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Extinction Countdown

Should YouTube Ban Videos of the Adorable but Endangered Slow Loris?

slow loris Thai market

Like hundreds of thousands of other people, my first encounter with a slow loris occurred online when I watched the now-famous 57-second video of one of these adorable primates being tickled and throwing up its arms in apparent glee. That video has been viewed more than nine million times since it was posted in June [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Fished out: Wildlife group objects as South Africa lifts abalone ban


South Africa will lift on Friday its nearly three-year-old ban on commercial abalone fishing, a move that a wildlife group says will send the highly valued and highly poached species spiraling toward extinction. Known in South African as perlemoen, abalone (specifically the Haliotis midae species) has long been a cash cow for the nation’s fishermen, [...]

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Extinction Countdown

DNA bar codes, a new tool for tracking illegal wildlife trade

illegally traded bushmeat products

The illegal trade of bushmeat—meat and products made from wildlife—has grown dramatically in the past several years, thanks to high demand, enormous profits, a lack of law enforcement and minimal sentencing for criminals caught trafficking in bushmeat. The worldwide market for these illegal products reached an estimated $5 billion to $8 billion in 2008. One [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Endangered African antelope win protection from American hunters

scimitar horned oryx

Until last week, U.S. trophy hunters had the legal right to hunt three species of endangered African game at American ranches, thanks to a “blanket exemption” to the Endangered Species Act issued during the Bush administration. That loophole has now been closed, following a federal judge’s ruling in a lawsuit brought by the organization Friends [...]

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Ban Elephant Ivory, Legalize Rhino Horn?

White rhino

The fate of elephants, rhinoceroses and other imperiled species could be decided in the coming days at a major meeting on wildlife trade regulation in Bangkok. Beginning March 3, delegates from the 178 countries that have signed the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, dubbed CITES, will gather to [...]

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