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Environment

  • A long flight in vain

    A long flight in vain

    An adult female honey buzzard from Finland, which last year managed to raise two young and spent a night in Malta in October, has just completed a 25,000-kilometre round trip from Finland to South Africa and back... in vain. The bird arrived in...

  • Pesticides tied to bird decline

    Pesticides tied to bird decline

    Controversial pesticides blamed for the loss of bee colonies may also be having much wider environmental effects and damaging wild bird populations, research has shown. Scientists in the Netherlands linked declines in farmland bird species, such...

  • The greater flamingo

    The greater flamingo

    Some weeks ago, a flamingo made news by visiting the Salina salt pans and remaining there for several days. It left during the night after three weeks. Last week, another flamingo, which could be the same one, landed at the Għadira Nature Reserve...

  • Amazon rainforest grew after climate change 2,000 years ago

    Swathes of the Amazon may have been grassland until a natural shift to a wetter climate about 2,000 years ago let the rainforests form, according to a study that challenges common belief that the world’s biggest tropical forest is far older. The...

  • Tropical fish ‘threatening waters’

    Tropical fish ‘threatening waters’

    Invading tropical fish pose a serious threat to temperate waters by overgrazing on marine vegetation, say scientists. Experts studied the harmful impact of fish migrating away from the tropics as a result of ocean warming. They found the strongest...

  • Insects could become big business in coming years

    Insects could become big business in coming years

    When it comes to resolving a big global food problem, a new breed of farmers and their financial backers are thinking small. Work on the world’s largest fly farm has begun in South Africa after the European firm behind the project won much-needed...

  • Shrimps view world in new light

    Shrimps view world in new light

    Mantis shrimps view their underwater world in a whole new light, seeing ultraviolet (UV) colours far beyond the range of human vision, scientists have learned. The creatures’ bulging eyes contain built-in filters made from a biological sunscreen...

  • Celebrating the Maltese hunting dog

    Celebrating the Maltese hunting dog

    The hunters’ federation (FKNK) celebrated Mnarja in Buskett with various educational initiatives relating to local flora and fauna. The events included wild bird feeding and the planting and care of local indigenous trees, particularly the Maltese...

  • Summer days and nights

    Summer days and nights

    The summer solstice has signalled a slow end to longer days and late sunsets. Night time still arrives late in July however, with dusk not ending until well after 9pm. The sun will be setting furthest from west as the earth rotates on its tilted...

  • Workshops on poverty and water

    Workshops on poverty and water

    For the first time since World War II, forced displacement of people globally has topped 50 million. The impact on migration of environmental refugees is a growing worry. A Maltese non-profit organisation by the name of Kopin (Kooperazzjoni...

  • New fossil gives more details about earth’s first known bird

    New fossil gives more details about earth’s first known bird

    Since its first fossil was unearthed in Bavarian limestone in 1961, Archaeopteryx − the original early bird − has been a paleontological rock star. Not only is it considered earth’s oldest-known bird but its blend of primitive dinosaur traits with...

  • Safeguarding marine life

    Safeguarding marine life

    Recreational boating, diving and other water sports may affect marine life to various degrees. Marine biologist Alan Deidun tells Stephanie Fsadni about the possible consequences. Water sports enthusiasts know they should not endanger swimmers –...

  • Common centaury

    Common centaury

    The common centaury, also known as the European centuary, is a flowering plant in the gentian family. It is a biannual plant, meaning it can live for two years. It is found throughout most of Europe and can also be found in parts of western Asia...

  • Caribbean corals could vanish in two decades

    Caribbean corals could vanish in two decades

    Most coral reefs in the Caribbean could vanish in the next two decades, hit by the loss of fish and sea urchins that eat a slime of coral-smothering algae, a UN-backed study said yesterday. The review, the most comprehensive to date of Caribbean...

  • Green visionaries

    Green visionaries

    Alexandra Cachia and Peppi Gauci are helping develop new sources of growth and green initiatives in Malta. Melanie Vella shares the green dream. Alexandra Cachia runs campaigns to inform the public how to recycle food and other compostable waste...

  • Coming unstuck

    Coming unstuck

    Adrian Muscat is researching a demand responsive transport system that could reduce traffic congestion and pollution. Sandy Calleja Portelli hitches a ride. Driving along our congested roads is invariably fraught with delays, most journeys taking...

  • Green building solution

    Green building solution

    The EVG-3D constructions system is a 40-year-old construction method that has been proven worldwide. Launched in Malta in 2013, the system is manufactured at JM Vassallo Vibro Steel Limited and over the past year has been adopted in numerous...

  • Taking flight

    Taking flight

    Bad farming practices, habitat loss and climate change are contributing to mass bird decline. However, in many corners of the world, we are witnessing a birding revolution. With 50 million birders in the US and six million in the UK, it’s a...

  • Successful implementation

    Successful implementation

    Until 15 years ago, Electrofix was a one-person show, performing electrical and mechanical jobs. Today it has established itself as one of the leading companies on the island in the electrical and mechanical sector. Having also branched into...

  • The air that we breathe

    The air that we breathe

    A recent World Health Organisation study defined air pollution as the world’s “single biggest environmental health risk”. The report finds that air pollution has killed around seven million people, in both cities and rural areas, thus causing...

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