Tag Archives: Zoo/Wildlife

* Lions in West and Central Africa apparently unique

Lions in West and Central Africa form a unique group, only distantly related to lions in East and Southern Africa. Biologists at Leiden University confirm this in an article published in Scientific Reports. In this study, the researchers gathered a genetic dataset of lion populations covering a total of 22 countries. This included samples from […]

Tags: ,

* Warnings of imminent extinction crisis for largest wild animal species

A team of conservation biologists is calling for a worldwide strategy to prevent the unthinkable: the extinction of the world’s largest mammal species. In a public declaration published in today’s edition of the journal BioScience, a group of more than 40 conservation scientists and other experts are calling for a coordinated global plan to prevent […]

Tags: ,

Should the gray wolf keep its endangered species protection?

Research by UCLA biologists published today in the journal Science Advances presents strong evidence that the scientific reason advanced by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove the gray wolf from protection under the Endangered Species Act is incorrect. A key justification for protection of the gray wolf under the act was that its […]

Tags: , ,

Tooth wear sheds light on the feeding habits of ancient elephant relatives

How can we ever know what ancient animals ate? For the first time, the changing diets of elephants in the last two million years in China have been reconstructed, using a technique based on analysis of the surface textures of their teeth. The work was carried out by a University of Bristol student, working with […]

Tags: , ,

What can a sea-lion teach us about musicality?

Ronan the sea lion can keep the beat better than any other animal, a study published in Frontiers in Neuroscience found out more. Whether it is Mozart, Hendrix, Miles Davis, or tribal drumming, few activities feel as uniquely human as music. And, indeed, for a long time, most scientists believed that Homo sapiens was the […]

Tags: ,

* Desert elephants pass on knowledge — not mutations — to survive

Despite reported differences in appearance and behavior, DNA evidence finds that Namibian desert elephants share the same DNA as African savanna elephants. However, Namibian desert-dwelling elephants should be protected so they can continue to pass on their unique knowledge and survival skills to future generations. “The ability of species such as elephants to learn and […]

Tags: ,

* Can you teach koalas new tricks?

In a paper titled Using complementary remote detection methods for retrofitted eco-passages: a case study for monitoring individual koalas in south-east Queensland published by the CSIRO on Tuesday (July 26), the Environmental Futures Research Institute team verified 130 crossings by koalas involving a retrofitted structure or a road surface over a 30-month period. Professor Darryl […]

Tags: ,

* Black bear links real objects to computer images

American black bears may be able to recognize things they know in real life, such as pieces of food or humans, when looking at a photograph of the same thing. This is one of the findings of a study led by Zoe Johnson-Ulrich and Jennifer Vonk of Oakland University in the US, which involved a […]

Tags: , ,

* The snow leopard — world’s most mysterious big cat — may be more common than thought

Posted on

The snow leopard has long been one of the least studied — and therefore poorly understood — of the large cats. No longer. Scientists studying snow leopards now say the big cats may be more common than previously thought. New estimates focused on areas described as ‘Snow Leopard Conservation Units,’ covering only 44 percent of […]

Tags: , ,

Exploring ways to ‘coexist with wildlife’

Posted on

Although protected areas such as national parks can play a crucial role in conserving wildlife, most species of large carnivores and large herbivores also depend on being able to occupy human-dominated landscapes. This sharing of space is often associated with conflicts between humans and wildlife, and between different groups of humans with divergent interests. In […]

Tags: , ,

* Plan to fly rhinos to Australia comes under fire

Posted on

An ambitious project to relocate rhinos from South Africa to Australia has been accused by some conservation researchers of being a waste of money. The Australian Rhino Project charity, headquartered in Sydney, has attracted huge publicity for its plans to move 80 rhinos to Australia “to establish an insurance population and ensure the survival of […]

Tags: ,

Deer make collision-free escapes thanks to inbuilt ‘compasses’

Posted on

Why do deer in a group, when startled, suddenly bolt away together and never collide with each other? It’s because these deer have an inner compass that allows them to follow a certain direction in order to make their escape. Their getaway is almost always along a north-south axis, thanks to their ability to sense […]

Tags: ,

Measuring impact of Kenya’s ivory burning ‘urgent’

Posted on

Gathering evidence on the impact of Kenya’s record-breaking ivory burn on elephant conservation should be an urgent priority according to four University of Queensland scientists. Dr Duan Biggs from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions (CEED) said the ivory burns and stockpile destruction had increased by more than 600 per cent since 2011, […]

Tags: ,

* Elephant calves more likely to survive in the care of their grandmothers

Posted on

Among the Asian elephants, the grandmothers have a significant role. They ensure the survival of the calves and breeding success for their daughters. Grandmothers often provide vital childcare in human communities across the world. In traditional societies such help even increases grandchildren’s survival prospects and leads to shorter birth intervals for the daughters. In a […]

Tags: ,

Climate change likely to turn up heat on koalas

Posted on

A changing climate means that by 2070 koalas may no longer call large parts of inland Australia home, researchers have found. Using a detailed ecological model, the University of Melbourne study shows hotter temperatures and altered rainfall patterns will make it much more difficult for koalas to get the water they need — making inland […]

Tags: ,

* Reintroduction of lynx requires larger numbers to avoid genetic depletion

Posted on

For successful reintroduction of lynx into the wild, the number of released animals is crucial. If only a few lynx are reintroduced to found a population, the genetic diversity is too low to ensure their long-term sustainability. An international research team has recently published these findings in the scientific journal Conservation Genetics. The researchers highlight […]

Tags: , ,

Wood toxin could harm zoo animals

Posted on

When those cute animals gnaw on wood enclosures at a zoo, they may be risking their health by ingesting toxic levels of arsenic, so zoo managers need to pay attention to the potential risk of the wood on zoo animals, a new University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences study shows. The wood […]

Tags: ,

Citizen scientists can help protect endangered species

Posted on

Lay people can help scientists conserve the protected Florida fox squirrel and endangered species just by collecting data, a new University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences study shows. So-called citizen scientists did a commendable job collecting information on the fox squirrel, according to the study. Until this study, the conservation and management […]

Tags: ,

Seeking to rewind mammalian extinction: The effort to save the northern white rhino

Posted on

In December 2015 an international group of scientists convened in Austria to discuss the imminent extinction of the northern white rhinoceros and the possibility of bringing the species back from brink of extinction. The discussions of this historic meeting appear in the international Journal Zoo Biology. The publication of this work is designed as part […]

Tags: ,

Evolution of the Javan leopard

Posted on

An international team of researchers from Germany and Indonesia has discovered new insights into the evolutionary history of the Javan leopard. The results of the study confirm that Javan leopards are clearly distinct from Asian leopards and probably colonised Java around 600,000 years ago via a land bridge from mainland Asia. The study, published in […]

Tags: ,

* Deadly animal prion disease appears in Europe

Posted on

A highly contagious and deadly animal brain disorder has been detected in Europe for the first time. Scientists are now warning that the single case found in a wild reindeer might represent an unrecognized, widespread infection. Chronic wasting disease (CWD) was thought to be restricted to deer, elk (Cervus canadensis) and moose (Alces alces) in […]

Tags: , ,

30 years after Chernobyl, camera study reveals wildlife abundance in Chernobyl

Posted on

Thirty years ago, the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Pripyat, Ukraine, became the site of the world’s largest nuclear accident. While humans are now scarce in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, continued studies–including a just-published camera study conducted by researchers from the University of Georgia’s Savannah River Ecology Laboratory–validate findings that wildlife populations are abundant at […]

Tags: ,

Island foxes may be ‘least variable’ of all wild animals

Posted on

In comparison to their relatives on the mainland, the Channel Island foxes living on six of California’s Channel Islands are dwarves, at two-thirds the size. The island foxes most likely evolved from gray foxes brought to the northern islands by humans over 7,000 years ago. Some think island foxes may have been partially domesticated by […]

Tags: ,

Global carnivore conservation at risk, new report shows

Posted on

A new study confirms that the global conservation of carnivores is at risk. Published in Scientific Reports, the report models future global land conversion and estimates this will lead to significant range loss and conflict with local people in regions critical for the survival of already threatened carnivore species. Organized by researchers from the University […]

Tags: ,

New assay offers improved detection of deadly prion diseases

Posted on

Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs), or prion diseases, are a family of rare progressive, neurodegenerative illnesses that affect both humans and animals. TSE surveillance is important for public health and food safety because TSEs have the potential of crossing from animals to humans, as seen with the spread of mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy […]

Tags: , ,

* Inbreeding impacts on mothering ability, red deer study shows

Inbred animals have fewer surviving offspring compared with others, a study of red deer in the wild has found. The insight could aid the conservation and management of endangered populations of animals in which inbreeding carries a high risk of extinction. The findings from a long-term study on a Scottish island shows that hinds whose […]

Tags: ,

No snow, no hares: Climate change pushes emblematic species north

If there is an animal emblematic of the northern winter, it is the snowshoe hare. A forest dweller, the snowshoe hare is named for its big feet, which allow it to skitter over deep snow to escape lynx, coyotes and other predators. It changes color with the seasons, assuming a snow-white fur coat for winter […]

Tags: ,

* Pandas hear more than we do

A study published in the journal Global Ecology and Conservation may help field conservationists better understand the potential for human activities to disturb endangered giant pandas in native habitats. Using pandas located at the San Diego Zoo, conservation scientists worked with animal care specialists to determine pandas’ range of hearing sensitivity, discovering that they can […]

Tags: ,

* Tracking deer by NASA satellite

Mule deer mothers are in sync with their environment, with reproduction patterns that closely match the cycles of plant growth in their habitat. And new research using NASA satellite data shows that tracking vegetation from space can help wildlife managers predict when does will give birth to fawns. Mule deer mothers are in sync with […]

Tags: ,

Food limitation linked to record California sea lion pup strandings

Posted on

Large numbers of California sea lion pups have flooded animal rescue centers in Southern California in the past few years. Now, as part of an ongoing investigation into the Unusual Mortality Event of California sea lions by a team of NOAA scientists and private partners, researchers may have an explanation. Booming sea lion numbers combined […]

Tags: ,

Sidebar