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Environmental conservation and preservation

Laos promises to phase out tiger farms: Conservation groups

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Laos has promised to phase out farms that breed endangered tigers for their body parts, a positive step from a country believed to be a major hub of wildlife trafficking in Asia, conservation groups said Friday. The announcement by Laotian officials in South Africa came one day …

Cambodia takes step to save nearly extinct Royal Turtle

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia (AP) — Conservationists say they have transferred more than 200 of the nearly extinct Royal Turtles to a new purpose-built breeding and conservation center, easing fears the rare species will disappear in Cambodia. In a statement Tuesday, the New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society said 206 Royal Turtles …

Thai farmers launch (bee) sting operation to stop elephants

PANA, Thailand (AP) — To stop wild elephants from rampaging through their produce, farmers in Thailand put up electric fences, set off firecrackers and even switched their crops from pineapples to pumpkins, which the pachyderms don’t relish much. Nothing worked, so the villagers decided on Plan Bee. In a pilot …

Obama creates world’s largest marine protected area

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama on Friday expanded a national monument off the coast of Hawaii, creating a safe zone for tuna, sea turtles and thousands of other species in what will be the world’s largest marine protected area. Obama’s proclamation quadrupled in size a monument originally created by …

Jordan’s newest mall debuts large-scale green technology

AMMAN, Jordan (AP) — In Jordan’s newest retail and leisure hub, the typical high-end boutiques, cinemas and gourmet coffee shops are tucked into an intricate ecosystem of natural heating and cooling, water recycling and hundreds of solar panels soaking up the sun’s rays. The three-story Abdali Mall is the first …

500 elephants find new home in massive African relocation

LIWONDE NATIONAL PARK, Malawi (AP) — Half a dozen African elephants lay strewn on a riverside plain in Malawi, immobilized by darts fired from a helicopter in a massive project to move 500 elephants, by truck and crane, to a sanctuary for the threatened species. As development squeezes Africa’s wildlife …

Push to create Utah monument marks latest Western land fight

BLANDING, Utah (AP) — Laminated sheets of paper held in place by rocks rest inside ancient cliff dwellings nestled underneath a spectacular red rock overhang in southeastern Utah. “Don’t erase the traces of America’s past,” the signs read. “Please do not enter interior rooms.” The weathered signs and a similar …

Plight of African lions persists 1 year after Cecil killing

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Some call it the Cecil the lion effect. A year ago, an American killed a lion in Zimbabwe in what authorities said was an illegal hunt, infuriating people worldwide and invigorating an international campaign against trophy hunting in Africa. Some conservationists, however, warn there are greater threats …

Unpack the trunk: Ringling’s elephants retire to Florida

The last 11 touring elephants from Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus kicked off their retirement in Florida on Friday with a buffet brunch of carrots, apples, celery, loaves of bread and lots of hay. Circus spokesman Stephen Payne told The Associated Press the elephants arrived at the 200-acre …