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Amphibians can evolve increased tolerance to pesticides, but the adaptation can make them more susceptible to parasites, according to a team that includes researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. The research, led by Binghamton University, showed that wood frogs that evolved increased tolerance to pesticides showed greater susceptibility to a dangerous virus, although they also demonstrated reduced susceptibility to a parasitic worm.
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Writing Aug. 11 in the journal Environmental Research Letters, University of Wisconsin-Madison Professor Tracey Holloway, an expert on air quality, and her former graduate student Olivia Sanderfoot sort through nearly 70 years of the scientific literature to assess the state of knowledge of how air pollution directly affects the health, well-being, reproductive success and diversity of birds.
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On dusty land in Mission, Tex., near the Mexican border, Marianna Trevino Wright recently took a walk with a contractor. She was showing off her effort to turn the earth surrounding the National Butterfly Center into “an oasis for butterflies,” she said — with 10,000 native milkweed plants that a dwindling number of monarch butterflies use as habitat in their arduous and yearly migration from Mexico and across the United States to Canada.
But the yellow that caught her eye that day wasn’t the fluttering wings of butterflies. It was heavy machinery that mows vegetation, said Wright, executive director of the butterfly reserve. And men were taking soil samples on the center’s property. “I said, ‘Hey guys what you’re doing?’ They said, ‘Working.’ I said, ‘On what?’ They said, ‘Clearing the land.’ I said, ‘You mean my land.’ They said, ‘We’re going to have to call our supervisor.’”
The Department of Homeland Security sought a waiver from environmental regulations this month to build a section of border wall near San Diego. But 1,500 miles away in Texas, the Trump administration is working on another section that could block migrating butterflies and cut across the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge, one of the most treasured spots for birdwatching in the country and a “crown jewel” in the federal refuge system. Wright unknowingly walked right into that effort.
Read the full story in Pacific Standard.
In a move that conservationists and oil and gas associations have been awaiting for months, the Department of the Interior published on Monday new recommendations for how the government should regulate land where greater sage grouse live. The recommendations walk back protections set for the bird in 2015.
Read the full story in Great Lakes Echo.
One Michigan-based organization is asking city dwellers to think of bats as neighbors rather than pests.
As bat populations dwindle nationwide, the Organization for Bat Conservation is seeking refuge for them in cities.
The organization, based in Pontiac, Michigan, is working with partners in 10 cities, teaching people how to coexist with an animal that many consider the stuff of nightmares.
Applications due September 1, 2017.
For more information, visit https://www.fws.gov/nativeamerican/grants.html
The goal of the Tribal Wildlife Grant Program is to provide a competitive funding opportunity for Federally recognized Tribal governments to develop and implement programs for the benefit of wildlife and their habitat, including species of Native American cultural or traditional importance and species that are not hunted or fished.
Tribal Wildlife Grants are used to provide technical and financial assistance to Tribes for the development and implementation of programs that benefit fish and wildlife resources and their habitat. Activities may include, but are not limited to, planning for wildlife and habitat conservation, fish and wildlife conservation and management actions, fish and wildlife related laboratory and field research, natural history studies, habitat mapping, field surveys and population monitoring, habitat preservation, conservation easements, and public education that is relevant to the project. The funds may be used for salaries, equipment, consultant services, subcontracts, acquisitions and travel.