Tag: human health

Citizen Science Tuesday: Kissing Bugs & Chagas Disease

Kissing bugs: Sure, this might sound like the latest cute critter video craze on YouTube, but a kiss from this bug could be the kiss of death.

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Can We Grow Safe Produce and Conserve Nature at the Same Time?

Farmers are destroying habitat near farms out of fear that wildlife is spreading E. coli and other pathogens to their fields. But is wildlife a source of foodborne illness? New research from Conservancy scientists suggests not.

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Peter Kareiva on Why the Ozone-Reforestation Study is Important

The Nature Conservancy’s chief scientist says new research from the TNC-The Dow Chemical Company collaboration shows nature can be a cost-competitive alternative — and bring bonus benefits.

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Does Biodiversity Really Protect Us From Disease?

The idea has gone mainstream over the last year — but new scientific evidence might dash hopes that conservation could be directly relevant to human health.

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Fish and Chimps

Chimpanzees don’t eat fish. They don’t even swim. But at Lake Tanganyika in western Tanzania, scientists have found that to save chimps, they must look underwater.

That’s because here, everything—people, fish, water, forest, and chimps—is interconnected. Attempting to conserve the apes without accounting for the health of the fishery that provides food and income for local people would doom these efforts.

Today, fish supplies are dwindling, villages are growing fast and chimps are getting squeezed into smaller and smaller forests.

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Parasites, Poverty and Biodiversity

Conservationists lamenting the diminished focus on biodiversity in an increasingly ecosystem service dominated field can take succour from a study by Matthew Bonds and colleagues published in PLoS Biology.

The interesting take-home, which is actually a side event in the paper, is that the loss of biodiversity (species richness of plants, mammals, and birds), increases the burden of vector-borne parasitic diseases amongst a country’s human population, which in turn increases poverty.

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