tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:/xml/cats1 cats news from mongabay.com 2015-07-02T03:31:37Z tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15060 2015-06-30T21:03:00Z 2015-07-02T03:31:37Z Taking technology out in the cold: working to conserve snow leopards <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0630Snow_leopard-Uncia_uncia150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Conservation work is important not just in tropical rainforests, but also in snow-covered peaks and steep slopes, the home of snow leopards and a number of unusual ungulates, including blue sheep and Asiatic ibex. When these and other native prey are scarce, snow leopards may resort to eating more livestock, which turns herders against them. Rhett Butler 48.728329 88.058417 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15057 2015-06-30T14:36:00Z 2015-06-30T14:39:07Z U.S. to remove extinct cougar from Endangered Species Act The U.S. government has declared the Eastern cougar extinct more than 80 years after its a believed a hunter in Maine wiped out the last individual. Scientists still dispute whether the Eastern cougar was a distinct subspecies, but either way officials believe the original population that roamed much of the Eastern U.S. and Canada is gone&#8212;and has been for decades. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15050 2015-06-29T18:39:00Z 2015-06-29T18:40:38Z Lions return to Rwanda After 15 years, the roar of lions will once again be heard in Rwanda. Today the NGO, African Parks, will begin moving seven lions from South Africa to Rwanda's Akagera National Park. It was here that Rwanda's last lions were poisoned by cattle herders after the Rwandan genocide left the park wholly unmanaged. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/15019 2015-06-23T14:50:00Z 2015-06-23T15:03:34Z Cat update: lion and African golden cat down, Iberian lynx up A new update of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has categorized the West African population of lions&#8212;which is considered genetically distinct and separate from East and Central African lions&#8212;as Critically Endangered. Based largely on a paper in 2014, the researchers estimate that there are only 121-375 mature lions in West Africa today. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14965 2015-06-15T22:11:00Z 2015-06-15T22:14:02Z Asiatic lion population rises by 27% in five years A new survey last month put the number of wild Asiatic lions (Panthera leo persica) at 523 individuals, a rise of 27% from the previous survey in 2010. Once roaming across much of Central and Western Asia, Asiatic lions today are found in only one place: Gir Forest National Park and surrounding environs in western India. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14931 2015-06-09T15:53:00Z 2015-06-09T15:54:00Z Happy tigers: Siberian population continues to grow <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0609.THUMB.Julie-Larsen-Maher_4358_Amur-Tiger-in-Snow_TM_BZ_01-06-15.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Siberian tiger population continues to rebound, according to the latest numbers from the subspecies' stronghold in Russia. Ten years ago, conservationists estimated 423-502 Amur tigers in Siberia. But last month, the Russian government and WWF said numbers had risen to 480-540 tigers, including an estimated 100 cubs. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14905 2015-06-04T15:00:00Z 2015-06-04T15:14:47Z Tigers expanding? Conservationists discover big cats in Thai park <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0604.tiger.wefcom.THUMB.(c)-ZSL_3.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>For the first time conservationists have confirmed Indochinese tigers in Thailand's Chaloem Ratanakosin National Park. In January, camera traps used by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and Thailand's Department of National Parks took a photo of a tigress, confirming what had only been rumors. A couple months later the camera traps photographed a male tiger in the same park. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14889 2015-06-01T19:56:00Z 2015-06-01T19:58:09Z Zambia lifts hunting ban on big cats Nine months after Zambia lifted its general trophy hunting ban&#8212;including on elephants&#8212;the country has now lifted its ban on hunting African lions and leopards. The Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) lifted the ban after surveying its big cat populations and setting new regulations. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14805 2015-05-14T15:55:00Z 2015-05-14T15:56:27Z South African Airways bans all wildlife trophies from flights <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0514.trophyroom.thumb.67877557_149afec7e7_o.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Trophy hunters may need to find another flight home, as South African Airlines (SAA) has announced a new ban on any wildlife trophies from their flights. The debate over trophy hunting in Africa is rising as many of the continent's most beloved mammals&#8212;including lions, elephants, rhinos, and giraffes&#8212;face precipitous declines. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14499 2015-03-16T16:14:00Z 2015-03-16T16:44:50Z King of the jungle returns to Gabon after nearly 20 year absence There's a new cat in town. For the first time since 1996, conservationists have proof of a lion roaming the wilds of the Central African country of Gabon. The lion&#8212;a healthy-looking, young male&#8212;was caught on camera trap in Batéké Plateau National Park, a 20,200 hectare expanse of grasslands and gallery forests. Jeremy Hance -2.158285 14.007680 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14474 2015-03-10T21:44:00Z 2015-03-12T13:53:05Z Tiger family photo surprises scientists <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0310.amur-tiger-family.thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In a frigid Russian forest, a camera trap snapped 21 family photos over two minutes. This wasn't a usual family, though, this was a tiger family, more specifically an Amur tiger family. And this wasn't even a usual tiger family: the cameras showed a dad leading the way. Jeremy Hance 44.229676 133.948678 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14434 2015-02-26T18:26:00Z 2015-02-26T18:32:45Z Photos: Amur leopard population hits at least 65 <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0226.thumb.Ma_r_28_cam2a-small.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Most of the world's big predators are in decline, but there are some happy stories out there. This week, WWF announced that the Amur leopard population has grown to a total of 65-69 cats. This represents a more than doubling of the population in eight years. Still, the Critically Endangered subspecies remains perilously close to extinction. Jeremy Hance 43.989510 133.453888 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14323 2015-01-29T19:53:00Z 2015-01-30T15:13:19Z Videos: new film series highlights bringing Gorongosa back to life Tracking lions, photographing bats, collecting insects, bringing elephants home: it's all part of a day's work in Gorongosa National Park. This vast wilderness in Mozambique was ravaged by civil war. However, a unique and ambitious 20-year-effort spearheaded by Greg Carr through the Gorongosa Restoration Project is working to restore this rich and little-studied African wilderness. Jeremy Hance -18.812994 34.331024 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14316 2015-01-28T15:21:00Z 2015-01-30T16:16:41Z Adorbs: scientists capture first photos of African golden cat kittens <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0127.Caracal-aurata-kittens-3.thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The African golden cat is arguably the continent's least known feline, inhabiting dense tropical forests, almost never seen, and, of course, long-upstaged by Africa's famous felines. But a few intrepid scientists are beginning to uncover the long-unknown lives of these wild cats. Researchers working in Uganda's Kibale National Park have captured remarkable photos of African golden cats...with kittens. Jeremy Hance 0.451968 30.489145 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14304 2015-01-26T15:17:00Z 2015-01-30T16:17:07Z Video: camera trap catches jaguar hunting peccaries Catching a jaguar on a remote camera trap in the Amazon is a rare, happy sight. But catching a jaguar attempting to ambush a herd of peccaries is quite simply astonishing. Jeremy Hance -3.228753 -73.187293 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14291 2015-01-21T20:01:00Z 2015-01-21T20:11:10Z Sundarbans still reeling from effects of December oil spill <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/15/0121.kid_cleanup-1024x768.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Last month, an estimated 350,000 liters of fuel oil spilled into the Sundarbans delta on the Bay of Bengal. An oil tanker that had collided with a cargo vessel on December 9th sank into the Shela River, spilling its oil into a protected sanctuary for the rare and endangered Irrawaddy dolphins (Orcaella brevirostris) and the Ganges river dolphins (Platanista gangetica). Jeremy Hance 21.968151 89.527303 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14287 2015-01-21T17:33:00Z 2015-01-30T16:17:23Z Video: clouded leopards and elephants grace drowned forest in Thailand Camera trap video from Khlong Saeng Wildlife Sanctuary in southern Thailand has revealed an impressive array of wildlife, including scent-marking clouded leopards and a whole herd of Asian elephant. The camera traps were set by HabitatID, an organization devoted to using remote camera traps to prove to government officials that wildlife still flourishes in forgotten places. Jeremy Hance 8.972407 98.790539 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14283 2015-01-20T18:33:00Z 2015-01-22T20:51:48Z India's tiger population up by more than 500 animals in four years The tiger is in major trouble. In 1900, the global population was over 100,000 animals; today, it is on the precipice of extinction, hovering around just 3,000. In response, tiger range countries have pledged to double to the population by 2022. But there has been little evidence of success until now: India has announced that its tiger population has jumped a remarkable 29 percent in the last four years. Jeremy Hance 18.643618 78.028492 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14255 2015-01-13T18:01:00Z 2015-01-14T17:45:32Z Mother and cub: researchers photograph rare cat with cub in Sumatra <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/15/0113.Kucing_emas_Kerinci-Seblat-Clouded-Leopard-Project.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Researchers working in Kerinci Seblat National Park have captured a remarkable image of a mother Asian golden cat (Catopuma temminckii) carrying her young in her mouth. The image was taken in mid-2014 as reported by Mongabay Indonesia by the Sumatran Tiger Research Team. Jeremy Hance -0.876586 100.527871 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14170 2014-12-18T15:53:00Z 2015-02-20T15:14:47Z Ocelots live in super densities on Barro Colorado Island By comparing camera trapping findings with genetic samples taken from feces, biologists have determined that the density of ocelots on Barro Colorado Island in Panama is the highest yet recorded. There are over three ocelots per every two square kilometers (0.77 square miles) on the island. Jeremy Hance 9.160347 -79.851205 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14100 2014-12-02T21:35:00Z 2015-02-20T15:16:52Z Rhino, cheetah win the world's top camera trap photo contest <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/1202.Burrard-Lucas_black,P20rhino_North,P20Luangwa,P20National,P20Park,P20Zambia_800.jpg.pagespeed.ic.eEwJhz9xR9.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Two big&#8212;and endangered&#8212;mammals took 2014's top prizes in the world's biggest camera trap photo contest: a black rhino and a Asiatic cheetah. The gorgeous shot of a black rhino at night in Zambia photo won the overall photo competition, while the image of a super-rare Asiatic cheetah in Iran took the top research prize. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13927 2014-10-21T14:47:00Z 2014-12-30T22:30:02Z Saving Asia's other endangered cats (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/LC_Ronglarp_HKK.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>It's no secret that when it comes to the wild cats of Asia&#8212;and, really, cats in general&#8212;tigers get all the press. In fact, tigers&#8212;down to an estimated 3,200 individuals&#8212;arguably dominate conservation across Asia. But as magnificent, grand, and endangered as the tigers are, there are a number of other felines in the region that are much less studied&#8212;and may be just as imperiled. Jeremy Hance 5.395824 117.268519 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13859 2014-10-02T13:55:00Z 2014-12-30T22:30:56Z What makes the jaguar the ultimate survivor? New books highlights mega-predator's remarkable past and precarious future <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/1002.thumbnail.9781597269964.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>For thousands of years the jaguar was a God, then it was vermin to be destroyed, and today it is the inspiration for arguably the most ambitious conservation effort on the planet. A new book by renowned big cat conservationist, Alan Rabinowitz, tells this remarkable story from the jaguar's evolutionary origins in Asia to its re-emergence today as a cultural and ecological symbol. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13847 2014-09-30T13:26:00Z 2014-10-01T14:36:36Z Armed conflict decimates tigers, rhinos, and swamp deer in Indian park The human cost of war is horrendous. However, while most attention is focused on the suffering caused to people&#8212;and rightly so&#8212;an understudied element is the impact on wildlife conservation. This is worrying given that many of the world’s conflict zones are situated in biodiversity hotspots. Jeremy Hance 26.717212 90.830000 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13788 2014-09-16T21:18:00Z 2014-12-30T22:32:49Z Malayan tiger population plunges to just 250-340 individuals <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/animals_01912.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Malaysia is on the edge of losing its tigers, and the world is one step nearer to losing another tiger subspecies: the Malayan tiger. Camera trap surveys from 2010-2013 have estimated that only 250-340 Malayan tigers remain, potentially a halving of the previous estimate of 500 individuals. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13771 2014-09-11T16:35:00Z 2015-04-20T15:40:25Z Meet the newest enemy to India's wildlife <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0911.leopard.road.Image-1-.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A boom in infrastructure and population has forced India's wildlife to eke out a creative existence in an increasingly human-modified environment. Big cats such as the leopard are often spotted within large cities, on railway tracks, and sadly, on India's burgeoning and sprawling road network. Jeremy Hance 11.945419 76.221074 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13757 2014-09-09T17:39:00Z 2014-09-09T18:02:00Z Zambia ends trophy hunting ban, elephants fair game After 20 months, Zambia has lifted its ban on hunting, allowing trophy hunters to target numerous species in the wildlife-rich country including elephants. The announcement was made by the country's Tourism and Art's Minister, Jean Kapata, who stated that the ban had resulted in a loss of revenue to the Zambia Wild Life Authority (ZAWA). Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13708 2014-08-22T19:37:00Z 2014-11-06T17:48:01Z An uncertain future: world's last wild Siberian tigers threatened by illegal logging, global warming, disease (PART II) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0822-primorsky-tiger-thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Every year, between 20 and 30 tigers are poached. Illegal logging is reducing the tigers' habitat, and illegal hunting is reducing its food supply. However, these are not the only threats to wild tiger survival -- other problems are cropping up and taking a toll on the iconic big cat. Morgan Erickson-Davis 46.646831 136.404467 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13687 2014-08-19T18:23:00Z 2014-11-06T17:45:51Z Logging of Russian Far East damaging tiger habitat, few intact forests protected (Part I) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0819-siberian-cub-derek-ramsey-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The destruction of Russian forests to supply timber to international markets is becoming one of the biggest threats to the world’s largest cat, the Siberian tiger. Russia has more forests than any other country, with more than half of the world’s coniferous forests. However, worldwide demand for high quality timber, along with weak regulations, has led to widespread logging of Russia’s trees. Morgan Erickson-Davis 49.072346 138.014209 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13614 2014-07-31T12:53:00Z 2014-12-29T21:41:17Z Seeking justice for Corazón: jaguar killings test the conservation movement in Mexico <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0731.0731.2009-06-June-27---Corazon---Los-Pavos.ac.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Eight years ago, a female jaguar cub was caught on film by a motion-triggered camera trap set in the foothills of canyons, oak forest, and scrubland that make-up the Northern Jaguar Reserve, just 125 miles south of the U.S.-Mexico border. Three years later, in 2009, the jaguar reappeared on film as an adult. They called her 'Corazón' for the distinctive heart-shaped spot on her left shoulder. Jeremy Hance 29.056000 -109.231003 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13516 2014-07-09T17:26:00Z 2014-11-25T22:22:36Z Cats' best friend? A new role for guard dogs in South Africa <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0709-dogfam-thumb.png" align="left"/></td></tr></table>While there has been a surge of recovery and reintroduction programs to combat predator decline, human population growth and limited protected areas have led to increased rates of human-wildlife conflicts in many regions of the world. A study published recently tested the ability of trained guarding dogs to protect livestock in South Africa and found it to be highly effective, protecting humans and predators alike. Morgan Erickson-Davis -31.401423 21.651473 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13426 2014-06-23T19:03:00Z 2014-07-23T05:40:28Z Monkeys reset camera trap, capture first-ever images of flat-headed cats in park <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0623-cat-trap-thumb.png" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Photo trapping is a popular technique for gathering images and information about elusive wildlife. Recently, camera traps captured the first-ever images of wild flat-headed cats in the Pasoh Forest Reserve, an unexpected find in the forestland southeast of Kuala Lumpur, according to a new report in mongabay.com’s open access journal Tropical Conservation Science. Morgan Erickson-Davis 2.958847 102.334125 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13422 2014-06-20T22:13:00Z 2014-06-22T20:20:51Z Deforestation drives tigers into contact, conflict with humans <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/animals/sf/150/tiger_3055A.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Conflicts between tigers and humans will continue to increase unless the destruction and loss of Sumatra's forests is halted, warns Dr. Erni Suyanti Musabine, a wildlife conservation veterinarian with Indonesia's Ministry of Forestry. According to Yanti, the critically endangered Sumatran tiger (<i>Panthera tigris sumatrae</i>) traditionally lived deep in the forest, but habitat loss forces them closer to human habitation where they are at risk of being hunted or contracting diseases, and are increasingly becoming a nuisance or threat to humans. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13415 2014-06-19T17:07:00Z 2014-12-30T22:42:53Z Chinese fishermen get the ultimate phone video: a swimming tiger Two Chinese fishermen got the catch of their lives...on mobile phone this week. While fishing in the Ussuri River, which acts as a border between Russia and China, the fishermen were approached by a swimming Siberian tiger. These tigers, also known as Amur tigers, are down to around 350-500 animals. Jeremy Hance 46.941552 134.076563 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13399 2014-06-17T18:18:00Z 2014-12-30T22:42:43Z Camera trap captures first ever video of rarely-seen bird in the Amazon...and much more <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/1107.Mosquera--Nocturnal-curassow.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A camera trap program in Ecuador's embattled Yasuni National Program has struck gold, taking what researchers believe is the first ever film of a wild nocturnal curassow (Nothocrax urumutum). In addition, the program has captured video of other rarely-seen animals, including the short-eared dog and the giant armadillo. Jeremy Hance -0.637516 -76.148906 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13361 2014-06-09T14:02:00Z 2014-12-30T22:42:00Z Bears, cats, and mystery mammals: camera traps in 'paper park' prove it's worth protecting <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0609.habitatid.Sun-bear.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Can a single photograph change the fate of a park? A new conservation group, HabitatID, believes so, and is putting this belief into action. Setting up camera traps in Cambodia's Virachey National Park, the group hopes that photos of charismatic and endangered species will help reinvigorate protection for a park that has been abandoned by conservation groups and underfunded by the government. Jeremy Hance 14.297357 107.049167 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13331 2014-06-03T19:22:00Z 2014-06-03T19:43:04Z Four donors pledge $80 million for big cats Four donors from around the world have pledged $80 million to cat conservation group, Panthera. The money will fund projects working to preserve tigers, lions, jaguars, cheetahs, leopards, snow leopards, and cougars over ten years. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13250 2014-05-19T17:34:00Z 2014-12-30T22:44:41Z Camera trap catches rare feline attempting to tackle armored prey (VIDEO) One of the world's least known wild cats may have taken on more than it could handle in a recent video released by the Gashaka Biodiversity Project from Nigeria's biggest national park, Gashaka Gumti. Jeremy Hance 7.541676 11.606435 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12992 2014-03-27T15:49:00Z 2014-03-30T18:54:23Z Kala: the face of tigers in peril <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0327.kala.Image-4.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In 1864, Walter Campbell was an officer in the British Army, stationed in India when he penned these words in his journal: "Never attack a tiger on foot&#8212;if you can help it. There are cases in which you must do so. Then face him like a Briton, and kill him if you can; for if you fail to kill him, he will certainly kill you." In a stroke of good fortune for the tiger, perceptions in India have changed drastically since Campbell's time. Tiger hunting is now banned and conservationists are usually able to rescue the big cats if they become stranded while navigating increasingly human-occupied areas. But is this enough to save the tiger? Jeremy Hance 21.168602 79.645198 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12773 2014-02-13T16:53:00Z 2014-12-30T22:54:01Z Featured video: camera traps catch jaguars, anteaters, and a sloth eating clay in the Amazon rainforest These are sights that have rarely been seen by human eyes: a stealthy jaguar, a bustling giant armadillo, and, most amazingly, a sloth slurping up clay from the ground. A new compilation of camera trap videos from Yasuni National Park in the Ecuadorean Amazon shows a staggering array of species, many cryptic and rare. Jeremy Hance -0.636851 -76.147327 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12735 2014-02-06T15:24:00Z 2014-02-10T13:31:22Z Proposed rail and road projects could devastate Nepal's tigers and rhinos <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0206.chitwan.rhino.DSC03514.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Chitwan National Park is a conservation success story. Since its establishment in 1973 the park's populations of both Bengal tigers (Panthera tigris tigris) and one-horned rhinos (Rhinoceros unicornis) have quintupled, a success achieved during a time when both species have been under siege globally by poachers. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the park is also a vital economic resource for locals: last year the park admitted over 150,000 tourists who brought in nearly $2 million in entry fees alone. But all this is imperiled by government plans for a new railway that would cut the park in half and a slew of new roads, according to a group of international conservationists known as the Alliance of Leading Environmental Researchers and Thinkers (ALERT). Jeremy Hance 27.474161 84.628944 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12700 2014-01-29T14:40:00Z 2014-02-19T15:28:02Z Predator appreciation: how saving lions, tigers, and polar bears could rescue ourselves <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0129.Christo_scan_46.150..jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In the new book, In Predatory Light: Lions and Tigers and Polar Bears, authors Elizabeth Marshall Thomas, Sy Montgomery, and John Houston, and photographers Cyril Christo and Marie Wilkinson share with us an impassioned and detailed appeal to appreciate three of the world's biggest predators: lions, tigers, and polar bears. Through lengthy discussions, combining themes from scientific conservation to local community folklore, In Predatory Light takes us step by step deeper into the wild world of these awe-inspiring carnivores and their varied plight as they facedown extinction. Jeremy Hance 78.80198 15.948486 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12694 2014-01-28T13:43:00Z 2014-01-29T13:37:35Z Feral crèches: parenting in wild India <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0128.Picture11_SBear.600.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Wildlife Conservation Society-India has been camera trapping wild animals for over 20 years in the Western Ghats. The results reveal the most intimate, fascinating and sometimes comical insights into animal behavior and ecology. These mammals generally become secretive and protective during parenting, and therefore we seldom get to see little ones in the wild. But discretely placed camera traps have not only caught glimpses of these adorable wild babies, but also produced wonderful family albums! Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12645 2014-01-16T20:26:00Z 2014-12-30T22:55:41Z Snow leopards and other mammals caught on camera trap in Uzbekistan (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0116.CAM43590-2013-11-16_14-31-13.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Scientists knew that snow leopards (Panthera uncia) still survived in the Central Asian country of Uzbekistan, but late last year they captured the first ever photos. Camera traps in the Gissar Nature Reserve took photos of the big cats, along with bear, lynx, ibex, wild boar, and other mammals. The camera trap program was led by biologists Bakhtiyor Aromov and Yelizaveta Protas working with Panthera, WWF's Central Asia Program, and Uzbekistan's Biocontrol Agency. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12640 2014-01-15T11:30:00Z 2014-01-17T20:16:44Z For agoutis, the night is fraught with peril <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/01016agouti150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In a study recently published in the online Animal Behavior journal, scientists from the US and the Netherlands have examined the impact of predation patterns on prey's food foraging habits. The two-year long study on Barro Colorado Island, Panama, focused on the predator-prey relationship between the Central American agouti (<I>Dasyprocta punctata</i>), a common rainforest rodent, and the ocelot (<i>Leopardus pardalis</i>). Tiffany Roufs 9.152943 -79.84643 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12632 2014-01-14T16:40:00Z 2014-01-14T16:47:19Z German government gives tigers $27 million At a summit in 2010, the world's 13 tiger range states pledged to double the number of tigers (Panthera tigris) in the wild by 2020. Today, non-tiger state Germany announced its assistance toward that end. Through its KfW Development Bank, the German government has pledged around $27 million (20 million Euro) to a new program run by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Jeremy Hance -0.870633 102.386627 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12610 2014-01-08T22:03:00Z 2014-12-30T22:56:28Z Lions face extinction in West Africa: less than 250 survive <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0108.Henschel_Lion_Niokolo-Koba_NP_SenegalCREDIT.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The lions of West Africa, which may represent a distinct subspecies, are on the precipice of extinction. A sober new study in PLOS ONE reports that less than 250 mature lions survive in the region. Scientists have long known that West Africa's lions were in trouble, but no one expected the situation to be as dire as it was. In fact, in 2012 scientists estimated the population at over 500. But looking at 21 parks, scientists were shocked to find lions persisted in just four with only one population containing more than 50 individuals. Jeremy Hance 11.248102 1.598455 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12478 2013-12-03T21:42:00Z 2015-02-11T23:58:51Z 86 percent of big animals in the Sahara Desert are extinct or endangered <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1203.addax_termit_niger_0512-copyright-Thomas-Rabeil-and-Sahara-Conservation-Fund_150-.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Bigger than all of Brazil, among the harshest ecosystems on Earth, and largely undeveloped, one would expect that the Sahara desert would be a haven for desert wildlife. One would anticipate that big African animals&#8212;which are facing poaching and habitat loss in other parts of the world&#8212;would thrive in this vast wilderness. But a new landmark study in Diversity and Distributions finds that the megafauna of the Sahara desert are on the verge of total collapse. Jeremy Hance 22.411029 12.235107 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12472 2013-12-02T14:22:00Z 2013-12-02T15:59:07Z Little dude takes the prize: rare dormouse wins BBC camera trap contest (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1202.galago.brown.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The image of a rare dormouse has won the fourth annual BBC Wildlife Camera-Trap Photo of the Year award. Photographed in Turkey, the Roach's mouse-tailed dormouse (Myomimus roachi) is listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN Red List with its habitat rapidly disappearing for agriculture. The photo took the grand prize out of 850 entries from around world in a contest that takes into account the scientific importance of submitted photos. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12461 2013-11-27T16:58:00Z 2015-02-11T23:55:08Z Scientists discover new cat species roaming Brazil <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1126.L-guttulus-08-TGO_med_res2.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>As a family, cats are some of the most well-studied animals on Earth, but that doesn't mean these adept carnivores don't continue to surprise us. Scientists have announced today the stunning discovery of a new species of cat, long-confused with another. Looking at the molecular data of small cats in Brazil, researchers found that the tigrina&#8212;also known as the oncilla in Central America&#8212;is actually two separate species. The new species has been dubbed Leopardus guttulus and is found in the Atlantic Forest of southern Brazil, while the other Leopardus tigrinus is found in the cerrado and Caatinga ecosystems in northeastern Brazil. Jeremy Hance -25.697226 -48.620796 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12453 2013-11-26T18:50:00Z 2015-02-11T23:55:15Z Camera traps reveal Amur leopards are breeding in China (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1126.amurleopards.1.1.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Good news today about one of the world's rarest mammals: camera traps in China's Wangqing Nature Reserve have captured the first proof of breeding Amur leopards in the country, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). The photos show a mother Amur leopard with two cubs. A recent survey by WWF-Russia estimated the total wild population of Amur leopards at just 50 individuals, but that's a population on the rise (from a possible nadir of 25) and expanding into long-unused territory. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12345 2013-11-11T15:59:00Z 2015-02-11T23:56:41Z Bangladesh plans massive coal plant in world's biggest mangrove forest <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1110.Sundarbans_MM7666_150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>On October 22nd Bangladeshi and Indian officials were supposed to hold a ceremony laying the foundation stone for the Rampal power plant, a massive new coal-fired plant that will sit on the edge of the Sundarbans, the world's largest mangrove forest. However, the governments suddenly cancelled the ceremony, instead announcing that the project had already been inaugurated in early October by the countries' heads of state via a less-ornate Skype call. While the governments say the change was made because of busy schedules, activists contend the sudden scuttling of the ceremony was more likely due to rising pressure against the coal plant, including a five-day march in September that attracted thousands. Jeremy Hance 22.648235 89.651756 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12324 2013-11-07T15:54:00Z 2014-02-22T01:56:15Z Could camera trap videos galvanize the world to protect Yasuni from oil drilling? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/1107.Mosquera-Jaguar.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Even ten years ago it would have been impossible to imagine: clear-as-day footage of a jaguar plodding through the impenetrable Amazon, or a bicolored-spined porcupine balancing on a branch, or a troop of spider monkeys feeding at a clay lick, or a band of little coatis racing one-by-one from the dense foliage. These are things that even researchers who have spent a lifetime in the Amazon may never see. Now anyone can: scientists at the Tiputini Biodiversity Station in Ecuador's Yasuní National Park have recently begun using camera trap videos to take movies of animals few will ever view in their lifetimes. The videos&#8212;following years of photo camera trapping&#8212;provide an intimate view of a world increasingly threatened by the oil industry. Jeremy Hance -0.638117 -76.149784 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12319 2013-11-06T03:47:00Z 2013-11-06T03:49:18Z Central Park Zoo debuts baby snow leopard twins (photos) The Wildlife Conservation Society’s Central Park Zoo is debuting a pair of snow leopard cubs that were born this past summer. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12305 2013-11-04T22:23:00Z 2015-02-11T23:46:39Z World's most cryptic feline photographed in logging concession <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/1104baycat150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The bay cat is arguably the world's least-known member of the cat family (Felidae). Although first described by scientists in 1874, no photo existed of a living specimen until 1998 and a wild cat in its rainforest habitat wasn't photographed until five years later. Given this, scientists with Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and Imperial College London were taken aback when their remote camera traps captured numerous photos of these elusive cats hanging out in a commercial logging concession in Sabah, a state in Malaysian Borneo. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12146 2013-09-30T16:19:00Z 2015-02-11T23:43:34Z Camera-traps reveal surprising mammals at remote site in Honduras (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0930.honduras.giantarmadillo.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A camera trap survey along the Sikre River in Honduras has discovered that the region is home to a menagerie of rare mammals, including giant anteaters. The survey, published in mongabay.com's open access journal, Tropical Conservation Science, recorded five cat species in 70 square kilometers. Jeremy Hance 15.738067 -84.682331 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12148 2013-09-30T14:24:00Z 2015-02-11T23:43:09Z Samburu's lions: how the big cats could make a comeback in Kenya <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/ewaso.DSC_0584.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In 2009 conservationists estimated that less than 2,000 lions survive in Kenya, a drop of 26 percent in just seven years. In addition, the East Africa country continues to hemorrhage lions: around a hundred a year. Poaching, poisoning, and large-scale habitat loss has put lions on the defensive across Africa, but even countries once thought lion strongholds--like Kenya--have seen populations harried to devastation and in some cases local extinction. Shivani Bhalla, a fourth-generation Kenyan, is working to turnaround this trend in Samburu National Reserve. Jeremy Hance 0.615244 37.532769 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12083 2013-09-17T15:03:00Z 2015-02-11T23:39:02Z Lions rising: community conservation making a difference for Africa's kings in Mozambique <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0917.LICM-11--Newst-male-lion-in-the-area.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Everyone knows that tigers, pandas, and blue whales are threatened with extinction&#8212;but lions!? Researchers were shocked to recently discover that lion populations have fallen precipitously: down to around 30,000 animals across the African continent. While 30,000 may sound like a lot, this is a nearly 70 percent decline since 1960. In addition, lion populations are increasingly fragmented with a number of populations having vanished altogether. However, there is hope: one place where lion populations are actually on the rise is Niassa National Reserve in Mozambique. Here, lion populations have risen by around 60 percent in just seven years. In part this is due to the effort of Colleen and Keith Begg. Jeremy Hance -12.004398 37.446442 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12036 2013-09-10T13:57:00Z 2015-02-11T23:39:57Z Protecting predators in the wildest landscape you've never heard of <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0910.DSC_3198lion2bw-.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Serengeti, the Congo, the Okavango Delta: many of Africa's great wildernesses are household names, however on a continent that never fails to surprise remain vast wild lands practically unknown to the global public. One of these is the Ruaha landscape: covering 51,800 square kilometers (20,000 square miles) of southern Tanzania's woodlands and savannah, Ruaha contains the largest population of elephants in East Africa, over 500 bird species, and a wealth of iconic top predators, including cheetah, hyena, wild dogs, leopard, and&#8212;the jewel in its crown&#8212;10 percent of the world's lions. But that's not all, one of Africa's least-known and secretive tribal groups, the Barabaig, also calls Ruaha home. Jeremy Hance -7.490133 35.01646 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11980 2013-08-29T15:28:00Z 2015-02-11T23:38:21Z Featured video: how tigers could save human civilization In the video below, John Vaillant, author of the <i>The Tiger: A True Story of Vengeance and Survival</i>, tells an audience at TEDxYYC about the similarities between tigers and human beings. Given these similarities&#8212;big mammals, apex predator, highly adaptable, intelligent, and stunningly 'superior'&#8212;John Vaillant asks an illuminating question: what can we learn from the tiger? It turns out learning from tigers could help conserve the human race. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11861 2013-07-31T18:14:00Z 2013-07-31T18:31:51Z Balkan lynx conservation unifies neighboring countries <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/0731balkan-lynx150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>They still call the Balkans “the Powder Keg of Europe.” For good reason too: bloody ethnic and religious conflicts in the past decades have left hundreds of thousands dead and millions displaced. As recently as 2001, the army in Macedonia was fighting with ethnic Albanians, many of them from Kosovo. However, in the past seven years a rare and charismatic wild cat – the Balkan lynx (<em>Lynx lynx balcanicus</em>)– is serving to unify countries with troubled historical and political relations. Albania, Macedonia, Kosovo and Montenegro are collaborating on a joint conservation strategy for the Critically Endangered animal. Rhett Butler 41.622116 20.665176 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11857 2013-07-30T16:02:00Z 2013-07-30T16:20:56Z Nepal's tigers on the rebound Nearly two hundred tigers roam the lowland forests of Nepal, according to a new survey. This is a 63 percent increase in the country's tiger population since 2009, and rare good news for global efforts to save the tiger from extinction. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11835 2013-07-25T18:44:00Z 2013-07-25T22:37:43Z Cheetah don’t overheat during hunts A new study published in <i>Biology Letters</i> finds that contrary to popular opinion, cheetah don’t overheat during hunts. But their body temperature rises after successful hunts due to stress than another predator may seize their prey. Rhett Butler -20.814211 16.653357 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11771 2013-07-15T18:12:00Z 2015-02-11T23:10:40Z Scientists: lions need funding not fences <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0715.Lion_waiting_in_Namibia.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Fences are not the answer to the decline in Africa's lions, according to a new paper in <i>Ecology Letters</i>. The new research directly counters an earlier controversial study that argued keeping lions fenced-in would be cheaper and more effective in saving the big cats. African lion (<i>Panthera leo</i>) populations across the continent have fallen dramatically: it's estimated that the current population is around 15,000-35,000 lions, down from 100,000 just 50 years ago. The animal kings are suffering from booming human populations, habitat loss and fragmentation, prey decline, trophy hunting, and human-lion conflict. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11635 2013-06-24T18:24:00Z 2013-06-25T23:55:17Z 60 big cats killed in Brazilian parks in last two years <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/brazil/150/brazil_1950.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>At least 60 big cats have been killed within national protected areas in Brazil during the past two years according to a recent survey published in mongabay.com's open access journal Tropical Conservation Science. The report, which focuses on jaguar (<i>Panthera onca</i>) and puma (<i>Puma concolor</i>) populations, within Brazilian protected areas shows that reserve management and use restrictions impact the level of big cat hunting. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11632 2013-06-24T12:22:00Z 2013-06-24T13:31:36Z Local people provide wildlife and forest data in park plagued by conflict <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/0624tiger150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>There are often many obstacles for scientists when gauging wildlife decline and forest loss, and one of the most difficult is civil conflict, like the situation in the Similipal Tiger Reserve in India. But a new study in mongabay.com's open access journal Tropical Conservation Science (TCS) finds that local communities may be used to gauge forest loss and wildlife decline for baseline data when conflicts or other obstacle prevent long-term research and monitoring. Jeremy Hance 21.631899 86.379089 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11590 2013-06-12T18:19:00Z 2013-06-12T18:27:04Z Tigers, orangutans, rhinos: Sumatra's big mammals on the edge of extinction Karman Lubis's body was found near where he had been working on a Sumatran rubber plantation. His head was found several days later a mile away and they still haven't found his right hand. He had been mauled by a Sumatran tiger that has been living in Batang Gadis National Park and he was one of five people killed there by tigers in the last five years. Jeremy Hance 0.269164 101.551208 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11571 2013-06-10T14:24:00Z 2015-02-11T23:06:36Z Tibetan monks partner with conservationists to protect the snow leopard <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0610.Snow-Leopard.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Tibetan monks could be the key to safeguarding the snow leopard (<i>Panthera uncia</i>) from extinction, according to an innovative program by big cat NGO Panthera which is partnering with Buddhist monasteries deep in leopard territory. Listed as Endangered by the IUCN Red List, snow leopard populations have dropped by a fifth in the last 16 years or so. Large, beautiful, and almost never-seen, snow leopards are the apex predators of the high plateaus and mountains of central Asia, but their survival like so many big predators is in jeopardy. Jeremy Hance 33.504759 87.963865 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11495 2013-05-28T16:45:00Z 2015-02-09T23:01:04Z Snowy tigers and giant owls: conservation against the odds in Russia's Far East <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0528.1.-Amur-Tiger-Camera-Trap-2008-(c)-WCS-Russia.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Russian Far East is one of the wildest places on Earth: where giant tigers roam snow-covered forests and the world's biggest owls stalk frozen rivers. Bordering northern China and North Korea, the forests of Primorye are known for the diversity of habitats, including coastal forests along the Sea of Japan, vast coniferous forests in the Sikhote-Alin mountains, and even steppe. These diverse ecosystems also makes the forests a hotspot for endangered species, including Amur tigers (<i>Panthera tigris altaica</i>), Blakiston's fish owls (<i>Bubo blakistoni</i>), and one of the world's rarest big cats, Amur leopards (<i>Panthera pardus orientalis</i>), which number only 30-50 animals. Jeremy Hance 44.933696 134.622802 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11465 2013-05-22T12:04:00Z 2013-05-22T12:13:27Z Prince Charles: take the war to the poachers Prince Charles has warned that criminal gangs are turning to animal poaching, an unprecedented slaughter of species that can only be stopped by waging war on the perpetrators, in the latest of a series of increasingly outspoken speeches about the environment. Addressing a conference of conservationists at St James's Palace in London, the Prince of Wales announced a meeting of heads of state to take place this autumn in London under government auspices to combat what he described as an emerging, militarized crisis. Jeremy Hance 51.504739 -0.137142 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11457 2013-05-21T14:02:00Z 2015-02-09T23:00:19Z Scientists capture one of the world's rarest big cats on film (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0521.javanleopard.8733156523_7504e31131_o.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Less than a hundred kilometers from the bustling metropolis of Jakarta, scientists have captured incredible photos of one of the world's most endangered big cats: the Javan leopard (<i>Panthera pardus melas</i>). Taken by a research project in Gunung Halimun-Salak National Park, the photos show the magnificent animal relaxing in dense primary rainforest. Scientists believe that fewer than 250 mature Javan leopard survive, and the population may be down to 100. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11446 2013-05-16T19:42:00Z 2015-02-09T22:57:44Z Crazy cat numbers: unusually high jaguar densities discovered in the Amazon rainforest <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0516.wwf.sandiego.Jaguar-2.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Jaguars (<i>Panthera onca</i>) are the biggest cat in the Americas and the only member of the Panthera genus in the New World; an animal most people recognize, the jaguar is also the third largest cat in the world with an intoxicatingly dangerous beauty. The feline ranges from the harsh deserts of southern Arizona to the lush rainforests of Central America, and from the Pantanal wetlands all the way down to northern Argentina. These mega-predators stalk prey quietly through the grasses of Venezuelan savannas, prowl the Atlantic forests of eastern Brazil, hunt along the river of the Amazon, and even venture into lower parts of the Andes. Jeremy Hance -12.036634 -69.727936 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11342 2013-05-02T18:08:00Z 2015-02-09T22:53:23Z Endangered primates and cats may be hiding out in swamps and mangrove forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay.s3.amazonaws.com/sabah/150/sabah_3798.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>What happens to animals when their forest is cut down? If they can, they migrate to different forests. But in an age when forests are falling far and fast, many species may have to shift to entirely different environments. A new paper in <i>Folia Primatologica</i> theorizes that some 60 primate species and 20 wild cat species in Asia and Africa may be relying more on less-impacted environments such as swamp forests, mangroves, and peat forests. Jeremy Hance -2.54936 113.64521 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11330 2013-05-01T16:24:00Z 2015-02-09T22:53:06Z 13 year search for Taiwan's top predator comes up empty-handed After 13 years of searching for the Formosan clouded leopard (<i>Neofelis nebulosa brachyura</i>), once hopeful scientists say they believe the cat is likely extinct. For more than a decade scientists set up over 1,500 camera traps and scent traps in the mountains of Taiwan where they believed the cat may still be hiding out, only to find nothing. Jeremy Hance 23.171926 120.858994 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11268 2013-04-18T14:30:00Z 2013-04-18T16:00:43Z Lions for sale: big game hunting combines with lion bone trade to threaten endangered cats <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://www.mongabay.com/images/uganda/150/ug8_5895.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Koos Hermanus would rather not give names to the lions he breeds. So here, behind a 2.4-meter high electric fence, is 1R, a three-and-a-half-year-old male, who consumes 5kg of meat a day and weighs almost 200kg. It will only leave its enclosure once it has been "booked"' by a hunter, most of whom are from the United States. At that point the big cat will be set loose in the wild for the first time in its life, 96 hours before the hunt begins. It usually takes about four days to track down the prey, with the trophy hunter following its trail on foot, accompanied by big-game professionals including Hermanus. He currently has 14 lions at his property near Groot Marico, about two and a half hours by road west of Johannesburg. Jeremy Hance -31.597253 25.726318 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11201 2013-04-09T17:25:00Z 2015-02-26T17:41:43Z Amur leopard population rises to 50 animals, but at risk from tigers, poachers <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0409.amurleopard.wwd.WEB_257680.250.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In the remote Russian far east, amid pine forests and long winters, a great cat may be beginning to make a recovery. A new survey estimates that the Amur leopard (Panthera pardus orientalis) population has risen to as many as 50 individuals. While this may not sound like much, it's a far cry from the a population that may have fallen to just 25 animals. Sporting the heaviest coat of any leopard, the Amur leopard largely hunts hoofed animals, such as deer and boar, in a forest still ruled by the Siberian tiger. Jeremy Hance 44.715514 134.60083 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11086 2013-03-20T23:23:00Z 2013-03-20T23:29:36Z Male lions require dense vegetation for successful ambush hunting <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/animals/150/z_00009.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>For a long time male lions were derided as the lazy ones in the pride, depending on females for the bulk of hunting and not pulling their weight. Much of this was based on field observations&#8212;female lions hunt cooperatively, often in open savannah, and therefore are easier to track at night. But new research in <i>Animal Behaviour</i> is showing that males are adroit hunters in their own right, except prickly males hunt alone and use dense vegetation as cover; instead of social hunting in open savannah, they depend on ambushing unsuspecting prey. Jeremy Hance -23.85821 31.463242 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11062 2013-03-18T16:03:00Z 2015-02-09T22:40:57Z Forgotten lions: shedding light on the fate of lions in unprotected areas <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0318.lions-03-18-at-9.33.18-AM.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>African lions (<i>Panthera leo</i>) living outside of protected areas like national parks or reserves also happen to be studied much less than those residing within protected areas, to the detriment of lion conservation initiatives. In response to this trend, a group of researchers surveyed an understudied, unprotected region in northwestern Mozambique called the Tete Province, whose geography and proximity to two national parks suggests a presence of lions. Jeremy Hance -16.165218 33.605404 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11014 2013-03-08T18:12:00Z 2013-03-12T03:31:14Z Conservationists: ban the wild cheetah pet trade A group of prominent conservation groups have joined an alliance of African states in calling on CITES to ban the trade in wild cheetah for the pet trade. Rhett Butler 13.724961 100.557947 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10985 2013-03-06T20:27:00Z 2015-02-09T22:38:26Z The end of wild Africa?: lions may need fences to survive <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/tz_1653a.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In order for dwindling lion populations to survive in Africa, large-scale fencing projects may be required according to new research in Ecology Letters. Recent estimates have put lion populations down to 15,000-35,000, a massive drop from a population that was thought to be around 100,000 in 1960. The worsening plight of lions have pushed the researchers to suggest what is likely to be a controversial proposal: fence the top predators in. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10931 2013-02-26T18:52:00Z 2013-02-26T19:09:42Z Chinese government creating secret demand for tiger trade alleges NGO (warning: graphic images) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0226.China_Chaohu_tiger-skin-rug-for-sale-with-permit-at-Xiafeng-taxidermy-copyright-EIA.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The number of tigers being captive bred in China for consumption exceed those surviving in the wild&#8212;across 13 countries&#8212;by over a third, according to a new report by the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). The report, Hidden in Plain Sight, alleges that while the Chinese government has been taking a tough stance on tiger conservation abroad, at home it has been secretly creating demand for the internationally-banned trade. Few animals in the world have garnered as much conservation attention at the tiger (Panthera tigirs), including an international summit in 2010 that raised hundreds of millions of dollars for the vanishing wild cats. Jeremy Hance 25.273262 110.285854 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10930 2013-02-26T15:38:00Z 2015-02-09T22:37:27Z Asiatic cheetahs: on the road to extinction? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0226.cheetahs.iran.Miandasht01_2.150..jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) are unique among large cats. They have a highly specialized body, a mild temperament, and are the fastest living animals on land. Acinonyx jubatus venaticus, the Asiatic subspecies, is unique among cheetahs and the only member of five currently living subspecies to occur outside of Africa. Listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List&#8212;with a population of between 70 and 100 individuals&#8212;the Asiatic cheetah is one of the rarest felines on the planet. But new proposed road through one of its last habitat strongholds may threaten the cat even further. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10894 2013-02-19T14:55:00Z 2015-02-09T22:30:12Z Jaguars, tapirs, oh my!: Amazon explorer films shocking wildlife bonanza in threatened forest <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0219.jaguar.Screen-Shot-2013-02-07-at-8.56.21-AM.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Watching a new video by Amazon explorer, Paul Rosolie, one feels transported into a hidden world of stalking jaguars, heavyweight tapirs, and daylight-wandering giant armadillos. This is the Amazon as one imagines it as a child: still full of wild things. In just four weeks at a single colpa (or clay lick where mammals and birds gather) on the lower Las Piedras River, Rosolie and his team captured 30 Amazonian species on video, including seven imperiled species. However, the very spot Rosolie and his team filmed is under threat: the lower Las Piedras River is being infiltrated by loggers, miners, and farmers following the construction of the Trans-Amazon highway. Jeremy Hance -12.055437 -69.818916 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10866 2013-02-13T15:50:00Z 2015-02-09T22:31:11Z Chasing down 'quest species': new book travels the world in search of rarity in nature <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0213.javanrhino.HI_36558.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In his new book, The Kingdom of Rarities, Eric Dinerstein chases after rare animals around the world, from the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus) in Brazil to the golden langur (Trachypithecus geei) in Bhutan to Kirtland's warbler (<i>Setophaga kirtlandii</i>) in the forests of Michigan. Throughout his journeys, he tackles the concept of rarity in nature head-on. Contrary to popular belief, rarity is actually the norm in the wildlife world. Jeremy Hance 27.228989 90.402374 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10860 2013-02-12T17:55:00Z 2015-02-09T22:31:03Z Tigers gobble up 49 percent of India's wildlife conservation funds, more imperiled species get nothing Nearly half of India's wildlife budget goes to one species: the tiger, reports a recent article in Live Mint. India has devoted around $63 million to wildlife conservation for 2013-2013, of which Project Tiger receives $31 million. The Bengal tiger (Panthera tigris tigris) is currently listed as Endangered by the IUCN Red List; however India is also home to 132 species currently considered Critically Endangered, the highest rating before extinction. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10849 2013-02-07T21:06:00Z 2015-02-09T22:30:38Z Catching Borneo's mysterious wild cats on film <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0207.Marbled_Cat.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In my childhood's biology books from the 50's, the Australian marsupial tiger Thylacine is classified rare but alive. Today we know that the last thylacine died in a Tasmanian zoo 7th September, 1936, after a century of intensive hunting encouraged by bounties. The local government had finally introduced official protection 59 days before the last specimen died. Despite the optimism in my old books, no more thylacines were ever found. No film of it in the wild exists. Jeremy Hance 4.958247 117.693787 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10846 2013-02-07T17:51:00Z 2013-02-07T18:03:30Z Animal picture of the day: the world's biggest cat The Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica), also known as the Siberian tiger, is the world's biggest cat. An adult male weighs on average about 390 pounds (176 kilograms). The largest yet recorded weighed 460 pounds (207 kilograms), although there are reports of considerably larger animals in the past. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10808 2013-02-04T18:19:00Z 2015-02-09T22:28:24Z Geneticists discover distinct lion group in squalid conditions <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0204.lion.light.Addis-3.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>They languished behind bars in squalid conditions, their very survival in jeopardy. Outside, an international team of advocates strove to bring worldwide attention to their plight. With modern genetics, the experts sought to prove what they had long believed: that these individuals were special. Like other cases of individuals waiting for rescue from a life of deprivation behind bars, the fate of those held captive might be dramatically altered with the application of genetic science to answer questions of debated identity. Now recent DNA analysis has made it official: this group is special and because of their scientifically confirmed distinctiveness they will soon enjoy greater freedom. Jeremy Hance 9.042788 38.761997 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10780 2013-01-29T22:27:00Z 2013-02-13T16:42:15Z Claim of human and tiger 'coexistence' lacks perspective <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0129.Tiger-by-Kalyan-Varma.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Nepal's Chitwan National Park was the site of a study, published in September 2012 by Carter and others, which concluded that, tigers coexist with humans at fine spatial scales. This paper has ignited a scientific debate regarding its implications for large carnivore conservation worldwide, with scientists at institutions worldwide questioning the validity of claims of coexistence. At the foundation of this debate, perhaps, is the unresolved question, "what is coexistence?" Jeremy Hance 27.487373 84.480591 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10729 2013-01-21T18:49:00Z 2013-01-22T16:30:43Z Living beside a tiger reserve: scientists study compensation for human-wildlife conflict in India <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0121_Kalyan_Varma_D111619.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>During an average year, 87% of households surrounding Kanha Tiger Reserve in Central India report experiencing some kind of conflict with wild animals, according to a new paper in the open-access journal PLOS One. Co-existence with protected, free-roaming wildlife can be a challenge when living at the edge of a tiger reserve. "Local residents most often directly bear the costs of living alongside wildlife and may have limited ability to cope with losses" wrote the authors of the new paper. Jeremy Hance 22.311967 80.569496 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10728 2013-01-21T17:31:00Z 2013-01-21T18:16:40Z Three developing nations move to ban hunting to protect vanishing wildlife <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/jlh/zimbabwe-botswana/150/chobe_1119.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Three developing countries have recently toughened hunting regulations believing the changes will better protect vanishing species. Botswana has announced it will ban trophy hunting on public lands beginning in 2014, while Zambia has recently banned any hunting of leopards or lions, both of which are disappearing across Africa. However, the most stringent ban comes from another continent: Costa Rica&#8212;often considered one of the "greenest" countries on Earth&#8212;has recently passed a law that bans all sport hunting and trapping both inside and outside protected areas. The controversial new law is considered the toughest in the Western Hemisphere. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10721 2013-01-17T20:44:00Z 2015-01-13T05:53:36Z Can ranchers co-exist with jaguars? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/0117jaguar_credit-Steve-Winter_Panthera150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Jaguar once roamed from the United States to Argentina, but today they've been eliminated from several range countries, including the United States. The chief reasons are habitat loss and direct killing by humans, putting ranchers and farmers at the heart of the issue. Both ranchers and farmers convert key jaguar habitat and kill the big cats as a threat to their livestock. However in parts of Brazil's Pantanal, some ranchers are going about their business without killing jaguars. <i>My Pantanal</i>, a film by Andrea Heydlauff, Vice President of the wild cat conservation group Panthera, takes a look at one particular ranch that is helping prove that jaguars and ranchers can co-exist. Rhett Butler -18.646245 -57.438171 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10690 2013-01-15T15:38:00Z 2015-02-09T22:21:48Z In the kingdom of the black panther <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/Infrared-light-makes-rosettes-appear-clearer_Rimba.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The black panther has a mythical aura: Rudyard Kipling chose the animal for one of his heroes in <i>the Jungle Book</i>, in the 1970s it became the symbol of an African-American socialist party, while comic guru Stan Lee selected the stunning feline for his first black superhero. But the real black panther isn't an actual species, instead it's a rare dark pigmentation found most commonly in leopards, but also occasionally in jaguars and other wild cats. The rarity of the black panther&#8212;not to mention its striking appearance&#8212;has added to their mystery. However, recent studies have found that black panthers, in this case 'black leopards,' are astoundingly common in one part of the world: the Malayan peninsula. Jeremy Hance 5.014339 102.647781 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10688 2013-01-14T23:17:00Z 2015-01-09T06:11:37Z Saving the Arabian leopard, the world's smallest leopard <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/13/0114arabianleopard150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Today most people are more likely to associate Yemen with warfare and bizarre terrorism plots rather than wildlife. But Yemen is home to a surprising diversity of animals, including a population of the world's smallest leopard: The Arabian leopard (<i>Panthera pardus nimr</i>). Native to the Arabian Peninsula, the Arabian leopard is today extremely rare &#8212; less than 200 animals are thought to survive in the wild. Despite the cat's precarious position, there is relatively little local enthusiasm to protect a species that is widely seen as a threat to livestock. Nevertheless one man in Yemen is trying to boost the value of leopard in the eyes of local people. David Stanton, an American teacher living in Yemen, had devoted his life to saving the Arabian leopard. Rhett Butler 23.223679 57.263077 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10636 2013-01-03T18:21:00Z 2015-02-09T22:19:06Z An avalanche of decline: snow leopard populations are plummeting The trading of big cat pelts is nothing new, but recent demand for snow leopard pelts and taxidermy mounts has added a new commodity to the illegal trade in wildlife products, according to the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). Traditionally, the market for large cat products has centered around tiger bones and parts for traditional Chinese medicine. Snow leopards (Uncia uncia), however, are a novel trend in the illegal wildlife trade arena and skins and taxidermy mounts are the most recent fad in luxury home décor. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10564 2012-12-12T20:20:00Z 2012-12-12T20:28:17Z Rare jungle cat filmed for only the second time A biologist on vacation in Malaysian Borneo caught one of the world's rarest cats on video for only the second time, reports the BBC. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10522 2012-12-05T15:48:00Z 2012-12-05T15:54:32Z Cute animal picture of the day: cheetahs in the snow Cheetah cubs at the Zoological Society of London's Whipsnade Zoo attempt to make sense of snow. Cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus), currently found in many African countries as well as Iran, are generally warm weather animals. Jeremy Hance 51.849644 -0.542886 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10513 2012-12-04T17:45:00Z 2015-02-09T22:16:53Z Lion population falls 68 percent in 50 years <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/animals/150/z_00009.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>African lions, one of the most iconic species on the planet, are in rapid decline. According to a new study in Biodiversity Conservation, the African lion (Panthera leo leo) population has dropped from around 100,000 animals just fifty years ago to as few as 32,000 today. The study, which used high resolution satellite imagery to study savannah ecosystems across Africa, also found that lion habitat had plunged by 75 percent. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10511 2012-12-04T16:02:00Z 2012-12-04T17:37:20Z Africa's great savannahs may be more endangered than the world's rainforests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/kenya/150/kenya_elf_0806.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Few of the world's ecosystems are more iconic than Africa's sprawling savannahs home to elephants, giraffes, rhinos, and the undisputed king of the animal kingdom: lions. This wild realm, where megafauna still roam in abundance, has inspired everyone from Ernest Hemingway to Karen Blixen, and David Livingstone to Theodore Roosevelt. Today it is the heart of Africa's wildlife tourism and includes staunch defenders such as Richard Leakey, Michael Fay, and the Jouberts. Despite this, the ecosystem has received less media attention than imperiled ecosystems like rainforests. But a ground-breaking study in Biodiversity Conservation finds that 75 percent of these large-scale intact grasslands have been lost, at least from the lion's point of view. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10510 2012-12-04T14:29:00Z 2012-12-05T14:48:30Z Pledge to end wildlife trafficking for Wildlife Conservation Day Today has been dubbed the first ever global Wildlife Conservation Day. To honor it, a coalition of conservation groups&#8212;including WWF and Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)&#8212;are working to raise awareness of illegal wildlife trafficking. Poaching for traditional medicine, bushmeat, and other products has put innumerable species at risk, including tigers, rhinos, sharks, and elephants. Jeremy Hance