Dec 072017
 
Asian Elephants Are Now Being Killed for Their Skin

The smell was ghastly and the sight even worse. Twenty-five elephants lay dead in a riverbed in the Ayeyawady (Irrawaddy) delta in southwestern Myanmar. “The stench is what led villagers to the bodies in the first place,” says Aung Myo Chit, the Smithsonian Institution’s Myanmar country coordinator, who also leads a local NGO, Growth for […]

Dec 112016
 
Land reclamation in Malaysia puts endangered turtle at risk

Melaka – The expanse of sand stretches hundreds of meters in both directions, featureless and flat, its dusty monotony alleviated only by the excavators, trucks and dredgers that dump sand and rocks into the sea and smooth out the newly-created land. Billboards surrounding one site tout an aspirational dream of stylish apartments, luxury hotels and […]

Sep 232016
 
Black, white and unique: the Malayan tapir struggles for recognition

Two-month old Asahan sucks milk greedily from a bottle. The baby Malayan tapir — his spotty brown juvenile coat already morphing to the distinctive black and white of an adult — was rescued by local villagers who found the displaced animal wandering alone through an oil palm plantation and then handed him over to Malaysia’s […]

Aug 172016
 
Indochinese leopard has disappeared from 94% of its historical range

The Indochinese leopard is struggling to survive. Once widespread across southeast Asia, the leopard subspecies has been wiped out from much of its habitat, and now occurs only in six percent of its historical range, a new study published in Biological Conservation has found. “Nobody was expecting this,” co-author Jan F. Kamler, Southeast Asia Leopard […]

Oct 142014
 
Marooned in shrinking forests, Bornean orangutans hang on as disaster looms (Part I)

The great apes are among some of the most endangered species on Earth, the targets of poachers and the victims of deforestation. However, from time-to-time there comes news of hope. A study published recently in Oryx describes the dire situation faced by Bornean orangutans, as well as an ambitious project to help save them. The […]

Feb 112014
 
How “insect soup” might change the face of conservation

Much of what we know about patterns of biodiversity has come from extensive fieldwork, with expert researchers sampling and identifying species in a process that takes thousands of man-hours. But new technologies may revolutionize this process, allowing us to monitor changes in biodiversity at speeds and scales unimaginable just a decade ago. A new paper […]

Jan 142014
 
Sun bear sanctuary to save 'forgotten species'

Like a proud dad, Siew Te Wong’s office walls and desk are covered in baby pictures, but unlike ordinary infants these possess four-inch claws and a taste for insects and honey. Wong, a leading sun bear researcher, has a heartfelt passion for the world’s smallest bear that is as big as the problems facing the […]

Jan 062014
 
Elephant deaths rise in Tanzania after shoot-to-kill poachers policy is dropped

Elephant deaths in Tanzania have risen dramatically since the government abandoned a shoot-to-kill policy against poachers, officials admit. Lazaro Nyalandu, the deputy minister of natural resources and tourism, said 60 elephants were “butchered” in November and December, compared with two in October. Soldiers, police, game rangers and forestry officers had been involved in a month-long […]

Dec 032013
 
World's most cryptic feline photographed in logging concession

The bay cat is arguably the world’s least-known member of the cat family (Felidae). Although first described by scientists in 1874, no photo existed of a living specimen until 1998 and a wild cat in its rainforest habitat wasn’t photographed until five years later. Given this, scientists with Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and Imperial […]

Nov 172013
 
Dolphins, bats and the evolution of echolocation

A dolphin swimming through the world’s oceans after fish, and a bat flying through the air with its membranous wings to catch insects or eat fruit: at first glance, it looks like no two creatures could be more different. But it turns out they share a superpower – they hunt prey by emitting high-pitched sounds […]

Oct 152013
 
POLL: Should Sun Bears be used for Chinese medicine?

Wildlife campaigner Louis Ng is no stranger to close encounters with animals in distress. But nothing quite prepared him for the emotional exchange with an adult bear outside a bear farm in Laos. A film-maker had stumbled upon the farm and contacted Ng, the co-founder and executive director of Animal Concerns Research and Education Society […]

Jun 132013
 
Conserving the long-neglected freshwater fish of Borneo

Borneo is a vast tropical island known for orangutans, rhinos, elephants, sun bears, proboscis monkeys, hornbills, and ubiquitous leeches. Conservationists have championed all of these species (aside from the leeches) in one way or another, but like many tropical regions Borneo’s freshwater species have long been neglected, despite their rich biodiversity and importance to local […]

Jun 072013
 
Palm oil expansion endangering rare frogs in Malaysia

Expansion of the palm oil industry in Malaysia is destroying key habitat for endangered frogs, putting them at greater risk, finds a new study published in the journal Conservation Biology. Over a two-year period, Aisyah Faruk of the Zoological Society of London and colleagues documented the impact of oil palm plantations on the peat swamp […]