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Latest Biota Stories

2006-07-26 16:44:15

By Christine Kearney NEW YORK (Reuters) - Authorities in six states on Wednesday arrested 44 suspected members of an international drug ring that smuggled more than 25 tons of the stimulant khat worth more than $10 million from Africa to U.S. cities. The arrests resulted from what authorities called the largest investigation of khat trafficking in U.S. history and coincided with fears the drug was growing in U.S. popularity and becoming a source of funding for Somali warlords. "We...

2006-06-08 19:08:04

By Ed Stoddard JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Delighted conservationists said on Friday that they had found conclusive proof of the existence of a rare giraffe-like creature in Congo's Virunga National Park that has defied the odds of survival in a region battered by savage conflict. First discovered in what is now Virunga in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo in 1901, the shy forest-dwelling okapi had not been found in the park since 1959. It was known to be present elsewhere in...

2006-06-08 19:05:00

By Ed Stoddard JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Delighted conservationists said on Friday that they had found conclusive proof of the existence of a rare giraffe-like creature in Congo's Virunga National Park that has defied the odds of survival in a region battered by savage conflict. First discovered in what is now Virunga in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo in 1901, the shy forest-dwelling okapi had not been found in the park since 1959. It was known to be present elsewhere in the Congo,...

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2006-06-01 14:19:10

WASHINGTON -- Gourmets savoring their roasted figs with goat cheese may not realize it, but they're tasting history. Archaeologists report that they have found evidence that ancient people grew fig trees some 11,400 years ago, making the fruit the earliest domesticated crop. The find dates use of figs some 1,000 years before the first evidence that crops such as wheat, barley and legumes were being cultivated in the Middle East. Remains of the ancient fruits were found at Gilgal I, a village...

2006-04-21 05:20:00

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) - Much like the bird that drew attention to it, Bayou de View - where birders reported seeing an ivory-billed woodpecker - is critically endangered, researchers said Thursday. University of Arkansas at Fayetteville graduate students spent last fall slogging through hip-deep mud to study the cypresses and other trees in the eastern Arkansas bayous. They found a forest of bald cypress and tupelo, an ecosystem that has all but disappeared from the landscape. Researchers...

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2006-02-28 08:25:00

ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- In the 1970s, there used to be about 1,300 beluga whales in Cook Inlet, delighting locals and tourists alike. Last year, the number was estimated at just 278. Why their numbers are dwindling has scientists puzzled - and scared. The National Marine Fisheries Service is embarking on a status review to determine if the belugas need the protection of the federal Endangered Species Act. A listing was rejected in 2000 because then it was believed that overharvesting was to...

2006-02-14 14:39:54

As thousands of pink-footed geese (Anser brachyrhynchus) prepare for their spring migration north to breeding grounds in the Arctic, ecologists are warning that the escalating conflict between farmers and the geese is threatening the birds' survival. Writing in the new issue of the British Ecological Society's Journal of Applied Ecology, Professor Marcel Klaassen of the Netherlands Institute of Ecology says that international action is urgently required. Farmers in northern- and mid-Norway...

2006-02-07 09:53:49

JONESBORO, Ark. (AP) - A federal judge heard arguments Monday over whether a vast irrigation project intended to help farmers in eastern Arkansas will harm the rare ivory-billed woodpecker. U.S. District Judge William R. Wilson was asked by environmentalists to temporarily stop the Grand Prairie Irrigation Project and order the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to conduct more environmental studies on the bird's habitat. The judge said he would rule as soon as possible and might have a telephone...

2005-12-12 12:25:00

By Deborah Zabarenko WASHINGTON -- It has starred in a video, been widely recorded and graced the cover of a prestigious magazine. But to dispel any doubt the ivory-billed woodpecker -- the Elvis of the bird world -- is back from extinction, searchers are combing a corner of Arkansas in an intensive six-month hunt. On foot, in canoes and kayaks, even using cherry-picker vehicles that tower over the forest canopy, teams of volunteers and paid workers have been looking for traces of the big...

2005-11-09 15:25:41

By Scott Reycraft TORONTO (Reuters) - Scientists are inviting schoolkids around the globe to visit with Canadian polar bears in a series of Internet video conferences from the self-styled Polar Bear Capital of the World. The schools project is one of a several organized by conservation group Polar Bears International, which is based in the northern Canadian city of Churchill, Manitoba, on the shores of Hudson Bay. The group also funds school visits by scientists to talk about the...


Latest Biota Reference Libraries

Montezuma Pine, Pinus montezumae
2014-07-15 13:27:17

Montezuma pine (Pinus montezumae) is native to Mexico and Central America and grows in the mountain ranges. This tree is known as ocote by the locals of Mexico. This tree has been planted successfully at mid altitudes in South Africa and Queensland, Australia, and at high altitudes in Kenya, Malawi, Botswana, Zimbabwe, and Bolivia. Trees planted in New Zealand and New South Wales, Australia have done well at sea level. The Montezuma pine grows at 6,562-10,500 feet above sea level where...

Macedonian Pine, Pinus peuce
2014-07-15 13:08:24

Macedonian Pine (Pinus peuce) is native to Macedonia, Bulgaria, Albania, Montenegro, Kosovo, southwest Serbia, as well as the extreme north of Greece. This pine has been neutralized and grows in Eastern Finland. This pine grows best at altitudes between 3,281feet and 7,218 feet with a few growing as low as 1,969 feet and as high as 7,546 feet. This pine tolerates shade as well as extreme cold, and grows in rocky soils that are acidic and poor in nutrients. This tree grows to heights...

Japanese White Pine, Pinus parviflora
2014-07-15 12:15:14

Japanese White Pine (Pinus parviflora) is native to Japan and found growing in Kokkaido, Honshu, Kyushu, Shikaku; and South Korea, and Utsurio-To. The Japanese call it the Japanese five-needle pine. The Japanese White Pine grows from sea level up to 8,202 feet, but grows best between 3,281 feet and 4,921 feet. Dwarfism sets in when the trees grow above sub-alpine levels. This pine grows on steep, rocky slopes and prefers well-drained soils and full sun although it does not like intense...

Chinese White Pine, Pinus armandii
2014-07-14 16:49:23

Chinese White Pine (Pinus armandii) is native to China as well as northern Burma. This pine is known as Mount Hua pine in Chinese. This pine grows at altitudes between 3,281 and 10,830 feet in light sandy to medium soils that is acidic and well-drained as this tree can tolerate drought. This tree grows to heights of 115 feet with a trunk diameter that measures 3 feet 3 inches. The bark is grayish brown when immature and matures to blackish brown to grayish red brown. The trunk will have...

Ocote Pine, Pinus oocarpa
2014-05-16 09:55:29

Ocote pine (Pinus oocarpa) is native to Mexico and Central America. This tree is also known as the Mexican yellow pine, hazelnut pine, pino Amarillo, and pino avellano. This pine is closely related to the pinus greggii and pinus patula. This pine grows at altitudes of 3000-7000 feet above sea level while in El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua it grows at lower altitudes of 2600 feet. In poor soils, the tree will only grow between 32.8 and 49.2 feet tall and up to 39.3 feet in shallow soil...

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Word of the Day
mallemaroking
  • Nautical, the visiting and carousing of sailors in the Greenland ships.
This word is apparently from a confusion of two similar Dutch words: 'mallemerok,' a foolish woman, and 'mallemok,' a name for some persons among the crew of a whaling vessel.