I find it very disappointing with all the citizen science data that is regularly collected concerning birds in the US and Britain that there has not been a more detailed investigation into bird death due to window collisions. I have found enough dead birds by windows even before I started doing rehab with birds to know the numbers are significant, but it would be beneficial to have hard data to be able to convince members of the public and architects to take action.
It disappoints me that even in conservation settings designers often choose beautiful, large windows without consideration of bird strikes. The new visitor centre and cafe at the Cairns Botanical Gardens is a perfect example of a new building, in a natural setting meant to conserve wildlife and is regularly killing birds instead. There are ways to design windows where they are more visible to birds so why wouldn’t you?
Maybe these deaths are not significant compared to other challenges birds face like cats and habitat destruction, but it is because the other challenges are so dire that I think birds need all the help they can get, and thinking a bit more about how we place and coat windows would not be that challenging or costly.
I love good news for an endangered species. It makes me feel like conservation efforts are paying off. I just wish there were more good stories to go with all the ones of animals slipping away into extinction. A lot of work still needs to go into saving the world’s albatross, but it is nice to see that things are headed in the right direction.
I think that it is good that the world is working to help preserve this area of vast biodiversity, but I think it is also setting a dangerous precedent. What is to stop Ecuador to demand more payments in the future as oil prices go up? As oil reserves dwindle and prices soar, I suspect any part of the planet harboring oil is in danger. I wish they could drill for oil without destroying the ecosystem. Maybe that is the best that we can hope for: that the payments buy time for oil drilling to become less environmentally damaging? Of course the current rate of disastrous oil spills do not give me great hope.
I hate hearing about species that are crashing, particularly when the cause is not understood. I hope that they can get a population in a captive breeding program before it is too late. I have heard objections to captive breeding, but I think having a reserve in captivity is much better than losing a species even if it can never be fully wild again. I hope they can figure out what is going on and change the environment to give these little guys a chance. Every species is precious- even a little sparrow.
I mentioned to someone recently that I wanted a green burial when the time comes. They seemed a bit shocked and exclaimed, “Oh, you can’t do *that* in Australia!” This was a bit odd since the conversation was revolving around donating your body to science which you can do in Australia and which my friend was enthusiastic about. So a bit of googling reveals that you *can* have a green burial in Australia though sadly not in very many locations yet. Hopefully, the trend will continue to expand so that there is a more local option when the time comes.
Some good news for a critically endangered wader. This is a species that sits on the brink and because of its vast migration habitats, saving it is a multi-nation commitment, but it sounds like good progress is being made. Oh, and it is extremely cute! Not that a species should be saved because it is cute, but the pictures that go with the article are adorable.
This is a positive story on endangered animals for a change. Though the loss of Lonesome George is sad, it seem that overall the Galapagos tortoises are doing well. I like captive breeding programs that are such a success and wish there were more of them.
This is not surprising, and is even to be expected. However, it still makes me angry. The powers that be would have us all believe that the oil spill is over, the mess was cleaned up, and all is fine and well in the Gulf. It doesn’t work that way, and more should be done to help struggling wildlife in the effected regions.
This is a devastating trailer, or at least I found it to be, but I think it should be watched so people begin to understand the ecological harm plastics are doing thousands of miles from civilization. I have been following Chris Jordon’s work for a couple of years. He is famous for taking graphic pictures of baby albatross carcasses filled with the plastics their parents found in the ocean around Midway and though was food. This film continues that theme, but in video, he is able to capture the suffering before the inevitable death. It is heart wrenching, but it is truth.
I think looking to nature as a model for a lot of technology makes a lot of sense and I think the leaf will be important in our quest to reduce dependency on fossil fuels. I think we are a long way away from finding anything nearly as efficient as fossil fuels, but I think it is good that people are looking in promising areas.
Growing up in the US and then moving to Australia, I generally think of America as a place where introduced pests have done most of the ecological harm possible and reached some kind of balance with the native fauna and flora while Australia’s native ecosystem is still being decimated by many introduced species. However, articles like this remind me that that is not really a true impression at all. Any ecosystem can be threatened and damaged by the right introduced pest no matter how many previous pests have already wreaked havoc.
Snakes are a particularly worrying pest because they are extremely challenging to control. It is hard to trap them because they eat infrequently and only eat live food. I looked into the complete destruction of the bird population on Guam by the Australian Brown Tree Snake and even on a small island the tree snake population has not been successfully controlled.