Blaze fierce in CA despite resistant vegetation

As fires cloak the San Gabriel Mountains in southern California, workers are attempting to carry out controlled burns along the perimeter of the fire. Firefighters battle part of the blaze in Glendale, CA. Photo courtesy Gina Ferazzi for the Los Angeles Times. These burns will reduce the amount of fuel around the current fire so that if the fire reaches this radius, it will have a higher chance of burning itself out. The concept of...

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New love for the endangered uglies?

The California Condor has enjoyed a comeback despite its relative ugliness. So-called charismatic megafauna have traditionally captured the attention of the public, becoming the poster children for zoos, aquariums and conservation organizations. This public affection for attractive animals has also translated into legislation: Cuddly and economically important animals get more money under the Endangered Species Act, regardless of...

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Video evidence of white-nose syndrome

The U.S. Forest Service, in partnership with Ravenswood Media, has produced an informational video about white-nose syndrome in bats (learn about WNS in this ESA press release).  The video doesn’t include the latest news — that Pennsylvania has ordered all bats taken from afflected caves to be killed — but it’s a good overview of the current state of information on the disease. Or, really, the lack thereof. In...

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