Category Archives: Scientific Studies

Uganda’s Disappearing Glaciers – BBC

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Uganda’s Mountain Parks Might Be the Last Refuge in a Changed Climate

The Rwenzori Mountains and Mount Elgon, the bookends of Uganda, may provide a last bastion for biodiversity in Uganda in a changing climate. While these mountainous national parks get fewer visitors and fewer conservation dollars than the savanna parks with their charismatic wildlife, they might turn out to be the most important ones to protect. Continue reading

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Impact of Oil Development on Wildlife Not Always Obvious

Nobody really knows what effect oil drilling will have on wildlife in Uganda. Most of the national parks and other protected areas are slated for drilling, and much of the oil is being found in the Albertine Rift, one of the most biodiverse regions on the planet. In Murchison Falls National Park, most of the current and proposed test wells are in the areas with the highest concentrations of wildlife and, while efforts are being made to gather some baseline data on the animals to measure impacts against, population numbers are estimates at best, and behavioral studies of the animals are limited or non-existent. If the natural heritage of this country is going to be protected, a lot more information needs to be gathered.

One thing that Uganda can do is look to studies that have been done in other places that are farther along the oil journey. Gabon is another country that is drilling in its national parks, and it has many of the same species of animals. A study was published this year in the journal Biological Conservation that looks at Oil Prospecting and its Impact on Large Rainforest Mammals in Loango National Park, Gabon. The species they looked at are elephants, gorillas, chimpanzees, monkeys and duikers – all species that can be found in Uganda as well. Continue reading

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Talking About Race with Kids

“White people over there! Black people over there!”

My wife and I stared at each other in horror as our then-3 1/2-year-old son stood on his chair and shouted this during a dinner we were hosting for a group of Ugandan and ex-pat friends. Continue reading

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Why People Don't Like Scientists

As an educator with a focus on nature and ecology, I want people to say “ooh, wow, fascinating!” when new information comes out about the natural world. Too often, studies like this come out that are more likely to result in people saying “ugh, science sure is dry and boring.” Come on, people – if something is interesting enough to do a study about, give us something afterwards to say “wow!” about. Continue reading

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