Category Archives: Wildlife

Ecology: Benfits Of 50% Of Serengeti Grasslands Burning Each Year (Video)

After receiving twelve hours of solar energy every day, the Serengeti grasslands become a tinderbox, just waiting to be lit.

The vast majority of the African fires currently burning seem to be in grasslands, in exactly the places we expect to see fires at this time of year. These fires are usually lit by cattle farmers as part of their traditional management of the savannahs where their animals graze. Some fires are started to stimulate new growth of nutritious grass for their animals, others are used to control the numbers of parasitic ticks or manage the growth of thorny scrub.

Without fires, many savannahs (and the animals they support) wouldn’t exist, and lighting them is a key management activity in many of the iconic protected areas of Africa. For instance the Serengeti in Tanzania is known worldwide for its safari animals and awe-inspiring wildebeest migration – and our work shows that around half of its grasslands burn each year.

Marine Wildlife: ‘Elephant Seals’ On Beaches In San Simeon, California (Video)

“Sunday Morning” takes us to the beach at San Simeon, Calif., a home for elephant seals. Videographer: Lance Milbrand.

The northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris) is one of two species of elephant seal (the other is the southern elephant seal). It is a member of the family Phocidae (true seals). Elephant seals derive their name from their great size and from the male’s large proboscis, which is used in making extraordinarily loud roaring noises, especially during the mating competition. Sexual dimorphism in size is great. Correspondingly, the mating system is highly polygynous; a successful male is able to impregnate up to 50 females in one season.

San Simeon is a town and census-designated place on the Pacific coast of San Luis Obispo County, California, United States. Its position along State Route 1 is about halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, each of those cities being roughly 230 miles away.

Travel & Nature: ‘Bladon Lake At Blenheim Palace’ In Woodstock, England

Blenheim Palace is a monumental country house in Woodstock, OxfordshireEngland. It is the principal residence of the Dukes of Marlborough, and the only non-royal, non-episcopal country house in England to hold the title of palace. The palace, one of England’s largest houses, was built between 1705 and 1722, and designated a UNESCOWorld Heritage Site in 1987.

Nature: ‘Bald Eagles’ In Northern Idaho (Video)

“Sunday Morning” takes us among bald eagles at Lake Coeur d’Alene in Idaho. Videographer: Hank Heusinkveld.

The bald eagle is a bird of prey found in North America. A sea eagle, it has two known subspecies and forms a species pair with the white-tailed eagle. Its range includes most of Canada and Alaska, all of the contiguous United States, and northern Mexico.

Lake Coeur d’Alene, officially Coeur d’Alene Lake, is a natural dam-controlled lake in North Idaho, located in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. At its northern end is the city of Coeur d’Alene. It spans 25 miles in length and ranges from 1 to 3 miles wide with over 109 miles of shoreline. 

Arctic Wildlife: ‘Tracking Polar Bears With Emails’

Every morning, Jon Aars, a senior researcher at the Norwegian Polar Institute, receives a batch of emails from several female polar bears in the High Arctic, checking in and letting him know where they are. “It’s always a nice way to start the day,” he says.

This was shot as part of Call to Earth, for CNN International.

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