Friday, 30 June 2017

Bat biodiversity is in danger on islands worldwide

Date: June 21, 2017
Source: University of Helsinki

A new study from the University of Helsinki investigates knowledge gaps among the largely unknown, but greatly threatened, group of island-restricted bats, and leads future research efforts to actual priorities. Island ecosystems, as a consequence of isolation from mainland, have evolved peculiar faunas with a great number of species found nowhere else. They are also some of the most vulnerable habitats in the world due to limited resilience to anthropogenic threats.

"Island bats play a fundamental role in the maintenance of insular ecosystems through seed dispersal, pollination, and suppression of arthropod pests," highlights Irene Conenna from the Metapopulation Research Center at the University of Helsinki.

Chimpanzees modify grooming behavior when near higher ranking members

Date: June 21, 2017
Source: University of Kent

Research by Dr Nicholas Newton-Fisher from the University of Kent has found chimpanzees modify their interactions with other chimpanzees if higher ranking members of their community are nearby.

Dr Newton-Fisher, based in the School of Anthropology and Conservation (SAC) at Kent, and Stefano Kaburu, from the Department of Population Health and Reproduction, School of Veterinary Medicine, UC Davis, University of California and formerly of SAC, observed grooming interactions between members of a community of chimpanzees in the Budongo Forest Reserve in Western Uganda.

Anti-poaching drive brings Siberia’s tigers back from brink

A WWF appeal aims to highlight the threat of habitat destruction and climate change on wild populations

Robin McKie Science editor
Saturday 24 June 2017 20.10 BST Last modified on Saturday 24 June 2017 22.30 BST 

In February, Pavel Fomenko was told that the body of a young female tiger had been discovered underneath a car parked outside the town of Luchegorsk, in eastern Russia. Fomenko – head of rare species conservation for WWF Russia – took the corpse for examination where he uncovered the grim details of the animal’s death.

The Amur tiger, which is also known as the Siberian tiger, had been caught in a trap and had chewed off a paw to free itself. It was left crippled, unable to hunt, and died of starvation while seeking shelter under the car. “Hearing about this sort of thing is always painful,” said Fomenko. “This was a beautiful tigress.” It is harrowing scenes such as these that conservation groups are hoping will become increasingly rare in the years to come. Later this week, WWF will launch an appeal that aims not just to halt the decline in tiger numbers but to boost them to new levels. The goal is to increase the world’s tiger population in the wild to more than 6,000 by 2022, the next Chinese year of the tiger. In this way, it should be possible to achieve global security for this poster boy and girl of the conservation movement.
The death of the tigress found under the car is tempered by the knowledge that the Amur is part of a global wild tiger population that has started to rise, albeit marginally, after decades of decline. The world lost 97% of its tiger population in a little over a century, but last year, WWF reported that global numbers in the wild had risen from 3,200 in 2010 to about 3,900 in 2016, thanks to the introduction of anti-poaching patrols, habitat protection and other measures.

“The increase in tiger numbers is encouraging but the species’ future in its natural environment still hangs in the balance and numbers remain perilously low,” said Rebecca May, WWF’s tiger specialist. “There now needs to be an enormous push forward to build on this progress. We need commitment and urgent action from all governments of ‘tiger-range’ countries [where tigers still roam free], as well as the passion and unwavering support of the public.”

Related Posts with Thumbnails