Best of Landscape News 2019: Biodiversity

Our pick of this year’s top stories

A pair of 6-week-old penguin chicks, left on their own by their parents, huddle together for warmth in Atka Bay, Antarctica. Photograph copyright Stefan Christmann
20 January 2020
Ming Chun Tang
20 January 2020
Ming Chun Tang

After a year that’s seen the climate crisis dominate the global sustainability agenda, you’d be forgiven for letting the planet’s other major crisis slip out of your mind. The past year taught us that about a million plant and animal species are at risk of extinction, raising sobering questions over which ones to prioritize saving. At Landscape News, we hope to be a small part of the solution by taking a moment to appreciate the wonders of the flora and fauna that we share our planet with – whether that’s well-known charismatic species like the big cats or the great apes, or obscure birds found only on remote islands in the Pacific.

Behind the scenes of new BBC series “Dynasties”

Producer Rupert Barrington reflects on the making of the BBC’s groundbreaking new nature documentary series.

Photo: Theo Webb; Copyright BBC NHU

In an era of mass extinction, who decides which species to save – and how?

Conservation efforts are often focused on well-known species like dolphins, elephants and orangutans, but Indigenous and local communities may have other priorities. Here’s how New Zealand resolved these conflicts.

Larry Koester

The 5 new World Heritage Sites most important for biodiversity

From king penguins to leopards, last year’s UNESCO World Heritage Site additions feature an extensive display of biodiversity. Here are five of them.

Birds flying over coastal regions near the Yellow Sea.
© Yancheng Broadcasting Television

Mountains of the apes

UNEP’s “ape guy” Johannes Refisch explains how – and why – his agency is prioritizing saving the chimpanzees, gorillas, bonobos and orangutans over the millions of lesser-known endangered species.

Joseph King, Flickr

Searching for the rare kākerōri bird in the Cook Islands

Landscape News goes birdwatching around the South Pacific island of Rarotonga, courtesy of veteran local conservation expert Ian Karika.

Kākerōri
J. Scott, Flickr

We’re on the brink of massive extinction, landmark biodiversity report says

A fairly self-explanatory word of warning from the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES).

Rifky, CIFOR

Photographer Laurent Baheux on his intimate ode to the African lion

Seventeen years of footage from wildlife photographer Laurent Baheux show the “king of animals” in its native – and disappearing – habitat.

"Proof of love," Kenya, 2014. Photo © 2019 Laurent Baheux. All rights reserved.
© 2019 Laurent Baheux. All rights reserved.

5 ways that life underwater affects life on land

Fast facts on how terrestrial – including human – livelihoods depend on the state of our oceans’ ecosystems.

Mathias Appel, Flickr

Saving the rare hihi bird by hearing its happy call

How conservationists are using sound recording devices to monitor a bird species recently reintroduced to its native ecosystem in New Zealand.

Neil Dalphin, Flickr

Report makes the business case for governments to protect biodiversity

A new report from the OECD presents a business case for governments to protect biodiversity through taxes.

A butterfly in Peru. Governments should create more economic incentives to protect biodiversity, an OECD report urges. Jeffrey van Lent, CIFOR
Jeffrey van Lent, CIFOR

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