This is what saving the world looks like.
Did you know that in JUST 50 YEARS, we’ve lost 2/3 of wildlife on earth? In the same time, we’ve lost 29% of all birds in North America. And in just 20 years, it's estimated that we've lost 80% of eastern monarch butterflies. The list goes on. We are in the middle of a biodiversity crisis, which has entered us into the Earth's 6th mass extinction event. This one wasn’t triggered by a meteor collision or an ice age, it was caused by us and how we've used and abused our lands and waters. This is the most important issue of our time and sometimes it seems like nobody is talking about it through all the noise. Nature is screaming for help but a large part of our society isn't listening.
But it’s not all bad news. The good news is there is a dedicated group of people who have been tirelessly working on these issues for decades: conservationists. And there are a lot of success stories. Nature is resilient and with a push in the right direction, it often bounces back. Conservation is the key to survival of wildlife, to clean air and water and, we believe, to the safety, security and well-being of humans in the future. Our next generation's lives will be defined by our actions now. Will we continue to destroy the planet or will we invest more into conservation?
Our biodiversity crisis is worldwide but conservation actions are often small, localized and must work together to protect our resources and stop the loss of wildlife. The following are a collection of stories that we've had the opportunity to tell that show individual conservation efforts in action. Each story is vital to the efforts in addressing the global biodiversity crisis. This is what saving the world looks like.
How to save an endangered woodpecker.
The red-cockaded woodpecker had a brush with extinction within the shortleaf pine forests of Arkansas and Oklahoma's Ouachita National Forest. A conservation plan was enacted and the species has seen a recovery and with it, many other species have reaped the benefits of this conservation work.
Saving the world's rarest butterfly.
The Poweshiek skipperling is the rarest butterfly that you've probably never heard of. What was once the most abundant butterfly throughout the midwest is now the rarest butterfly in the world. And the crash happened faster than scientists can understand. Watch the story of conservationists working to save this butterfly from the brink of extinction.
A community supported butterfly.
With 80% of monarch butterflies being lost in just 20 short years, we find North America's most iconic species of butterfly in crisis mode. But we know the monarch only needs one thing, more milkweed. And our communities have plenty of space to plant more. See how one community is embracing it's cultural connection to the butterfly in order to support its survival.
Saving the tree that fire built.
A partnership forged in fire has become the catalyst to restoration of a tree species that had been all but lost from the landscape. Once blanketing the south, the longleaf pine lost nearly 98% of it's range before restoration efforts brought a species back and with it, the preservation of a cultural tradition.
Restoring a Great Lakes reef.
The Great Lakes
Keeping the UP wild.
What is the value of the wilderness?
The glades are a habitat that have become extremely rare over time. Our footprint was snuffing out the glades of the Ozark National Forest and all the species that live there. With a little management, this system and the life found within has made a major comeback.