Environmental News

A curated set of environmental news stories brought to you by the Gottlieb Native Garden team.


Diane Shader Smith

Executive Director’s Report, June 2019

It’s a struggle for any kid his size to venture far beyond a parking lot or a playground. He is too big to carry in a backpack and gets bored too easily to do much beyond a trailhead. For those of us who like to get out more, that’s a hard constraint to put on our trips.

Declines in Insect Abundance and Diversity: We Know Enough to Act Now

Insects provide services of over $57 billion to the US economy. Although we need more study to understand the overall scope and scale of the declines, the research that has been done provides compelling evidence of declines in insect abundance, diversity, and biomass.

Declines in insect abundance and diversity: We know enough to act now

Recent regional reports and trends in biomonitoring suggest that insects are experiencing a multicontinental crisis that is apparent as reductions in abundance, diversity, and biomass.

Evolution Fast Track: Otter Genetic History Provides Clues for Future Recovery

Unlike whales and dolphins that have lived in the marine world for more than 50 million years, sea otters have only had about 5 million years to develop the suite of adaptations necessary to survive the harsh conditions of life in the sea. What happened genetically to assist in that incredible transition?

Rice fields provide protected habitat for young salmon

Young fish fitted with microtransmitters and released into Sacramento River

Help for the Insect Apocalypse: Calscape Adds Host Plant Information for California Native Butterflies and Moths

The California Native Plant Society announced today that its Calscape native plant database now includes host plant information for California native butterflies and moths (Lepidoptera). For these insects, host plants are those on which they can lay their eggs and their caterpillars can eat — and only specific plants will do.

Rare frog gained new foothold until California fires ‘annihilated’ habitat, experts say

Before the wildfire came, California red-legged frogs had regained a tenuous foothold in the Santa Monica Mountains — and the small population of rare amphibians was thriving.
Read more here: https://www.sacbee.com/news/state/california/article231749928.html#storylink=cpy

New environmental DNA program makes conservation research faster, more efficient

A new tool from UCLA could be about to make the field accessible and useful to many more scientists.

Spotted Lantern Fly Sparking California Concern

UC Riverside is testing whether a sesame seed-sized wasp can control a pest that could seriously damage California crops including wine, walnuts, and avocados. 

What drives Yellowstone’s massive elk migrations?

These migratory elk rely primarily on environmental cues, including a retreating snowline and the greening grasses of spring, to decide when to make these yearly journeys, shows a new study led by University of California, Berkeley, researchers.