Environmental News

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


Diane Shader Smith

Hardcore Natural History

Every quarter Hardcore Natural History selects a theme and presents three evenings to examine that through three lenses: plant, animal, and cultural. Our speakers address the most current research in those three respective areas so that guests are able to learn about history, while it is happening. Up next: The Price of Pesticides with Sarah Hoyle

Mitigating the Effects of Climate Change On Grassland Butterflies

Grasslands provide important habitat for a range of butterflies, some of which rely on these open sunny habitats for survival.

As wildfires continue in western United States, biologists fear for vulnerable species

Ecologists fear the wildfires also could inflict lasting damage on species and ecosystems. In particular, they worry the loss of habitat could imperil species with small populations or restricted ranges, and that incinerated ecosystems will fail to rebound in a warming climate, leading to permanent landscape changes.

Sacred Pollinators: An Interview with Frank K. Lake

An interview with research ecologist Frank K. Lake.

Birding in California

More bird species have been recorded in California (660 plus) than in any other state. 

How to make a way station for traveling monarch butterflies

However dire the situation, there are many citizen scientists, conservationists and home gardeners who are not ready to give up the fight to preserve this majestic butterfly.

Newfound brain structure explains why some birds are so smart—and maybe even self-aware

In recent years, birds have been found to make tools, understand abstract concepts, and even recognize paintings by Monet and Picasso.

California’s Joshua tree could become first to win protections because of climate crisis

The 2.5m-year-old tree would be first plant species protected by law in state as current habitat increasingly becomes less viable

When COVID-19 silenced cities, birdsong recaptured its former glory

Growing noise pollution has forced white-crowned sparrow males to sing louder, less effective songs in order to be heard by rivals and mates. During the pandemic house arrest last spring, the background din quieted. A new study shows that, in just a matter of weeks, the sparrows’ songs recovered the acoustic quality of songs sung decades ago, when city life was less noisy.

Western Monarch Breeding Season Status

The western monarch breeding season is coming to a close for 2020 and we are in the midst of the fall migration—the time when monarch butterflies are making the long journey back to their overwintering grounds.