Bob Rosenfield holds a pair of Cooper’s hawks in a city park in Victoria, Canada. The female, in the foreground, is a third again as large as her mate.

The Hawks in Your Backyard

Biologists scale city trees to bag a surprisingly urban species, the Cooper's Hawk

In the worst animal epidemic in years, white-nose syndrome threatens to wipe out some bat species.

What Is Killing the Bats?

Can scientists stop white-nose syndrome, a new disease that is killing bats in catastrophic numbers?

North and South Korea are collaborating to save one of the world's most endangered bird species, red-crowned cranes.

The DMZ's Thriving Resident: The Crane

Rare cranes have flourished in the world's unlikeliest sanctuary, the heavily mined demilitarized zone between North and South Korea

The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge contains vital habitat for polar bears who rely on the border of terrestrial and marine ecosystems.

Fifty Years of Arctic National Wildlife Preservation

Biologist George Schaller on the debate over ANWR conservation and why the refuge must be saved

The Makgadikgadi Pans National Park is part of a rare African open wild land. The environment is so harsh that zebras have to cover a lot of ground to survive.

Nothing Can Stop the Zebra

A 150-mile fence in the Kalahari Desert appeared to threaten Africa's zebras, but now researchers can breathe a sigh of relief

The only great ape unique to Asia, orangutans are increasingly rare, with fewer than 50,000 in Borneo. Here, a male named Doyok moves through a reserve.

A Quest to Save the Orangutan

Birute Mary Galdikas has devoted her life to saving the great ape. But the orangutan faces its greatest threat yet

The Gulf catastrophe will have far-reaching effects, which scientists have only begun to study.

A Crude Awakening in the Gulf of Mexico

Scientists are just beginning to grasp how profoundly oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill has devastated the region

The silver spotted skipper butterfly is one of the most common butterflies caught during the census.

Name That Butterfly

Citizen scientists on a sharp learning curve are carrying out an important census in fields and gardens across the country


Smithsonian Implements Sticky Solution to Aid Energy Conservation

The discovery of new species is driven by new technologies, targeted surveys of little-studied ecosystems and a determined effort to identify plants and animals before their habitat is lost. The kipunji is one of 300 mammal species discovered in the past decade; it is thought to be Africa’s rarest monkey.

Meet the New Species

From old-world primates to patch-nosed salamanders, new creatures are being discovered every day

Brian Boutin, a Nature Conservancy biologist, stands protectively over a newly planted bald cypress sapling. Park managers hope to slow the submersion of the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge.

Rising Seas Endanger Wetland Wildlife

For scientists in a remote corner of coastal North Carolina, ignoring global warming is not an option

Burrowing owls are the only North American bird of prey that nests exclusively underground.

The Little Owls That Live Underground

Burrowing owls can thrive amid agricultural development and urbanization—so why are they imperiled?

When some turtles swim south in the fall, scores of them get trapped by Cape Cod, where many die of hypothermia.

Saving the World's Most Endangered Sea Turtle

Stranded on Cape Cod beaches, these Kemp's ridley turtles are getting a helping hand from volunteers and researchers

Beavers have long been recognized as the engineers of the forest, constantly reshaping their surroundings.

Beavers: The Engineers of the Forest

Back from the brink of extinction, the beavers of Massachusetts are a crucial component of a healthy ecosystem

Horses brought by Spanish explorers in the 16th century bore a dark stripe along the spine, a feature that marks some mustangs today.

The Mustang Mystique

Descended from animals brought by Spanish conquistadors centuries ago, wild horses roam the West. But are they running out of room?

One of only two plants worldwide that actively trap animal prey, the flytrap is at home in a surprisingly small patch of U.S. soil.

The Venus Flytrap's Lethal Allure

Native only to the Carolinas, the carnivorous plant that draws unwitting insects to its spiky maw now faces dangers of its own

Biologists long believed that lions band together to hunt prey.  But Craig Packer and colleagues have found that's not the main reason the animals team up.

The Truth About Lions

The world's foremost lion expert reveals the brutal, secret world of the king of beasts

Peregrine falcons are the fastest animal on earth.  They have been clocked at over 200 miles per hour as they descend upon their target.

The World’s Fastest Animal Takes New York

The peregrine falcon, whose salvation began 40 years ago, commands the skies above the Empire State Building

Geladas (a male and female in the Simien Mountains) signal their status with the livid skin on their chests.

Ethiopia's Exotic Monkeys

High in the Simien Mountains, researchers are getting a close-up look at the exotic, socially adventuresome primates known as geladas

A gray wolf in Yellowstone National Park.

Wolves to Lose Protection in Idaho and Montana

Since the first wolves were reintroduced in Yellowstone National Park in 1995, the population has grown to 1,500 or more

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