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The Future of Animals

Sixth Mass Extinction animals environment green

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#41
caltrek

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As climate change worsens, king penguins will need to move — or they’ll die

 

https://www.theverge...-southern-ocean

 

Introduction:

 

(The Verge) If we don’t cut greenhouse gas emissions to address climate change, then by the end of the century, 70 percent of king penguins could face a tough decision: either find a new home or die, according to new research.

 

King penguins live on islands scattered throughout the Southern Ocean, the waters surrounding Antarctica. The birds can swim as far as 310 miles (500 kilometers) to feed on lanternfish, squids, and krill in a food belt circling the continent. But climate models show that this food belt will move closer and closer to the South Pole, forcing the penguins to swim farther to catch their meals. By 2100, the penguins are expected to migrate to other islands or as many as 70 percent of them could disappear, according to a study published today inNature Climate Change.

 

King_penguins2.0.jpg

 

 

King penguins from the Possession Island, Crozet Archipelago.

 Photo by Céline Le Bohec - CNRS/IPEV/CSM


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#42
caltrek

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Speaking of penguins and our increasing knowledge of animals in general.

 

A Supercolony of Penguins Has Been Found Near Antarctica

 

https://www.nytimes....nav=bottom-well

 

Introduction:

 

(New York times) A new colony of Adélie penguins has been discovered near Antarctica, substantially increasing the known populations of the knee-high creatures.

 

“It’s always good news when you find new penguins,” said P. Dee Boersma, director of the Center for Ecosystem Sentinels at the University of Washington, who was not involved in the new study. “The trends have not been good for so many of these species.”

 

Previous censuses of penguins had come close to these animals, living on the Danger Islands just off the end of the “thumb” of Antarctica, below South America. But satellite images of the islands revealed the pinkish-red stain of penguin guano, suggesting larger colonies than expected, said Heather Lynch, one of the five primary investigators on the new study, published Friday in Scientific Reports.

 

After several years of preparation, a team of researchers traveled in 2015 to the Danger Islands near the Weddell Sea to do a more precise count on the nine-island archipelago. Using a drone doctored to work in the extreme climate of the region, the researchers were able to get a precise estimate of the numbers of breeding pairs of Adélie penguins in the region: about 750,000 (or 1.5 million individuals).

 
 

06TB-PENGUINS4-superJumbo.jpg?quality=75

 

An Adélie penguin found the quadcopter used to count the colony.

Credit Stony Brook University, Louisiana State University, Rachael Herman


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#43
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White House Quietly Lifts Ban on Elephant Trophies

 

https://www.courthou...phant-trophies/

 

Introduction:

 

(Courthouse News) – The Trump administration is once again allowing Americans to import the body parts of African elephants shot for sport — a practice the president himself decried as recently as last November.

 

In a March 1 letter, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced the importation of elephant trophies will now be approved on a “case-by-case basis.”

The letter cites a December ruling in Safari Club Int’l v. Zinke, a long-running lawsuitchallenging the ban filed by Safari Club International and the lobbying arm of the National Rifle Association.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#44
zEVerzan

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Makes sense given the family's view of elephant conservation.

 

k20hvsn1syny.jpg


I always imagined the future as a time of more reason, empathy, and peace, not less. It's time for a change.
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#45
caltrek

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^^^An ugly picture, in more ways than one.

 

 

 

 

Feds Sued to Force Protection of Alaska’s Pacific Walrus

 

 

https://www.courthousenews.com/feds-sued-to-force-protection-of-alaskas-pacific-walrus/

 

Introduction:

 

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (Courthouse News) – The Center for Biological Diversity sued the Trump administration Thursday over its denial of Endangered Species Act protection to the Pacific walrus.

 

The lawsuit, filed in Anchorage federal court, challenges the October 2017 decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service finding the Pacific walrus does not warrant listing as a threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act.

 

“The service’s listing decision deprives the walrus of the ESA protections which it is both entitled to and desperately needs,” the complaint states.

 

In 2011, following the center’s petition three years earlier to list the walrus as threatened or endangered, Fish and Wildlife decided the animal needed protection. Officials concluded climate change would destroy the walrus’s sea-ice habitat and cause a substantial population decline.

 

But a few months after President Donald Trump took office, the agency reversed course and found the species no longer merits protection. Fish and Wildlife Service said that because the species is not likely to become endangered in the foreseeable future, it would delay listing in favor of more highly threatened species.

Pacific-walrus-lg.jpg?resize=300%2C220

 

Pacific walrus.

(Courthouse News Service via U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#46
Yuli Ban

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Here's a thought experiment: how would an acceleration of robotics assist the discovery and protection of new species? We'd theoretically be able to send out agents into the wild to affect health and migration as well as study animals with no moral quandary due to a human life not being on the line. 

 

We could more accurately document wildlife populations and watch trends.


And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#47
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We could probably send a swarm of fully-automated roving drones to the bottom of Earth's oceans to form a comprehensive map of ocean floor ecology (which is different than satellite geographical mapping) - the ocean is, after all, yet another frontier, and we know little about its wildlife. By extension we could also set those drones to periodically give updates on populations so that we can track the harm our actions are doing to the ecosystems. I suspect this level of automation is possible now, but not viable, and will become viable in about 10 years or so. By then, 2028, who can tell what further damage we will have done, possibly hundreds of marvelous species that we never even knew about driven to extinction.


I always imagined the future as a time of more reason, empathy, and peace, not less. It's time for a change.
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#48
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Maybe robots could be programmed to shoot film documentaries for our entertainment and edification. After all, why should documentary producers be immune to the threat of unemployment?

 

 

 

 

Just trying to segue into:

 

 

When a filmmaker discovered a mountain lion in his backyard, he made a documentary

 

https://www.theverge...on-hawk-montana

 

 

Introduction:

 

(The Verge) The first time that Montana-based wildlife filmmaker Casey Anderson locked eyes with the mountain lion living in his backyard, he was close enough to hear her crunching on a dead deer’s bones. Then, he noticed that she must have recently given birth. That was when Anderson knew he had to make a film about the mountain lion, whom he nicknames Mama Mo, and her three cubs: Eeny, Meeny, and Miny.

 

There was just one problem: mountain lions aren’t easy to spot. “I’ve been told 1,000 times that you can’t do a documentary about mountain lions,” Anderson says. “Anytime anybody has ever tried, it’s just a documentary about people looking for mountain lions — not actually finding them.”

 

So he turned to military-grade, thermal-sensing FLIR cameras to track the mountain lion family even at night. He mounted a camera-stabilizing platform designed for helicopters on his truck. And he spent two years filming Mama Mo and her cubs before he ever knew the documentary would reach a TV screen. “I knew how unique of an opportunity it was,” he says. “If you get to film a mountain lion for like five days in one year, you’re like winning the Super Bowl. And we were filming her for months on end.”


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#49
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Trophy Hunters, and Gun Boosters: Meet the Trump Administration’s Wildlife Conservation Council

 

https://www.motherjo...vation-council/

 

Introduction:

 

Introduction:

 

Mother Jones) The Trump administration has launched a commission at the Interior Department to promote big-game trophy hunting and the “economic benefits that result from US citizens traveling to foreign nations to engage in hunting.” The council, which will cost taxpayers $250,000 a year, is charged with making recommendations to Secretary Ryan Zinke about removing barriers to importing trophy hunting animals—such as the recently overturned ban on elephant and lion trophies from some countries—and relaxing legal restrictions on hunting and importing endangered species.

 

The members of the International Wildlife Conservation Council, which is holding its first meeting Friday, include a reality-TV safari hunting guide, a former beauty queen, gun industry representatives, members and affiliates of a controversial trophy hunting group, and a veterinarian associated with an exotic animal breeding facility in Florida that sells endangered animals to roadside zoos.

 

“It’s really embarrassing,” says Masha Kalinina, the international trade policy specialist for the wildlife department at the Humane Society International. “I just question the qualifications of each and every one of these people. Notably missing from this trophy hunting council are legitimate representatives of the conservation community with proper scientific credentials and a record of successful conservation programs, along with wildlife law enforcement experts and biologists who have no financial stake in promoting trophy hunting.”

 

Conclusion:

 

Wildlife conservation and animal welfare groups and more than 60 scientists and economists have written to the Fish and Wildlife Service to protest the council and its membership. They argue that the way it was created violates federal law because of the lack of a balance of perspectives, its potential for capture by special interests, and the absence of public benefits. PETA’s Winders says the council’s creation is “openly defiant of the Federal Advisory Act, which requires a host of things, one of which is balanced representation, and this reads like a who’s who of hunting interests. I think we will see some legal challenges to this committee before long.” Indeed, on Wednesday, the wildlife conservation group Born Free sued the Fish and Wildlife Service for refusing to release documents related to the council’s creation.

 

cecil2-3152018.jpg?w=835

 

Cecil the lion gained fame after he was killed by Safari Club International member Walter Palmer during an illegal hunt in Zimbabwe. 

Paula French/ZUMA


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#50
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Feds Sued Over Lack of Protection for California Whales

 

https://www.courthou...ifornia-whales/

 

Introduction:

 

SAN FRANCISCO (Courthouse News) – Environmentalists sued the federal government Thursday claiming humpback whales off the coast of California listed as endangered still have not received habitat protections.

 

The lawsuit filed by the Center for Biological Diversity and two other groups aims to force the National Marine Fisheries Service to designate critical habitat off the Pacific Coast for the humpback whale population who feed off the coast. The whales are in danger from fishing gear, ship traffic, and oil spills. The government’s lack of action violates the Endangered Species Act, according to the lawsuit.

 

In September 2016, two groups of Pacific Ocean humpback whale populations were listed as endangered and a third group as threatened, according to the 13-page complaint filed in the Northern District of California.

 

But earlier this year, the Trump administration announced plans to expand offshore oil and gas drilling across the country, including the entire West Coast and Alaska.

“If finalized, this proposal could greatly damage humpback whale habitat with seismic exploration activities, drilling, construction, and pollution,” the groups say in the lawsuit.

HUMPBACK-WHALE.jpg?resize=300%2C179

Humpback Whales spend the winter months off of the Mexican Coast and then migrate to the central California coast for the feeding season.

 

 

 

Every time I read such stories my initial reaction is:  "I am so thankful the courts are there to stop the more extreme measures of the Trump administration."

 

Then I think about all of those federal judges that have been or are going to be replaced by Trump appointees...


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#51
Sciencerocks

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I predict that if we keep killing them off that the 6th great extinction will probably end up killing off 80%+ of all animal life.

 

Cats, dogs and other pets that we keep are the only ones that will fair well.



#52
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‘Rewilding’ Missing Carnivores May Help Restore Some Landscapes

 

https://www.nytimes....l=inside-nyt-re

 

Introduction:

 

(New York Times) If you’re lucky, you can spot a gray wolf in Yellowstone National Park. But a century ago, you’d have been hard pressed to find any there. Poisonings and unregulated hunting obliterated nearly all of these majestic canines from Canada to Mexico, their original home range.

 

Then the rewilding began.

 

Since their reintroduction to Yellowstone and Idaho in the 1990s, gray wolves have done so well that they’re reclaiming other parts of the northern Rockies.

 

In the places where they returned, wolves tidied up explosive deer and elk populations, which had eaten valleys barren. That helped bring back trees and shrubs. Birds and beavers, as well as the animals that live in dams, also returned. The wolves ate coyotes, freeing up their prey for others. Bears and raptors came back for carrion. With more trees controlling erosion, the flows of some rivers were less chaotic, forming pools that became new habitats.

 

“We’re just uncovering these effects of large carnivores at the same time their populations are declining and are at risk,” said William Ripple, an ecologist at Oregon State University. He’s found that if you rewild some carnivores, or return them back to lost ranges, a cascade of ecological bounty may follow.

 

 

merlin_135589353_a1a81829-f00c-4d3b-8e6a

 

The gray wolf's reintroduction to Yellowstone National Park in the 1990s has been a success story of a carnivore's rewilding helping an entire ecosystem.

CreditJohn and Karen Hollingsworth/United States Fish and Wildlife Service


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#53
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Recreating the wild: De-extinction, technology, and the ethics of conservation

 

http://reviewcanada.ca/magazine/2018/01/mammoth-or-pigeon-de-extinctions-choices/

 

Introduction:

 

 

(LRC) Imagine that you are standing on the streets of Toronto or Hamilton on a spring day sometime in the 19th century. The skies begin to darken as a massive flock of birds passes overhead, blotting the sun. The beating of billions of wings rumbles like thunder, stirring up a wind that chills you to the bone. The flock might take days to pass. The birds were passenger pigeons, once found across North America east of the Rockies. About the size of our pigeons today, the males had a coppery breast, the females were somewhat plainer, and they travelled in gargantuan numbers. A single flock could stretch over 150 kilometres, and number in the billions: in the spring of 1860, a flock estimated at over 3.7 billion birds flew over Ontario. Gorging themselves on tree nuts, such as acorns, they could clear entire forests; the weight of roosting pigeons would cause whole limbs to drop from the trees. And we think pigeons today are a pest.

 

Passenger pigeons were once the most abundant bird in North America, maybe in the world. At one point, they outnumbered humans on our planet. But over the course of just 50 years, we managed to wipe them out, hunting them to oblivion. (Martha, the last of her kind, died in 1914 at the Cincinnati Zoo.) Until very recently, the extinction of the passenger pigeon—a plump, tasty creature once served in restaurants in New York and Toronto—seemed a shame, and simply that. Some now see it as an opportunity. New technologies could allow us to bring the passenger pigeon back from the dead—to “de-extinct” it, in the somewhat clunky terminology of the day. It is just one candidate species that has been floated for conjuring from the past, alongside the Neanderthal, the T. rex, and the fan favourite, the woolly mammoth. If a variety of pigeon seems a humble animal to resurrect, there are other conservative choices, including a strange little frog that vomits its babies out of its mouth when it reproduces, and which went extinct in the 1980s.

 

 

https://futurism.com...urrect-species/

 

Extract:

 

 

(Futurism) Using modern technology to revive extinct species is known simply as “de-extinction,” though the process is not what you’d call simple.

It’s like putting together a jigzaw puzzle that has 900 million pieces. And is still missing some. And you don’t have the picture on the box. But you have a puzzle that’s similar as reference.

 

The key components of all species’ DNA are nucleotides: adenine, cytosine, guanine, and thymine — noted by the letters A, C, G, and T, respectively. The Harvard team started with 900 million of the moa’s nucleotides to start piecing together its entire genome (they aren’t saying how many they needed for a complete genome). Using the genome of a modern bird relative, the emu, to fill in the blanks, the researchers were able to piece together about 85 percent of the bird’s genome — on par with the genomes of other extinct species.

 

Once scientists organize the genome, the next step is deciding how to best attempt to revive the species. Researchers can opt for “backbreeding,” a process in which they take a closely related species and selectively breed it until they produce something akin to the extinct species. If the species hasn’t been extinct for very long and researchers have a sample from, perhaps, the last living member, cloning may also be a viable option. The third option — using genetic engineering — is relatively new. With an accurate assembly of an extinct species’ genetic data, researchers can inject them into an egg of a living species that’s genetically close to the one they’re attempting to bring back to life

 

 

https://www.thehasti...s-conservation/

 

Extract:

 

(The Hastings Center) Is true de-extinction possible?

 

Advances in biology have revealed the ways the environment influences species’ genomes. Even if scientists could produce creatures with DNA identical to that of extinct species, different environmental pressures would alter their genomes in novel ways, raising the possibility that those creatures would differ from the extinct species. “Species are entangled with other species, the land, and ecological events and processes,” writes Ronald Sandler, director of the Ethics Institute at Northwestern University. “If scientists merely create organisms genetically similar to previously existing species, neither the species nor its relationships are regenerated.” Still, some experts think that creating organisms that are similar to extinct species might have ecological benefits.

 

Does de-extinction support or undermine the goals of conservation?

 

Many scientists believe that although the maintenance of biodiversity benefits ecosystems, changes to the environment could make the reintroduction of extinct species difficult–possibly even ecologically disruptive. Curt Meine, a senior fellow with the Center for Humans and Nature and the Aldo Leopold Foundation, writes that species reintroduction does not take place in a “social or ecological vacuum” and that the interactions of a species with its physical and social environment are critical for its success.

 

… “By proposing that we can revive species through modern technology, we give the impression that species are ‘throwaway’ items,” write Robert DeSalle, a curator at the American Museum of Natural History’s Sackler Institute for Comparative Genomics, and George Amato, director of the conservation genomics program at the institute. And Phil Seddon, chair of a recent International Union for Conservation of Nature task force that issued guidelines for attempting de-extinction, argues that, although conservationists need to be willing to use new biotechnologies for conservation goals, de-extinction may not be the best place to start.

 

Sadler_De-extinction-400x421.jpg

 

Illustration by Meredith Sadler


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#54
caltrek

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File this one under how our knowledge of animals is increasing as the future becomes now.

 

 

Don't Underestimate Pandas

 

https://www.theverge...-bamboo-science

 

Entire Story:

 

(The Verge) The giant panda has a complicated reputation. It is known as an adorable animal, a symbol of Chinese diplomacy, the poster child for endangered animals, the poster child for charismatic megafauna who get too much attention for being endangered, and a creature that’s really bad at sex (with exceptions).

 

So it’s unsurprising that pandas are seen as bumbling animals, but in actuality, they do have one very impressive skill: their bodies neutralize cyanide. Yes, the poisonous chemical that famously smells faintly of almonds.

 

You see, raw bamboo contains cyanide and, if eaten, will make the average person extremely sick; it can even be deadly. (Cooking gets rid of the cyanide.) Pandas, of course, primarily eat bamboo, and have adapted to overcome this. In a study published in Nature a couple years ago, scientists investigated how this works by measuring the cyanide content in the bamboo shoots they fed to 20 giant pandas. In addition to measuring cyanide in the shoots themselves, they measured the cyanide in the pandas’ feces.

 

They found that, first, pandas are ingesting cyanide — it’s not like they’ve found a way to only eat bamboo that doesn’t contain it. Giant pandas absorbed more than 65 percent of the cyanide present in the shoots. But their bodies were able to turn 80 percent of that absorbed cyanide into a less toxic chemical called thiocyanate, which they then peed out. It’s an inspiring story, really. It’s possible to be a giant cuddly animal that everyone underestimates, with the little-known power of being able to eat poison.

912861254.jpg.0.jpg

Photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#55
caltrek

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Whether certain species will survive into the future is turning out to be a much more complicated question then what might be considered at first blush. 

 

'It's priceless': how a store of rhino semen could save the species

 

https://www.theguard...ce_b-gdnscience

 

Introduction:

 

(The Guardian) For over 20 years, Thomas Hildebrandt has harboured a dream: to save the northern white rhinoceros, the world’s rarest large mammal.

 

On Monday the scientist received the devastating news that Sudan, the last male of the species, had been put down in his northern Kenyan home, aged 45. Hildebrandt’s office is full of pictures of him, on which he points out the species’ unique pearl-like skin, furry ears, huge feet for tackling swamps, and horns capable of lifting two tons.

 

“We were extremely sad,” Hildebrandt said. “He was old and very sick, and we knew the day would come, but I’d known him for 18 years and he was the gentlest of creatures who had become an important ambassador for species protection,” he said.

 

Hildebrandt has short videos of Sudan in his final weeks of life that the rhino’s carers in Ol Pejeta conservancy sent him so that he could follow his decline – he gradually stopped eating and walking, whereupon the decision was made to put him down.

 

Sudan did not live to see another northern white rhino being born, despite efforts to mate him in Kenya with southern white rhinos to at least produce a hybrid. But Hildebrandt said he is very hopeful that the last two remaining members of his species, Fatu and Najin, his 28-year-old daughter and 18-year-old granddaughter, will.

 

4338.jpg?w=300&q=55&auto=format&usm=12&f

 

Females, Najin and Fatu, are the last two remaining members of the northern white rhino species.

Photograph: Tony Karumba/AFP/Getty Images


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#56
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In which the U.N. meet the subject of this thread:

 

UN Reports See a Lonelier Planet With Fewer Plants, Animals

 

https://www.courthousenews.com/un-reports-see-a-lonelier-planet-with-fewer-plants-animals/

 

Introduction:

 

WASHINGTON (AP) — Earth is losing plants, animals and clean water at a dramatic rate, according to four new United Nations scientific reports that provide the most comprehensive and localized look at the state of biodiversity.

 

Scientists meeting in Colombia issued four regional reports Friday on how well animal and plants are doing in the Americas; Europe and Central Asia; Africa; and the Asia-Pacific area.

 

Their conclusion after three years of study : Nowhere is doing well.

 

The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem was about more than just critters, said study team chairman Robert Watson. It is about keeping Earth livable for humans, because we rely on biodiversity for food, clean water and public health, the prominent British and U.S. scientist said.

 

“This is undermining well-being across the planet, threatening us long-term on food and water,” Watson said in an interview.

South-Africa-Drought.jpg?resize=300%2C20

FILE — This is a Feb. 1 2018 file photo of Cape Town’s main water supply from the Theewaterskloof dam outside Grabouw, Cape Town.

(AP Photo/Bram Janssen, File)


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#57
caltrek

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...and another thing about the future of animals, specifically the prospects for intra-species communication:


Smile! Your dog’s brain will light up in response


http://www.sciencema...-light-response


Introduction

"Science - As every dog lover—and scientist—knows, man’s best friend is good at reading faces. Dogs can tell the difference between happy and not-so-happy expressions, such as anger and sadness. Like us, they watch the left sides of peoples’ faces—where emotional cues first appear. And they even seem to be able to interpret our emotions and modulate their behavior accordingly. But what are the neural mechanisms that control how dogs process human faces?

To find out, scientists trained eight dogs—mostly border collies—to lie still in a functional magnetic resonance imaging scanner while viewing photos of strangers with either happy or neutral expressions. The faces matched the gender of the dogs’ chief caretakers, because dogs have been shown to score lower on tasks involving faces of the opposite sex. The results: A happy human face produces a distinctive signature in a dog’s temporal lobe and other neural regions, the scientists report online this week on the preprint server bioRxiv.

In a follow-up experiment, the pooches’ brains were scanned as they looked at faces expressing happiness, anger, fear, or sadness. The happiness pattern was so distinctive that a machine learning program could pick it out from brain activity linked to all the other emotions. (A similar “happiness” signature is found in humans.) That means, the researchers say, that our human emotions are represented in our pooches’ brains—which suggests that our canine pals really do know what we’re feeling."

The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#58
Ewolf20

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this seems both sad and hopeful. though hope life may come back some years later even if the sun might eat up most of the inner planets. 



#59
caltrek

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Pittsburgh Strikes a Deal with Goat Nonprofit

 

https://nonprofitqua...goat-nonprofit/

 

 

Introduction:

 

(nonprofit Quarterly) Goats are the latest contract workers in Pittsburgh. They have a preliminary contract, which includes their manager, Hobo the donkey. Pittsburgh has hired them to eat the weeds…and the poison ivy.

 

NPQ has reported on the efficacy of goat mowing. The Pittsburgh City Council agreed to a five-year contract with a nonprofit, Allegheny GoatScape, which will supply and manage the goats to eat in various city-owned properties.

 

Allegheny GoatScape received its 501c3 IRS designation letter in January 2017. The nonprofit grew from an organization, Steel City Grazers, which proved through practice that goats are a cost-effective and environmentally friendly to tame unwanted vegetation.

 

Pittsburg Public Works Director Mike Gable reports that the goats are indefatigable workers. They eat around the clock, and unlike a loud mower, the goats are inviting for the public, who watch them work and can take selfies with them.

baby-goats.jpg

 

Photo via Good Free Photos


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#60
Lastseasonsnow

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I don't want to draw a grey future but wild animals will continue to die. There is so much change in weather and climate that the animals are going to extinct, even though we're trying to help. 







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Sixth Mass Extinction, animals, environment, green

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