Oil development at Arctic Refuge would forever alter sensitive ecosystems

The U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources voted 13-10 this month to approve a bill that would allow oil and gas exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska. The measure will be added to the Senate’s tax-reform package that is expected to be put to a vote before the end of […]

Despite devastation from forest fires, ecosystems rise from the ashes

The California wildfires have left a trail of devastation in their wake, killing dozens of people and burning hundreds of acres across the state. Amanda Rodewald, an expert in wildlife ecology and conservation biology at Cornell University, says that ­­– as efforts continue to extinguish new fires and clean-up the environment – we must remember […]

Study illuminates dramatic impact of night lights on bird migration

Media Resources: Download images, video, and radar animation. Note: The video file from The Messenger may only be used in connection with this story and only as-is, with no changes to the clip itself. Credit: SongbirdSOS Productions, Inc. ITHACA, N.Y. – Billions of birds undertake migratory journeys each spring and fall. Most of these spectacular movements go […]

Dino-killing asteroid’s impact on bird evolution

ITHACA, N.Y. – Human activities could change the pace of evolution, similar to what occurred 66 million years ago when a giant asteroid wiped out the dinosaurs, leaving modern birds as their only descendants. That’s one conclusion drawn by the authors of a new study published in Systematic Biology. Cornell University Ph.D. candidate Jacob Berv and […]

Climate change, habitat loss threaten eastern forest birds

Media note: Images of common eastern North American birds and a map of their breeding grounds can be viewed and downloaded here: https://cornell.box.com/v/LaSorteBirds ITHACA, N.Y. – Human-caused habitat loss looms as the greatest threat to some North American breeding birds over the next few decades. The problem will be most severe on their wintering grounds, according to a […]

Video and audio technology bring Manhattan to life, circa 1609

Media Note: To view the four Manhattan soundscapes/360 experiences, visit www.unsung.nyc.    NEW YORK – Imagine sitting on your couch at home and through the magic of technology, you are transported to the lobby of the American Museum of Natural History in Manhattan. You see and hear the people bustling about; then everything fades to […]

Audio landscapes take listeners to Manhattan before it was Manhattan

Experience Manhattan’s natural world before the Dutch arrived during journalists-only audio showcase and virtual reality immersion premiere WHO:            Creators of “Calling Thunder: The Unsung History of Manhattan” project unveil soundscapes and 360 experience of the natural world of Manhattan island before the Dutch arrival with a formal audio presentation, and break-out sessions for journalists to […]

Citizen-science pioneer, Project FeederWatch soars into 30th year

Media note: Two audio clips featuring conversations with citizen scientists and the founder of Project FeederWatch, as well as additional graphics can be downloaded at https://cornell.box.com/v/ProjectFeederWatch ITHACA, N.Y. – This winter, Project FeederWatch – a citizen-science program where participants track birds visiting their backyard feeders from November to April – celebrates its 30th anniversary. The […]

Say ‘chickadee’ – Merlin app now IDs birds from pics

ITHACA, N.Y. – The Merlin Bird Photo ID mobile app has been launched and, thanks to machine-learning technology, can identify hundreds of North American species it “sees” in photos. The app was developed by Cornell Tech and California Institute of Technology computer vision researchers in partnership with the Cornell University Lab of Ornithology and bird enthusiasts. Because Merlin Bird Photo ID […]

A planet not fit for animals is not fit for humans either

Amanda Rodewald, Director of Conservation Science at Cornell University’s Lab of Ornithology, says the WWF’s Living Planet Report showing that populations of vertebrate animals have declined by 58 percent should be considered a warning for people to change habits before making our planet unsuitable for people, too. Rodewald says: “The declines in wildlife populations are shocking […]