Habitat Conservation

When habitats are threatened, so are the animals who live there.

Carnivore Collapse

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Large carnivores—big cats, wolves, bears and more—face enormous threats from loss of prey and habitat to use of their parts in traditional medicine. But beefed up livestock production worldwide—50 percent more in the last 50 years—is also taking a tremendous toll, says William Ripple, lead author of a new Oregon State University College of Forestry study. It’s also significantly contributing to greenhouse gas emissions. 

Are the Spotted Owl Wars Back?

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Old-growth forests of the Pacific Northwest under fire

Ignoring the lessons learned from unsustainable clear-cutting in the 1970s and 1980s, Oregon politicians are pushing legislation that would dramatically accelerate logging in the heart of the Pacific Northwest, undermining known federal environmental laws and threatening imperiled species. 

Bad News Bats

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Arkansas is the 23rd state stricken with the deadly white-nose syndrome in cave-dwelling bats after state biologists confirmed its presence in two northern long-eared bats in January. Biologists estimate that bat deaths caused by the cold-loving fungus, first found in winter 2006 and 2007, exceed 5 million to 7 million—although exact numbers are unknown. It is suspected the disease makes the bats wake up every three days or so during hibernation to clean the fungus off, which causes the bats to burn through their fat reserves.

Living Lightly

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For the Birds

Some cat owners probably awoke this morning to a carcass on their doorstep: a bird, a mouse or maybe a mole. These “gifts” are tokens of their feline’s late-night prowling and a glimpse of the ecological havoc wreaked by the domestic cat. 

Idaho’s War on Wolves Escalates

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Idaho holds a privileged place in the annals of wolf history. Here, in The Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness nearly 20 years ago, the first reintroduced wolves in America leaped from portable kennels onto their historical home turf, returned by a federal government coming to terms with its misguided policy to hunt, poison and trap an ecologically crucial species to near-extinction. Now, with federal wolf protection lifted in 2011 and wolf management in the hands of the state, many concerned citizens and scientists view Idaho as the poster child for a particularly egregious anti-wolf agenda—one that is absent scientific merit, based in irrational loathing and aimed toward wolf persecution, not management. “While we are disappointed with many states’ wolf plans, Idaho tops the list as the state with the worst wolf policy,” says Don Barry, Defenders’ senior vice president of conservation programs. “The state has rapidly become the most hostile state in the West to wolves and wolf recovery and has adopted a series of extreme anti-wolf measures designed to seriously undermine wolf recovery and sustainability, and to drive the wolf population down to the absolute minimum.”

Spring 2014

Volume and Issue: 
Volume 89, Issue 2
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Gray wolf, © Joan Poor
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Defenders Magazine

Ecological Insults and Injuries Revealed Four Years after Deepwater Horizon

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by Chris Haney

Four years after the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig spilled millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, we're beginning to see the full scope of how this ecological disaster is impacting our wildlife on land, air and sea.

We’ve Got to Protect What’s Left of the Sagebrush Sea

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by Mark Salvo

New research shows that after a fire, the Sagebrush Sea (home to the imperiled greater sage-grouse) could take up to 20 years to fully recover. With other factors already threatening so much of this habitat, what does that mean for the species that call it home?

Oklahoma energy briefs for April 11, 2014

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April 11, 2014
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NEWS OK
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Photo: Larry Lamsa / WikiCommons
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Defenders In the News

Conservation groups challenge limited protections for lesser prairie-chicken

Defenders of Wildlife * WildEarth Guardians * Center for Biological Diversity

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

April 10, 2014

Contact: Jason Rylander, Defenders of Wildlife, (202) 772-3245

                Erik Molvar, WildEarth Guardians, (307) 399-7910

                Jay Lininger, Center for Biological Diversity, (928) 853-9929

 

Conservation groups challenge limited protections for lesser prairie-chicken

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