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Wandering Albatrosses on Prion Island, South Georgia Island, Antarctica. Paul Souders / Corbis Documentary / Getty Images Plus

The theme for today's Earth Day is "Protect Our Species," so Google has gotten in on the celebration with a doodle that celebrates the amazing biodiversity of life on earth.

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Aerial of farmland and mountains near Seaward Kaikoura Range in New Zealand. David Wall Photo / Lonely Planet Images / Getty Images Plus

By Jordan Davidson

New Zealand's pristine image as a haven of untouched forests and landscapes was tarnished this week by a brand new government report. The Environment Aotearoa 2019 painted a bleak image of the island nation's environment and its future prospects.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A mountain woodland caribou bull in the Muskwa-Kechika Wilderness area in northern British Columbia, Canada. John E Marriott / All Canada Photos / Getty Images

It's heartening, in the midst of the human-caused sixth mass extinction, to find good wildlife recovery news. As plant and animal species disappear faster than they have for millions of years, Russia's Siberian, or Amur, tigers are making a comeback. After falling to a low of just a few dozen in the mid-20th century, the tigers now number around 500, with close to 100 cubs — thanks to conservation measures that include habitat restoration and an illegal hunting crackdown.

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EgNo 4180 and her 2019 calf photographed by the CCS aerial survey team in Cape Cod Bay on April 11. CCS image, NOAA permit 19315-1

One of the rarest species of whale in the world is experiencing a mini-baby boom off the coast of New England, lending hope to the survival of the once-imperiled population.

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The last known female Yangtze giant softshell turtle, who died Saturday. STR / AFP / Getty Images

The last known female Yangtze giant softshell turtle (Rafetus swinhoei) has died, putting the critically endangered species at risk for extinction. There are now only three left in the world.

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David Bernhardt arrives before testifying during a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee confirmation hearing on March 28, 2019 in Washington, DC. Zach Gibson / Getty Images

The Senate voted to confirm former oil-and-gas lobbyist David Bernhardt as Secretary of the Interior Thursday, despite calls from Democrats and government watchdogs to investigate his past conduct, The New York Times reported.

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The pangolin is the world's most trafficked mammal. Nigel Dennis / Getty Images

A record number of pangolin scales were seized in Singapore in the past week, drawing renewed attention to the plight of the world's most trafficked mammal.

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Cavan Images / Getty Images

Update: The window for photo submissions has ended. The winner will be announced this Monday, April 22.

Earth Day is celebrated each year on April 22nd. The official theme of Earth Day 2019 is 'Protect Our Species.' In honor of Earth Day, EcoWatch has kicked off a second photo contest. Show us what 'Protect Our Species' means to you. Maybe there's a tree you've always loved, or perhaps it's a photo of the bird you adore that always visits your yard. We're excited to see what species means a lot to you. Capture a moment and send it our way!

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An elephant among savannah grass in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Hein von Horsten / Gallo Images / Getty Images

A suspected rhino poacher was trampled to death by an elephant and then eaten by lions after entering South Africa's Kruger National Park, South African National Parks said.

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Birds flying near skyscrapers in Chicago, the most dangerous U.S. city for migrating birds. FTiare /
iStock / Getty Images Plus

What are the most dangerous U.S. cities for migratory birds?

That's the question answered by a new study published last week in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, which looked at the problem of light pollution. Seventy percent of bird species present in the U.S. are migratory, and more than 80 percent of those species migrate at night. The increasing light pollution of cities attracts the avian travelers, who then crash into buildings. Building collisions kill an estimated 600 million birds in the U.S. every year, according to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, which led the study.

The researchers created two lists for the cities that pose the greatest risk to birds during both the spring and fall migratory season, based on both geography and light pollution.

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JeffGoulden / E+ / Getty Images

One of the most endangered wolves in the world is indeed its own species. That's the important finding of a National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine report released Thursday, which determined that red wolves are genetically distinct from gray wolves and coyotes.

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