Tag Archives: copper

Caught on Tape: One of World’s Rarest Orchids — Watch Video

29 Jul

from the Center for Biological Diversity

Photo by Ron Coleman

Photo by Ron Coleman

Coleman’s coralroot is a stunning purple orchid that exists in only a few mountain ranges in the Southwest. Fewer than 200 are known to exist in the wild, and they remain a mystery: Biologists don’t even know how the flowers are pollinated, largely because there are so few individuals — and because the elusive plants spend most of their lives underground.

It’s extremely rare to actually see these orchids in the wild. Recently, though, Center for Biological Diversity staff wandered the desert and found two specimens in full bloom; we captured them on video so that you, too, can see this beautiful hermit of the desert in all its glory.

Check out the video of the Coleman’s coralroot below; then read about the Center’s work to protect this orchid and other rare plants and animals in the Southwest’s breathtaking Sky Islands region, where many special species and wild places are threatened by an open-pit mine planned for the Santa Rita Mountains.

Hurdles Remain for U.S. Jaguar Habitat

24 Jan

By Leslie Macmillan / New York Times Green

[Fish and Wildlife Service] A jaguar observed last October by a camera trap in southern Arizona.

[Fish and Wildlife Service] A jaguar observed last October by a camera trap in southern Arizona.

Last fall, remote cameras in a rugged expanse of desert grasslands in Southern Arizona captured arresting images of a jaguar slinking through the underbrush, its yellow eyes fixed on some distant sight. The photos add to the dozen or so documented sightings of the endangered cat on American soil in the last century.

The monitoring project, conducted by the University of Arizona in conjunction with the federal Fish and Wildlife Service, is providing data that will inform decisions about a proposed critical habitat for the big cat: 838,000 acres in Southern Arizona and New Mexico, an area roughly the size of Rhode Island. Continue reading

A Threatened Snail in the Path of Rosemont Copper Mine

25 Jul

By Samantha Bare / Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced Tuesday that it will begin a yearlong review to determine whether the Sonoran talussnail is threatened, specifically by the proposed Rosemont Copper mine.

The action is in response to a petition by the Center for Biological Diversity, which claims that the snail is just one of several species of plants and animals threatened by the proposed mine southeast of Tucson.

“They’re going to blast a mile-wide open pit,” said Tierra Curry, a conservation biologist for the center. “That would literally just blow up the populations of the snail.”

Continue reading