Tag Archives: endangered

West Coast Great White Sharks are endangered – population around 340

A group of environmentalists have petitioned the federal government to put West Coast Great White Sharks as an endangered species. From an L.A. Times article:

The northeastern Pacific Ocean population of great whites is genetically distinct and in danger of extinction, according to the petition. Researchers have estimated that there are about 340 individuals in the group that are mature or nearly so.

“There could be fewer than 100 breeding females left,” said Geoff Shester, the California program director of Oceana, an international group focused on protecting the world’s oceans.

 

Wow, just a few hundred of these guys out there. Even though the ocean is a huge place, that small number would probably still inspire enormous fear in people, despite the extreme rarity of shark attacks.

 

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The Museum of Endangered Sounds – Nintendo, VCR, payphone, cassette tape

This site is archiving the electronic sounds of the past, and it’s awesome

The site archives a few sounds that might have you nostalgically playing them over and over again. There’s everything from the sound of dialing a rotary telephone to the sound of a floppy drive chugging away. If nothing else, listening to the sound of a screeching modem kicking into high gear will make you eternally grateful for your 24 hour broadband connection.

I love this idea!

The Museum of Endangered Sounds

 

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Amazing Species: a carnivorous plant – Nepenthes rigidifolia

Nepenthes rigidifolia is not yet listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, however a provisional evaluation classes this species as ‘Critically Endangered’. Known only from a single location in Sumatra, Indonesia, this spectacular carnivorous pitcher plant produces mottled brown and yellowish green pitchers up to 21 cm tall and 8 cm wide, borne from unique, rigid leaves from which it receives its name. The traps of this plant are home to a wide range of dependant animals, including mosquito larvae and other arthropods.

Only 24 specimens of this ultra-rare plant species were ever discovered in the wild, all outside of national parks and nature reserves. Unfortunately, that small number has been decimated by poaching and habitat destruction, and a recent survey confirmed just two individuals surviving in the wild today.

To safeguard against complete extinction, multiple strains of Nepenthes rigidifolia are preserved through an ex-situ conservation strategy (i.e., conservation outside their natural habitat), with the hope that protection and restoration of its habitat may save this critically rare species, and the ecosystem of miniature life that it supports.

via IUCN Amazing Species (pdf)

The ultimate round-up of Earth Day events for this Sunday

Earth Day is this Sunday, April 22, 2012, and here is the ultimate round-up of events:
 
National Park WeekFree entrance to all U.S. National Parks

Looking for something fun, free, and fantastic to do with family and friends?

Head out to America’s national parks where millions of stars light up the dark night sky, deer and antelope (and a few other critters!) play on the wide open range, and history is an unbelievable experience, not an exam.

And the best news? During National Park Week, April 21-29, All 397 of your national parks offer free admission, all week long!

 
The Nature ConservancyPicnic for the Planet

Feel like breaking a world record? Join the Nature Conservancy in their giant Picnic for the Planet sandwich-munching extravaganza. The goal is to set a record for the largest picnic celebration ever. The picnic sites are dotted across the country.

 
Wyland FoundationPledge to Conserve Water

To mark the Clean Water Act’s 40th anniversary, the Wyland Foundation has invited cities across the nation — broken into groups by population — to compete at collecting pledges by individuals to cut down on water and energy use in the month of April.

 
World Wildlife FederationCreate a webpage about an Endangered Species

The World Wildlife Fund is inviting people to create their own Web pages to spotlight a favorite endangered species or cause by using W.W.F.’s easy-to-navigate software.

 
Advanced Research Projects Agency for Energy (ARPA-E)

A slideshow showcasing potentially transformative energy technologies from the 3rd annual ARPA-E summit.

 
Scientific American10 Surprising Recycling Efforts (from bras to crayons)

A slideshow, in observance of Earth Day 2012, that helps consumers move well beyond the throw-it-out mentality.

 
2 free iPhone apps about our National Parks

Two apps that feature national parks have arrived just in time for Earth Day. And they’re free, which goes nicely with the Saturday start of fee-free National Park Week. So download the app, pick a park to visit and go.

    • Fotopedia National Parks
    • National Parks by National Geographic

 
Earth Day in Photographs

April 22 will mark Earth Day worldwide, an event now in its 42nd year and observed in 175 countries. The original grass-roots environmental action helped spur the Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act in the United States. Gathered here are images of our planet’s environment, efforts to utilize renewable alternative sources of energy, and the effects of different forms of pollution.

Elephants forage on March 20, 2012 in the Tsavo-east National Park.

 
NY TimesEarth Day Round-up

The holiday is Earth Day — the 43rd to be held since Gaylord Nelson, then a Democratic senator from Wisconsin, proposed that a “national teach-in” on the environment be held on April 22, 1970.

So, how best to celebrate, honor, reflect on or brood about the planet? Here are a few ideas:

Trying to foster a recovery in Basking Sharks – the 40-foot docile giants

An electronic ID tag from a rare shark spotted off the (San Diego) county coast in June has popped to the surface near Hawaii, providing local marine researchers with an unprecedented look into the long-distance movements of the second-largest known fish.

“I would characterize it as an avalanche of data,” said Van Sommeran said Monday.

Basking sharks have almost disappeared from the West Coast, but biologists at the National Marine Fisheries Service in La Jolla found two last year and outfitted them with satellite-based tracking devices in hopes of learning more about where they roam.

Agencies in Canada, Mexico and the United States are trying to safeguard basking sharks, which once gathered near the coastline by the hundreds or thousands. In recent years, however, sightings have dwindled and biologists have speculated that as few as 300 swim along the West Coast.

While basking sharks have gaping mouths and can grow up to 40 feet, they aren’t a threat to people. They are filter feeders that consume large volumes of zooplankton.

via Shark’s journey a first for science

Sensitive and endangered species list for the Bolsa Chica Wetlands

Did you know that there are 22 sensitive and endangered species that rely on the Bolsa Chica Wetlands in Huntington Beach, California?

As of January 2011, that list includes 16 bird, 1 reptile, and 5 plant species. The full list below doesn’t include the 200+ other birds that call the wetlands home, but it does give you a sense of how important this place is.

Birds

  • Peregrine - (Falco peregrinus anatum) – recently delisted
  • White tailed kite - (Elanus leucurus) – California Fully Protected
  • Loggerhead Shrike - (Lanius ludovicianus) – California Species of Special Concern
  • California Gnatcatcher - (Polioptila californica californica) – Federal Threatened
  • Burrowing Owl - (Athene cunicularia) – California Species of Special Concern
  • Cooper’s Hawk - (Accipiter cooperii) – California Watch List
  • Merlin - (Falco columbarius) – California Watch List
  • Northern Harrier – (Circus cyaneus) – California Species of Special Concern
  • Osprey - (Pandion haliaetus) – California Watch List
  • Sharp-shinned Hawk - (Accipiter striatus) – California Watch List
  • Northern Cardinal - (Cardinalis cardinalis) – California Watch List
  • Olive-sided Flycatcher - (Contopus cooperi) – California Species of Special Concern, USFWS Birds of Conservation Concern
  • Tricolored Blackbird - (Agelaius tricolor) – California Species of Special Concern, USFWS Birds of Conservation Concern
  • Yellow-headed Blackbird - (Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus) – California Species of Special Concern
  • Yellow Warbler - (Dendroica petechia brewsteri) – California Species of Special Concern
  • Yellow-breasted Chat - (Icteria virens) – California Species of Special Concern

Reptiles

  • Silvery Legless Lizard - (Anniella pulchra pulchra) – California Species of Special Concern

Plants

  • Southern tarplant - (Centromadia parryi ssp. Australis) – CNPS 1B.1
  • Southwestern spiny rush - (Juncus acutus ssp. Leopoldii) – CNPS 4.2
  • California box thorn - (Lycium californicum) – CNPS 4.2
  • Coast Woolly Heads - (Nemacaulis denudata var. denudata) – CNPS 1B.2
  • Woolly sea-blite - (Suaeda taxifolia) – CNPS 4.2

 

// Information provided from the California Department of Fish and Game – Lower Mesa Restoration Project

Walking with endangered species: California Least Tern

I’ve always heard a lot about endangered species. Even seen a few pictures, but let’s be honest. The creatures that most of us see are rats, pigeons, and spiders.

Not the beauties of the animal kingdom. Which has caused me to wonder about the exotic animals on the Discovery channel. Does everything eat out of trash cans and look like rabies?

My answer came at the beach where I spotted some dolphins. In fact, I’m seeing a lot of them, nearly everyday. Which is a huge change from my childhood in the 90s, when seeing them then was like winning the lottery, maybe once a summer.

This launched me on an investigation that revealed a treasure trove in my backyard. There are nature preserves, tidal basins, wetlands, habitats, and nesting grounds.

I began noticing all sorts of animals all around me. Some that I passed by without even thinking twice. Like the birds in the picture below.

It turns out that those a few of those are an endangered species, and they are beautiful.

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