Science Stories

  • Sealing Pandora's Box

    WWF Magazine: Fall 2020
    Environmental destruction and the high-risk wildlife trade are intimately connected with the emergence of new zoonotic diseases like COVID-19, but conservation could help prevent future pandemics.
    Red and green germ illustration with trees
  • The human health and conservation connection

    February 20, 2020

    Human health and the health of our environment are inextricably linked. Our collective resilience, well-being, nutrition, and ability to avert disease is fully connected to the food we eat, the water we drink, the air we breathe, and the ways we interact with nature.

    Woman walking through lake in Nepal
  • What we learned about coral reefs in 2019

    January 07, 2020

    While most of what we learned about coral reefs in 2019 is grim, there's still hope. In this new decade, we can do quite a bit to protect coral reefs and the wildlife and people that depend on them.

    Gabby Ahmadia, senior marine scientist at WWF, surveys a reef in the Selat Dampier MPA, Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia
  • Current status

    WWF Magazine: Spring 2018
    WWF offices in Bolivia, Brazil, and Colombia coordinated a tri-national effort to tag and study river dolphins, applying satellite GPS technology to the task for the first time.
    riverdolphin 01 spring2018
  • WWF's Dr. Rebecca Shaw on an integrated approach to science

    WWF Magazine: Winter 2016
    Dr. Shaw leads an interdisciplinary approach to science that draws on the best research from ecology, economics, and the political and social sciences to generate big, cuttingedge ideas for protecting the planet.
    Dr. Rebecca Shaw
  • Snow leopard research breathes new life into community conservation in Nepal

    July 05, 2016

    Just beyond the remote mountain village of Yangma in the high Himalayas of eastern Nepal, Nepali conservationists fitted a female snow leopard with a GPS collar. The collar will allow scientists to track this snow leopard’s movements daily for the next year, which will help us learn more about these mysterious and endangered cats. This female becomes the third snow leopard collared near Yangma since 2013, the first two having both been males.

    setting up gear to collar a snow leopard
  • WWF's Arnaud Lyet on measuring wildlife populations

    WWF Magazine: Summer 2016
    Using scientific modeling to gauge the real state of wildlife populations
    Arnaud Lyet sitting in a chair
  • Inspirational women in conservation

    Every day, women take on tasks both small and large to help the planet. Here’s a look at a few of their stories.

  • Record Low for Winter Sea Ice in the Arctic

    March 19, 2015

    Following the Earth's warmest year since records began in 1880, Arctic sea ice has shrunk to its lowest maximum winter extent recorded. This record measurement is a sign of thin, slow-growing ice.

    arctic sea ice broken up
  • Good news for Asian big cats

    March 03, 2015

    We are celebrating major milestones for both leopards and tigers in 2015. Efforts to protect and establish populations of these big cats are yielding results in Russia, China and India. Looking ahead, there is much more work to be done to protect these species. 

    Amur Leopard
  • DNA Extraction Turns a Soggy Polar Bear Footprint into an Exciting Ecological Discovery

    WWF Magazine: Spring 2015
    A partnership between researchers, scientists and WWF looks at biodiversity by the spoonful
    Polar Bear Footprint in a spoon
  • Polar Bear Research between Two Countries

    WWF Magazine: Spring 2015
    US and Russian biologists team up on polar bear research
    helicopter in alaska
  • Rhino Collaring Will Tell Critical Tale

    December 29, 2014

    A one-horned rhinoceros was successfully collared in Nepal late last month. The event was particularly significant because it occurred in a wildlife corridor that connects Nepal’s Bardia National Park with India’s Katerniaghat Wildlife Sanctuary.

    collared rhino Khata corridor
  • A Troubled Paradise

    October 27, 2014

    Today, the Philippines' oceans are troubled. For over a century, coastal development, destructive fishing practices, coral mining, sedimentation, overfishing and chemical pollution have chipped away at the ocean’s health. Add to that climate change consequences such as ocean warming, acidification and coral bleaching, and we have an undersea war against marine resources. Faced with this problem, many countries within the Coral Triangle have established Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), to conserve what’s left.

    Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park lagoon looking bleached, Palawan, Philippines
  • Illegal Fishing Puts Crab Populations at Risk

    October 16, 2014

    A new WWF study has revealed populations of crab in the Russian Far East are at risk of collapse due to overharvest from illegal fishing.

    pulling in crab pot
  • Hacking Nature for Good

    October 14, 2014

    WWF challenged a group of programmers, designers and conservationists to spend a Sunday developing a technology system to help the monarch butterfly at the annual SXSW ECO conference in Austin, Texas. The “hackathon” gave attendees just 24 hours to build an app to help monarchs.

    hackathon
  • Telling a Good Story with Maps

    WWF Magazine: Winter 2014
    WWF's Nasser Olwero explains why people need to use maps more
    nasser profile
  • Zebras on the Move

    WWF Magazine: Winter 2014
    Quick work leads to discovery of Africa's longest land-mammal migration
    zebras aerial
  • The State of Our Planet

    September 30, 2014

    The Living Planet Index (LPI)—essentially the S&P 500 Index for wildlife—documents the populations of more than 3,000 wild species. And for the first time, species number less than one-half what they were in 1970.

    Rhinos
  • US Declares World's Largest Fully Protected Marine Reserve

    September 25, 2014

    President Obama announced creation of the world’s largest fully protected marine area on Sept. 25. Using his executive authority he has expanded the existing Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument to six times its current size, resulting in 490,000 square miles of protected marine environment.

    lemon butterfly fish
  • Wildlife and Climate Change

    To increase chances of conservation success, we must understand traits that make an individual species especially resilient or vulnerable to changes in climate. Different species will be affected in different ways; sometimes negatively, but not always.

    gorilla closeup
  • Weather Stations for Conservation

    August 25, 2014

    WWF and The Coca-Cola Company, are trying to make sure today’s farmers to apply environmental knowledge to farming. Agricultural runoffs like pesticides, fertilizers and topsoil are some of the greatest threats to the Mesoamerican Reef, the second-largest reef in the world. 

    weather station
  • Report: US Communities and Wildlife Would Be Affected by Arctic Oil Spill

    July 25, 2014

    New research mapping a range of oil spill scenarios in the Canadian Beaufort Sea finds that a spill would likely reach the U.S. shorelines of Alaska and could affect the local communities and wildlife living there.

    Polar bear