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Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus
The Caucasus is one of the most diverse places on earth, with more species per acre than any other temperate zone. Leopards still roam here, only a few hours from central Europe, and conservation strategy is one of the few examples of inter-country collaboration in this region. A fascinating blend of culture, society and traditional life set in a history of fragmentation and conflict.
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UNDP, Ministry of Environmental Protection of Georgia Discuss Tusheti Protected Areas

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Agency of Protected Areas at the Ministry of Environmental Protection of Georgia presented the results of a project which tested innovative finance tools and management practices in Tusheti – the country’s richest and most diverse protected areas.

 

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The Blue Lake, the deepest of its kind in the world

The Blue Lake, the deepest of its kind in the world | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

These stunning photographs were taken by National Geographic photographer Victor Lyagushkin at the Blue Lake in Russia.  'The aim of the project was to make scientists pay attention to this lake and to make them start researching it. We wanted people to understand that this is not a puddle, an but unknown and wonderful world under the water,' said Lyagushkin.

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Can we count animal extinctions?

Can we count animal extinctions? | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

Twenty years ago a convention on biodiversity was agreed at the Rio Earth Summit - but do we know how many species are becoming extinct?

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Europe’s wild network of Pan Parks

Europe’s wild network of Pan Parks | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it
Overcrowded Europe may be culturally dense, brimming with historic cities and manicured landscapes, but it also has some genuine wilderness areas – albeit in the recesses of the continent.

 

There are only 12 parks in the selective Pan Parks network, which stretches across 10 countries, from Finland to Georgia. In the core areas in these parks, no human exploitation is allowed, no roads or construction, no hunting, fishing, mining, logging, grazing or even grass cutting.  And Borjomi Kharagauli National Park in Georgia is one of them.

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ANC Program – Priorities: Health and Right to Good Environment

The “Armenian National Congress” recognizes the priorities of health and right to good environment over public relations of short-term economic nature,” says the ANC environmental program for the 2012 elections.
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Caucasus Region Facing Climate Change Problems

The Caucasus region is facing a climate change problem according to the Regional Environmental Center of the Caucasus (REC Caucasus).

 

Because of the impact of climate change, a serious decrease of agro-biodiversity in arid and semi-arid ecosystems is expected, the vulnerability of which is confirmed by a number of studies in all three South Caucasus countries.

 

The Caucasus Region is exceptional for its agricultural species and a large variety of its wild relatives. Preservation of existing agro-biodiversity has great importance for agricultural sustainability and the welfare of the local community

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NGOs Joining to Save Bakhmaro

NGOs Joining to Save Bakhmaro | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

NGOs are joining to save Bakhmaro: a five-cascade HPP is constructed in the gorge of Bakhvistskali River where Bakhmaro resort is located.  The hydro power station will change the climate on the spot, which will bring to the loss of resort function in Bakhmaro...

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The new face of Batumi means more visitors for Mtirala

The new face of Batumi means more visitors for Mtirala | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

In the shadow of the Caucasus mountains, Georgia's Batumi is turning itself into a 'hip' coastal resort, and Mtirala national park is seeing increasing numbers of visitors to its 16,000 hectare wilderness.  A look at how important conservation of Georgia's natural assets is in the face of its increasing development.

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Market Relations and Nature Protection Can Successfully Coexist Only Under Rule of Law - Ecolur

Market Relations and Nature Protection Can Successfully Coexist Only Under Rule of Law - Ecolur | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

Yasemin Pamuk, Director of the South Caucasus Project of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom, speaks about the environmental problems in Armenia and influence of market economy on environmental issues in his interview with EcoLur.

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Climate Change Increases Costs of Conserving Biodiversity

Climate Change Increases Costs of Conserving Biodiversity | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it
This week, a group of international researchers convened by CI released several new studies on the impact of climate change on biodiversity. Jonah Busch, lead author of the paper “Climate Change and the Cost of Conserving Species in Madagascar,” explains his new research in today’s blog.
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‘Serious’ pesticide threat in former Soviet Union

‘Serious’ pesticide threat in former Soviet Union | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it
The European Union and the UN’s food agency announced an agreement on Thursday to manage vast stocks of obsolete pesticides in the former Soviet Union, warning they had become a “serious threat”. The EU and the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) will spend seven million euros ($9.1 million) over the next four years to help contain the risks in 12 countries in the region, spanning Russia, the Caucasus and Central Asia.
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MME tests measures to halt illegal hunting of birds | BirdLife Community

MME tests measures to halt illegal hunting of birds | BirdLife Community | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

MME/BirdLife in Hungary, in cooperation with 8 other conservation organisations just launched a 5 years LIFE+ project that will aim to find effective and alternative solutions to crimes toward birds in Hungary, ...

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Can Wildlife Corridors Heal Fragmented Landscapes?

Conservationists have long called for creating ecological corridors that would enable large mammals and other wildlife to roam more freely across an increasingly developed planet.  But now scientists are taking a closer look at just how well these corridors are working and what role they might play in a warming world.
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ATP Celebrates Earth Day in Kotayk with UN, US Embassy

ATP Celebrates Earth Day in Kotayk with UN, US Embassy | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

The celebration of Earth Day is gaining in popularity at a rapid pace in Armenia. This year, Armenia Tree Project (ATP) celebrated by planting trees in the community of Teghenik in the Kotayk region. On Fri., April 20, the U.S. Embassy in Armenia and the United Nations joined ATP to plant a cluster of decorative and fruit trees in Teghenik.

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Inviting Cinderella Species to the Ball

Inviting Cinderella Species to the Ball | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it
Charismatic megafauna dominate fund-raising efforts at the expense of species facing greater threats, researchers report.

 

We humans are quite fond of ourselves. So much so that our narcissism tends to influence our preferences for other species, too. We generally favor big, attractive mammals with forward-facing eyes, and this bias is reflected in the conservation dollars we donate.

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FPWC’s Buffer Zone Project

FPWC’s Buffer Zone Project | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

In order to improve nature conservation in Armenia, FPWC has taken over, since October 2010, the responsibility for more than 1000 hectares of pristine land in the vicinity of Khosrov Reserve. FPWC aims to maintain the area as a protected Buffer Zone for the reserve. Moreover a part of the territory forms a corridor for the critically endangered Armenian Mufflon reaching from the Urts Mountain Range to the Khosrov Reserve.

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Georgia Envisions Instant City on Swampy Site

Georgia Envisions Instant City on Swampy Site | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

Reaching the site where Georgia’s government is breaking ground for Lazika, its grandiose city of the future, requires navigating livestock — shaggy cows and huge spotted hogs that sunbathe on the road to the hypnotic chirping of innumerable frogs.

 

The proposed site is at the edge of the Kolkheti wetlands, where in 1997 Georgia committed to preserve about 82,000 acres as part of the international Ramsar Convention.

 

One finds varying opinions about the proposal to build a city of half a million here on a stretch of marshy land near the Black Sea.

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Wild bison with TB may have to be killed in Poland - Chicago Sun-Times

Wild bison with TB may have to be killed in Poland - Chicago Sun-Times | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it
WARSAW, Poland — A herd of 25 wild European bison infected with tuberculosis should be killed to prevent the disease from spreading to other herds in southeastern Poland, officials said Monday.

 

Veterinarian Miroslaw Welz, a member of the panel, said it was a painful decision but seemed to be the only one that would protect the remaining herds, which are believed to be disease-free.

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Call for nominating 2014 as International Year of Wilderness

Call for nominating 2014 as International Year of Wilderness | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

PAN Parks Foundation calls upon the nomination of 2014 as the International Year of Wilderness. Such a nomination will help to secure the necessary political and public support for 'The Million Project', which aims at guaranteeing the protection of 1 million hectares of Europe’s wilderness by 2015.

 

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Earth Day: Tree Planters In Armenia Show Forests Are Not Just For Cutting

In the green, mountainous land of western Armenia, far from any major city, you might think the forest could take care of itself.  But this once wooded land is now largely stripped bare, the result of centuries of logging. Today it is a landscape of grassy hillsides, with the remaining trees scarce and lonely on the hilltops.

 

It is a scene that has become common in many countries where people regard forests mostly as sources of timber to sell.  But now things are changing, thanks to the efforts of environmental activists ......

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That Was Then, This Is Now

That Was Then, This Is Now | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

For those of us who have made conservation our life’s work, Earth Day can be something of a bittersweet occasion.  On the one hand, it is a time to celebrate the successes of this vital movement; this year at Conservation International, we are marking our first quarter-century of protecting nature for the well-being of humanity. On the other hand, it is a time to be humbled — and similarly inspired — by how much more work we all have to do. It seems that now, 42 years after the first Earth Day, the times are a-changing as much as they ever were.

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Good News for World’s Endangered Big Cats

Good News for World’s Endangered Big Cats | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it
Good News for World's Endangered Big Cats – Russia establishes Land of the Leopard National Park for the Amur Leopard, and captive born Iberian Lynxes are released into the wild in Spain.
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The Messenger - New CARE project hopes to develop Georgia-Armenia border regions

The Messenger - New CARE project hopes to develop Georgia-Armenia border regions | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

Yesterday, CARE International in the Caucasus hosted a conference titled “Joining Regional Actors for Local Economic Development”, organized within the framework of the project “Local Actors Join for Inclusive Economic Development and Governance in the South Caucasus (JOIN)”.

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70% increase in Russian visitors to Georgia

70% increase in Russian visitors to Georgia | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it

About 30 000 Russians have entered Georgia since visa restrictions were lifted February 28. This is seventy per cent higher than the same period last year.  Manjgaladze says the increase in Russian visitors is a benefit.“In addition this is extra financial resource for Georgia’s tourism infrastructure. More tourists means more employed people.”

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Wildlife friendly farmers take their fight to Brussels

Wildlife friendly farmers take their fight to Brussels | Saving the Wild: Nature Conservation in the Caucasus | Scoop.it
On Monday 19 March, a group of farmers from across Europe travelled to Brussels to call for greater support for wildlife conservation in the European countryside through Rural Development measures.
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