcement authorities and corruption has further […]

19 January 2018. In other news: Environmental stories from around the web, January 19, 2018 Tropical forests Focus on the positive to tackle climate change, argue scientists (Nature Climate Change/IIASA). Doomsday climate scenarios for this century could be overblown (Nature/AFP). Critically endangered snub-nosed monkey numbers plummet in Myanmar (Myanmar Times). Penang could lose water supply if logging continues, says think tank (FMT News). Climate change could drive clouds higher, causing problems […]

19 January 2018. Outrage and conspiracy claims as Indonesia, Malaysia react to EU ban on palm oil in biofuels JAKARTA — Officials in Indonesia and Malaysia, the world’s biggest producers of palm oil, have lambasted the European Parliament’s decision to phase out the commodity from motor fuels over the next three years due to environmental concerns. Indonesian Trade Minister Enggartiasto Lukita said Thursday that the vote to reduce to zero “the contribution from biofuels […]

19 January 2018. Decapitated orangutan found near palm plantations shot 17 times, autopsy finds JAKARTA — Indonesian authorities have retrieved 17 air gun pellets from the body of an orangutan found decapitated and seemingly tortured in Indonesian Borneo earlier this week. The discovery was made Thursday during a necropsy which was ordered following criticism from wildlife activists over local authorities’ decision to bury the corpse of the male Bornean […]

19 January 2018. Pope set to visit site of deforestation, indigenous struggle in Peru Pope Francis will visit one of the Peruvian Amazon’s most threatened regions today, where the leader of the Catholic Church is expected to address escalating deforestation and uncertainty about indigenous peoples’ rights. “The Holy Father has a special concern for the Amazon and therefore put as the first point of his journey an encounter with […]

19 January 2018. Facebook being used for illegal reptile trade in the Philippines Facebook has emerged as a major market for trafficking in live reptiles in the Philippines, according to a new report by TRAFFIC, the wildlife trade and monitoring network. In a survey that lasted three months in 2016, TRAFFIC researchers monitored 90 Facebook groups that had previously been known to advertize the sale of reptiles, and […]

18 January 2018. New satellite data reveals forest loss far greater than expected in Brazil Amazon The Brazilian Amazon lost 184 km2 of forest in December 2017, according to the country’s Institute of Man and the Environment of the Amazon (Imazon). The data, obtained exclusively by the Brazilian news network GLOBO, show a significant increase in deforestation over that of December 2016, when just 9 km2 of deforestation was recorded. More […]

18 January 2018. NASA: Global surface temperatures in 2017 second-hottest on record despite no El Niño An analysis of global temperature data by scientists with the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) found that 2017 was the second-hottest year on record since 1880 — which the scientists say is especially significant given that there was no El Niño last year. According to scientists at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies […]

18 January 2018. 680000 acres of Amazon rainforest may be lost to Peru’s new roads Late last year, the Peruvian government gave the go-ahead for the construction of new roads along its border with Brazil in the Ucayali and Madre de Dios regions. The main road would span 172 miles, connecting the towns of Puerto Esperanza and Iñapari. But such development has a cost. A new analysis finds around 680,000 […]

18 January 2018. Camera traps confirm existence of ‘world’s ugliest pig’ in the wild, warts and all Researchers have used camera traps on the island of Java, Indonesia to capture what they say is the first-ever footage of the Javan warty pig in the wild. Sometimes referred to as “the world’s ugliest pig” because of the eponymous warts that grow on its face, the Javan warty pig (Sus verrucosus) has seen its […]

18 January 2018. Myanmar to target illegal charcoal trade with China Charcoal bags on a boat near Katha, Myanmar. The boat is bound for Bhamo, where the charcoal will be taken by trucks over the order to China. Photo by Nathan Siegel for Mongabay.Myanmar has pledged to stem the massive tide of charcoal being illegally harvested, produced and exported from their forests to Chinese factories. Last week a senior official from the country’s Department of Forestry told the Myanmar Times that the charcoal trade has “exacerbated” deforestation. Certain forestry products like charcoal are not allowed to be exported […]

18 January 2018. Record Amazon fires, intensified by forest degradation, burn indigenous lands Experts say 2017 Brazilian wildfires were caused not principally by drought, but mostly set by people, and worsened by human-caused forest degradation. Agency budget cuts worsened the crisis.

17 January 2018. A saiga time bomb? Bad news for Central Asia’s beleaguered antelope In May 2015, more than 200,000 saiga antelope (Saiga tatarica) suddenly died. Entire herds perished, their bodies littering the steppe grasslands of central Kazakhstan as if dropped from the sky. Biologists were left stunned, baffled and very concerned. Already critically endangered, the mass die-off reduced the species by two-thirds globally. Only around 31,000 remained in […]

17 January 2018. U.S. National Park Service advisory panel disintegrates Arches National Park. Courtesy of National Parks Service.The US National Park Service is America’s latest federal environmental agency to lose most of its advisory board. A January 15 letter signed by nine members of the board detailed why they were stepping down from service. Three remained for various professional reasons, such as finishing current projects. The nine resigning board members said they […]

17 January 2018. A tale of two policies: climate change, Trump, and the U.S. military Even as Donald Trump calls climate change a hoax, the U.S. military is recognizing it as a national security threat, and revving up to protect its bases and operations in a climate destabilized world.