Op-Eds and Blogs

The ‘super year for biodiversity’: Undermined by a wildlife market?
by Janice Weatherley-Singh
This year’s meeting of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is being curtailed by the COVID-19 outbreak. Ironically, the pandemic most likely first emerged from wildlife being traded in a live animal market.
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Cutting the Kill Count
by Luke Warwick, Lee Crockett
The ultimate goal of CITES listings is fewer dead sharks and rays. That means hard work globally to implement trade regulations. A major new program of the Shark Conservation Fund will play a key role.
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How Do We Prevent the Next Outbreak?
by Christian Walzer, Nicholas Robinson
In a new commentary for Scientific American, WCS's Chris Walzer and his colleague Nick Robinson argue that as the world triages COVID-19, we also need to triage how to prevent future zoonotic outbreaks.
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Emerging Zoonoses and the Risk Posed by Wildlife Markets
by Amanda Fine, Aili Kang
With new cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) reported each day across the globe, we are reminded that coming into close contact with wildlife, their body parts, and excreta poses a risk of spillover of the pathogens to human populations.
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Conservation and Business: Working Together for a Sustainable Singapore
by Martin Callow
WCS is engaged with Singapore-based banks to counter global and regional wildlife trafficking—stemming illicit financial flows to save endangered populations of rhino, hornbills, elephants, and pangolins.
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Taking a Stand to Save Earth's Oceans
by Kendall Jones, James Watson
Despite their immensity, the seas will be irreversibly depleted of life if nothing change. In a new study published in One Earth, WCS’s Kendall Jones and James Watson assess what is needed to save Earth’s marine biodiversity.
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Collaborating for Jaguar Conservation
by Rob Wallace, Enzo Aliaga-Rossel
On World Wildlife Day, we celebrate the collaborative attitude of toward jaguar conservation and recognize the diversity of local actors needed to make on-the-ground action effective.
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Conserving Biological and Cultural Diversity in Nicaragua
by Fabricio Díaz Santos
"Despite the conservation challenges confronting these forested landscapes of Nicaragua, I can testify that they still provide basic necessities to the Indigenous communities that live in them," says WCS's Fabricio Díaz Santos.
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Saving endangered species: Now we must focus on ecosystem health
by James Watson
"In one critical respect," argues WCS's James Watson in an op-ed for World Wildlife Day, "the current global strategic plan for biodiversity is simply not working. We must embrace a new approach that directly targets the conservation of ecosystems."
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For the Central Asian Mammals Initiative, the Journey Continues
by Enkhtuvshin Shiilegdamba, Kirk Olson, Alfred DeGemmis
"The high mountain and vast temperate grasslands of Central Asia are havens for some of the world’s most spectacular assemblages of migratory mammals in the world," write WCS's Enkhtuvshin Shiilegdamba, Kirk Olson, and Alfred DeGemmis.
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The Remarkable 50-Year Conservation Journey of Dr. John Weaver
by Justina Ray
"John Weaver has packed a formidable number of accomplishments into his adventures across the wild landscapes of western North America in his 50-year career as a conservation biologist," writes WCS Canada's Justina Ray.
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Worth the Wait
by Nicole Auil Gomez, Janet Gibson
Belize recently enacted the Fisheries Resources Act. This bipartisan, forward-looking fisheries bill protects both marine species and livelihoods. The WCS Belize Program is excited to support what will be a huge undertaking to realize its full implementation.
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Hasty development of Ontario’s Ring of Fire could have devastating impacts
by Justina Ray, Cheryl Chetkiewicz
Roads and the access they create can dramatically reshape an entire region. Understanding these consequences is vital if we want to sustain nature’s services and the Indigenous communities that depend on them..
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Wildlife Trade Regulations Provide a Success Story for Manta Rays
by Hollie Booth
The Government of Indonesia, with support from WCS and the Shark Conservation Fund, is developing a range of management measures for CITES-listed sharks and rays, including catch limits for silky sharks and mako sharks.
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A Critical Treaty for Migratory Birds Must Find Its Way Forward
by Alfred DeGemmis, Jon Slaght, Martin Robards
Parties to the Convention on Migratory Species are reviewing implementation of initiatives and plans for individual flyways, studies on the illegal killing and trade in migratory bird species, and efforts around power lines, light pollution, and more.
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Protecting Jaguars without Borders
by Maria del Carmen Fleytas
Jaguars cross borders with frequency and regularity," notes WCS's Maria del Carmen Fleytas. "We have a unique opportunity to increase the large scale, transboundary conservation collaborations that the species needs to persist."
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