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This Week in Biodiversity News – 17th November 2021

Hana Ketley
Hana Ketley

An extinct species could be cloned as a last-ditch attempt to find the Eungella gastric-brooding frog in the wild fails. This species, last seen in the wild between the 1970s and 80s, was the subject of a final search in the remote rainforests of north Queensland, which proved unsuccessful. Scientists across the world are now experimenting with cloning procedures “beyond the known edge of science” in an attempt to bring the species back.

China signs up to combat forest destruction, but critics say it’s not enough. China is among more than 100 countries that have committed to halt and reverse deforestation and land degradation by 2030, but its supply chains are reliant on the production of ‘forest-risk’ commodities, such as palm oil and cattle, which is driving deforestation outside its borders.

Federal agency withdraws plan that would all but end protection for red wolves in North Carolina. Just days after announcing that it will withdraw a 2018 proposal that would have reduced the north-eastern North Carolina protection area for red wolves by some 90%, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) stated it now plans to release nine wolves from captivity this winter. This comes in response to a federal lawsuit that accuses the FWS of violating the Endangered Species Act by not releasing more wolves into the wild.

The Amazon has the highest October forest loss since at least 2007. 877 square kilometres of rainforest were cleared in the Brazilian Amazon, a 5% increase over October 2020, the second straight month that the rate of forest clearing has risen on a month-over-month basis. Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has been trending upwards since 2012, but there are hopes that this trend will end as Brazil signed the COP26 agreement to halt and reverse forest loss by 2030.