Category: Biodiversity

One of the world’s oldest science experiments comes up from the dirt

Read the full story in the New York Times.

Every 20 years under the cover of darkness, scientists dig up seeds that were stashed 142 years ago beneath a college campus.

Small farms outdo big ones on biodiversity — and crop yields

Read the full story in Nature.

Large-scale farms account for most of the global food supply, but smallholdings protect species and are just as profitable.

More Biodiversity, Better Mental Health?

Read the full story at HealthDay.

It probably won’t show up on any real estate listing, but making your home in a place with many different kinds of birds and plants may be good for you.

That’s the upshot of a German study that showed people who live in areas with greater biodiversity have better mental health than those in areas with fewer types of plants and birds.

Tiny scoops of water are unlocking worlds of information about Oregon watersheds

Read the full story from Oregon Public Radio.

Environmental DNA, or eDNA, can help identify who’s in a river, stream or creek. Now, it’s helping scientists learn how threatened salmon and trout adapt to a changing environment.

Sounds of Silence: Extinction Is Erasing the Earth’s Music

Read the full story at The Revelator.

Writer Kathleen Dean Moore turns her ear to nature’s sounds and what we’re losing as species disappear.

An Illicit Trade in Brazil Is Sending Tiny Songbirds to Their Deaths

Read the full story at e360.

Thousands of saffron finches are being snatched out of South American forests and sold in Brazil for use in brutal, illegal fighting rings. Lax wildlife laws have made it difficult for authorities to crack down on the lucrative trade, leaving traffickers and ring runners undeterred.

The Problem with Unpaid Conservation Work

Read the full story from JStor.

There’s no way to sugarcoat it. One million species of plants and animals are currently under threat of extinction, and plenty more could join them due to the impacts of climate change. But the conservation programs that must lead the large-scale global action required to protect even a fraction of these species face constant underfunding. That’s why these organizations depend so heavily on volunteers, who are now an integral part of the conservation movement. But as environmental policy researchers Ans Vercammen, Caroline Park, Robyn Goddard, Joss Lyons-White, and Andrew Knight argue, current volunteer practices may undermine efforts to tackle this biodiversity crisis.

The Demise and Potential Revival of the American Chestnut

Read the full story in Sierra Magazine.

In central Pennsylvania, there are monuments to the dead. Inside century-old barns and farmhouses, ceiling beams and wide floor planks that are straight grained and honey red with age serve as reminders of one of the deadliest epidemics to ever reach American shores. Between 1904 and 1940, some 3.5 billion American chestnut trees, the giants of the Appalachian hardwood forest, succumbed to a fungal blight called Cryphonectria parasitica.

European Forests Have Become More Vulnerable to Insect Outbreaks

Read the full story in Scientific American.

A tiny, creeping menace is threatening forests across Europe. And scientists believe climate change is a big part of the problem.

New research finds that European forests have become more vulnerable to insect pest outbreaks over the last four decades, and especially since the year 2000.

Facebook rainforest ads: Inquiry ordered into Amazon land sales

Read the full story from the BBC.

Brazil’s Supreme Federal Court has ordered an inquiry into the sale of protected areas of the Amazon rainforest via Facebook.

%d bloggers like this: