Archive for surfbirds archive

Cold-loving butterflies threatened by climate change and habitat loss

Some of the UK’s best-loved birds and butterflies could be wiped out as there is not enough habitat for them to cope with the effects of a warming climate, a study involving Butterfly Conservation has revealed. Continue reading

Learn your Stripes – quarter of brits think there are ten times more tigers in the wild

WWF-UK survey reveals people are unaware of the perilously low number of wild tigers

A new survey commissioned by WWF-UK reveals 23% of those polled thought there were about 10 times (39,000) the number of tigers in the wild, rather than the sad reality of around 3,900. Despite being one of the most iconic animals in the world, it would seem many are still unware of the desperately low numbers.

As 2017 begins the world has just five years to reach an ambitious and visionary conservation goal agreed in 2010*; to double the number of wild tigers by 2022, the next Chinese year of the tiger.  Last year, conservationists celebrated global wild tiger numbers increasing for the first time in the history of conservation.

The poll by Markettiers of more than 1000 British public also found that one third of those surveyed thought wild tigers lived in Kenya. Tigers have never lived in the wild in Africa, yet other countries on this continent incorrectly thought to home wild tigers include South Africa, Zimbabwe and Tanzania, with 26%, 17% and 11% of people surveyed selecting them respectively.

Tiger © Jan Kelchtermans, from the surfbirds galleries.

There are 13 tiger range countries in total across Asia. India is home to the largest population of wild tigers, which 67% of those polled identified correctly.

Rebecca May, WWF-UK’s tiger specialist, comments:

“Tigers are endangered and need our support, which is why it’s worrying to discover that so many people are not aware of the fragile situation faced by tigers in the wild. The increase in wild tiger numbers reported earlier this year is encouraging, but the species’ future in its natural environment still hangs on a knife edge, and numbers remain perilously low. There now needs to be a monumental push forward to build on this progress. We need commitment and urgent action from all tiger range governments, as well as passion and unwavering support from the public, including from us in the UK.”

In a separate survey released in July 2016, WWF-UK also revealed that three quarters of Brits weren’t aware of tiger farm practices in Asia, which are fuelling the illegal tiger trade and jeopardising the recovery of wild tigers across the continent.  There are now more than 200 of these facilities across Asia – a large number of which are likely to be involved in the illegal trade of tigers like the notorious Tiger Temple;  Asia’s most renowned tiger farm. The high profile investigation of Thailand’s Tiger Temple shocked the nation last summer.

The implications of these captive facilities was further highlighted in a recent TRAFFIC and WWF report showing the growing proportion of tiger parts seized are suspected to be from tiger farms, up from just 2% in the 2000-2003 period to at least 30% in 2012-2015.

New study reveals lost birdsong of Britain

New study reveals that yellowhammer dialects which it’s thought previously existed in the UK have now been lost, but can still be heard in birdsong overseas, shedding new light on the cultural evolution of birdsong. Continue reading

Tourists spend £8.2m in Dumfries and Galloway after travelling to see red kites

People visiting Dumfries and Galloway to see the region’s red kites have contributed over £8.2m to the local economy, a new report has found. Continue reading

Farmers in Fife and Angus are heralded as saviours of one of Scotland’s fastest declining birds

Actions by farmers are responsible for improved fortunes of corn buntings. Continue reading

The Endangered Treasure of Ulcinj – documentary

These man-made salt works became a bird haven, but now the threatened birds and salt workers share the same destiny. Watch the thought-provoking documentary Continue reading

Tracking jaguars in Paraguay’s hot, dry Chaco Plains

It’s hot, dry and largely uninhabited by humans. But although the Chaco Plains of south-central South America may not be an ideal habitat for our species, this sprawling region is far from deserted. Indeed, the Chaco Plains’ savannahs and tropical forests are something of a biodiversity hotspot, sheltering a wide range of mammals – from jaguars and cougars to anteaters to armadillos. Continue reading

2017 brings hope for Pacific birds

A new year always brings new hope – but 2017 is a big one for conservation in the Pacific.  The last big leap forward in 2015 was the restoration of the islands of Acteon and Gambier in French Polynesia. In 2017 we are on the countdown for the next big step forward, the restoration of up to 18 islands of the Marquesas and at Rapa, again in French Polynesia. Continue reading

This man has just broken the record for most bird species seen in a year

Interview: Arjan Dwarshuis has just broken the world record for the number of bird species spotted in a single year. And he is doing it to raise money for BirdLife.
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A tern for the better

Asia’s rarest seabird has been discovered breeding in the Korean Peninsula. This new stronghold could help the Chinese Crested Tern bounce back from near-extinction. Continue reading