Our Editorial and News Affiliates
With more than one million unique visitors per month, Mongabay.com is one of the world's most popular environmental science and conservation news sites. The news and rainforests sections of the site are widely cited for information on tropical forests, conservation, and wildlife.
Mongabay.com aims to raise interest in wildlife and wildlands while promoting awareness of environmental issues. Originally the site was based around a text on tropical rainforests written by Rhett A. Butler, but today the site has expanded to other topics (like Madagascar [WildMadagasacar.org]) and is available in versions for kids and in more than two dozen non-English languages. Mongabay.com is also publisher of Tropical Conservation Science, a peer-reviewed, open-access academic journal that seeks to provide opportunities for scientists in developing countries to publish their research in their native languages.
rhett (at) mongabay.com
Prehistoric Peruvians enjoyed popcorn
January 19, 2012 09:07 AM - Jeremy Hance, MONGABAY.COM
Researchers have uncovered corncobs dating back at least 3,000 years ago in two ancient mound sites in Peru according to a paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). The ancient corn remnants, which proved residents were eating both popped corn and corn flour, are the earliest ever discovered in South America and may go back as far as 4,700 BCE (6,700 years ago), over fifteen hundred years before the early Egyptians developed hieroglyphics and while woolly mammoths still roamed parts of the Earth.
New frog trumps miniscule fish for title of 'world's smallest vertebrate'
January 13, 2012 08:55 AM - Jeremy Hance, MONGABAY.COM
How small can you be and still have a spine? Scientists are continually surprised by the answer. Researchers have discovered a new species of frog in Papua New Guinea that is smaller than many insects and dwarfed by a dime. The frog trumps the previously known smallest vertebrate—a tiny fish—by nearly 1 millimeter.
Weird carnivorous flower devours worms underground
January 10, 2012 03:09 PM - Jeremy Hance, MONGABAY.COM
A worm measuring only a millimeter in length scoots its way through relatively massive grains of white sand. The worm, known as a nematode or roundworm, is seeking lunch in the form of bacteria. Suddenly, however, its journey is interrupted: it is caught on a large green surface. Unable to wiggle free the worm is slowly digested, becoming lunch itself for an innocuous purple flower called Philcoxia minensis.
'Christmas miracle' for endangered rhinos
December 25, 2011 07:59 AM - Editor, MONGABAY.COM
Conservationists and wildlife officials in the Malaysian state of Sabah airlifted a young female Sumatran Rhinoceros — one of the world's most endangered animals — to an area of forest where she would encounter a potential partner, reports the Sabah Wildlife Department and Borneo Rhino Alliance. Sumatran Rhinoceros populations are so low, some individuals live in areas where they have no hope of ever finding another rhino. "This is a fantastic gift for our uphill battle in ensuring the survival of this truly unique species and wonderful timing with Christmas, a time to give thanks for our blessings," said Laurentius Ambu the Director of the SWD. "We have monitored her since 2007, and there is no sign that any other rhino has entered her range in the past five years," added Junaidi Payne the Executive Director of Borneo Rhino Alliance. "This is a stark indication that so few rhinos remain that they are simply not meeting for reproduction."
Texas loses half a billion trees to epic drought
December 21, 2011 02:12 PM - Jeremy Hance, MONGABAY.COM
A punishing drought in Texas has not only damaged crops, killed cattle, and led to widespread fires, but has also killed off a significant portion of the state's trees: between 100 and 500 million trees have perished to drought stress according to preliminary analysis. The estimate does not include tree mortality caused by fires. The drought has been linked to La Niña conditions, which causes drying in the Southern U.S., and has likely been exacerbated by global climate change. In all around 10 percent of Texas' forests may have been lost to the drought—so far. Trees are expected to continue suffering and dying in Texas even if rain comes, however forecasters predict dry conditions will remain in Texas for another six months at least.
Philippines disaster may have been worsened by climate change, deforestation
December 20, 2011 04:18 PM - Jeremy Hance, MONGABAY.COM
As the Philippines begins to bury more than a 1,000 disaster victims in mass graves, Philippine President Benigno Aquino has ordered an investigation into last weekend's flash flood and landslide, including looking at the role of illegal logging. Officials have pointed to both climate change and vast deforestation as likely exacerbating the disaster.
Droughts could push parts of Africa back into famine
December 19, 2011 11:57 AM - Jeremy Hance, MONGABAY.COM
Drought and erratic rains could lead to further food scarcities in Africa warns the United Nations World Food Program (WFP). The WFP singles out South Sudan, the world's newest nation, and Niger as nations of particular concern. Earlier this year famine killed scores of people, including an estimated 30,000 children, in Somalia. In South Sudan drought and ongoing conflict threaten food supplies for 2.7 million people.
On the edge of extinction, giant ibis discovered in new region of Cambodia
December 7, 2011 08:42 AM - Jeremy Hance, MONGABAY.COM
The world's largest ibis, and one of the world's most endangered birds, has received some good news. A giant ibis (Thaumatibis giganteawas) has been photographed in the Kampong Som Valley in Koh Kong Province in Cambodia, the first record from this province in nearly a hundred years. Adults can grow to reach nearly 3.5 feet (106 centimeters) long.
At least 74 percent of current warming caused by us
December 6, 2011 07:56 AM - Jeremy Hance, MONGABAY.COM
A new methodology to tease out how much current climate change is linked to human activities has added to the consensus that behind global warming is us. The study, published in Nature Geoscience found that humans have caused at least three-quarters (74 percent) of current warming, while also determining that warming has actually been slowed down by atmospheric aerosols, including some pollutants, which reflect sunlight back into space.
Deforestation and forest degradation down in the Brazilian Amazon since August
December 2, 2011 03:38 PM - Rhett Butler, MONGABAY.COM
Deforestation and forest degradation are down moderately from August through October 2011 relative to the same period a year ago, reports a satellite-based assessment released today by Imazon, a Brazilian group. Imazon's near-real time system, which tracks change in forest plots 25 hectares (62 acres) or larger, found that 512 square kilometers of rainforest were cleared between August 2011 and October 2011, the first three months of the deforestation calendar year, which runs from August 1 through July 31 to coincide with the dry season when it is easiest to measure forest cover. The figure represents a 4 percent decline from the 533 square kilometers cleared in 2010.