Photo by Alan Hopps

We can save animals, the environment, and our own health by having the willpower to prioritize principles over cravings.

I was never much of a meat eater as a child. I didn’t like eating steak, star of the American home-cooked meal, much at all. I would complain that it was too tough, took too long to chew before I could swallow it. My mother would tell me that if I ate a piece of broccoli with the steak, it would help me chew faster. …

Photo by Paul Souders

As the natural world approaches the brink, mankind must act in the interest of future generations and Earth’s dwindling wildlife

Imagine sitting in front of a large oven. You’ve been told that ovens grow hot and that you will perish if you’re inside. Disbelieving this fact, or understanding and disregarding it, you climb inside and turn the dial. You sit there as things slowly begin to warm up. It would seem, as you were told, that death is a certainty. But you’re not worried. You’ll reach natural death before the oven grows hot enough to burn.

Now imagine carrying your…

Photo by Charlie Hamilton James

Gray wolves play a much larger role in Yellowstone National Park than once believed, and epitomize trophic cascade and how ecosystems react to it

There is very little wilderness left in the world. As of 2016, only 23% of Earth’s land mass could still be classified as “wilderness,” that is, land largely unspoiled by human development. That percentage was about 10% larger in the 1990s, but recent decades have seen rapid increases in the depletion of the planet’s remaining wildlands. The United States has designated close to 110 million acres of its territory as federally-protected wilderness, which sounds like quite…

Photo by Francis Perez

The massive amount of plastic pollution in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch not only threatens marine wildlife, but humans as well

There’s a country three times the size of France in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It didn’t used to be there, but it keeps growing year after year. You can visit it, but never set foot on it. We didn’t build it, but humanity’s fingerprints are all over it. And while no human can live there, it’s home to millions of residents.

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is no riddle. It’s a rapidly growing environmental blight — a…

Photo by Ami Vitale

The imminent extinction of the northern white rhino came easily, and won’t be the last if wildlife conservation isn’t given more attention

I woke up with a headache the day that Sudan died.

Sudan, the last male northern white rhino in existence, died on Monday, March 20. When I saw the story appear in my feed, I was certain he had been gunned down by some coward. Sudan was fortunate enough to die surrounded by his caretakers at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya, euthanized after a recent leg infection had worn down his aged health beyond the point of…

David Vasquez

Writer and wildlife conservation advocate. Amateur photographer and terrible dancer. Based in San Francisco, CA.

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