ecosystems

Since 1960, the Colorado River has not flowed regularly to the sea. While pockets of green remain, the Colorado in its delta is a parched river begging for relief. The dry, sandy channel glares in the bright sun, abandoned by the river that has been overtapped and overworked for too long. It’s hard not to think of the...

By David Wilkie and  Joshua Ginsberg Oil in the Arctic Wildlife Refuge of Alaska; minerals in unlogged forests of Congo and Gabon in Central Africa; new roads across the Serengeti in Tanzania and the Mayan forests of Central America; and oil palm plantations in Indonesia and Malaysia. Seldom does a week go by without a...

By Cristián Samper and Ann Tutwiler As we recognize World Food Day this week, it is a good time to consider two crucial challenges to humankind: safeguarding global food security in the face of climate change and population growth, and conserving biodiversity –the variety of life forms, and their ecosystems, that sustain life on our...

By Cristián Samper and Ann Tutwiler As we recognize World Food Day this week, it is a good time to consider two crucial challenges to humankind: safeguarding global food security in the face of climate change and population growth, and conserving biodiversity –the variety of life forms, and their ecosystems, that sustain life on our...

Today, during an early morning walk along Morse Beach, near Sandy Point Bird Sanctuary in West Haven, I noticed many dead horseshoe crab on the sand. One of them had a tag, referring to #2859 and a phone number to report the find.   Back to the office, I learnt that the Maryland Fishery Resources Office has...

Today, during an early morning walk along Morse Beach, near Sandy Point Bird Sanctuary in West Haven, I noticed many dead horseshoe crab on the sand. One of them had a tag, referring to #2859 and a phone number to report the find.   Back to the office, I learnt that the Maryland Fishery Resources Office has...

Two new studies showcase the greater dangers of rising ocean temperatures. The first, in the journal Nature Climate Change, finds rising carbon dioxide levels that make oceans more acidic can also raise global temperatures. The authors find ocean acidification would lead certain marine organisms to emit less of the sulphur compounds that help with cloud...

By Kate Horowitz At the first whiff of a mountain lion, a mouse might scamper away, a rabbit might freeze, and a stray dog might prepare for a fight. These instinctive responses, so crucial to survival, are surprisingly common: New research shows that even plants can benefit from “eavesdropping” on chemical cues from their attackers....

The most devastated ecosystem I’ve ever seen is the Aral Sea in Central Asia. Once the world’s fourth largest lake, the Aral spanned an area the size of Ireland. It harbored more than twenty species of fish, and its fishery sustained an annual catch of 44,000 tons and 60,000 jobs. Lush wetlands along the lake’s...

The most devastated ecosystem I’ve ever seen is the Aral Sea in Central Asia. Once the world’s fourth largest lake, the Aral spanned an area the size of Ireland. It harbored more than twenty species of fish, and its fishery sustained an annual catch of 44,000 tons and 60,000 jobs. Lush wetlands along the lake’s...