WWF UK Blog Rod Downie

Rod Downie's latest posts

Gentoo penguin,Port Lockroy, Antarctica. Copyright: Pete Bucktrout, Norman Cobley, British Antarctic Survey

My 3 letters from the Penguin Post Office

Did you see the BBC2 Natural World documentary ‘Penguin Post Office’? It was a penguin extravaganza set at one of the UK’s most remote outposts. Port Lockroy, Goudier Island is located just off the Antarctic Peninsula. The historic British base was built in 1944, during a secret wartime mission called Operation Tabarin. It operated as […]

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Antarctic Krill © Chris Gilbert, British Antarctic Survey

Bridging the Krill divide

Understanding the objectives for krill fishing and conservation in the Scotia Sea and the Antarctic Peninsula Region. Antarctic krill are small crustaceans – a bit like shrimps (picture ‘Will and Bill the krill’ – played by Matt Damon and Brad Pitt in Happy Feet 2). They have large black eyes and a translucent pink shell,  […]

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Svalbard Polar Bear

The Queens of Svalbard

My Colleague Gert from WWF Netherlands has just returned from a trip with the Norwegian Polar Institute polar bear research crew on board the MS Lance, and it’s safe to say the trip was nothing like he expected. The mission was to capture and tag polar bears, take body measurements and fit females with satellite […]

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A polar bear walking on pack ice in Spitsbergen, Norway

Leaders commit to conservation measures at Polar Bear Forum

Polar bear walking on pack ice in Spitsbergen, Norway Ministers and other national representatives made commitments today at the International Forum on Polar Bear Conservation in  Moscow, Russia, that will help polar bears persist across their Arctic range. The commitments were made at a forum in Russia supported by WWF. “The Arctic States’ response goes […]

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Polar bear sow and two cubs, in Alaska

Polar bears descend on Moscow

This week, we’re celebrating the 40th anniversary of a turning point in global polar bear conservation. 40 years ago the polar bear countries – United States, Canada, Russia, Greenland (Denmark) and Norway – made forward-thinking conservation commitments that helped several polar bear populations stabilize and largely recover from the historic threat of over-harvest. The countries […]

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Pacific walrus Males at

Thousands of Walrus forced ashore

Last weekend, David Rose (Mail on Sunday) misleadingly reported on ‘global cooling’ and growing Arctic sea ice. In fact, Arctic sea ice has declined to the sixth-lowest extent on record this month. As a result, a growing number of walruses – up to 4,000 at one location by Sept. 14 – are being forced to […]

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Protecting polar bears and people

I’m in Tromsø in Norway this week, which is north of the Arctic circle. WWF has brought together some of the world’s leading polar bear experts from Russia, Norway, Greenland, Canada and Alaska in the US – the polar bear ‘range states’ – for a workshop at the Fram High North Research Centre for Climate […]

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Adelie penguins on iceberg.

The best laid plans of ice and men (and penguins)

The Antarctic Peninsula and the Scotia Arc, including the South Orkney Islands, are among the most rapidly warming parts of our planet. Air and ocean temperatures have increased, some ice shelves have retreated or collapsed, most glaciers have also retreated, and seasonal pack ice is generally much reduced. This has important consequences for the wildlife, […]

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