Displaced Syrians, who fled their homes in the border town of Ras al-Ain, receive humanitarian aid on October 12, 2019, in the town of Tal Tamr in the countryside of Syria’s northeastern Hasakeh province.
Among the immediate protection needs which have been identified are the lack of civil documentation, as people left their homes without papers and other belongings. Families have also been separated.
Some people are in need of psychological first aid and psychosocial support. UNHCR mobilized protection teams to identify critical protection needs of the most vulnerable, including people with specific needs, elderly people and those with disabilities and serious medical conditions.
The drought that punished California from 2010 to 2015 killed more than 100 million trees, but some in Northern California’s Mendocino County survived just fine. How did they do it? Researchers from the University of Texas at Austin and the University of California, Berkeley, have found that—just like humans fracking oil and gas deposits in shale—tree roots are able to access substantial quantities of water stored in weathered bedrock.
However it’s held, the amount of water is significant—4 to 21 inches of rock moisture was found in the test wells. Importantly, the amount of moisture held by the rock remains stable year over year, topping up whether winter rains are plentiful or scanty, with the remainder draining off into the groundwater table.
A new UNHCR project, The Dream Diaries, visualizes the dreams of children who have fled their homes and found a better life in Europe.
Four young ‘online creators’ have traveled over 7,000 kilometers across Europe to meet a dozen refugee and asylum-seeking children as part of a new project, in association with UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, that lets the youngsters’ imagination run free.
Over the past 50 years, the conservation movement in North America has famously helped protect some of the most iconic birds from extinction, including bald eagles, wild turkeys, white pelicans, peregrine falcons, Kirtland’s warblers, and California condors. But a new study in the journal Science shows that while those rare birds were recovering, total bird numbers were plummeting, even among some of the most common backyard species.
The researchers found broad population decreases, not just with rare or threatened birds. “We saw that these losses occurred in the common species and across every habitat,” Rosenberg says. “Even birds we were calling generalists that should be well-adapted to human environments were in decline. Starlings and house sparrows, these invasive species that we thought may be taking over, were showing the same declines.
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Living in the threatened long-leaf pine flats, the dusky gopher frog needs fire, water, and earth to survive. Earthen tunnels, dug by other animals like gopher tortoises, are a damp refuge for these frogs when the weather is dry, while fire keeps the longleaf forest healthy and open, and the rainwater that gathers in seasonal wetlands serves as a perfect place to lay eggs.
With only a single population of about a hundred adult frogs in Mississippi’s Harrison County, these dumpy, speckly frogs are the rarest species of amphibian in North America. If startled, they cover their eyes with their front feet, and can also inflate their bodies to look bigger. The male frogs’ mating calls are said to sound like a human snoring.