News Releases


Oceans and Fisheries


New Tech Lets Us Track Real-Time Health of Coral Reefs Around the World
MERMAID, an open-source tech platform for marine scientists, is for the first time launching an interactive map that provides an insider’s view of the ecosystem data collected from coral reefs by field scientists around the world. MERMAID (Marine Ecological Research Management AID) is a first of its kind free, online-offline platform that allows scientists anywhere in the world to collect, analyze, and share field-based coral reef surveys. Developed in partnership between the Wildlife Cons...
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Study Finds Only 2.5 Percent of the World’s Coral Reefs Are Currently Being Actively Protected
A new global study has found that only 2.5 percent of tropical reefs are formally protected and conserved through laws and regulations. These numbers are significantly lower than previous estimates, and highlight an urgent need for governments, communities, and partnering organizations to create and expand marine reserves to protect these ecosystems which support more than 500 million people worldwide.
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New Study Finds Access to Education and Markets Vital for Coastal Fishing Communities Adapting to a Warming and Changing World
A new study investigating the links between coastal communities and coral reefs in Kenya and Madagascar has found that access to education and markets can help mitigate acute vulnerabilities for communities struggling with poverty and reliant on ecosystems degraded by overfishing.
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Strong Sharing Networks Can Help Communities Rebound From Crises
Of the top five countries in the world most at risk to disasters, three are Pacific Island nations. Yet time and time again, Pacific Islanders exhibit marked abilities to quickly recover. Part of the reason may be due to strong social networks that help to distribute resources to those most in need, say marine scientists from the University of Hawaiʿi, National Geographic Society and WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society) in a new study.
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Good Governance Needed to Build Support for Fishing Restrictions
Good governance appears to be a prerequisite for local support of strong fisheries restrictions, the key finding in a recently published study of 16 fishing villages in East Africa that are struggling to achieve fisheries sustainability.
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World Wildlife Day Remarks by WCS President and CEO Cristián Samper

The following are excerpts of remarks given today by WCS President and CEO Cristián Samper at the Celebration of World Wildlife Day 2020, on the theme of “Sustaining all life on earth.”

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Scientists Listen to Whales, Walruses, & Seals In a Changing Arctic Seascape
A  year-round acoustic study of marine mammals in the northern Bering Sea is providing scientists with a valuable snapshot of an Arctic world already under drastic pressure from climate change, according to WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society), Columbia University, Southall Environmental Associates, and the University of Washington.
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Integrating Social and Ecological Science  For Effective Coral Reef Conservation
While many conservation plans focus on only environmental indicators for success, the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)’s coral reef program is trying a relatively new approach: focusing on both social and ecological processes and outcomes to ensure a long-term future for coral reef systems, according to a newly published study.
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Study Finds Overharvest of Juvenile Queen Conch in Belize May be Reducing Size of Adults and Population
The new study by WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society), the University of Miami, and Universidad de Puerto Rico have detected a decrease in the average size of adult queen conch (Lobatus gigas), possibly the result of fishers using shell length rather than thickness as a reliable indicator of age.
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Besides Hot Water, Coral Bleaching Also About Location, Location, Location
As conservationists grapple with unprecedented levels of coral reef bleaching in the world’s warming oceans, scientists in the Indian and Pacific Oceans used the most recent El Nino of 2016 (the warmest year on record) to evaluate the role of excess heat as the leading driver of coral bleaching.
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