User: flenvcenter Topic: Biodiversity-Independent
Category: Specific Organisms :: Plants
Last updated: Nov 22 2014 23:11 IST RSS 2.0
 
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Dutch Heath Authorities To Kill 8,000 Ducks To Prevent Bird Flu 22.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
AMSTERDAM, Nov 22 (Reuters) - Dutch health authorities on Saturday were destroying 8,000 ducks to prevent the possible spread of bird flu, which has infected three farms in a week in the Netherlands, a leading poultry and egg exporter. A government statement said ducks were being culled in the central town of Barneveld as a precaution because authorities want to eliminate all risks after the H5N8 virus spread to three out of 12 provinces since last Sunday. The clearing operation at the duck farm in Barneveld, will increase the number of animals destroyed since the first infection was discovered last Sunday to 211,000 birds. "It is necessary to do everything needed to prevent an outbreak like in 2003," when 30 million chickens were culled, the statement said. High-intensity Dutch farms house millions of animals -- 103 million chickens, 12 million pigs, 4 million cows and millions more sheep, turkeys, ducks, rabbits and goats. But health officials fear that the close proximity of the farms ...
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Hang Out With The Shedd Aquarium's Precious New Sea Otter Pup (WATCH LIVE) 18.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Just can't get enough of Pup 681, the abandoned sea otter pup who arrived at Chicago's Shedd Aquarium late last month ? You're in luck. At 1 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Nov. 18, the Shedd and the Monterey Bay Aquarium, which originally discovered the pup on Coastways Beach in September, will co-host a Google Hangout On Air session to update the public on 681's progress in the weeks since she arrived at her new permanent home in Chicago. The "poolside" session will be moderated by journalist Bill Kurtis. Follow the action above, or register for the hangout to ask questions or make comments. Follow the conversation using the hashtag #puphangout. Want to see how far little 681 has come in just a few weeks? Watch the pup learning how to swim shortly after she arrived at the Shedd, and check out some of her baby photos, ...
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International Fisheries Body Raises Quota On Endangered Bluefin Tuna 17.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com

MILAN (AP) — A multi-nation fisheries body has increased the quotas on Bluefin tuna fished in the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea amid early signs of population recovery, raising concern among conservationists.


The International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas on Monday raised next year's quota on Bluefin tuna off the United States, Canada and Mexico by 14 percent to 2,000 metric tons. It raised the quota on the Mediterranean Bluefin tuna population by 20 percent to 15,821 metric tons.


Amanda Nickson of the Pew Environment Group said the decision puts at risk the population recovery made over the last several years.


The World Wildlife Foundation called on fishers and consumers "to take greater responsibility" to ensure Bluefin tuna recovery.

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Hotter Sex, Cooler Planet 15.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Originally published on TIME.com Earlier this year, NASA issued a report declaring that global warming isn't coming, it's already here. "This Is What a Holy Sh*t Moment for Global Warming Looks Like," according to a headline on Mother Jones. Two studies in the journals Science and Geophysical Research Letters reported that major glaciers that are part of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet appear to have become irrevocably destabilized. The collapse of these major glaciers now "appears unstoppable," according to NASA. An article in the current issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association states, "Health is inextricably linked to climate change ," including respiratory disorders, infectious diseases, water-borne diseases and mental health disorders. Warmer oceans mean that sea levels will rise more than 3 feet in 200 years, or less, eventually triggering the collapse of the rest of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. When the ice sheet is gone, sea levels will rise between 9 and 15 feet, which will, over ...
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This Sea Otter Pup Loves Snacks, Milk And Toys Just As Much As Any Other Baby 14.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Chicago's Shedd Aquarium clearly has a star on its hands. Just over two weeks ago, the facility took in a young, orphaned southern sea otter . Dubbing her "Pup 681" for now, Shedd employees provide her round-the-clock care, ensuring that the surprisingly furry critter learns basic otter tasks such as grooming, foraging, feeding and regulating her own body temperature. If the aquarium's latest video and photo releases are any indication, little 681's lessons appear to be going swimmingly. Footage shows the pup feeding from a bottle, playing with her toys and learning how to swim. She also appears to be growing and looks ever so slightly larger than the last time we saw her, about a week ago . The pup is also preparing for her first Google Hangout. On Nov. 18 at 1 p.m. ET, the Shedd will host a live “poolside” hangout with Pup 681. Moderated by veteran Chicago journalist Bill Kurtis, the event will provide the public with an update on her progress. Registration for the hangout can be accessed here. Go, ...
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Open Letter Poem 14.11.2014 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
A single fact to start: Nicholas Kristof (and others) have reported that more women were killed in the last 50 years just for being women than all of the men in all of the wars of the 20th century! Come again? It's a fact. The men bought it in World Wars or regional wars or battles sanctioned by the State -- the women all died because they had female body parts! Do we all know that a 27-year-old, critically ill woman (26 weeks pregnant) died recently while undergoing a Cesarean section ordered by a judge in Washington, D.C., in his attempt to save the fetus? (The judge, by the way, was aware of the great risk to the young woman's life.) The world was outraged by the YouTube beheadings of journalists by ISIS, but, folks, women are beheaded (or stoned to death) with appalling regularity in countries like Saudi Arabia. Just for "being women" -- or for acting on human desire, for having an opinion, for seeking to be educated. Sixteen-year-old Nobel Laureate Malala Yousafzai is shot in the head by the ...
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Mostly Plants: New Science Says a Healthier Diet is Best for the Climate 13.11.2014 Commondreams.org Views
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A Health Check-up for Our Environment—Ignored at Our Own Risk 12.11.2014 Commondreams.org Views
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Oil palm ecology suits some. 11.11.2014 The Earth Times Online Newspaper - Environment News
How can we cope with the burgeoning oil palm plantations. Instead of just complaining, here is one piece of evidence from the Journal of Applied Ecology . Perhaps some other organisms can survive in these nightmares for many almost-extinct animals and plants.
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A Health Check-up for Our Environment - Ignored at Our Own Risk 11.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
In the 1950s, thousands of Baiji river dolphins (pictured) plied the waters of the Yangtze, Asia's mightiest river. The Chinese river dolphin had evolved over 20 millions of years, and was revered as the goddess of the Yangtze. By 1994, fewer than 100 individuals remained, and by 2006, the dolphin had become extinct . A proud branch on the tree of life had been destroyed in the blink of an eye by pollution, dam building, and reckless navigation. Sadly, the goddess of the Yangtze is not alone in her fate. The last Chinese paddlefish was sighted in 2003. The majestic Chinese sturgeon is considered to be critically endangered as well. Of the 143 fish species which were historically recorded in the Yangtze River, only 17 were left in 2013. As many as 30 million animal, plant and fungi species populate Planet Earth. About 1.7 million of them have been identified and described. What is the health of these plant and animal kingdoms? Which species groups are at particular risk? Are the extinct Chinese river ...
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Nevada Poachers Face Trial Charged As 'Serial Wildlife Killers' 11.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
By Laura Zuckerman Nov 10 (Reuters) - Three men convicted of state hunting violations in Nevada now face trial on federal charges stemming from a poaching ring that saw untold numbers of deer, antelope, birds and other wildlife killed illegally across Nevada, game officials said on Monday. Authorities uncovered the poaching ring after one of the defendants posted a photograph on Facebook of two deer he shot and killed out of season last June, said Cameron Waithman, who led the Nevada Wildlife Department investigation of the case. The ensuing probe found that Adrian Acevedo-Hernandez, 36, Jose Luis Montufar-Canales, 31, and J. Nemias Reyes Marin, 31, had been illegally killing and butchering animals across the state and bragging about the kills online since early 2013, Waithman said. The men, described by Waithman as "serial wildlife killers," were convicted in a state court of misdemeanor hunting violations earlier this year. In July they were indicted by a federal grand jury in Las Vegas ...
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Bette Midler Starts Parody Kickstarter To Plant A Tree On The Moon 8.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Singer, actress and tree-hugger Bette Midler has done so much for conservation here on Earth. It's time to take it to the moon.

Midler has planted many trees in her time (when she's not wielding those amazing vocal cords), and in this Funny or Die parody of a Kickstarter initiative, the singer wants to take the next step in this cause that is near and dear to heart: She wants to plant a tree on the moon. But she needs your help to do it. And $174 million.

And if you help her out by donating, you could receive any number of gifts. For instance, if you give $5,000, she'll carve your name in the moon tree. For $100,000, Bette Midler will moon you from the moon!

Don't miss your chance to get in on this important cause, because if Bette Midler can't get a tree planted on the moon, who will?


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Colbert Calls Out Republicans' 'I'm Not A Scientist' Excuse On Climate Change 7.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
"You don't have to worry about global warming anymore, because the Senate sure won't," Stephen Colbert quipped on Thursday's "The Colbert Report." Colbert slammed many Republicans' position on climate change after they gained a majority in the U.S. Senate in Tuesday's election. Environmental groups are fearful that progress on climate change and other environmental issues will suffer under the new Senate. As Colbert pointed out, Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), who literally wrote the book on climate change denial, is poised to take control of the Environment and Public Works Committee. Colbert described Inhofe's 2012 book, The Greatest Hoax, as being "like Harry Potter for people who thought Harry Potter had too much science in it." Like many others in the media , Colbert called out Republicans for using the " I'm not a scientist " defense when asked about humans' contribution to global warming. He specifically targeted newly-elected Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush for dodging questions about rising ...
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Aquarium Staff Teaches Adorable Orphaned Otter Pup How To Otter 6.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
An orphaned 5-week-old southern sea otter now has a second chance at life, thanks to round-the-clock care from staff at Chicago's Shedd Aquarium. The female otter, who is being referred to as Pup 681, was found in late September on Coastways Beach in California. Wildlife officials determined the 2-pound pup, just a week old at the time, had been orphaned. She was then taken to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Her condition was stabilized before she was transferred to Shedd, which offered to give the otter a permanent home . Pup 681 arrived at the Chicago aquarium on Oct. 28. A rotating staff of six to eight animal care experts tend to her, monitoring her at all times behind the scenes at Shedd's Abbott Oceanarium. They are also teaching her how to groom, forage, feed and regulate her own body temperature. It is, to put it lightly, no small feat. (Story continues below.) But look how cute! "It truly takes a village to rehabilitate a young sea otter," Tim Binder, vice president of animal collections for Shedd, ...
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India Destroys Massive Stockpile Of Illegal Wildlife Parts 2.11.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
NEW DELHI (AP) — Indian authorities set fire Sunday to a stockpile of tiger skins, elephant tusks, rhino horns and other illegal animal parts in an effort to discourage wildlife smuggling in South Asia. Animal poaching and smuggling have flourished in India, driven by black market demand from China, Vietnam and other Southeast Asian countries where many believe exotic animal parts have medicinal or aphrodisiacal properties. In most cases, there is no scientific evidence that they do. Indian Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar loaded more than 42,000 illegal animal parts into a large, blazing oven at the Delhi Zoo. The parts included tiger and leopard pelts, reptile skins, rhino horns and shawls made from endangered Tibetan antelope called shahtoosh. Wildlife officials and members of the media crammed into the small room at the zoo to witness the inferno. "The exercise is an attempt to deplore the unethical, indiscriminate and most unlawful activities of harvest and trade of wildlife products," the ...
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Can Long Island Be Saved? -- Part X: Governor Cuomo Announces An Action Plan For Long Island 30.10.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Graphic courtesy The Nature Conservancy, Stony Brook University's School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences and LICCRA Readers of this series 'Can Long Island Be Saved?' will recall the flurry of public meetings and forums from this May. Here's a great link to all the key materials from the three meetings called for by the Governor. Local, state, and federal officials and policy makers and various environmental groups studying Long Island's groundwater pollution crisis convened for a series of discussions about the collapse of our marine and coastal environments and what could still be done to stem the tide. What is Long Island without fishing, shell fishing, beach going, boating, and swimming? What happens to our coasts when the marshes and sea grass are gone, how much more vulnerable will we be? How do we stem the tide, reverse the precipitous decline, and build a Long Island we would pass on to future generations? IBM Smarter Cities awarded a $500,000 grant in the form of consulting services ...
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This Is What It's Like To Be A Lion Killing Its Prey 29.10.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Nature can be brutal. GoPro recently released footage (below) of a human-raised lioness called Meg as she patrols the South African plains. With a camera strapped to her back, Meg does what lions do, stalking a waterbuck and taking it down for the kill. The video begins with " Lion Whisperer " and wildlife conservationist Kevin Richardson palling around with Meg and outfitting her with a GoPro. Then Meg goes off to hunt, and Richardson rejoins her after her kill. Though he says his heart goes out to Meg's prey, he concedes that "this is nature." While Richardson's closeness to lions he raised has generated some controversy , there's no denying Meg and her ilk's place atop the four-legged food chain. Lionesses do 85 to 90 percent of the hunting in prides, Out To Africa notes. Take a look at the footage from Meg's hunt (below), starting at the 2:19 mark. WARNING: Footage is ...
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EU Just Shy Of Meeting 2020 Emissions Goal After New Greenhouse Gas Cuts Announced 28.10.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — The European Union's environment agency says the bloc's greenhouse gas emissions dropped by nearly 2 percent last year, putting the EU very close to reaching its emissions target for 2020. That goal is to reduce emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases by 20 percent compared to 1990 levels. The European Environment Agency said Tuesday that emissions already have fallen 19 percent, meaning the 28-nation bloc is likely to achieve a larger reduction than it aimed for. The EEA projected that 2020 emissions will be 21 percent or 24 percent lower than they were in 1990, depending on whether planned climate action is implemented in full. However, some countries weren't on track to meet their individual targets through domestic action, including Germany and Spain. Most scientists agree the greenhouse gas emissions resulting from the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation are the main cause of climate change. The EEA said the EU as a whole also was on track to meet its goals on ...
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U.S. Fish And Wildlife Service Proposes Listing African Lion As Threatened Species 27.10.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
WASHINGTON, Oct 27 (Reuters) - The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Monday proposed listing the African lion as threatened after a study showed the big cats were in danger of extinction in the foreseeable future. A listing as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act would bar trafficking of the species as it faces dwindling habitat in Africa and more competition with humans. African lions, or Panthera leo leo, are found across a wide range in the continent, but about 70 percent, or 24,000, of them live in only 10 major strongholds, the service said in a statement. Listing the African lion as threatened "will bring the full protections of U.S. law to lion conservation, allowing us to strengthen enforcement and monitoring of imports and international trade," Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe said. The main threats to the African lion are loss of habitat and of the animals lions prey on, and increased conflict with humans, the statement said. People and farming and grazing ...
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Why Big, Old, Fat, Fertile Female Fish Are The Rockstars Of The Ocean 27.10.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
The next time you catch a BOFFFF, maybe you should throw her back. A growing collection of research shows that big, old, fat, fertile female fish -- what scientists call BOFFFFs -- are critically important to ocean fisheries because they’re basically rockstars of reproduction . Conventional wisdom has held that, in order to protect ocean stocks and maintain strong populations, fishermen should catch big fish but release smaller ones so that they can grow, produce eggs and continue the circle of life. But in the October 2014 issue of the “ICES Journal of Marine Science” , three experts argue that fishing efforts should focus on medium sized fish, rather than snatching out and bragging about the huge ones. “The loss of big fish [often] decreases the productivity and stability of fishery stocks,” explained Mark Hixon, a marine biologist at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, who published the paper with California State University marine biologist Darren Johnson and NOAA Fisheries ecologist Susan Sogard. ...
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