War imperils not only human communities but also wildlife and natural resources, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society’s third edition of State of the Wild: A Global Portrait, a series that identifies the world’s most pressing conservation challenges.

The 2010–2011 edition includes a special section devoted to the impact of human conflicts on wildlife and wild places.

“Conservation requires a commitment to saving our natural wonders in times of war and peace,” said Steve Sanderson, president and CEO of the Wildlife Conservation Society. “Conserving the world’s wildlife and wild places is a part of ensuring long-term security. The essays in State of the Wild address this crucial connection.”

The book’s special section titled “Wildlife Conservation in a Time of War” includes essays on conservation projects and issues in Afghanistan, Central and southern Africa, and the world’s marine ecosystems. It considers how conservation can contribute to peace-building and reconstruction in post-conflict areas.

The book features other essays on emerging diseases by Dr. William Karesh; the future of forest elephants by Drs. Stephen Blake and Simon Hedges; ocean conservation by Dr. Claudio Campagna; and the effects of the global economic recession on conservation by WCS Chair Ward Woods.

Additionally, the 2010-2011 edition includes contributions by noted environmental writers, such as Callum M. Roberts, author of The Unnatural History of the Sea; and Bill Weber, lead author of In the Kingdom of Gorillas.

Some of the other essays in the 2010-2011—State of the Wild focus on:

  • The plight of turtle species in Asia;
  • The effects of climate change on migratory birds;
  • The difficulties of assigning economic worth to ecosystem services;
  • The potential role of religions and faith communities in helping conservation; and
  • Global conservation news highlights in Africa, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands, Central and South America, Europe, North America, and in the world’s oceans.

“The State of the Wild series provides readers with a timely analysis of the world’s most urgent conservation issues as well as recent discoveries and highlights, ” said Dr. Kent Redford, vice president and director of WCS’s Wildlife Institute and series editor of State of the Wild. “It promotes innovative, science-based solutions for saving and managing the world’s wildlife and wild places.”

“This unique publication blends poetic awe for nature’s beauty with rigorous analysis of the most difficult challenges conservation faces,” said Luigi Boitani, president for the Society of Conservation Biology and reviewer of the 2010-2011—State of the Wild: A Global Portrait. “This stunning book is informative and inspiring. Every conservationist should read it.”

Books are available at www.wcs.org/stateofthewild.