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Top 10 HAPPY environmental stories of 2016

28 / 12 / 2016, Mongabaycom News

As always, Mongabay covered a mix of environmental stories this year. While some species went extinct, several new species were discovered. Some forests were wiped out, but others were restored. Below, we take a look at some of the “happier” stories of 2016 (in no particular order) — from the declaration of large marine parks to animals that are recovering after years of decline, a reserve for the world’s largest primate, and increased restrictions on wildlife trade. 1. Animals are bouncing back from extinction For some animals, 2016 was a good year. Take California’s Island foxes for example. In august, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced a proposal to remove three subspecies of the island fox — found on San Miguel, Santa Rosa and Santa Cruz Islands -- from the Federal List of Threatened and Endangered Wildlife. According to the U.S. FWS, this was the fastest mammal recovery in Endangered Species Act history, thanks to an aggressive recovery plan. Another species in California, the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog, showed rapid signs of recovery. Once close to extinction, frog numbers seem to have increased seven-fold over the last 20 years, a recent study found. Effective conservation efforts also resulted in improved conservation status of species like the Giant Panda, Tibetan Antelope, the Bridled Nailtail Wallaby, and the Greater Stick-nest rat this year. The Giant Panda, for example, was down-listed from Endangered to Vulnerable in the IUCN Red List, while the Tibetan Antelope was moved from Endangered to Near Threatened. Saiga antelopes in Kazakhstan, too, seem to…

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