tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:/xml/environment1 environment news from mongabay.com 2014-09-30T02:05:48Z tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13846 2014-09-30T02:03:00Z 2014-09-30T02:05:48Z Joint force uses Google Earth to find elephant poaching camps in Mozambique, captures poachers in raid <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0929-guns-3-thumb.png" align="left"/></td></tr></table>On Monday, September 22, two ivory poachers were arrested in Mozambique during a late-night raid near Niassa National Reserve. The arrest followed on the heels of nearly two-dozen reported kills in the reserve in just the first two weeks of the month. Morgan Erickson-Davis -11.880410 37.467319 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13844 2014-09-29T20:47:00Z 2014-09-29T21:09:01Z A weed by any other name: remnant shrubs and trees play vital role in regenerating forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0923-birds-tcs150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Tropical forest restoration projects are exciting research sites for scientists studying factors that affect ecosystem recovery. Here, scientists are trying to understand plant community succession, i.e. the process of recovery after cleared lands are abandoned and allowed to regrow naturally. One of the most important components of this recovery process is seed dispersal, since seeds from nearby forests allow a deforested habitat to become populated again by native plants and trees. Tiffany Roufs 8.137603 99.512565 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13833 2014-09-29T16:17:00Z 2014-09-29T16:29:07Z Climate change to boost farmland, diminish harvests, says new study <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://www.mongabay.com/images/gabon/150/gabon-15610.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Climate change is likely to alter how we humans grow adequate amounts of food for a swelling global population. Assessing just how much and where those changes will occur has been difficult. But a new study takes aim at those very questions and could provide a guide for the debate over feeding the planet while also preserving biodiversity and the forests that filter out the carbon we produce. Brittany Stewart -1.617103 17.101189 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13843 2014-09-29T14:26:00Z 2014-09-29T14:31:24Z Did the world's only venomous primate evolve to mimic the cobra? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0928.Capture-and-collaring-low-124.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The bite of a slow loris can be painful, and sometimes even lethal. After all, this cute-looking YouTube sensation is the only known 'venomous' primate in the world&#8212;a trait that might have strangely evolved to mimic spectacled cobras, according to a recent paper. Mimicry in mammals is rare. But anecdotal evidence and studies in the past have noted the uncanny cobra-like defensive postures, sounds, and gait in slow lorises. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13842 2014-09-26T18:39:00Z 2014-09-26T18:55:43Z Dogs may be responsible for declining mammals in Brazil’s agroforests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0923collage.dogs.tcs.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>With an estimated population of 700 million individuals, domestic dogs are the most abundant carnivore in the world and are present everywhere that man has settled. Domestic dogs are not usually viewed as a huge threat to wildlife and native habitats, but according to a recent study dogs fit all three categories to be considered an invasive species and may be decimating mammals in agroforests in Brazil. Tiffany Roufs -14.063986 -42.180505 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13841 2014-09-26T17:41:00Z 2014-09-26T22:28:35Z Diverse, deceptive, declining: orchids threatened by deforestation in South America <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0926-orchid-lithograph-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Pushing past a thick fern leaf, Crain stopped short, overcome by joy. As he broke into dance, his assistant peered curiously at the tiny lentil-shaped fruit dangling from a stem, and resolutely decided Crain was mad. After more than two years studying a rare Puerto Rican endemic orchid species, Crain had finally found his first specimen bearing fruit. Morgan Erickson-Davis -1.333539 -76.954968 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13840 2014-09-26T09:37:00Z 2014-09-26T09:52:04Z Coal mine has heavy impact in Indonesian Borneo <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0926-indonesia-coal-mine150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Baharuddin should be happy. The rambutan and durian trees flanking his home are heavy with fruit. Two hectares of chilies stretch before his house. The price of chili — a staple commodity in Indonesia — has been stable for six months. From his 2,000 plants he hopes to earn 40 million rupiah ($3,400), much of which he wants to invest in expanding his crop. That is, if his farm can survive the threats that have destroyed so many of his neighbor's. Rhett Butler -0.531027 117.2387 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13839 2014-09-26T03:15:00Z 2014-09-27T12:37:06Z Hitchhiking Caribbean lizard upends island biogeography theory <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/cr/150/costa_rica_4418.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The biggest factor determining species diversity and distribution on islands is not size and isolation, as traditional island biogeography theory states, but economics. Simply put, the more trade an island is engaged in, the more boats visit it, and with more boats comes more hitchhikers. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13838 2014-09-25T23:01:00Z 2014-09-25T23:54:13Z Reintroduction program ups Mexico's scarlet macaw population by 34 percent in one year <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0925-macaw-thumb.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>While listed as Least Concern by the IUCN, the scarlet macaw has disappeared from almost all of its native range in Mexico, is very rare in most Central America countries, and is locally extinct in El Salvador. A new paper published this week finds a reintroduction program was hugely successful in its first year of operation, with a 92 percent survival rate for released birds. Morgan Erickson-Davis 17.481431 -92.044834 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13837 2014-09-25T21:33:00Z 2014-09-25T21:41:22Z Four countries pledge to restore 30 million hectares of degraded lands at UN Summit In 2011, Germany and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature launched the Bonn Challenge, which pledged to restore 150 million hectares of degraded and deforested lands by 2020. Several countries have already made commitments&#8212;including the U.S.&#8212;but this week at the UN Climate Summit four more jumped on board. Jeremy Hance 8.964736 38.828945 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13836 2014-09-25T17:01:00Z 2014-09-25T17:09:11Z Scientists uncover six potentially new species in Peru, including bizarre aquatic mammal (photos) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0925.newspecies.Chibchanomys.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A group of Peruvian and Mexican scientists say they have uncovered at least six new species near South America's most famous archaeological site: Machu Picchu. The discoveries include a new mammal, a new lizard, and four new frogs. While the scientists are working on formally describing the species, they have released photos and a few tantalizing details about the new discoveries. Jeremy Hance -13.193858 -72.531615 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13835 2014-09-25T16:41:00Z 2014-09-29T23:13:11Z In the shadows of Machu Picchu, scientists find 'extinct' cat-sized mammal <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0925.newspecies.Cuscomys2.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Below one of the most famous archaeological sites in the world, scientists have made a remarkable discovery: a living cat-sized mammal that, until now, was only known from bones. The Machu Picchu arboreal chinchilla rat (<i>Cuscomys oblativa</i>) was first described from two enigmatic skulls discovered in Incan pottery sculpted 400 years ago. Jeremy Hance -13.192824 -72.536287 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13834 2014-09-25T15:48:00Z 2014-09-25T16:16:37Z Termites suffer in logged forests and palm oil plantations <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0923-termites-150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Ants appear more resilient to forest degradation than termites. Scientists have long studied how birds, mammals, and amphibians respond to forest degradation, but what about the most abundant animals in the forest? Insects. A new study in <i>Biodiversity and Conservation</i> looks at how ants and termites reacted to forest changes in Malaysian Borneo. Tiffany Roufs 3.535145 114.288557 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13832 2014-09-24T20:56:00Z 2014-09-24T21:41:00Z Turning point for Peru's forests? Norway and Germany put muscle and money behind ambitious agreement <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/peru/150/manu_0728.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>From the Andes to the Amazon, Peru houses some of the world's most spectacular forests. Proud and culturally-diverse indigenous tribes inhabit the interiors of the Peruvian Amazon, including some that have chosen little contact with the outside world. And even as scientists have identified tens-of-thousands of species that make their homes from the leaf litter to the canopy. Jeremy Hance -13.256860 -68.993973 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13827 2014-09-24T18:36:00Z 2014-09-25T23:54:32Z Scientists use genes, feces to study disappearing monkeys <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0924-king-colobus-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Human pressures through tree clearing and poaching are reducing both forest and fauna in West Africa. In response to dwindling primate populations, scientists used genetics techniques to examine their makeup and outlook – demonstrating the usefulness of such methods in the study of animals that are becoming ever-fewer in number and ever-harder to find. Morgan Erickson-Davis 6.757973 -4.795016 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13828 2014-09-24T18:30:00Z 2014-09-24T18:37:04Z Towards the poles: tropical cyclones on the move <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0923-cyclone150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>If you thought your relatively northerly or southerly location sheltered you from Mother Nature’s worst storms, think again. For years we have known that the tropics are expanding towards the poles. However, there is something decidedly destructive accompanying that shifting warm weather: tropical cyclones. Tiffany Roufs tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13823 2014-09-24T14:21:00Z 2014-09-29T21:16:51Z Drivers in Brazil will intentionally run-down small animals, but only if it is safe <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0923-tcs.fakesnake.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Although not always very wide, roads can be huge barriers to wildlife. Not only do roads break up habitats, making animal movement more difficult, but they also allow people into long-inaccessible natural areas. A new study in mongabay.com’s open-access journal Tropical Conservation Science looks at how drivers on Brazil’s MG-010 road act when faced with small animals, such as snakes, on the path. Tiffany Roufs -19.349065 -43.619487 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13822 2014-09-24T13:25:00Z 2014-09-24T13:35:11Z Leaders pledge to end deforestation by 2030 <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay.s3.amazonaws.com/sabah/150/sabah_aerial_1452.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Dozens of companies, non-profit organizations, and governments pledged to work together to halve forest loss by 2020 and end it altogether by 2030. If implemented, the commitment could reduce annual carbon dioxide emissions by 4.5-8.8 billion tons annually, equivalent to removing a billion cars from the world's roads. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13821 2014-09-24T09:34:00Z 2014-09-24T14:35:40Z Cargill commits to zero deforestation across entire global supply chain: all commodities <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/sabah/150/sabah_2207.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Cargill, one of the world's largest agricultural companies, has extended its zero deforestation commitment for palm oil to all commodities it produces. The commitment, announced Tuesday at the United Nations Climate Summit in New York, is the most far-reaching zero deforestation policy ever established, covering Cargill's sprawling global empire of businesses, including palm oil, sugar, soy, cattle, and cocoa. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13820 2014-09-23T23:50:00Z 2014-09-24T14:13:39Z Norway to pay Liberia to stop deforestation <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0923-diana-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In one of the many major announcements that have come out of the UN Climate Summit in New York this week, Norway says it will pay Liberia to stop cutting down its forests. Norway’s payment will come on the form of development aid for the war-torn, impoverished, and now Ebola-ridden West African nation. Morgan Erickson-Davis 7.281362 -9.936618 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13819 2014-09-23T20:18:00Z 2014-09-23T20:35:06Z Fragmented forests hurt some bat species, may benefit others <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0922.bats.TCS.sept.2014.360-150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Development of roads and other structures disturb large, continuous patches of habitat for wildlife. This habitat fragmentation is one of the biggest contributors to species extinction, as the local ecology and species interactions are altered. A new study finds that leaf-nosed bat abundances in Mexico are closely linked to how sensitive each species is to habitat fragmentation. Tiffany Roufs 17.163800 -96.689228 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13818 2014-09-23T19:22:00Z 2014-09-23T19:27:42Z Leonard DiCaprio to UN Climate Summit: 'You can make history or you will be vilified by it' Actor, environmental activist, and recently named UN Messenger of Peace, Leonardo DiCaprio, spoke today to a UN Climate Summit. The summit, which is hosting the largest gathering of world leaders to address the crisis in five years, is meant to pave the way for a new climate agreement in Paris in 2015. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13817 2014-09-23T18:13:00Z 2014-09-25T22:00:57Z Dissolving pulp: the threat to Indonesia’s forests you’ve probably never heard of <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0923-orang-thumb-1.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>If the term “dissolving pulp” evokes nothing for you, you’re not alone. Not many people have heard of it, and the very term “dissolving pulp” is so generic it’s hard to imagine it could be a threat to anything. Morgan Erickson-Davis 1.438037 99.996098 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13816 2014-09-22T21:52:00Z 2014-09-22T22:06:08Z Climate coup: Rockefeller announces they are dropping fossil fuel investments In 1870, John D. Rockefeller founded the Standard Oil Company. Rapidly becoming the world's largest oil refiner, Standard made Rockefeller a billionaire and one of the world's greatest philanthropists. 144 years later and John D. Rockefeller's descendants have announced they are stripping fossil fuels from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, a private charity with around $860 million in assets. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13815 2014-09-22T20:32:00Z 2014-09-22T20:47:08Z Chinese now emit more carbon per capita than Europeans Last year, the people of China emitted more carbon per person than those in the EU, according this year's Global Carbon Budget. The report, updated annually, also found that global emissions jumped 2.5 percent last year and are set to hit a record high of 40 billion tonnes this year. The findings highlight how little global society has done to stem emissions, despite numerous pledges and past global agreements. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13814 2014-09-22T16:26:00Z 2014-09-22T20:40:44Z Over half a million people march for climate action worldwide, shattering turnout predictions Around 570,000 people took part in marches around the world yesterday calling for action on climate change. By far the largest event was in New York City, which had been dubbed the biggest climate march in history weeks before. Organizers estimate that 400,000 people showed up to the march in Manhattan, shattering predictions. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13813 2014-09-22T13:52:00Z 2014-09-22T14:07:42Z Feeding the planet while saving forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia-java/150/java_0094.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Cattle ranching, palm oil production, soy cultivation, and other forms of commercial agriculture drive more than 70 percent of tropical deforestation worldwide, but a global transition could enable the world to produce more food, fuel and fiber without destroying more forests, argues a new report published by the Climate and Land Use Alliance (CLUA), a group of philanthropic organizations working to slow climate change. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13811 2014-09-22T13:36:00Z 2014-09-23T00:10:27Z Extinction island? Plans to log half an island could endanger over 40 species <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/plullulaeopti.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Woodlark Island is a rare place on the planet today. This small island off the coast Papua New Guinea is still covered in rich tropical forest, an ecosystem shared for thousands of years between tribal peoples and a plethora of species, including at least 42 found no-where else. Yet, like many such wildernesses, Woodlark Island is now facing major changes: not the least of them is a plan to log half of the island. Jeremy Hance -9.038617 152.610839 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13812 2014-09-22T08:39:00Z 2014-09-22T21:50:02Z Scientists rebut NYTimes op-ed 'To Save the Planet, Don’t Plant Trees' <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/sabah/150/sabah_0226.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The following is a response from a group of scientists' -- including 6 members of the National Academy, 3 IPCC Lead Authors, and 1 IPCC Co-Chair -- to Dr. Nadine Unger’s September 21, New York Times Op-Ed, "To Save the Planet, Don’t Plant Trees" Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13810 2014-09-20T12:46:00Z 2014-09-24T09:25:04Z Palm oil giants announce deforestation moratorium -- effective immediately <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/i/indonesia/150/aceh_0913.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Five of the world's largest palm oil producers have announced an immediate moratorium on palm oil sourced via clearance of potential high carbon stock forests. On Friday, Asian Agri, IOI Corporation Berhad, Kuala Lumpur Kepong (KLK) Berhad, Musim Mas Group and Sime Darby Plantation said they will suspend forest clearing until they have completed a year-along study that aims to establish a threshold for defining what constitutes high carbon stock (HCS) forest. Rhett Butler 3.114409 101.573087 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13809 2014-09-19T22:49:00Z 2014-09-20T12:53:25Z After 12 years, Indonesia finally ratifies transboundary haze agreement <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/12/0920gfwfires150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Indonesia ended 12 years of stalling this week, becoming the last ASEAN nation to ratify an agreement on transboundary haze. As smoke from more than 1,200 fires in Sumatra and Kalimantan pushed air pollution in neighboring Singapore to 'unhealthy' levels, the Indonesian House of Representatives ratified the 2002 ASEAN Agreement on Transboundary Haze Pollution (AATHP). Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13808 2014-09-19T22:13:00Z 2014-09-23T14:21:57Z Changing climate, changing conservation paradigms in Canada's boreal forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0919smoke150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Crackling heat and thick billowing smoke raced across the landscape. After weeks of scorching dry summer weather, the wildfire seemed to hungrily consume the earth. In northern Alberta, Canada, the Richardson fire of 2011 gained particular notoriety for ravaging nearly 700,000 hectares – and threatening the Athabasca oil sand development. Yet it is these very wildfires that are so crucial in shaping our boreal forests – which make up nearly one third of the world's forests. Brittany Stewart 57.884529 -111.033318 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13807 2014-09-19T17:39:00Z 2014-09-19T21:50:59Z Is there hope for the vaquita? IUCN calls for action to save world's smallest, rarest porpoise <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0919-vaquita1-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Since the baiji was declared extinct in the early aughts, the vaquita has taken its unenviable position as the world’s most threatened cetacean. The tiny porpoise currently numbers around 100, with accidental entanglement in gillnets primarily responsible for its decline. In response, the IUCN recently issued a statement calling for immediate action to curb vaquita bycatch and head off its extinction – which otherwise may lie just around the corner. Morgan Erickson-Davis 31.095548 -114.586877 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13803 2014-09-19T08:18:00Z 2014-09-19T08:21:06Z Krispy Kreme, Dunkin' Donuts to cut palm oil linked to deforestation Two of the world's largest doughnut brands this week committed to sourcing safeguards that move them toward eliminating deforestation from their palm oil supply chains. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13802 2014-09-19T05:16:00Z 2014-09-19T05:42:12Z Brazil cancels Tapajos dam auction due to indigenous concerns Brazilian authorities have suspended the auction of the centerpiece of the massive Tapajos hydroelectric complex, reports Agencia Brasil. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13801 2014-09-18T22:14:00Z 2014-09-21T13:10:25Z World population could surpass 13 BILLION by the end of the century By 2100, over 13 billion people could be walking the planet. That's the conclusion of a new study published today in <i>Science</i>, which employed UN data to explore the probability of various population scenarios. The new study further demolishes the long-held theory that human population growth will quit growing by mid-century and then fall. Tiffany Roufs tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13799 2014-09-18T19:26:00Z 2014-09-18T19:28:15Z Legislation protecting Indonesia's indigenous communities is not good enough, says advocacy group <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0918-fronds-thumb.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Approaching final legalization, an advocacy group for Indonesia’s indigenous communities has asked to postpone passing a bill granting protections to indigenous people, stating some demands still need to be addressed. Morgan Erickson-Davis 1.471485 100.315548 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13794 2014-09-18T15:35:00Z 2014-09-18T15:45:50Z The cheap option on climate change: recognize indigenous rights to forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/colombia_1160.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Since 2008, governments have invested $1.64 billion in funds to kick-start REDD+, or Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation, the global effort to conserve the world's forests in order to better mitigate climate change. However, a new report by the Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI) finds that same amount of money could have secured the legal rights of indigenous and local people to 450 million hectares of forest, an area 40 percent larger than India. Tiffany Roufs tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13793 2014-09-17T19:46:00Z 2014-09-17T19:53:51Z 'The green Amazon is red with indigenous blood': authorities pull bodies from river that may have belonged to slain leaders Peruvian authorities have pulled more human remains from a remote river in the Amazon, which may belong to one of the four murdered Ashaninka natives killed on September 1st. It is believed the four Ashaninka men, including renowned leader Edwin Chota Valera, were assassinated for speaking up against illegal logging on their traditional lands. Jeremy Hance -10.433375 -71.573146 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13792 2014-09-17T18:13:00Z 2014-09-17T19:42:41Z Camera traps capture ‘fantastically bizarre’ animal behavior in South African park <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0917-genet-buffalo-wildlifeact-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Cowbirds ride cattle to pick off their parasites; egrets pal around with wildebeest and eat the small creatures disturbed by their grazing. But mammals riding other mammals is something long-thought pretty much isolated to humans and their domestic creatures. Then, earlier this month, a camera trap in a park in South Africa captured something that contradicts this assumption: a genet riding around on giant herbivores. Morgan Erickson-Davis -28.229220 31.921758 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13791 2014-09-17T16:33:00Z 2014-09-17T17:21:52Z 'We will win this war': Yeb Saño speaks out on global warming <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0917-walrus-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Ahead of the upcoming Climate Change Summit to be held in New York, September 23, a Filipino man who last year made headlines around the world on the subject is speaking out. Morgan Erickson-Davis 78.314712 17.687267 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13790 2014-09-17T09:47:00Z 2014-09-17T15:29:19Z Plantation companies agree to process to define zero deforestation commitments A group of palm oil and timber companies that have pledged to eliminate deforestation from their supply chains have agreed to establish a standard for determining what constitutes forest in terms of carbon storage. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13789 2014-09-17T08:55:00Z 2014-09-18T12:26:49Z Activists urge outgoing Indonesian president to protect key forest area before he steps down Activists have launched an urgent appeal calling upon outgoing Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to step up protection of the only ecosystem that houses Sumatran orangutans, rhinos, elephants and tigers. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13788 2014-09-16T21:18:00Z 2014-09-16T21:23:15Z 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/13784 2014-09-16T18:03:00Z 2014-09-16T18:04:31Z From 'production' forests to protected forests, groups work to save Sumatran orangutan habitat. But will it be enough? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/i/indonesia/150/north_sumatra_0584.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The orangutan is native exclusively to the islands of Borneo and Sumatra — two regions that have seen the brunt of Indonesia's recent forest destruction due primarily to logging and plantation development. Although there are anywhere from 45,000 to 69,000 Bornean orangutans remaining in the wild, the Sumatran species numbers only about 7,300 according to a 2004 survey, and is dwindling further every year. Morgan Erickson-Davis 3.096116 97.700802 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13783 2014-09-15T16:52:00Z 2014-09-18T14:34:16Z Bizarre lizard newest victim of reptile pet trade <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0914.earless.monitor.Facebok-EML.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>If you've never heard of the earless monitor lizard, you're not alone: this cryptic lizard has long-escaped the attention of the larger public. But over the past couple years its bizarre appearance has been splashed across social media sites for reptile collectors. While this decidedly-quirky attention may seem benign, it could actually threaten the species' existence. Jeremy Hance 3.284402 114.791102 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13782 2014-09-15T12:54:00Z 2014-09-15T13:17:33Z Protected areas do work, concludes study Protected areas are working. That's the conclusion of a new analysis of over 80 different studies on the efficacy of parks and nature reserves in safeguarding wildlife. Published in the open access journal, PLOS ONE, the new study finds that in general protected areas house higher abundances of wildlife as well as greater biodiversity than adjacent areas. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13781 2014-09-14T23:08:00Z 2014-09-15T00:31:41Z Brazil's planned Tapajós dams would increase Amazon deforestation by 1M ha A plan to build a dozen dams in the Tapajós river basin would drive the loss of an additional 950,000 hectares of rainforest by 2032 by spurring land speculation and mass migration to the region, suggests a new study published by Imazon, a Brazilian NGO. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13780 2014-09-14T07:48:00Z 2014-09-19T08:37:29Z Indonesia's secret treasures: islands passed over by loggers, hunters and conservationists <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0914island150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>As our boat sailed towards the forest-clad island, I had no idea what surprise awaited me. A few months ago I was asked to conduct a wildlife survey on a rarely visited island somewhere in Indonesia. For reasons explained below I will not disclose its name. Suffice to say it is one of the thousands of Indonesian islands without people on it. In terms of the wildlife I saw, the absence of people really showed. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13779 2014-09-13T23:52:00Z 2014-09-14T07:50:58Z Domestic conservation: Indonesia’s rich should step up to save nation’s dwindling natural resources Indonesia’s middle and upper classes are becoming increasingly interested and supportive of environmental conservation. Still, they have some way to go to become real leaders and trendsetters on this important issue. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13778 2014-09-12T18:58:00Z 2014-09-12T19:05:18Z As Bolivia plans dramatic agro-expansion, forests may pay the price (PART II) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0912-giant-otter-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>In an August 14 announcement, Bolivian Vice President, Alvaro Garcia Linera, laid out an ambitious plan to increase the country’s cropland by 250 percent, and triple its agricultural output. The proposal is touted as way to increase both food and economic security for the inland South American country, but what will it mean for its forests? Morgan Erickson-Davis -12.849774 -66.966144 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13777 2014-09-12T18:31:00Z 2014-09-12T18:35:36Z Palm oil company continues to operate illegal plantation despite court ruling A palm oil company in Central Kalimantan continues to operate business as usual, despite a Supreme Court ruling confirming it has no legal permit to do so. Since 2009, PT Hati Prima Agro (HPA), a subsidiary of palm oil giant Bumitama Gunajaya Agro Group (BGA), has cleared over 7,000 ha of land in Central Kalimantan, even though their permits were revoked by the Ministry of Forestry in 2008. Rhett Butler -1.480243 112.530012 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13776 2014-09-12T17:38:00Z 2014-09-12T17:44:15Z FSC passes motion for greater protection of primary forests The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) has passed a motion to increase protection of old-growth forests. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13775 2014-09-12T17:05:00Z 2014-09-12T17:09:28Z WCS-led raids lead to six arrests near Mozambique’s largest reserve <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0912-forest-elephant-thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A joint force of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and government authorities are in the midst of carrying out a series of raids against poachers in Mozambique aimed at halting the illegal killing of elephants in Niassa National Reserve, the country’s largest protected area. Six men, thought to be responsible for killing 39 elephants in 2014, were arrested in an early morning bust in the town of Marrupa, just south of the park. Morgan Erickson-Davis -11.880809 37.467158 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13774 2014-09-12T00:57:00Z 2014-09-12T01:03:10Z Brazil confirms last year's rise in Amazon deforestation Brazil's National Space Agency INPE has officially confirmed last year's rise in Amazon deforestation. Rhett Butler -1.933227 -66.283264 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13773 2014-09-11T21:23:00Z 2014-09-12T17:37:09Z Illegal tropical deforestation driven globally by “agro-conversion” <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0911-gorilla-rhett-thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Nearly 50 percent of tropical deforestation to make room for commercial agriculture between 2000 and 2012 was done so illegally. That’s a key finding of a report published by the U.S.-based nonprofit organization Forest Trends looking at the global tide of tropical forest “agro-conversion.” Morgan Erickson-Davis 0.492965 16.863132 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13772 2014-09-11T18:17:00Z 2014-09-12T00:59:31Z FSC meeting weighs old-growth forest protection, smallholder participation <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay.s3.amazonaws.com/sabah/150/sabah_aerial_1827.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), a body that sets social and environmental certification criteria for forestry products, is weighing measures that could step up protection for old-growth forests and make it easier for indigenous people and traditional forest communities to qualify for certification. The measures are set for a vote this week at the body's General Assembly, which is held every three years to establish and revise criteria that underpin the standard. Rhett Butler -6.948239 142.379379 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13771 2014-09-11T16:35:00Z 2014-09-11T19:05:21Z 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/13770 2014-09-11T15:26:00Z 2014-09-12T13:44:14Z Next big idea in forest conservation? Harness the power of marketing <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0911.Diogo-Veri%CC%81ssimo--%C2%A9Laure-Cugnie%CC%80re.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>As a whole, conservationists have been slow to adapt the strategies of marketing or to market conservation at all. Dr. Diogo Veríssimo, a researcher who works at the interface between social and natural sciences, with a focus on behavior change and evidence-based conservation, thinks this needs to change. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13769 2014-09-11T15:20:00Z 2014-09-19T22:14:50Z Why are great apes treated like second-class species by CITES? The illegal trade in live chimpanzees, gorillas, bonobos and orangutans showed no signs of weakening in the first half of 2014&#8212;and may actually be getting worse&#8212;since the Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP) published the first-ever report to gauge the global black market trade in great apes in 2013. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13768 2014-09-10T22:22:00Z 2014-09-10T22:35:51Z 'We are running out of time': CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere surprise scientists The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere made the biggest jump last year since 1984, according to the World Meteorological Organization's (WMO) Greenhouse Gas Bulletin, raising alarm bells about society's inaction on curbing global warming. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13765 2014-09-10T19:45:00Z 2014-09-12T19:03:42Z Bolivian vice president proposes unprecedented agricultural expansion (PART 1) <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0810-dinomys-branickii-frable-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>On August 14, the Bolivian Vice President, Alvaro Garcia Linera, made a startling announcement: by 2025, Bolivia was going to make two striking developments - first, it would expand all cultivated land to 2.5 times its present area, and second, it would triple food production from 15 to 45 million tons. Morgan Erickson-Davis -16.141641 -66.036958 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13764 2014-09-10T18:27:00Z 2014-09-22T13:58:56Z Elephants pay the price for palm oil in Malaysian Borneo, impact may reach far beyond reported kills <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0810-borneo-elephants-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>More than a dozen elephant kills were reported in Sabah in 2013 alone, but it is unknown exactly how many have lost their lives in recent years as palm plantations encroach further and further into the rainforest. What is clear is that if the loss of their forest habitat continues to drive conflicts with humans at the rate it is now, Borneo elephants’ long-term survival may be in jeopardy. Morgan Erickson-Davis 6.180661 116.893646 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13763 2014-09-10T02:36:00Z 2014-09-10T02:55:11Z Malaysian palm oil chief misleads on deforestation One of Malaysia's top palm oil officials has once again misled the public on the state of forests in Malaysia. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13758 2014-09-09T18:06:00Z 2014-09-09T20:02:18Z Thought wiped out by climate change, 'extinct' snail rediscovered in Seychelles <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0809-snail-sif-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Aldabra banded snail was declared extinct in 1997 as one of the world’s first recorded direct casualties of climate change. But last month, a monitoring team found a population on one of the atoll’s islands, surprising the team and giving hope that other species whose habitats are being degraded by climate change may still be able to cling to existence. Morgan Erickson-Davis -9.373243 46.330556 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/13755 2014-09-08T21:03:00Z 2014-09-09T16:25:14Z 4 Ashaninka tribesmen killed by loggers in Peru One of those killed was Edwin Chota, the leader of the Alto Tamaya-Saweto indigenous community who won fame for fighting illegal loggers. As such, Chota was a top target for assassination, according to a conservationist familiar with the situation. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13754 2014-09-08T20:51:00Z 2014-09-08T21:00:07Z 'Canary in the cornfield': monarch butterfly may get threatened species status <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0908-monarch-thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Monarch butterflies were once a common sight throughout the North American heartland. But declines in milkweed – their caterpillars’ only source of food – have led to a 90 percent decline in monarch numbers. Now, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is reviewing a petition that would grant the iconic species protection through the Endangered Species Act. Morgan Erickson-Davis 41.618377 -91.588802 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13753 2014-09-08T20:34:00Z 2014-09-08T20:41:22Z Norway slaughters over 700 whales this season As of late August, Norway has killed 729 northern minke whales (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) during its annual whaling season, the highest number taken since 1993. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13752 2014-09-07T23:47:00Z 2014-09-08T21:03:52Z Conservationist, indigenous leader killed in plane crash in Colombia <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0907-daniel-matapi150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A conservationist who worked to protect voluntarily isolated tribes in the Amazon rainforest and an indigenous leader were among ten killed in a plane crash in southern Colombia Saturday afternoon. Roberto Franco, a political scientist, and Daniel Matapi, a Yukuna-Matapis indigenous leader, died when the Piper PA-31 Navajo crashed after takeoff from Araracuara in the department of Caqueta. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13751 2014-09-07T19:15:00Z 2014-09-07T19:52:42Z Pictures of endangered animals for Threatened Species Day <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay.s3.amazonaws.com/animals/150/herps_1046.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>September 7 is Threatened Species Day, a designation established by the Australian government to commemorate the death of the last remaining thylacine, better known as the Tasmanian tiger, at the Hobart Zoo in 1936. While the day is intended to focus on Australian species, this year we're highlighting a small selection of non-Australian species that are considered at risk of extinction globally. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13750 2014-09-05T21:27:00Z 2014-09-06T02:54:54Z World's rainforests could be mapped in 3D at high resolution by 2020 for under $250M <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0905cao150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Mapping the world's tropical forests with a fleet of airplanes outfitted with advanced LiDAR could rapidly and accurately assess global forest carbon stocks for a fraction of the cost of a typical Earth observation satellite mission &#8212; and far less than field-based sampling &#8212; argues a new paper published in <i>Carbon Balance and Management</i>. Rhett Butler -2.635788 -74.864044 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13749 2014-09-05T21:13:00Z 2014-09-05T21:14:45Z California blue whales recover to historical levels The population of blue whales in the Eastern Pacific has recovered to 97 percent of historic levels decades after Earth's largest animal was nearly driven to extinction in some places due to the whaling industry, reports a new study published in the journal, Marine Mammal Science. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13748 2014-09-05T21:03:00Z 2014-09-05T21:17:39Z Companies at risk of sourcing illegal palm oil despite zero deforestation commitments, finds investigation Major palm oil suppliers may be continuing to buy tainted palm oil despite high-profile commitments to eliminate deforestation from their supply chains, reports a new investigation published by Eyes on the Forest. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13746 2014-09-05T19:01:00Z 2014-09-05T19:04:14Z Canada, Russia, Brazil lead world in old-growth forest loss <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0905-log-road-thumb.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Every day, the world loses about 50,000 hectares of forest to agricultural clearing, road development, and other human activities, constricting true wilderness into smaller and smaller areas – along with the species that inhabit them. New analysis and maps released this week show these last vestiges are disappearing at a quick pace, with more than 104 million hectares degraded from 2000 to 2013. Morgan Erickson-Davis -1.952080 -52.828939 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13745 2014-09-05T13:49:00Z 2014-09-05T16:35:03Z APP can meet projected pulp demand without clearing more forest Indonesian forestry giant Asia Pulp &amp; Paper (APP) won't need to clear additional forests to meet pulp requirements for current and forecast mill expansion, finds an independent assessment conducted by The Forest Trust (TFT) and Ata Marie. Rhett Butler 1.5077 101.77145 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13744 2014-09-05T03:48:00Z 2014-09-05T03:51:10Z How Islam could help save Aceh's forests Aceh, Indonesia has found a new ally in the struggle to protect the province's remaining natural forests: Sharia law. Rhett Butler 4.893941 95.799179 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13743 2014-09-05T02:12:00Z 2014-09-05T11:28:23Z A path to becoming a conservation scientist <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0824-ysi-zuzana-burivalova-04_150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The path to finding a career often involves twists and turns. Serendipity is important &#8212; one rarely anticipates what small events, chance occurrences, and seeds of inspiration will spur decisions that lead to pursuing one job or another. For Zuzana Burivalova, a PhD candidate based at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETH Zurich), the road to becoming a tropical forest ecologist began as a child in a small Czech Republic village with a foldout children's book about rainforests. Rhett Butler 15.742693 50.043311 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13742 2014-09-04T22:22:00Z 2014-09-29T14:26:31Z Conservationists use social media to take on Peru's booming illegal wildlife trade <table align="left"><tr><td><img src=" http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0904_150.-Capuchin-monkey-in-cage_Photo-Noga-Shanee.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Illegal wildlife trafficking is thriving in Peru. But a Peruvian organization is now using a public campaign, via social media and press releases, to track and rescue illegally kept wildlife in the country. 'I have filed 47 complaints from 14 different states in Peru including hundreds of animals commercialized illegally in markets, kept as pets, and used as tourist attractions,' said Noga Shanee, Co-founder and project director of Neotropical Primate Conservation. Tiffany Roufs tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13737 2014-09-04T16:45:00Z 2014-09-08T16:42:57Z REDD+ versus indigenous people? Why a tribe in Panama rejected pay for their carbon-rich forests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0904_04_guerra_kuna_yala150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>There isn’t a word or phrase in the Kuna language for "carbon trading,” and much less for something as complex as REDD+. Standing for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation, REDD+ is the worldwide UN-backed climate change mitigation scheme that relies on carbon trading within forest landscapes to fund forest conservation programs. And yet, since 2008, the Kuna people have been hearing lots about it and referring to it often in their private conversations. Tiffany Roufs 9.548827 -78.839226 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13738 2014-09-04T16:43:00Z 2014-09-04T19:41:56Z Indonesia to verify ownership of 66M ha of disputed forest land <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay/indonesia-java/150/java_0536.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Indonesian government has declared it will verify ownership of 66.3 million hectares of disputed forest land by the end of the year. Through the development of a Recognition and Verification of Rights scheme (PPH), the Forestry Department will inventory and evaluate the status of all government land where indigenous people and other groups hold conflicting claims of ownership. Indonesia currently considers 122.2 million hectares of forested land—almost 64% of the country—to be state-owned. They hope to resolve all conflicting claims to the area by the end of 2015. Rhett Butler -0.4779 111.505337 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13736 2014-09-03T16:00:00Z 2014-09-05T02:29:01Z Mongabay founder, Rhett Butler, wins Field Museum's top conservation prize <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/boston_091.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Field Museum has honored Rhett A. Butler, the founder of mongabay.com, with this year's prestigious Parker/Gentry Award. The award is giving annually to an 'individual, team or organization whose efforts have had a significant impact on preserving the world's rich natural heritage and whose actions can serve as a model to others,' according to the museum. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13735 2014-09-02T21:02:00Z 2014-09-02T21:11:52Z Australia cancels plan to dump dredge in Great Barrier Reef A consortium of companies&#8212;North Queensland Bulk Ports, GVK Hancock and Adani Group&#8212;have announced they are giving up on a hugely-controversial plan to dump five million tonnes of dredged sediment in the Great Barrier Reef. The plans ran into considerable opposition from environment, conservation, and tourism groups who feared harm to the world's largest coral reef system. Jeremy Hance -19.891980 148.077845 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13734 2014-09-02T17:08:00Z 2014-09-02T17:34:32Z Scientists uncover five new species of 'toupee' monkeys in the Amazon <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0831.saki.ci_39968595.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>While saki monkeys may be characterized by floppy mops of hair that resemble the worst of human toupees, these acrobatic, tree-dwelling primates are essential for dispersing seeds. After long being neglected by both scientists and conservationists, a massive research effort by one intrepid researcher has revealed the full-scale of saki monkey diversity, uncovering five new species. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13733 2014-09-01T21:21:00Z 2014-09-02T17:22:59Z The last of her kind: centennial of the death of the world's last passenger pigeon <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0901-pass-pigeon-audubon-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>They once numbered in the billions, flying 60 miles per hour in flocks that darkened the sky. But on September 1, 1914, one hundred years ago today, the last member of what may have been the most numerous bird species on the planet died in a cage in the Cincinnati zoo. Morgan Erickson-Davis 39.104330 -84.400978 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13732 2014-09-01T20:51:00Z 2014-09-01T20:53:31Z 25 primate pictures for World Primate Day September 1 is World Primate Day, a designation intended to raise awareness about apes, monkeys, and prosimians like lemurs, lorises, and tarsiers. Many non-human primates are threatened by habitat loss, the pet trade, and hunting. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13731 2014-08-29T22:25:00Z 2014-08-31T19:27:04Z 'A global tragedy' in the making? Thailand plans highway expansion through World Heritage Site <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0829-banteng-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Dong Phayayen Khao Yai Forest Complex (DPKY-FC) is the largest tract of surviving forest in central Thailand, renowned for its biodiversity. Now, the Thai government is planning major expansions to a road that bisects the complex – which scientists say will bar animal movement throughout their natural ranges, result in higher rates of road kill, and give hunters and loggers increased access to the forest. Morgan Erickson-Davis 14.189639 102.102929 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13730 2014-08-29T18:51:00Z 2014-08-30T01:41:10Z More trouble with tar sands: oil extraction leading to big forest loss in Alberta <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0829-tar-sands-op-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Tar sands operations have been the subject of much controversy over the past few years as expected economic gains for Canada the may come at the cost of environmental damage from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline and increased greenhouse gas emissions. Now another negative impact has come to light - deforestation of the boreal forest overlying the oil deposits. Morgan Erickson-Davis 57.694984 -111.396673 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13728 2014-08-28T23:43:00Z 2014-08-28T23:52:38Z Indonesia's national airline to start using palm oil biofuel Indonesia's national airline, Garuda Indonesia, says it will start mixing palm oil-based biofuel with its jet fuel as part of an initiative to "reduce" carbon emissions, reports The Jakarta Post. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13727 2014-08-28T19:31:00Z 2014-08-28T19:57:02Z Authorities stop 'greatest destroyers of the Brazilian Amazon rainforest' <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0828-brazil-lone-thumb.png" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A criminal organization involved in the illicit deforestation of large portions of Brazil's forests has been stopped, with at least six members of the organization arrested as of Aug. 28 and warrants issued for others. The gang has been accused of committing crimes worth over $220 million. Morgan Erickson-Davis -5.670855 -55.858498 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13726 2014-08-28T19:19:00Z 2014-09-02T01:27:19Z Saving the Atlantic Forest would cost less than 'Titanic' <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0828.atlantic.S._flavius_SP_Zoo.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Want to save the world's most imperiled biodiversity hotspot? You just need a down payment of $198 million. While that may sound like a lot, it's actually less than it cost to make the film, Titanic. A new study published today in Science finds that paying private landowners to protect the Atlantic Forest would cost Brazil just 6.5 percent of what it currently spends ever year on agricultural subsidies. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13724 2014-08-28T17:31:00Z 2014-08-28T17:34:33Z Indonesian authorities bust porcupine-smuggling ring Police in Langkat, North Sumatera, Indonesia, seized 55 porcupines from smugglers preparing to ship the animals to China. Three suspects were detained during last week's operation, while their accomplices remain at large. Dozens more animals reportedly obtained from dealers in Medan are still unaccounted for. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13723 2014-08-27T23:55:00Z 2014-09-03T00:20:53Z Meeting an Illegal Logger <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0827logger150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>'I make six times the amount of money logging as I would working my small plot of land or even working legally in a pulp and paper or palm oil plantation.' An illegal logger explains the economic conditions in South Sumatra. Mongabay Special Reporting Fellow Robert S. Eshelman interviews an illegal logger in Indonesia on the topic of cleaning up commodity supply chains. Tiffany Roufs -3.483145 104.340247 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13722 2014-08-27T22:35:00Z 2014-08-27T22:43:40Z Where should the roads go? New map offers a solution to the 'Pandora's Box of environmental problems' <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0827-roads3-thumb.jpeg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Roads make it possible to bring goods to market, to get to the office, to log a forest, to hunt its wildlife. Without roads, human society as we know it could not exist. However, to build roads, trees must be cleared and swamps drained, shrinking valuable wildlife habitat and fragmenting populations in the process. A new study unveils an innovative map that defines which areas of the world would be best used to build roads – and which should be left alone. Morgan Erickson-Davis -3.349126 -57.198830 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13720 2014-08-27T18:57:00Z 2014-08-27T20:07:50Z Invasion of the lionfish: new research finds the situation may be worse than we thought <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0827-lionfish-wittenrich-thumb.png" align="left"/></td></tr></table>You may have recently read the controversial story on invasive lionfish research involving Dr. Zack Jud of Florida International University and a young girl named Lauren Arrington. While the issue of attribution in scientific research is crucial to the discipline, much of the media focus so far has sidestepped the real issue: what lionfish tolerance for brackish water really means for the environment. Morgan Erickson-Davis 32.240509 -80.489845 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13719 2014-08-27T18:52:00Z 2014-09-02T17:50:41Z The Gran Canal: will Nicaragua's big bet create prosperity or environmental ruin? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/0827.800px-Volcanic_Island.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>A hundred years ago, the Panama Canal reshaped global geography. Now a new project, spearheaded by a media-shy Chinese millionaire, wants to build a 278-kilometer canal through Nicaragua. While the government argues the mega-project will change the country's dire economic outlook overnight, critics contend it will cause undue environmental damage, upend numerous communities, and do little to help local people. Jeremy Hance 11.392321 -85.465667 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13717 2014-08-26T20:18:00Z 2014-08-27T16:58:24Z How do we save the world's vanishing old-growth forests? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/14/sabah_1454.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>There's nothing in the world like a primary forest, which has never been industrially logged or cleared by humans. They are often described as cathedral-like, due to pillar-like trees and carpet-like undergrowth. Yet, the world's primary forests&#8212;also known as old-growth forests&#8212;are falling every year, and policy-makers are not doing enough to stop it. Jeremy Hance 5.159093 116.924597 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13716 2014-08-26T19:35:00Z 2014-08-27T21:00:18Z What lies within, we may never know: deforestation threatening Sulawesi’s unique wildlife <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://www.mongabay.com/thumbnails/indonesia/sulawesi/sulawesi6483.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>For 10 million years the Indonesian island of Sulawesi has been disconnected from other landforms, almost inviting evolution to color outside the lines. Despite a growing population and limited space, Sulawesi has managed to provide a safe haven to hundreds of unique species as they evolved over millennia. But that haven may soon be lost to uncontrolled extraction of forest products from Sulawesi’s many pristine ecosystems. Morgan Erickson-Davis -2.460181 120.146481 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13715 2014-08-25T19:43:00Z 2014-08-27T18:09:37Z Can it be stopped? Ghana's forests 'could completely disappear in less than 25 years' <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay-images.s3.amazonaws.com/14/0825-chimp-butler-thumb.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Ghana contains forests that are biologically unique and important both for the wildlife they contain and the human communities that depend on them. However, the country is experiencing one of the greatest rates of deforestation in West Africa. At its current rate of forest loss, a study estimates that Ghana could be devoid of major forest cover in less than a quarter-century. Morgan Erickson-Davis 5.667530 -2.420482 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/13713 2014-08-25T14:56:00Z 2014-08-25T15:10:42Z Featured video: new Netflix documentary highlights the work of Sylvia Earle to save the oceans Sylvia Earle is one of the ocean's staunchest defenders. A National Geographic Society Explorer in Residence and former chief scientist with NOAA, Earle has spent a lifetime documenting the rapid decline of the world's oceans and calling for more action to defend the body of water that cradles the world's continents. Jeremy Hance