Back in the last year of the tiger, the tiger range countries came together and aimed to double the number of tigers in the 12 years until the next year of the Tiger – which is this year. As a result, a great deal of surveys have been done to try to work out how the different countries fared.
A number have done very well, India for instance has slightly more than doubled its tiger population – though given they started at about 1.5% of historical numbers, this is just a first step. Never-the-less, as India houses roughly 2 in every 3 wild tigers at the current time, a doubling of their numbers is very positive.
Nepal is different. In the last 12 years Nepal has tripled the tiger population of the country, with 355 tigers, up from 121. What is even more exciting, is that Nepal is approaching the estimated 400 that the Chitwan- Parsa complex can hold.
One of the biggest and best known populations of great white sharks live off the coast of South Africa. So when their behaviour changed in 2017, and they were seen far less regularly, scientists raised alarm bells fast.
Orangutans have been seen swimming on many occasions in the wild. Bizarrely, though, it seems to be a shared trait of all captive Orangutans to be terrified of water, and incapable of swimming even short distances.
This does help zoos, as it makes easy barriers to put up, without impeding the views that the visitors will get.
As in many zoos, it is not uncommon for visitors to through food for the animals (though in almost all instances this will not be good for the animal in question),
On the fateful day – in Vin[earl safari Phu Quoc (on Phu Quco the largest island of Vietnam) a visitor threw some food, but it fell short in the moat. The orangutan preceded now a ramp to try to extract the morsel, but slipped and fell in. Having struggled briefly on the surface, the animal sunk out of view.
The zoo keeper quickly threw in a life preserver, and then jumped in himself, and returned to the surface with the Orangutan. Once on shore, the keeper gave CPR and the Orangutan recovered.
European bee-eaters are becoming regular visitors to the UK, as global warming continues.
This year these bee-eaters bred in Norfolk, and have the last few years, though so far have never succeeded. These colourful birds are just one more sign that global warming is real and is having significant effects.
Oral contraceptives for squirrels are working, a study has shown and so the UK government is keen to try to use this to reduce the grey squirrel population.
There have been many commentators over the years that have suggested that reducing one species to benefit another is somehow racist. Were both species native, this suggestion might have some justification, but they are not.
A recent study has shown that many farms could increase their yields while greatly reducing the quantity of chemical fertilizers that they have to buy. Given the dramatic increase in the price of fertilizers, this may well become something that many farmers are forced into.
CATL has created its first sodium-ion batteries and they can charge to 80% in 15 minutes. With a current usable charge of 160 watt hours per kg, they are targeting 200 in the near future. Another big advantage, is that these batteries can be used along lithium ion batteries.
This is not the sodium glass batteries that John Goddenough came up with, but may well still help in the moves we are making.
It is incredibly clear, that carbon reductions cannot stop when we have gone electric in cars, and greened out grid, along with are heating.
Unfortunately, it is clear that we need to cut the carbon footprint of our diets as well. Beef has a large carbon footprint – its plant based beef patties are responsibly for 120 grams of carbon, instead of 2.11kg.
Will lab-grown meat arrive to cut this down? possibly, but will it arrive soon enough to help us out? I dont know.
What is clear, is that those of us in the West need to dramatically cut our carbon footprint in the next few years, not in a few decades. As such some changes in diet will be needed.
While many people have found that electric cars are already more than capable of taking care of not only their daily needs, but also doing incredible road trips (I recently drove mine more than 1000 miles to watch the bears of north west Spain) it is still the regularly refrain that they cannot go far enough.
Lets forget for the moment the fact that unlike a combustion engine car you don’t have to stand and wait for the car to charge up – you plugin and then go have lunch/do what ever you want. For many people, they wish to replace their combustion engine with a car that is very similar (again even though, for almost every recharge they will plug it in at home in the evening, and in the morning be ready to go) and as such an extended range is something that will help with adoption. Now my experience with our car, is that we need to plan our stops a little better, but usually the car has the range to carry on, long before the family is ready to get back in. If you are doing a road trip on your own, this may not always be the case – and as such perhaps cars could do with more range.
Enter a new battery chemistry of Lithium-sulphur, which could triple battery capacity, and therefore the range of a car. Given that the longest range recent cars have ranges over 400 miles, this would give you a car with a range of 1200 or about 17 hours of non-stop driving at UK maximum allowed speeds.