Biodiversity is important everywhere, to humans as well as to birds. Healthy waters – fresh, salt, and in-between – enables a healthy planet. Here are excerpts from three articles showcasing different activities.
International partnership helps establish large marine sanctuary Good News Network
Centered around the small archipelago of Tristan da Cunha in the Southern Atlantic, governments and ecological organizations have created the fourth-largest marine protected area on Earth, and the largest in the Atlantic Ocean.
Spanning 265,347 square miles, Tristan da Cunha is almost three times as big as the island of Great Britain, and will protect tens of millions of native and migratory birds, rare migratory sharks, whales, seals, golden undersea forests of kelp, and penguins—collectively valued as a UNESCO World Heritage Site—from illegal mining, fishing, and other extractive activities.
The government of the small UK territorial island announced on Thursday that, in partnership with the UK government, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, and National Geographic’s Pristine Seas Initiative, it would conserve its surrounding oceans to help achieve the goal to “secure protection of 30% of the world’s oceans by 2030.”
🐟 Dam removal partnership signed EcoWatch
In a historic move to resurrect the largest dam removal project in the U.S., Oregon, California, the Yurok Tribe and the Karuk Tribe signed an agreement on Tuesday to push forward on dam removal.
The dam removal project is essential to the tribes in the region — the Klamath River on the Oregon-California border — and will reopen hundreds of miles of river access to salmon that have been blocked for more than a century, in what is seen as one of the largest salmon restoration attempts in U.S. history. The removal would drain large reservoirs and reshape California’s second-largest river.
🐟 Blue whale sightings off give hope of recovery The Guardian
When the Antarctic blue whale – the largest and loudest animal on the planet – was all but wiped out by whaling 50 years ago, the waters around South Georgia fell silent.
Twenty years of dedicated whale surveys from ships off the sub-Antarctic island between 1998 and 2018 resulted in only a single blue whale sighting. But a whale expedition this year and analysis by an international research team resulted in 58 blue whale sightings and numerous acoustic detections, raising hopes that the critically endangered mammal is finally recovering five decades after whaling was banned.
“We don’t quite know why it has taken the blue whales so long to come back,” said Susannah Calderan, of the Scottish Association for Marine Science and the lead author of a study in the journal Endangered Species Research. “It may be that so many of them were killed at South Georgia that there was a loss of cultural memory in the population that the area was a foraging ground, and that it is only now being rediscovered.”
These efforts make such a difference. If you know of more, please let me know.
As he saw through his host’s eyes, he was again bewildered. He supposed his host was in a tree, but it was a tree unlike any he had ever seen, with long droopy branches, and something hanging from them. Were those leaves? He had never seen any leaves like those. And the tree, bizarrely, was not standing on land but in water — could trees do that? Hunters of the Feather