While climate change is bothering humankind, it is affecting the animal kingdom much more. Scientists and conservationists are now coming up with more and more unique engaging ideas to monitor and preserve endangered species, keeping the global ecology in balance. The new collaborative project of the British Antarctic Survey and WWF will directly involve animal lovers worldwide in the important task of monitoring an Arctic species.
The ‘Walrus from Space’ research project is a joint collaboration of WWF and the British Antarctic Survey and is designed to get a clearer picture of the population and activities of the Arctic walrus without disturbing the animals physically. Under the project, the scientists used space satellites to capture a range of high-resolution images of the walrus population. In literally thousands of images, the walrus groups are seen to be congregated on more than 9,653 square miles along the Arctic coastline. Cumulatively, the area is larger than all of Wales. Walruses are a culturally significant iconic species of the Arctic coastline, threatened continuously by the global climate crisis.
The Real-Life Involvement
Under a real-life inclusive initiative, named ‘Where’s Wally?’, scientists are now appealing to the common people to help them count the number of Walrus from the satellite images. The unique project will directly involve animal lovers and enthusiasts across the globe in scanning the images helping the project scientists to monitor the Walrus population. According to the chief polar adviser at WWF Rod Downie, anyone from any background can take part in this voluntary project of Walrus census and can do the task by using their own computers. They just have to undergo a short online training module before jumping into action.
The Vision Behind
The climate crisis is becoming a serious global threat with each passing day. Feeling powerless in the face of nature is only natural here. This project aims to increase global awareness, and scientists and conservationists are hoping to enable individuals to take direct action.
Homegrown Mushroom Give Life to Ireland’s Bees
An Irish designer is growing unique mushroom hives in a quest to protect her island’s local black bees. For years, Ireland imported a rabble of bees from places with tropical climates and warmer weather. Bees find it challenging to survive in Irish climate but other generic factors like loss of habitat and increase in the usage of pesticides have also lead to a decline in the bee population. Further, the imported new species mated with local bees to procreate hybrids that stormed the hives of the black bees and still could not get adjusted to the weather.
A Prototype Recognized for its Sustainability
Econooc is a prototype hive designed by Niamh Damery, an Irish designer, to save Ireland’s native black bees. This hive is among the world’s finest 20 and has been considered for the James Dyson Design Award for Sustainability. The designer not only aims to protect the bees but also intends to have people participate in its conservation.
The mushroom hives are cultivated from mycelium pores with by-products like straw or wood shavings used as substrate. Mycelium, the mass of interwoven filamentous situated underground, provides support to the fruiting body. These mushrooms are emerging as a probable design tool. GNN reported that mushrooms could be used to build things like canoes, bricks, and coffins. To create the beehive, mycelium and the substrate concoction is stuffed into a mold in the replica of the actual hive. It is then heated in the oven to secure the shape.
Econooc mimics a hive and is placed in the hollow of a local tree. This is the natural habitat of the black Irish bees, where they build their shelter, store food and protect their young ones. Recycled plastic is used to make a landing pad so that owners can watch the activities of the bees. The hive is secured on the tree with the help of old car seatbelts used as straps. Every aspect of the project is based on sustainability.