Most Popular Stories from Mongabay Latam, April 2

These are the most popular stories at Mongabay Latam from April 2 – 8. The oil spill in Colombia is an ongoing environmental disaster. The search for the causes of the tragedy and the work to save affected animals were the most read stories of the week.

The image above, a spectacular vista of the Grand Canyon in Colorado from the vast Mongabay Latam archive, was the most popular on Latam’s social networks.

Oil spill in Colombia: the environmental emergency continues and the causes are unknown

El crudo se extendió por 24 kilómetros en la quebrada La Lizama y el Caño Muerto. Foto: Fundación de periodistas víctimas del conflicto armado en Colombia (FUNPERPAZ).
The crude oil spill extends for 24 km in the La Lizama and Caño Muerto tributaries in western Colombia. Image credit: Journalists for Peace Foundation.

A mysterious, month-long oil spill is finally under control, but the effect of more than an estimated 16,000 barrels of crude oil are still being felt, notably in a tributary of Colombia’s most important river, the Magdalena . While the country’s state oil company, Ecopetrol, waits for the arrival of US equipment to determine why an abandoned oil well suddenly exploded, a troubling hypothesis points to pressures from a new hydroelectric dam.

Bolivia: Why is the Sama Reserve in danger?

La cuenca de Tajzara. Foto: Sernap.
The Tajzara basin in the Sama Reserve. Image credit: National Service of Protected Areas (Bolivia).

Overgrazing, highway construction and intense, prolonged droughts are wreaking significant impact on the fragile ecosystem of the Sama plateau. Water is the most affected resource, despite the reserve’s status as a protected area and an internationally important wetland. A nearby city could lose its primary source of water.

Colombia: Supreme Court orders government to stop deforestation in the Amazon

Guaviare, cuya selva conecta la Amazonía y la Orinoquía, es uno de los cinco departamentos con mayor tasa de deforestación en Colombia. Foto: Semana.
Guaviare, where rainforests border the Amazon and Orinoco rivers, is one of five provinces with the highest deforestation rates in Colombia. Image credit: Semana.

A historic environmental decision. Given the increasing deforestation of the Amazon, the supreme court granted the petition of 25 children and youth who argued that the loss of the forests will affect their futures. The state will need to take concrete measures.

Sounds of biodiversity: acoustic monitoring in scientific research

Los modernos grabadores (Audio Moth) son cada vez más pequeños y se pueden camuflar en los árboles. Foto. Marconi Campos / Sieve Analytics.
Modern recorders (Audio moth) are getting smaller and easier to hide in trees. Image credit: Marconi Campos, Sieve Analytics.

For the last ten years, the sounds of the dry savannah of Puerto Rico have been recorded without interruption. Learn how sound helps to monitor the region’s biodiversity.

Saving animals affected by the oil spill in Colombia

Las serpientes además de ser limpiadas necesitan ser sondeadas. Foto: Cabildo Verde.
Snakes need to be both cleaned and documented. Image credit: Cabildo Verde.

Colombia’s state oil company Ecopetrol reported that the recent 16,000-barrel oil spill has killed 2442 animals. Meanwhile, 1530 have been rescued. How are the Colombians dealing with this environmental disaster? How are they saving the affected animals?

Peru: marine conservation versus oil activity?

Las ondas sonoras que se producen durante la prospección sísmica afecta la biodiversidad marina. Foto. Mario Gomi /Oceana
Sound waves produced by seismic testing affect marine life. Image credit: Mario Gomi, Oceana

Diverse specialists and experts warn of the environmental risks posed by oil wells in the north of the Peruvian sea, a marine zone of high biodiversity and sensitivity.

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This story first appeared on Mongabay

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