175 news posts related to Conservation

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Permanent daylight saving time would reduce deer-vehicle collisions, study shows

Deer along a highway

In much of the United States, there is a twice-yearly shift in timekeeping between standard time and daylight saving time, or DST, which delays both sunrise and sunset to make mornings darker and evenings brighter. Recently, scientists, policy experts, lawmakers and citizens have debated abandoning the twice-a-year switch and adopting either year-round standard time or DST. A team of researchers at the University of Washington — led by postdoctoral researcher Calum Cunningham and Laura Prugh, an associate professor of quantitative wildlife sciences — have found that one of those options would sharply reduce a hazard common to much of the country: deer-vehicle collisions. 

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Animals in national parks impacted by even just a few people

Brown Bear on Alaskan shore.

People often visit U.S. national parks to catch a glimpse of wildlife. But how does our presence impact the animals we hope to see? National park traffic has grown steadily over the past decade, and popular parks like Yosemite and Yellowstone can easily see over a million visitors a year. In these heavily used areas, one might expect animals to change their behavior to avoid humans. 

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UW Botanic Gardens' Miller Seed Vault preserves some of Washington’s rarest native plants

Miller Seed Vault volunteer

In 2017, nearly half the population of Umtanum Desert buckwheat (Eriogonum codium) was destroyed by a wildfire in Washington’s Hanford Reach National Monument. This unassuming perennial plant is not found anywhere else in the world — meaning catastrophic events such as this could eventually spell extinction for its corner of Washington’s rich biodiversity. How do we protect rare, endemic plants as they come under increasing pressure from intensifying wildfires and habitat disruption? 

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An 85-year-old fishing club’s records reveal the secrets of Puget Sound salmon

Few people would consider launching a boat into Seattle’s Elliott Bay on a winter morning. It’s cold, dark, and more often than not, wet. But the steadfast members of Seattle’s Tengu Club, a Japanese American fishing club that held its first annual salmon derby in 1946, can reliably be found doing just that. In the 85 years since it was founded, participants have gathered on the shores of West Seattle each winter to reconnect and fish for resident Puget Sound Chinook salmon, also known as blackmouth because of their dark-colored gums. 

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Whodunnit? Uncovering the mystery of a tiny toxin killing shellfish in Puget Sound

clams killed by yessotoxins

Around 50 years ago, Pacific oysters in the Puget Sound started dying at noticeably increasing rates during the summer, causing residents and scientists to wonder why. Researchers in what is now the School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences investigated many factors that may cause mortalities such as bacteria, reproductive stress related to spawning and changes in other environmental conditions. The evidence collected pointed towards stress on the animals when they spawn, as the Pacific oyster spends a lot of their energy on reproduction. 

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