Aquatic: In the last few decades, the Bay Delta's ecological productivity has dropped catastrophically. And the likely culprits are tiny, have hard shells, and live in the estuary in unimaginable numbers.
Invertebrates: After examining 10,000 individual insects caught in the first three months of 2015, an L.A. County Museum of Natural History researcher has identified 30 brand new species of fly -- uncharted biodiversity from urban Los Angeles.
Invertebrates: There are 15 species of California native milkweed that gardeners can choose from to give monarchs a helping hand. Not all of them are readily available in nurseries, but with a little searching you should be able to find at least one appropriate for your part of the state.
Invertebrates: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will spend a year deciding whether to grant the monarch butterfly protection under the Endangered Species Act, according to an announcement scheduled to be released Wednesday.
Invertebrates: An insect found in Ramona has been positively identified as the red bug Scantius aegyptius, native to the Mediterranean, the San Diego County Department of Agriculture, Weights and Measures said Wednesday.
Invertebrates: The BioSCAN Project, a citizen-science insect research project launched by the Los Angeles County Natural History Museum (NHM), has been turning up some fascinating captured insects. We've picked five of what we thought were the among most interesting.
Invertebrates: In a move that would have been nearly incomprehensible 20 years ago, environmental groups are asking the federal government to grant Endangered Species Act protection to a popular butterfly that was once one of North America's most common large insects.
Invasive Species: For California Invasive Species Action Week (August 2-10), we're looking at a different problem species each weekday. Tuesday's topic: a species that's probably raiding your sugar bowl right now.
Invertebrates: A Bay Area county not usually known as a hotspot for West Nile virus has undertaken a second round of pesticide spraying this year after finding mosquitoes infected with the virus, according to public health officials.
Plants: A California native orchid once found from the Bay Area and Sierra Nevada northward into Oregon has declined in population so steeply that the International Union for the Conservation of Nature has declared the plant globally Endangered.
Commentary: Pandering to scientific illiteracy isn't a new thing in Washington D.C. Every day in the nation's capital seems to bring its share of ludicrous statements and actions from people who ought to know better, from denial of the reality climate change to fourth-grade misconceptions about human reproductive biology. It's just disappointing when that pandering comes from the Smithsonian.
Invertebrates: State game wardens handed out 31 citations and warned several dozen additional fish harvesters at a wildlife law enforcement checkpoint near Jenner, California on Sunday. The checkpoint was part of a mounting effort by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) to educate sport fishers about the importance of protecting the state's remaining abalone.
Commentary: While other websites celebrating Endangered Species Day are concentrating on the big and dramatic, we thought we'd celebrate by mentioning a few species that aren't big and flashy and glamorous. They're beautiful, but they don't flaunt it.
Invertebrates: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to take a California beetle off the Endangered Species Act's Threatened list, but two leading environmental groups are charging that the move is based on politics rather than science.
Invertebrates: A Navy research and development center that usually focuses on high-tech communication and surveillance matters is working to boost numbers of one of California's most critically endangered marine animals: the black abalone.
Commentary: A small snail found only in a few small hills in the Mojave Desert has launched a public dispute, as mining interests and wildlife advocates spar over whether the species should be granted federal protection.
Invertebrates: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency violated the Clean Air Act when it approved a permit for a large gas-fired power plant that may drive an Endangered butterfly to extinction. That's according to a San Francisco-based environmental group that filed suit against the EPA last week.
Commentary: A large environmental group is charging that a dramatic increase in the use of a popular weed-killer is the culprit in the last decade's plunge in monarch butterfly numbers. But are they blaming a symptom rather than the real cause?
Invertebrates: A tiny Mojave Desert snail that lives under rocks on mountain slopes is threatened by a new Kern County gold mine, according to a group urging emergency protection for the snail under the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Invertebrates: Monarch butterflies are in trouble, a sad fact that's putting midwestern butterflies in the news this week. And according to a fifteen-year study, the monarch's numbers are crashing in California as well.
Invertebrates: File this one under "what are they thinking?" An invasive cockroach species first noted in California in 1978 is now well established throughout the cities and towns of the southwestern U.S., and though little is known about its biology or its effect on other wildlife, you can still buy it online.
Fish: We still don't know whether there's something more than coincidence behind the two oarfish that washed up on Southern California beaches this month, but a wildlife lab in Santa Barbara has taken advantage of the opportunity to learn about oarfish ecology -- with the help of critters many Californians would probably rather not think about.
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