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Posts Tagged "Hawaii"

Extinction Countdown

The Long, Strange Saga of the Endangered Hawaiian Hawk

hawaiian hawk

The National Wilderness Institute no longer exists. Its Web site has disappeared, its phone number has been disconnected and the founder has moved on to become a senior advisor for the conservative Heritage Foundation. But the legacy of the organization, founded in part to attempt to repeal the Endangered Species Act, lives on. Back in [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Endangered Plants for Sale Online: Are They Legal?

Pritchardia remota

Did you know that it is often legal to buy and sell endangered species of plants through the mail? It’s true. Take, for example, the rare Hawaiian palm tree Pritchardia remota, one of several species collectively known as lou’lu. The tree, like many in its genus, is listed as endangered under the U.S. Endangered Species [...]

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Extinction Countdown

The 4 Most Endangered Seal Species

saimaa seal

I have a summer tradition. Every year, as close to the first day of summer as possible, I hop onto one of the many whale-watching tours that depart from Boothbay Harbor, Maine, and spend an afternoon on the ocean. On a good day we can end up seeing a dozen or so whales. On a [...]

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Extinction Countdown

The Last 50 Corroboree Frogs and Other Links from the Brink

southern corroboree frog

A colorful frog, some Hawaiian mollusks and California’s threatened fish are among the endangered species in the news this week. The Frog Extinction Crisis Continues: How much longer until we have to say good-bye to the southern corroboree frog (Pseudophryne corroboree)? The rare Australian amphibian, one of the world’s most colorful and well-known endangered species, [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Amazing Hawaiian Plant Loved by Tourists but Endangered by Climate Change

silversword

Every year up to two million people visit Haleakalā National Park in Hawaii, the only habitat for the endangered Haleakalā silversword (Argyroxyphium sandwicense macrocephalum), a spectacular and unusual plant that is now threatened by climate change. According to research published January 7 in Global Change Biology, these silverswords have suffered a dramatic population decline in [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Citizen Scientists, Funding Needed to Help Hawaiian Monk Seal Research Project

hawaiian monk seal

Endangered Hawaiian monk seals (Monachus schauinslandi) have a bad reputation among some local fishermen, who accuse the 200-kilogram mammals of eating the fish that the humans catch for their livelihoods. A new project aims to find out if that notoriety is deserved and the public—in particular, teens—has a chance to participate. The National Marine Fisheries [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Blue-Tailed Skink Declared Extinct in Hawaii

copper-striped blue-tailed skink

Hawaii’s extinction crisis has claimed another victim: the copper-striped blue-tailed skink (Emoia impar), a once-common lizard that has now been declared extinct by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The skink was last seen in Hawaii in the 1960s. Extensive surveys between 1988 and 2008 failed to turn up any sign that it exists in the [...]

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Extinction Countdown

U.S. Army Protects Critically Endangered Hawaiian Snails from Invasive Predators

Achatinella mustelina

Three hundred critically endangered kahuli tree snails (Achatinella mustelina) have a new home this week: a basketball court–size, predator-proof enclosure built for them by the U.S. Army in Hawaii’s Waianae Mountains. The snails, according to the Army, spent the past two years in a lab at the University of Hawaii at Manoa while the new [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Newly Discovered Hawaiian Bird Could Already Be Extinct

Here’s something amazing: a new bird species has been discovered in the U.S. for the first time since 1974. Unfortunately, the discovery wasn’t a live bird. It was actually a museum sample collected in 1963, and the scientists who discovered it fear it may already be extinct or threatened with extinction. The specimen was collected [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Algal Neurotoxins Found in Endangered Hawaiian Monk Seals

Hawaiian monk seal

More than 30 years after 50 critically endangered Hawaiian monk seals (Monachus schauinslandi) died of suspected algal toxic poisoning, the presence of ciguatoxins in living seals has finally been confirmed through a new, noninvasive test. Ciguatoxins are produced by dinoflagellates, which live near coral and seaweed. The dinoflagellates are eaten by small fish, which are [...]

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Observations

Hawaii Faces More Dangerous Tsunami Risk

Northern tsunamis aimed at Hawaii

An ocean debris pile, much further inland than expected, testifies to past giant waves from the north.

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Observations

Souvenir Seafood Menus Offer Glimpse into Hawaii’s Oceans of Old

A 1957 menu from Hawaiian restaurant "The Tropics." Image credit: Kyle Van Houtan

Kyle Van Houtan, a marine ecologist at Duke University and a researcher for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, has spent the last few months scouring libraries, Web sites and private collections for Hawaiian restaurant menus dating as far back as the late 1800s. Why menus? Van Houtan and his colleagues are trying to learn [...]

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Observations

Hawaii picks Maui luxury resort as site to test smart-grid technology

Hawaii,Wailea,wind, green energy, renewable, GE

Hawaii has been working for more than a year to map out concrete plans to harness the abundant—though unpredictable—winds that blow across the state’s numerous islands. As the state and its utilities draw up plans for wind farms and other green-energy facilities to help meet the goal of pulling 70 percent of power from clean [...]

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Plugged In

Turning off the Lights Won’t Save Oil

pecss_diagram_2009_small

Today, more than 80% of the energy used in the United States comes from fossil fuels – specifically from petroleum, natural gas and coal. In the transportation sector, this number is even higher with fossil fuels (almost exclusively petroleum) supplying 97% of the total energy used. But, on the electric power side of the equation, [...]

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