Topic Archive Nature

Czech scientists denounce Environment Ministry’s plans for Šumava

22-04-2014 15:01 | Jan Richter

Photo: Filip Jandourek A group of Czech scientists is threatening to launch legal action against the Czech Republic over what they see as its failure to provide appropriate protection to the Šumava National Park. The Czech Environment Ministry plans to designate 23 percent of the park’s area as non-intervention zones, off limits for loggers and developers. But the scientists argue over 50 percent of the park should be granted such protection, and say the ministry has given in to pressure from local politicians and logging firms. I spoke to Professor Pavel Kindlmann of Prague’s Charles University about the ministry’s plans.  More

Prague Zoo taking responsibility for the survival of endangered breeds

17-04-2014 16:18 | Daniela Lazarová

Photo: Kristýna Maková Three years ago Prague Zoo launched its biggest conservation project to date – helping to save the Przewalski horse from extinction. The zoo successfully breeds these Mongolian wild horses here in the Czech Republic and then transports them to the Mongolian steppes to enrich the gene pool of a small protected herd that is to help the endangered breed survive. I met up with the zoo’s spokeswoman Jana Ptáčinská Jirátová to find out how the project has been coming along.  More

Czech researchers studying global climate change on James Ross Island

10-04-2014 15:48 | Daniela Lazarová

Johann Gregor Mendel station, photo: Kamil Láska / Masaryk University Czech scientists from Brno’s Masaryk University have been involved in polar research since the 1980s and since 2006 they have their own polar station in Antarctica –the Johann Gregor Mendel station. For the duration of the polar summer a team of scientists from Masaryk University works at the station doing glacier research and collecting data relating to the impact of global warming on micro-organisms. The sixteen-member- team is just back from its 2014 expedition and this week I talked to the head of the team Pavel Kapler about its work.  More

Photo confirms return of wolves to Bohemia after over century

08-04-2014 15:11 | Ian Willoughby

Photo: CTK Last week a camera trap captured an image of a wolf crossing a clearing in a wooded area near Doksy in North Bohemia. Wolves disappeared from Bohemia in the late 19th century and the new photo confirms speculation about the animal’s return to this part of the world.  More

Czech botanists discover new “bearded” vanilla species in southern Vietnam

05-02-2014 16:05 | Daniela Lazarová

Vanilla attropogon – loosely translated as “vanilla with a dark beard” is not something you are likely to put in your pudding. Out of the vast number of vanilla orchid species only three are commercially cultivated for consumption, the most common of which is the Mexican vanilla, now cultivated in Madagaskar. Other breeds are used in the perfume industry but most of the species are simply flowers growing in the tropics. Now Czech botanists have uncovered a brand new species in a largely unexplored nature reserve in southern Vietnam.  More

Iron Curtain continues in minds of Czech deer

28-01-2014 14:04 | Chris Johnstone

Photo: CTK Almost a quarter of a century after the fall of the Iron Curtain, some patterns of behaviour have continued as if the event never took place. A study of deer in the Šumava National Park shows that populations on both the Czech and German sides of the former barrier behave as if it is still there.  More

Czech environmental activist: EC’s 2030 framework for climate and energy policies is a big disappointment

23-01-2014 15:32 | Daniela Lazarová

Photo: František Tichý The European Commission on Wednesday unveiled a proposed framework for climate and energy policies up until 2030, targeting a 40% carbon cut and a 27% share of renewables. Czech environmentalists say the goals outlined fall short of expectations and are bad news for the Czech Republic. I discussed the proposed action plan with Vojtěch Kotecký of the environment group Duha.  More

Wilderness trumps insensitive development of Šumava says study

22-01-2014 14:03 | Chris Johnstone

Šumava, photo: Barbora Kmentová The Czech Republic’s biggest national park has become a battleground for those fighting over its future development. Academics and green groups this week delivered what they hope will be a decisive rebuttal to what they see as moves to open up the park to developers and loggers.  More

Environment Ministry ends year with bird and beaver underwear

19-12-2013 15:02 | Masha Volynsky

Illustrative photo: Steve, CC BY-SA 2.0 With less than a fortnight to go before the end of the year, the Czech Environment Ministry has decided to allocate some of the remaining annual budget to the very last public tender for promotional items, some of which has raised eyebrows. Public institutions see these kinds of end-of-year spending sprees as necessary, but critics see it simply as a waste of public funds.  More

Czech researchers uncover new plant species in Borneo

13-11-2013 15:24 | Jan Velinger

Thismia hexagona, photo: CTK Members of an expert team from Palacký University conducting research on the island of Borneo revealed recently they had uncovered a new species of plant belonging to the Thismiaceae family. Highly-unusual in appearance, the initial specimen was actually found by accident, when one of the members of the team slipped and fell, only to notice the plant growing nearby. The specimen was gathered for research, and later additional samples were found.  More



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