Chris O'dowd

Did you give to a charity saving made up animals?

You may need to read it twice before you actually believe it but Irish actor Chris O’Dowd has admitted that when working in a call centre raising money for a wildlife charity he made up species to get people to donate money to the cause. The actor has claimed he raised hundreds of thousands of…
red barbed ant

Global Re-introductions case studies published

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has released the latest volume of case studies involving the re-introduction of endangered species. The 298 page book is available to download free of charge in pdf format. It covers 236 re-introduction programmes and is the 4th in a series from the Reintroduction Specialists Group. The…
bat survey

European bat populations surge

Bat populations in Europe have surged according to a new study recently released. Between 1993 and 2011 bat numbers increased by 42% according to the European Environment Agency (EEA) survey. New conservation treaties and actions have started to have the desired effect as bat populations start to rebound. “It is extremely encouraging to see bat populations…
african lion

Calls for West African lions to be declared critically endangered

The results of a 6 year lion survey covering West Africa has shown just how precarious the population is. There is estimated to be barely 400 west African lions left spread over 5 countries. With fewer than 250 mature adult lions left the west African lion meets criterion C2a(ii) for designation as critically endangered. While officially…
sumatran tiger

Major tiger sanctuary announced for Indonesia

Indonesia’s forestry department has announced plans for the establishment of a major tiger sanctuary for illegally trapped and captured Sumatran tigers. With just 300 individual tigers left in the wild the new plan will be a major contribution towards helping prevent the extinction of the species. The tiger sanctuary will be developed in Riau province…
saola camera trap

Vietnamese saola seen again after 15 years

Camera traps are increasingly revealing long-lost species around the world. The latest success for the cameras is the re-appearance of the saola in Vietnam. It was last seen 15 years ago and offers new hope for one of the most endangered species on the planet. The animal was photographed during a programme run by the WWF-Asia and…
cheetah re-introduction

Cheetahs return after 100 year absence

For the first time in over 100 years wild cheetahs are roaming the Free State wilderness in South Africa thanks to a re-introduction programme. The first 2 cheetahs – both males – have been released by The Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT), in partnership with Laohu Valley Reserve and Amakhala Game Reserve. Free State has been…
vietnam delegates

Rosewood listing could help tackle illegal logging

Violence and gun fights between law enforcement agencies and poachers of tigers, elephants and rhino are well known and occur often but increasingly there are armed conflicts between loggers and law enforcement agencies. As the price of hardwoods rocket driven by high-end furniture demand in China the listings on CITES Appendices of a number of hardwood…
Shark from below

Highlights of CITES week 1

The first week of CITES in Bangkok has come to an end and there was some interesting highlights to look back on. It was an ambitious week for the delegates with lots of meetings to attend and decisions to be made. For me the most notable highlights of the week were: 1. Secret ballots stay.…
orangutan

UK launches ‘If they’re gone’ campaign

Four iconic wildlife species are spearheading a new year-long campaign in the UK to help protect and conserve endangered species. The tiger, rhino, elephant and orangutan are the key species being used in the campaign called ‘If They’re Gone…’. the campaign has been launched to coincide with the start of the CITES meeting in Bangkok.…
white tipped shark

Sharks set to get boost from CITES

Sharks across the world are under threat thanks to shark fin soup. Often the sharks are caught as a profitable by-catch but as only the fins are valuable the rest of the shark is dumped overboard. The trade is international in scope and there is little control. CoP16 though offers some hope for the future.…
echidna

Does the echidna still roam around Australia?

The western long-beaked echidna, (Zaglossus bruijnii) is a critically endangered species with just a small population living in Indonesian New Guinea. It is one of only 5 mammal species that lays eggs and was thought to have gone extinct in Australia thousands, if not tens of thousands, of years ago. But a recent discovery has…
pygmy three-toed sloth

Just 79 Pygmy three-toed sloths found

It was only determined to be a separate species in 2001 but the Pygmy three-toed sloth (Bradypus pygmaeus) could be one of the rarest mammals on the planet. Restricted to just one small island and with a preference for fast disappearing mangrove forest as home, a recent survey found just 79 of the sloths. The Pygmy…