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From the War in Iraq to the War against Poaching – November 15, 2017

Damien Mander’s fight to protect African wildlife

Eight years ago, Damien Mander was trekking through the bush in Zimbabwe when he saw something harrowing — a half-dead buffalo floundering on the ground, trying to free herself from a wire snare gripping her legs. The ranger accompanying Mander said the buffalo must have been there for three days. 

photo of Damien manderPhoto by Erico HillerConservation wasn't always at the forefront of Damien Mander's life, but he found new purpose in the fight to protect wildlife in Southern Africa.

“She’d ripped her pelvis in half,” Mander, a 38-year-old Australian conservationist, told me when we met in Washington DC. “Up close, you could hear the… more

by: Elizabeth Claire Alberts

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British Columbia Government Using ‘Judas’ Wolf in Unethical Hunt, Say Wildlife Advocates – March 9, 2016

Collared wolf may be kept alive to help government track and kill pack members time and time again

The mass killing of gray wolves in British Columbia (BC) has ignited a bitter feud between Canadian government officials and conservationists. The government has insisted that the cull, which began in early 2015, is the only way to save the critically endangered mountain caribou, while wildlife advocates argue that wolves are merely being scapegoated for habitat loss in the region. In recent weeks, the battle has heated up with the release of audio clips of a recorded interview with a retired wildlife patrol guide who outlines the controversial methods used in the culls. 

Photo of Grey Wolf British ColumbiaPhoto courtesy of Wildlife Defence… more

by: Elizabeth Claire Alberts

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The Truth Behind That “Crappy” Cup of Coffee – October 7, 2015

Civet cats caged and force-fed in large numbers to feed the world’s growing demand for kopi luwak

I saw my first civet cat on the last day of my holiday in Bali, Indonesia. It was tethered to a wooden tabletop outside of an upscale coffee shop, squinting at the afternoon sun as it struggled to sleep. Tourists swarmed around the animal, poking its fur and snapping photos. It didn’t take much to see that this civet cat was scared, and very stressed.

photo of a caged civetWorld Animal ProtectionA caged civet cat at a "Luwak" coffee farm in Sumatra, Indonesia. World Animal Protection carried out an investigation on the practice of civet farming to make coffee in 2011.

When… more

by: Elizabeth Claire Alberts

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Recycled Plastic Clothing: Solution or Threat? – December 15, 2014

Research shows that synthetic clothing sheds plastic microfibers, which end up back in oceans

Celebrity music mogul Pharrell Williams recently unveiled his latest project: He’s the face for G-Star Raw for the Oceans, a clothing line made out of recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles. Since the collection’s launch in September 2014, Raw for the Oceans has received a huge amount of media attention, and the clothes have been distributed to G-Star Raw shops around the world. On the clothing line’s website, the makers claim that Pharrell’s collection uses “the world’s first high performance eco-yarn.”

Oil Train BlockadePhoto by Bo Eide Plastic and other ocean trash on a beach in northern Norway.

The concept… more

by: Elizabeth Claire Alberts

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70 Years On, Seabirds Continue to Warn about Plastic Pollution in the Oceans – June 6, 2014

Plight of the flesh-footed shearwater in Australia illustrates how widespread the problem is

It’s a late May night on Lord Howe Island, and the moon gleams across the volcanic mountains and white sand beaches of this six-mile long isle off the east coast of Australia. While most people are tucked inside their houses or hotels, conservation biologist Dr. Jennifer Lavers and her colleague, naturalist Ian Hutton, don headlamps and bike to the flesh-footed shearwater colony on the northeast side of the island. Lord Howe Island is one of the two main breeding areas for this seabird in the southwest Pacific Ocean (the other is in northern New Zealand). Tonight the colony bustles with 90-day-old chicks flapping their wings as they prepare for their first… more

by: Elizabeth Claire Alberts

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