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The Future of Animals

Sixth Mass Extinction animals environment green

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#161
caltrek

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'It's working!': Utah Officials Thrilled to See Animals Using Highway Wildlife Overpass

 

https://edition.cnn....trnd/index.html

 

Introduction:

 (CNN)  In an effort to reduce accidents involving wildlife on a busy highway, Utah officials got creative: they built a bridge. New video shows the plan has been a success.

 

The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources built the bridge back in 2018 over Interstate 80 to reduce traffic accidents in Parleys Canyon caused by wandering animals. Last week, the agency released a video of the bridge in use -- aiding moose, porcupines, deer and even bears across the busy highway.
 
"It's working!" officials posted on Facebook. "Thanks to the Utah Department of Transportation and Utah State University for monitoring the Parley's Canyon wildlife overpass this year. As you can see, the 2nd year of this overpass has been successful at helping wildlife safely migrate over busy Interstate 80 and helping motorists be much safer as well. Please keep off of this overpass. Thanks!"
 
The overpass is filled with rocks, boulders and logs, giving wildlife a welcome alternative to the six lanes of traffic on I-80.

201126103023-screengrab-01-wildlife-brid

The overpass has boulders, logs, and other natural features.


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


#162
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Wolves to Make Colorado Comeback After Vote for Reintroduction by 2023

 

More on that item:

 

https://grist.org/po...-race-so-close/

 

Introduction:

(Grist) The presidential election was deemed a “nail biter,” with the outcome teetering on a “razor’s edge” for days after the ballots were cast. But in Colorado, where Democrats claimed a decisive victory for Joe Biden and newly elected senator John Hickenlooper, voters were biting their nails for another reason: wolves.

 

On the ballot this year was Proposition 114, a historic measure that would require Colorado officials to restore and manage gray wolf populations in the western portion of the state. But while a 2019 survey of Colorado voters indicated overwhelming support for the initiative, with 84 percent of respondents saying they would vote in favor of it, the results show a different story. As of Friday afternoon, the state election site was reporting a 50-49 split, with a little more than 33,000 votes tipping the odds pro-wolf.

 

Two groups opposing the measure conceded the race, and Colorado Parks and Wildlife announced it would begin creating a plan to carry it out. But why did a seemingly sure bet turn out to be the most divisive issue on the ballot?


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


#163
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In post # 154, a report was cited concerning a UK trial set to begin to see whether specialist medical sniffer dogs can detect coronavirus in humans. In the article cited and linked below, a proof-of-concept study in France and Lebanon is discussed.

 

We Just Got Even More Evidence That Some Dogs Can Reliably Detect COVID-19

 

https://www.sciencealert.com/early-tests-show-dogs-have-some-ability-to-smell-covid-19-on-our-sweat

 

Introduction:

(Science Alert) With the right training and motivation, the smartest dogs can detect up to 40 different types of bombs, sniff out tiny traces of drugs, perform extensive search-and-rescues, and smell the colon cancer in our farts. They might even catch a whiff of SARS-CoV-2 in our sweat. 

 

A proof-of-concept study in France and Lebanon has successfully trained six working 'detection dogs' to pick up the smell of patients who have been sickened by the novel coronavirus.

 

In less than a day, many of these professional canines had already memorised the scent. Within weeks, the dogs had been trained to correctly mark which sweat samples came from symptomatic COVID-19 patients, and which didn't. 

 

In the final test, some dogs had a success rate of 76 percent. Others were correct 100 percent of the time. The research is limited and the results preliminary, but accumulating evidence suggests trained dogs may be a rapid, reliable and cheap way to screen (not test) for COVID-19.

 

"These results provide some evidence that detection dogs may be able to discriminate between sweat samples from symptomatic COVID-19 individuals and those from asymptomatic COVID-19 negative individuals," the authors of the study write.


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


#164
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Tasmanian Devils Claw Their Way Back From Extinction

 

https://www.sciencem...back-extinction

 

Introduction:

(Science) For decades a ghastly facial cancer has been decimating Tasmanian devils. Spreading from animal to animal when the stocky, raccoon-size marsupials bite each other, the transmissible cancer has killed up to 80% of the devils in Tasmania, their only home for millennia. Some researchers saw extinction as inevitable. Now, a new study in Science, suggests the remaining 15,000 devils have reached a détente with the cancer. Until recently it was spreading exponentially, like the pandemic coronavirus among humans in many parts of the world. But geneticists calculate that each infected devil now transmits tumor cells to just one—or fewer—other devils. That could mean the disease may disappear over time.

 

tasmanian-devil-portrait-02-8ca36129d827

Mathias Appel / Flickr/ Public Domain 

https://www.treehugger.com/tasmanian-devil-facts-5074332


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


#165
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Fight Is On to Save Critically Endangered Red Squirrel in Arizona

 

https://www.courthou...rel-in-arizona/

 

Introduction:

 

TUCSON, Ariz. (Courthouse News) — Encroaching development and wildfires exacerbated by climate change have conspired to leave a squirrel species unique to a tiny niche of Arizona forest teetering near extinction.

 

Mt. Graham, a 10,000-foot peak in the Pinaleño Mountains, is home to a University of Arizona observatory, a telescope owned by the Vatican, an abandoned church camp, and 14 privately owned summer cabins — all of which threaten the Mt. Graham red squirrel.

 

The sub-species, thought to be extinct by the 1950s but rediscovered in the 1970s, was added to the Endangered Species List in 1987. It has been squeezed in recent years by competing squirrels, wildfires, and firefighting efforts — including prescribed burns and the cutting of fire breaks which destroy the squirrels’ “middens” or food caches.

 

A recent U.S. Fish and Wildlife Survey counted just 109 individuals. That’s up from a low point of fewer than 40, but those squirrels face a forest so fractured that only a handful of the animals still live in federally recognized habitat. Most have been forced to lower elevations.

 

If nothing changes the squirrels will soon be extinct according to Robin Silver, a founder of the Center for Biological Diversity, a nonprofit that has sued the federal government over the squirrels a dozen times in the past 30 years.

MtGrahamRedSquirrel.jpg?resize=1024%2C86


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


#166
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Tiny Pygmy Possums Found on Kangaroo Island After Fears of Bushfires Wiping Them Out

 

https://mymodernmet....yX-O81LmuGL33KQ

 

Introduction:

(My Modern Met) The devastating Australian bushfires of 2019–20 burned almost half of the country and killed or displaced nearly three billion animals. One species that many feared we had lost forever was the pygmy possum. The bushfires destroyed most of their habitat, and no one had seen the rare, tiny creatures since the fires began. However, hope was recently restored when pygmy possums were discovered on Kangaroo Island by wildlife conservation NGO, Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife.

 

Weighing just 7 grams and measuring around 10 cm (including their tail), pygmy possums are often described as the world's smallest possum. In addition to Kangaroo Island, they can mainly be found in Tasmania and on mainland South Australia and Victoria. Given their tiny size, they’re difficult to find and study; however, the Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife group were pleasantly surprised to find them. The search was part of a large recovery effort to investigate which species were left after the bushfires.

 

“There's only really been 113 formal records of the species [ever on Kangaroo Island],” Fauna ecologist Pat Hodgens says. “So certainly not very common and, obviously, the summer bushfires burnt through much of that habitat that species had, but we were certainly hopeful that we would find them.”

 

Along with the pygmy possums, more than 20 other wildlife species have been found, including a tammar wallaby and a southern brown bandicoot. This is fantastic news for the future of each species, and now Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife wants to do everything it can to protect them. Since the fires destroyed much of their habitat, the vulnerable animals need all the help they can get, since they are now more exposed to predators. Hodgens explains, “It's very important now because it is kind of like the last refuge for a lot of these species that really rely on very old long, unburned vegetation.”

129018171_1102937330159043_1525009891752


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






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