• Cheetah Man

    Cheetah Man

     Olivier Houalet – whose looks are reminiscent of Tarzan – is just 27-years-old and had no specialist training in animal behaviour when he came to live in Namibia. But Olivier has developed an amazing affinity with the Big Cats there. He has developed a unique approach to working with the cheetahs, in particular, by adopting their body language and mannerisms, becoming part of the pack, allowing him to offer amazing insights into how cheetahs behave and the fascinating social rules that operate among them. Now Olivier is about to embark on an emotional journey to release them back into the wild, a journey he is passionate about, even if it leads to their deaths.


     
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  • Climatisation : le froid qui réchauffe la planète

    Climatisation : le froid qui réchauffe la planète

    L’augmentation actuelle et à venir de la demande de climatiseurs dans le monde risque de créer une catastrophe écologique, alerte l’Agence internationale de l’énergie (AIE).

    Peut-on avoir de l’air frais à volonté sur une planète qui est de plus en plus chaude ? D’ici à trente ans, le nombre de climatiseurs vendu dans le monde devrait exploser, entraînant une surconsommation électrique, des émissions de CO2… et, au final, encore plus de réchauffement climatique. En France, le marché est en pleine expansion : il a progressé de 8 % l’an dernier, en 2017, où 500 000 appareils ont été installés.

    Vers une catastrophe écologique ?

    Ce goût pour la fraîcheur est de plus en plus partagé, notamment dans les pays émergents, comme la Chine. À Pékin, il n’y a pas un immeuble qui ne soit équipé de bloc de climatisation. Les appareils de base, qui sont le plus couramment vendus, consomment beaucoup d’électricité. D’après l’Agence internationale de l’énergie (AIE), la demande de climatisation mondiale pourrait tourner à la catastrophe écologique. Actuellement, on compte 1,6 milliard de climatiseurs. En 2050, il pourrait y en avoir 5,6 milliards et 37 % de l’électricité mondiale serait consommée par ses climatiseurs, ce qui rejetterait 1 milliard de tonnes supplémentaire.
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  • The demise of the largest and oldest African baobabs

    The demise of the largest and oldest African baobabs

    The African baobab is the biggest and longest-living angio-sperm tree. By using radiocarbon dating we identified the stable architectures that enable baobabs to reach large sizes and great ages. We report that 9 of the 13 oldest and 5 of the 6 largest individuals have died, or at least their oldest parts/stems have collapsed and died, over the past 12 years; the cause of the mortalities is still unclear…
     
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  • The largest Victorian glasshouse in the world has reopened

    Temperate House

    The largest Victorian glasshouse in the world has reopened

    Temperate House, Kew review king of greenhouses sees the light again


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  • The Silence of the Bugs

    The Silence of the Bugs

    By Curt Stager Mr. Stager is a professor of natural sciences.

    Credit Enzo Pérès-Labourdette

    Fifty-six years after Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” warned of bird die-offs from pesticides, a new biocrisis may be emerging. A study published last fall documented a 76 percent decline in the total seasonal biomass of flying insects netted at 63 locations in Germany over the last three decades. Losses in midsummer, when these insects are most numerous, exceeded 80 percent. This alarming discovery, made by mostly amateur naturalists who make up the volunteer-run Entomological Society Krefeld, raised an obvious question: Was this happening elsewhere? Unfortunately, that question is hard to answer because of another problem: a global decline of field naturalists who study these phenomena.  Most scientists today live in cities and have little direct experience with wild plants and animals, and most biology textbooks now focus more on molecules, cells and internal anatomy than on the diversity and habits of species. It has even become fashionable among some educators to belittle the teaching of natural history and scientific facts that can be “regurgitated” on tests in favor of theoretical concepts…
     
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  • Australie : la Grande Barrière de corail a déjà failli disparaître cinq fois en 30 000 ans

    Australie : la Grande Barrière de corail a déjà failli disparaître cinq fois en 30 000 ans

    A nouveau menacée de disparition, la Grande Barrière pourrait cette fois succomber au rythme sans précédent de hausse de la température et du niveau des océans.

    La Grande Barrière de corail au large de l’Etat australien du Queensland, le 25 avril 2018. (IMAGINECHINA / AFP)

    La Grande Barrière de corail est presque morte cinq fois en 30 000 ans et a ressuscité grâce à la migration de certains coraux. Mais le rythme sans précédent de hausse du niveau et de la température des océans pourrait avoir raison d’elle, s’inquiète une étude australienne publiée lundi 28 mai dans la revue Nature Geoscience.  La Barrière a failli mourir deux fois pendant la dernière période glaciaire, il y a 30 000 et 22 000 ans, lorsque la baisse du niveau des océans a exposé les récifs à l’air libre. Deux autres épisodes quasi mortels ont eu lieu il y a environ 17 000 ans et 13 000 ans : l’augmentation importante du niveau de la mer a menacé ces petits animaux au squelette de calcaire, qui ne peuvent pas survivre à de grandes profondeurs…
     
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  • Resurrecting the northern white rhinoceros?

     Scientists See Promise in Resurrecting These Rhinos That Are Nearly Extinct

    Even if the technology can bring back the northern white rhinoceros, should we do it?

    Sudan, the last male northern white rhino, who died March 20 at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya.

    CreditSan Diego Zoo Global

    By Steph Yin

    When the last male northern white rhinoceros died in March, people mourned the beloved mammal’s step toward extinction.

    With no members of the subspecies left in the wild and just two females remaining in captivity, it felt like the last bit of sand was draining through the rhino’s hourglass.

    But several teams of scientists are working to flip the hourglass back over…


     
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  • Primeira morte de mico-leão-dourado por febre amarela é confirmada no Brasil

     Primeira morte de mico-leão-dourado por febre amarela é confirmada no Brasil

    Cientistas temem que doença afete ainda mais a espécie já ameaçada de extinção

    por Ana Lucia Azevedo  

    Mico-leão-dourado, assim como outros primatas, não transmite a doença – Ana Branco / Agência O Globo

    RIO- A primeira morte de um mico-leão-dourado por febre amarela foi confirmada esta semana. O animal morreu em 17 de maio e o caso preocupa porque a espécie é um dos símbolos mundiais da fauna ameaçada de extinção e só existe no estado do Rio de Janeiro. A febre amarela causou em 2017 e este ano o maior massacre de primatas da história da Mata Atlântica e um dos principais temores era de que afetasse espécies em extinção, como os muriquis e os micos-leões. Toda a população humana da área de ocorrência do mico-leão está vacinada…
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  • Australia creates world’s largest cat-proof fence

    Australia creates world’s largest cat-proof fence

    Electrified fence creates a predator-free area of almost 23,200 acres.

    Michael d’Estries

     

    Australia’s new cat fence will provide some much-needed protection for 11 nationally threatened mammals including the mala, the bilby and the black-footed rock-wallaby. (Photo: Australian Wildlife Conservancy/Facebook)

    Feral foxes and cats eager for a quick meal in the wilds of central Australia have a new formidable obstacle to contend with.

    The Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) has put the finishing touches on the world’s largest cat-proof fence, a 27-mile-long enclosure of electrified wire and netting encompassing more than 23,000 acres. Called the Newhaven wildlife sanctuary, this former cattle station has been transformed into a haven for 11 critically endangered marsupials, birds and other threatened species…


     
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  • How to Protect Your Local Pollinators in Ten Easy Ways

     How to Protect Your Local Pollinators in Ten Easy Ways

    As the first annual World Bee Day looms, insect and garden lovers are abuzz with excitement

    By Ryan P. Smith smithsonian.com Like many of the vital insects contributing daily to our biosphere, bees tend to get a bit of a bad rap in modern life. We think of them myopically, holding grudges over poolside stings and picnic disruptions yet completely oblivious to the hard work the little guys put in day in and day out, enriching their ecosystems and our own. As they harvest nectar, bees transport pollen from plant to plant, fostering reproduction among a sweeping array of flora—90 percent of flowering plants depend on pollinators—and keeping our planet and diet diverse in the process…
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