Biology

China to ban ivory trade by end of 2017

China to ban ivory trade by end of 2017

Dealing a critical blow to the illegal practice of elephant poaching, Chinese authorities have decided to ban all trade in ivory or any products made of ivory by the end of 2017.

Currently, China is the world’s biggest ivory market, and the decision to ban ivory trade has been taken by authorities after years of intensifying international as well as domestic pressure from wildlife protection advocates.

Carter Roberts, the president of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), welcomed the decision, calling a “game changer” for conserving the largest land animal on Earth.

Chinese officials seize 3.4 tons of illegally trafficked pangolin scales

Chinese officials seize 3.4 tons of illegally trafficked pangolin scales

Chinese Customs officials seized more than three tons of illegally trafficked animal parts taken from the bodies of dead pangolins at a port in Shanghai, and arrested three people in connection with the case.

According to the China News Service, customer officers found illegally trafficked pangolin scales of the endangered species on 10th of December in a container of 101 bags that were imported from Africa among declared timbers.

Cheetahs could soon be defined as “endangered” species as numbers dwindle

Conservationists want cheetahs to be defined as “endangered” species

The fastest running animal on land is facing high risk of extinction as the number in the wild has reduced to nearly 7,100. There were more than 100,000 cheetahs in Africa in the start of last century. The research paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has urged for status of cheetah to be converted to 'endangered'. Amid persistently shrinking populations of cheetah across Africa and other historic habitats around the world, conservationists have sounded alarm bells for the fastest animal on land.

Recently discovered Hawaiian fish named after President Obama

Recently discovered Hawaiian fish named after President Obama

A recently discovered new species of Hawaiian coral reef fish has been named after U.S. President Barack Obama, Lead researcher Richard Pyle from the Bishop Museum in Hawaii announced.

The new fish species, now formally named Tosanoides obama, was spotted during an expedition by divers inside the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument in June this year. It may be noted here that the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument is a protected marine area that Mr. Obama expanded in August this year.

Researchers discover prehistoric bird species in Canadian Arctic

Researchers discover prehistoric bird species in Canadian Arctic

A team of geologists from the University of Rochester claimed to have found a new prehistoric bird species in the Canadian Arctic, marking the discovery of the oldest avian records in the northernmost latitude.

Prof. John Tarduno, the chairperson of the Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences at the University of Rochester, and his team named the new species Tingmiatornis arctica. In the Inuktitut language, which is spoken in the central & eastern parts of Canadian Arctic, the word “Tingmiat” means “those that fly.”

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Flying Bugs Over British Sky Analyzed by Research Team

Flying Bugs Over British Sky Analyzed by Research Team

After analyzing insects migrating over Southern Britain for nearly 10 years, researchers have released data in a research paper published in the journal Science. The number of insects migrating over southern Britain could be in trillions and scientists estimate a combined weight of 3,200 tons for these flying bugs. The research team used using entomological radar and aerial insect catching nets to collect the data, most comprehensive estimate of flying bugs till date.

Nearly 3.5 trillion migrating insects fly over south-central England annually: study

Nearly 3.5 trillion migrating insects fly over south-central England annually: study

More than three trillion migrating insects fly over the region of south-central England each year, unseen and unnoticed by humans, according to a new study by University of Exeter researchers.

Dr. Jason Chapman, an entomologist at University of Exeter and colleagues estimated that as many as 3.5 trillion bugs and butterflies migrate across the region annually. Their total mass is equivalent to nearly 20,000 flying reindeer.

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Deep-sea octopods under threat from mining: study

Deep-sea octopods under threat from mining: study

Deep-sea creatures like Casper, which make their home nearly 2.5 miles beneath the ocean surface, are under increasing threat from human activities, a new study cautioned.

Casper, a milky-white species of deep-sea octopus, was discovered in March this year. Now, the new study indicated that this newly discovered cephalopod species is being threatened by deep-sea mining.

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Sharks aren’t the top predator in marine world: videos show

Sharks aren’t the top predator in marine world: videos show

Many people consider sharks as the most ferocious marine creature but a recently captured drone video showed that sharks aren't the top predator in the marine world after all.

During a whale-watching trip in Monterey Bay, photographer Slater Moore caught two adult killer whales feasting on two young sharks on camera. One of the two young sharks was still wriggling as the whales were tearing into their bodies.

Elusive 'ghost shark' filmed alive for first time

Elusive 'ghost shark' filmed alive for first time

The highly-elusive ‘ghost shark’ has been filmed alive for the first time by a team of American geologists. The pointy-nosed blue animal was filed by accident in 2009, but the footage was released recently on the National Geographic channel.

The ghost sharks, which are a relative of sharks and rays, are also known as chimaeras. They are deep-sea animals, and usually live around Australian and New Zealand.

But, American geologists filmed the animal alive prowling at depths of around 2 kilometers off the coast of California and Hawaii.

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