International League of Conservation Writers

Writing to inspire the love of nature and a passion for its protection
The International League of Conservation Writers is a forum to bring writers together from around the world who are writing to promote wilderness, nature, conservation, or using other means to protect and restore the natural areas, habitats, animals, and plants of our planet. ILCW will present periodic writing awards to authors who excel in this field.

Come write, do research, and be near wild and protected areas in Colorado while working in the David R. Brower Office of Conservation Writing. Sit at the same desk used by Dave Brower.

ILCW Members Are Eligible to Use  David R. Brower Office for Conservation Writing There is no cost for ILCW members to use the office.  For information click  here.

Featured Video

Yellowstone is More Valuable than Gold

Don’t Mine Yellowstone.
An outreach short on behalf of the Yellowstone Gateway Business Coalition: a group of businesses and landowners in Paradise Valley, Montana that have come together to stop two industrial-scale gold mines from threatening the local economy and quality of life at the doorstep of Yellowstone National Park.

Go to all previous Featured Videos here.

“What we are doing to the forests of the world is but a mirror reflection of what we aredoing to ourselves and to one another.” 
― Mahatma Gandhi


Have news to share? Click here.

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Book Review

Reading Nature’s Archives in The Library of Ice Campbell

The Library of Ice: Readings from a Cold Climate
2018, Simon & Schuster / Scribner UK
Hardcover, 336 pages

The book is rich in meticulous detail — it’s a microscope and a dictionary, as much as a library. Less familiar words bloom throughout (‘dioptre’, ‘firn’, ‘philtrum’), and it does well to veer only occasionally towards the abstruse. For all the density of scholarship, it’s a readable account, and highly poetic in places.

Vivid imagery is conjured, whether it’s through Campbell’s words (“The [curling] stone makes me think of a child potentate: everyone’s eyes are on it, and its apparently independent movement is cleverly controlled”) or the words of others (Arctic explorer William McKinley: “As I turned round to face the ship, old Karluk seemed to be doing her best to outdo nature. Her deck covering of snow shimmered like tinsel. Every rope and spar was magnified by a fluffy coating of frosted rime”). Read the entire review by Sally Moss here.


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Giant Panda Returns to China from San Diego Zoo

Gao Gao the Giant Panda who had been living at the San Diego Zoo for the past 15 years is returning to China per the zoo’s agreement with the People’s Republic of China. While at the zoo, Gao Gao fathered five cubs. When the Giant Panda Conservation Program began in 1996 the number of Giant Panda in the wild was thought to be less than 1,000. The 2014 census revealed 1,864 Giant Pandas in the wild plus 300 more living in zoos and managed habitats in China and elsewhere. Gao Gao will return to the Chinese Center for Research and Conservation for Giant Panda in Dujiangyan, China.

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SPECIES INVASIONS: Water Hyacinth and Zebra Mussels

By Bianca T. Esposito
Intern at No Water No Life

Water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) is a perennial, free-floating aquatic weed, native to South America’s Amazon River, but carried overseas for ornamental use. Today the water hyacinth is considered to be the “world’s worst aquatic weed.” This aggressive, invasive species spreads rapidly over entire surfaces of lakes and ponds and can double its coverage in just two weeks. Yet its ability to withstand drastic fluctuations in flow rates, acidity and low nutrient levels makes it a viable and popular water-garden plant.

Since imported to North America in 1884, it has invaded the Columbia and Mississippi River Basins, two NWNL case-study watersheds. Also introduced into East Africa, it is present in three NWNL basins:  those of the Omo, Nile and Mara Rivers. Recorded in Egypt as early as the 1890’s, water hyacinth became a “plague” in the late 1900’s. River control schemes, such as dams, barrages and irrigation canals have encouraged its growth and spread. Furthermore, climate change, a combination of higher temperatures and CO₂ fertilization, is significantly increasing water hyacinth proliferation. Read more.

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Camping with European Outdoor Ethics Programme

Verena Gruber (ILCW member, Austria) of the European Wilderness Society points out in her latest blog post the differences in camping in Wilderness between the United States and Europe. Camping in the Wilderness in the U.S. is allowed (as long as Leave No Trace Rules are followed) but that camping in European Wilderness is highly restricted or prohibited in many protected areas. But there are other ways to experience European Wilderness as her post points out. Click here to read more.

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Wildlife Governance Reform: Where to Begin

By Kirk Robinson and Dave Parsons

In recent years it has become increasingly obvious that state wildlife governance needs significant reform – in all states, some more than others.

There are three pervasive problems. One is that state wildlife management agencies and their associated wildlife commissions are held captive by special interests, including primarily hunting and fishing, livestock, and energy interests. As a consequence, the rightful interests of the majority of citizens are often ignored, and so is scientific knowledge when it is perceived as an obstacle to special interests’ objectives. Wildlife populations are being managed less on an ecological model and more on a farm model, with some species being favored and others (typically predators) disfavored. Ironically, this dereliction of public trust duty is viewed by wildlife agencies and their politically appointed commissions as an obligation owed to the special interests. Read more here.

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Science Forum South Africa

More than 3500 participants are expected at the annual Science Forum South Africa, December 12-14, 2018 in Pretoria, South Africa. This is the largest pan-African science gathering dedicated to research and innovation. ILCW member Daud Abdi Daud will attend representing Somali Media for Environment Science Health and Agriculture (SOMESHA). Participants are expected from Africa, and non-African countries from Brussels to Beijing and Toronto to Tokyo. Click here for more information about the conference.

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U.S. National Public Lands Day

Established in 1994 and held annually on the fourth Saturday in September, National Public Lands Day is the nation's largest single-day volunteer effort. It celebrates the connection between people and green space in their community, inspires environmental stewardship, and encourages use of open space for education, recreation, and general health. This year’s event, on September 22, 2018, will focus on restoration and resilience of our public lands. 

There are many ways to participate in National Public Lands Day.

  • You canvisit a national park for free
  • You can take part in a volunteer work project.If you volunteer on this day, you will receive a fee-free day coupon to be used on a future date.
  • You can share your favorite outdoor activity on social media channel with the hashtag #NPSVolunteer, #FindYourPark and #NPLD!

National Public Lands Day is organized annually by theNational Environmental Education Foundation, in cooperation with Department of the Interior, Department of the Army, and Department of Agriculture. The National Park Service is one of the event’s largest providers of sites and volunteers. Other participating federal agencies include the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, US Forest Service, and US Army Corps of Engineers.

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Second Wolf Pack Found in Austria

About a half-dozen wolves have been spotted via a trip camera near the Austrian-Czech border near Karlstift. There is also evidence that a third pack may be located on the Czech side as well. Wolves were hunted to extinction in Europe but are making their way back. See more at the European Wilderness Society here.

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Southern Plains Land Trust 20th Anniversary Celebration

The Southern Plains Land Trust (SPLT) is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a fundraising event October 19 in Denver. SPLT has protected more than 25,000 acres of prairie land in southeastern Colorado. Part of which, the Heartland Ranch Nature Preserve, is nearly 30-square miles and larger in size than any of Colorado’s state parks. To purchase tickets for the fundraiser click here.




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Stay Positive in Negative Times

The Back to Basics blogs encourages writers to stay positive and resist the fear we are subjected to on a daily basis. Click here to read.

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Extract Lithium from Sea Water?

Due to a new filtering material, lithium could be extracted during the desalination process of producing freshwater from the ocean. The process is being developed by researchers at Monash University in Australia and the University of Texas at Austin. Lithium is an important component in batteries and is currently valued at $100 a pound. The value could offset the cost of desalination. Click here to read the entire article.

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Giant Panda Best Friends Award to Pandas International

GPFriends International gemeinnützige UG announced this year’s Giant Panda Best Friends award to Pandas International, USA; Tiergarten Schönbrunn, Austria; Chengdu Panda Base, China; and CCRCGP China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda, China. The award is given to the selected individuals, institutions, organizations and institutions who are committed to the protection of nature, wildlife and species, in particular the Great Pandas.

Suzanne Braden is President of Panda International and a member of ILCW


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Why Beavers Matter

Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter

In Eager, environmental journalist Ben Goldfarb reveals that our modern idea of what a healthy landscape looks like and how it functions is wrong, distorted by the fur trade that once trapped out millions of beavers from North America’s lakes and rivers. The consequences of losing beavers were profound: streams eroded, wetlands dried up, and species from salmon to swans lost vital habitat. Today, a growing coalition of “Beaver Believers”―including scientists, ranchers, and passionate citizens―recognizes that ecosystems with beavers are far healthier, for humans and non-humans alike, than those without them. From the Nevada deserts to the Scottish highlands, Believers are now hard at work restoring these industrious rodents to their former haunts. Eager is a powerful story about one of the world’s most influential species, how North America was colonized, how our landscapes have changed over the centuries, and how beavers can help us fight drought, flooding, wildfire, extinction, and the ravages of climate change. Ultimately, it’s about how we can learn to coexist, harmoniously and even beneficially, with our fellow travelers on this planet.


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Somalian Journalist Killed by Policeman

Twenty-year-old SBS TV cameraman Abdirizak Qasim Iman, was shot dead by a policeman July 26 in Mogadishu. The reason is unclear, and the policeman got away. Iman is the first journalist to be murdered in Somalia this year says a member of SOMESHA (Somali Media for Environment Science Health and Agriculture). Why is this noteworthy? Somalia is at the high end of members of the media who are killed. It’s a dangerous job to be a journalist in Somalia and the crimes are rarely investigated reports the Huffington Post.

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Green Radio Hour

The Green Radio Hour hosted by ILCW member Jon Bowermaster has been on the air from KWNY 1490 ( since March. Bowermaster interviews figures from the political advocacy, science, and activist worlds like: lawyer/activist/ethicist Karenna Gore, filmmaker Josh Fox, author and poet Eliza Griswold, former New York Times environmental writer Andy Revkin, biologist and anti-fractivist Sandra Steingraber, plastic pollution champion Dianna Cohen and, author Paul Greenberg. Also, check out their archives of past shows here.


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Prairies Book is a Gem

ILCW member (USA) Cathy Morrison has illustrated a beautiful book about the flora and fauna found on the prairie. Written by Marybeth Lorbiecki, The Prairie that Nature Built, is a book that will captivate both children and adults while learning about the prairie’s plants and animals. At the end there is more information and activities that children can do to continue to learn about this amazing ecosystem.
















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Hatred of Journalists Threatens Democracies

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has released their 2018 World Press Freedom Index showing growing animosity toward journalists world-wide. Many times the hostility towards the media is openly encourage by political leaders and those with authoritarian regimes. To see an interesting map showing the degree of “hatred” toward journalists, click here.

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Science Magazine Profiles ILCW co-founder Boyd Norton


The American Association for the Advancement of Science just published a story about ILCW member (USA) Boyd Norton and how he went from being a nuclear scientist to an ardent conservationist and photographer. Click here to read.

Boyd Norton and admirer

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Residences for writers in Switzerland
Applications are now closed for 2019 session

Seven residential modules available to writers at the Jan Michalski Foundation in Switzerland.

The Jan Michalski Foundation in Montricher, Switzerland features an original group of seven residential modules that are available to writers, translators, and other creative individuals for residencies of varying lengths. Hanging from the openwork canopy surrounding the Foundation, these living spaces are called “treehouses” and offer ideal conditions to anyone looking to start, continue, or put the final touches on a writing or translating project.

Residences are open to all types of writing. Priority is given to writers and translators but the residences are open to other disciplines where writing is at the heart of the project. Residencies can be granted for individual projects or projects in pairs.

In 2019, a percentage of the residences will be dedicated to nature writing, a form of fiction or creative non-fiction that raises awareness of nature, prepares for a sustainable way of living, and helps to better understand socio-environmental interconnections and the impact of human actions on nature. 
Applications for the 2019 residencies have closed.

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A Maasai Steward of the Serengeti

Alison Jones of No Water No Life (and ILCW member, USA) met with Meyasi Mollal of the Serengeti Preservation Foundation (and ILCW member, Tanzania) recently in Nairobi to talk about the Mara River Basin. The Mara River flows from Kenya, across Tanzania and into Lake Victoria providing water to Kenya’s Maasai Mari and Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park. Kenya currently has proposals to build several dams on the Mara River. Read the interview here.

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Top 37 US Parks to Visit

The Hiking Blog for Montem Outdoor Gear recommends37 must see US National Parks to explore before you die. Click here to learn more.

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Environmental Defense Fund Going to Space

The Environmental Defense Fund is planning to launch a satellite known as MethaneSAT to measure methane leaks from oil and gas operations, many of which could be stopped with easy repairs. Methane accounts for a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions. The satellite will produce a snapshot of 80 percent of the Earth every seven days and will detect methane in concentrations of as little as two parts per billion.

The data collected will pinpoint offenders and contributors to global warming so that the leaks can be stopped, as well as provide an accurate account of progress in stopping the methane emissions. The data will also help in prosecuting negligent offenders. The goal of this project is to cut methane pollution 45% by 2025. That would be equivalent to shutting down 1,300 coal power plants. The estimated launch of the satellite is slated for 2021. For more information click here.

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Urban Birder in German

David Lindo, ILCW member (UK) has a new book just out in German. He says it is a compilation of his English title Tales From the Concrete Jungles with additional chapters on German, Austrian and Swiss cities. For more details visit here.



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Scientists say the Mississippi is flooding more than it has in 500 years — and we caused it

In a recent study it was found that man’s best effort to make the Mississippi River more efficient for shipping by straightening it and adding levees to protect against floods may have had the unintended effect of causing higher flooding. Scientists says the river is flooding more now than it has in 500 years. Click here to read the article.

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Hasselstrom wins Sarton Award

Linda M. Hasselstrom (ILCW member, USA) has won the Sarton Women’s Book Award for Memoir for her title Gathering from the Grassland: A Plains Journal. The Story Circle Network, an international nonprofit organization of women writers, recently announced the winners of its 2017 Sarton Women's Book Awards™. The award program is named in honor of May Sarton, who is remembered for her contributions to women's literature as a memoirist, novelist, and poet.Linda M. Hasselstrom is a nature writer, poet, and longtime leader in land steward­ship, and examines several generations of family diaries searching for an understanding of her ancestors and for direction in planning for the future of the plains ranch which has been in the family for over a century. Moving through the days of a year, she is never afraid to show the reader the most difficult thing of all, the truth of her life. The portrait that emerges is of a woman who makes peace with life’s complexities and finds joy in honoring the plains and its people and animals. Ever the nature writer at heart, Hasselstrom crafts miniature essays on plains animals including antelope, owls, badgers, snakes, buffalo, and cattle. She also delves into rural community dynamics, death and aging, family, and the work of a writer. Click here for a short video about her ranch life, writing and teaching career.

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Mara River Basin in Eastern Africa

Alison Jones, ILCW member (USA) and founder of No Water No Life, has been in East Africa surveying the recent activity on the Mara River. She reports that Kenya is committed to protect 70 new "water towers" (headwater forests) of the Mara and other Kenya Rivers to stop soil erosion, illegal logging and drought from further degrading these transboundary lifelines of water. Kenya will increase its forest cover from its current 7.2% (below UN standards) to 15% by 2020 to insure clean and sufficient water flows in the Mara and other Kenya Rivers. Earlier plans were to expand forest cover to merely 10% by 2030. Kenya will give farmers incentives to increase forest cover by planting indigenous trees and high-value fruit trees, as well as retaining trees that deliver multiple ecosystem services.

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News From WILDvoices

Founder of WildVoices, Tomasz Wiercioch writes: This week, I want to introduce you to two young photographers, Neale Howarth and Alex Basaraba. They've taken over our Instagram to share wildlife and climate change stories. Neale is based out of Pumba Private Game Reserve, in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, and has been developing his own style of wildlife photography over the last few years and contributes behind-the-scenes blog posts to WILDvoices. Alex is passionate about Climate Change, the environment, and empowering human livelihoods. Through his many travels, he has captured and told many captivating stories at the intersection of environmental conservation and human well-being. He recently launched @AClimateLens, an Instagram based platform featuring a collective of photographers documenting Climate Change to infuse hope in global adaptation and resiliency. He also has a great personal Instagram account. For more information about WILDvoices, contact them here.

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Anti-Poaching Success in Mali

Mali Elephants Safe for Past Year

The Mali Elephant Project (MEP), working with grassroots leaders and national government officials, reports that there was no recorded poaching of elephants during the past year. The habitat is the size of Switzerland, 8 million acres (3.24 million ha), containing elephants as well as numerous cultures and ethnic groups who have traditionally managed their lands separately.

Program director, Susan Canney, and field manager, Nomba Ganame, realized that protecting a herd that migrates across such a vast territory could only be accomplished with local support. That is why the Mali Elephant Project brought together eight ethnic groups for the first-time, and worked with them to organize an elder council that jointly manages the land for the benefit of people and elephants. The Mali Elephant Project harnesses the power of working together to achieve conservation outcomes that would be impossible for one group working in isolation to produce on their own.

In 2013, a violent insurgency swept through the elephant habitat and destabilized the entire region (making the elephants susceptible to bandits and poachers for the first time), the Mali Elephant Project was the only NGO project to remain operating in the region. In an escalating climate of fear and uncertainty, it became necessary to unite local leadership with national-level officials for greater coordination. The result of that process was an official decree issued by Mali’s President in early 2016 calling on all of Mali’s agencies to prioritize working together to save this internationally important herd.

The MEP also built the foundation for Mali’s first anti-poaching unit (APU), a bold and unique collaboration between Mali’s Ministry of Environment, the United Nations MINUSMA forces, Chengeta Wildlife, and local communities. The APU was first deployed in January 2016. The Mali Elephant Project is a project of the WILD Foundation. See more here..

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Another City Sues Fossil Fuel Companies
for Climate Change

Richmond, California became the ninth U.S. community to sue fossil fuel giants over climate change, joining cities like New York and San Francisco. A climate change adaptation study commissioned by the city found that the city’s current levees will not protect it against rising sea levels. It's water supply, sourced from runoff from the Sierra Nevada Mountains, is vulnerable to drought.

Source: Thank you to No Water No Life who has followed California drought as a Spotlight.

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China to Host WILD 11 in 2019

Vance Martin, President of the WILD Foundation, and leaders from the Global Times, People's Daily, and the China Institute of Strategy and Management participate in the January 20, 2018 announcement that China will host the 11th World Wilderness Congress in Beijing 2019.

The 11th World Wilderness Congress (WILD 11) will be held in Beijing in late 2019. As China comes to terms with the high ecological cost of

rapid industrialization, people around the world are also waking up to the fact that we are in the midst of the sixth great extinction. At this singular moment in Chinese and world history, China’s commitment to strengthen international leadership for the protection of wild nature through the WILD11 process promises groundbreaking opportunities for East-West and global coordination on conservation challenges.

The first World Wilderness Congress (WWC) was hosted by South Africa in 1977. Since then the WWC has inspired and facilitated the development and implementation of practical outcomes that protect wild nature while meeting the needs of human communities. A sampling of outcomes over 40 years include initiating the process leading to the creation of the World Bank’s Global Environmental Facility (GEF); founding the International League of Conservation Photographers; creating new and strengthening existing protected nature areas; and facilitating the creation of the first transboundary conservation area between Mexico and the United States (total area of some 1.5 million hectares, over 3.5 million acres); and many more. More details are available here>

As the Chinese and international Secretariats are created, details will be formulated on both the lead-up events and the exact dates, goals and programme of WILD11 itself. Preliminary information and the channel to become involved is available at>

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Nancy Campbell is Britain’s New Canal Laureate for 2018

Nancy Campbell. Photo by Paul Preece, 2018

The Poetry Society and the Canal & River Trust announce the appointment of Britain’s new Canal Laureate Nancy Campbell. Campbell is an ILCW member (UK), Oxford-based poet, and kayaker. She has a keen interest in arctic, marine and water conservation, following on from her winter residency at the most northern museum in the world in Greenland in 2010, and subsequent museum residencies in both Greenland and Iceland over the last seven years. During 2018 she will “seek out and share stories” from the people and places she will encounter during her travels along the 2,000 miles of the nation’s historic canals and waterways looked after by the Canal & River Trust. Nancy begins her role as Canal Laureate this month, taking over from poet Luke Kennard (2016-17) and poet Jo Bell, who became the inaugural Canal Laureate (2013-15). Interested in helping make her poetry accessible to a mainstream audience, Nancy is keen to realise her poems through other mediums such as printmaking and film. Her initial events and collaborations will include: creating a short work about rain to be displayed by the waterways; writing a poem about an unassuming and endangered type of herring – the Twaite Shad; and a collaboration with Nottingham’s ‘Light Night’ event.

Established in 2013 by The Poetry Society and the Canal & River Trust, the Canal Laureateship aims to encourage exciting new writing about the Britain’s historic canal network. Previous Laureateships have seen poems stencilled onto canalside walls, carved into newly made lock-beams, translated into short films, and forgotten classic poetry given new life in performances, publication and animations. Canal poetry has been celebrated at venues including the Hay Festival, the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Birmingham Literature Festival, National Waterways Museum Ellesmere Port, London’s Southbank Centre and Crick Boat Show, Welshpool Poetry Festival, Market Bosworth Festival, Leeds Liverpool Biennial, and showcased in a dedicated canal edition of BBC Radio 4’s Poetry Please. The project is part of the Arts on the Waterways programme, a partnership between the Canal & River Trust, Arts Council England and Arts Council of Wales to help attract even more visitors to the waterways while surprising and delighting existing communities through innovative art projects.

To read poems by Nancy Campbell and the other New Canal Laureates, please click here.

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Happenings at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy

The Lewa-Borana area in Kenya is working with the Il Ngwesi, a community conservancy that adjoins Lewa on the north, in partnering on rhino protection. Il Ngwesi’s 22,000 acres added into a rhino conservation partnership could hold at least 150 black rhinos. This safer habitat for all wildlife is a more secure landscape for people and sustainable tourism opportunities. Lewa is also working to provide more opportunities for Women through the Lewa Micro-Credit Programme. They are partnering with two groups: Women’s Microfinance Initiative(WMI) and KIVA. Support for Education—through their Giving Tuesday campaign Lewa will engage 50 students to attend their first year of secondary school in 2018. The Big Give donations will facilitate 10 school groups of 50 children each to visit Lewa for a conservation experience. And Guest Numbers are up—the tourism arm of Lewa contributes at least one third to their operations. Lewa Wildlife Conservancy has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since. 2013. For more information about Lewa and all they offer, click here.

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Restoring Native Forests to Former Coal Sites

In Appalachia (USA) previous efforts to restore former coal mine sites have left large areas of unproductive land. Now, a group of nonprofits and scientists are working to restore native trees to the region. Read more.

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Proposed Dams May Damage Serengeti Ecosystem

The River Mara is the only permanent source of water for herds of wildlife that migrate between Kenya and Tanzania. Currently Kenya is proposing several dams on the River Mara and its tributaries that would lead to reduced water flows possibly imperiling the lives of many of the animals of the Serengeti in Tanzania. For more information, click here.

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Mexico Creates Largest N. Am. Ocean Reserve

The Guardian reports Mexico’s president Enrique Peña Nieto decreed a protection zone around the Revillagigedo Islands (242 miles / 390 km) southwest of the Baja California peninsula. The protection will ban fishing, mining and the construction of new hotels on the islands.
For more information and to view a short film of these spectacular islands, click here.

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New Book by ILCW member

A Field Guide to Future Conservationists

Second Nature: Saving Tiger Landscapes in the Twenty-First Century by ILCW member Sanjay Gubbi (2018, Rainfed Books) is a “field guide to future conservationists” says Wired magazine. The article goes on to say: The Western Ghats landscape spread across Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala is home to a wildlife corridor passing through Nagarhole, Bandipur, Mudumalai and Wayanad. It hosts the single largest tiger population in the world. This is an area that Sanjay Gubbi is keenly familiar with. Gubbi has documented his conservation efforts in the region, compiled in a new book titled Second Nature: Saving Tiger Landscapes in the Twenty-First Century, published January 2018. The book features the nitty-gritty of wildlife landscape preservation, often far removed from the beauty of hillsides and forestry, the purview of pure ecologists who view applied conservation as “a beast that is far too huge to grapple with.” India’s large human population and the aim to become a ‘developed economy’ has strained forest resources. Policies that facilitate large-scale industrialisation have also resulted in linear infrastructure intrusions like roadways, railway tracks and power lines, which move into natural ecosystems without regard to ecological balance. Click here to read the entire article.

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Did You See This?

NATURE Prevails

Behind every species fighting to survive, are the people dedicated to their protection. We persist, so that nature prevails.

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Rocky Mountain Wolf Project

The Rocky Mountain Wolf Project is committed to restoring the gray wolf to the great National Forests and other public wildlands in western Colorado. After the successful reintroduction of gray wolves into the greater Yellowstone ecosystem, there's just one missing link in the Rocky Mountains—one state whose public lands are still haunted by the missing howl: Colorado. Join our mission and help build our movement by spreading awareness and donating what YOU can to reestablish the wolf in western Colorado. Click here for more information.

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WILD 11 in China, late 2019

The following graphic illustrates why China was chosen for the location of WILD 11 (the 11th World Wilderness Congress). For additional information click here.

Click the image to print this infographic.


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Mineral Extraction in the Great Sand Dunes

Conservation Photographer Boyd Norton submitted this photo of what the Great Sand Dunes National Park could look like if mineral extraction is greenlighted further on public lands. Former Deputy Secretary of the Interior David J. Hayes, who is now the executive director of NYU School of Law’s State Energy and Environmental Impact Center wrote:

“… despite his allusions to Republican President Theodore Roosevelt, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and his team are consciously and aggressively casting aside a long list of environmental, health and safety protections for valued public lands, as well as rules that protect taxpayers from being fleeced by energy companies: They’re repealing oil and gas operator requirements for fracking; rolling back rules that restrict wasteful venting and flaring of unwanted gas; and axing reforms requiring coal, oil and gas companies to pay royalties at an appropriate level. He’s also quashed, midstream, a federal coal program review that already had identified serious improprieties.” Read the entire article here.

If you don’t want to see mineral extraction on our public lands, work to protect them by increasing the awareness of what could happen through your writing, photos, and social media.

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4Ocean Has Removed Nearly 1 Million Pounds of Trash

The founders of 4Ocean love to surf. But on a trip to Bali, Indonesia they were amazed at the amount of trash that washed up on the shore each day and how fishermen had to push their boats through it to make their daily catch. From that sobering experience the two founded 4Ocean an organization that is cleaning up the ocean and recycling the trash collected. In two years they have collected nearly one million pounds of trash. Their efforts are funded by bracelets sold off their website. The bracelets are made of recycled materials, are attractive, and fund the removal of one pound of trash for each bracelet sold. They operate out of multiple countries and employ 150 people worldwide. For more information go to

What does 1 million pounds of trash look like?
1 million pounds = 1.2 billion 10” straws.
That many straws laid end-to-end would circle the equator nearly 7 times.

1 million pounds = 1.3 billion plastic grocery bags
1 million pounds = 36.4 million plastic water bottles
1 million pounds = 2.7 billion cigarette butts

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Global Release of award-Winning Film
BLOOD LIONS on Ecostreamz

Blood Lions, the film that exposes the cruelty for profit of the canned hunting industry by the shooting of captive-bred lions in enclosures, will now be released worldwide on the new streaming platform The film was produced not only to create global awareness around the captive lion breeding and canned hunting industry in South Africa - where thousands of lions are mass bred to be killed each year for large profits - but it is also a “call to action” to tourists and young international volunteers when visiting that country. Jim Branchflower, founder and CEO of Ecostreamz, said, “For some, lions are just a commodity, cruelly abused to make money from cub-petting, canned hunting and selling their bones for traditional Chinese medicine. We are proud to play a role in this important campaign to end their suffering. Any caring person who watches Blood Lions will want to back the campaign to ban the practice.”

To watch the film or the trailer.
For more information:
Ecostreamz and
Showmax for South Africa.
Blood Lions and info.

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Barons Honored at Authors Guild

Bob and Charlotte Baron with Joseph Bruchac at the May 16, 2018 Authors Guild Foundation Event in New York City.

ILCW members (USA) Bob and Charlotte Baron were recently honored, along with their company Fulcrum Publishing (Golden, Colorado), by the Authors Guild Foundation in New York City. They were presented the Award for Distinguished Service to the Literary Community. Bob is also cofounder of the International League of Conservation Writers. Other ILCW members on hand for the presentation were: Joseph Bruchac, who introduced the Barons, Bruchac is the author of many books on Native American stories and culture; Vance Martin, President of the WILD Foundation; Elizabeth Darby, author and contributor to numerous magazines; Larry Schweiger, past president of the National Wildlife Federation; and Patty Maher, author and magazine contributor.
Click here to view events of that evening.


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Nature: one of the most under-appreciated tools for reigning in carbon

A new study shows that better global land stewardship—conserving and restoring wild habitats and practicing more sustainable farming—could get us more than one-third of the way to the Paris climate mitigation targets. Nature may not be the most sexy tool in the shed, but it has tremendous power to move the climate change needle. In principle, the authors say, natural climate solutions could remove 23.8 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent from the atmosphere each year. Read more.
Source: No Water No Life Weekly Drop Newsletter

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Member Writing


Protecting Ecuador’s Wildlife and Habitats

CREDIT Dominic Mitchell,

Dominic Mitchell, ILCW Member (UK) is the managing editor for Birdwatch magazine and In a recent article story for the World Land Trust he tells about his trip to the Ecuadorian Andres, the amazing birdlife, and the need to protect their habitats. The sites visited are managed by the World Land Trust’s Ecuadorian partner Fundacion Jocotoco. Not only did he and his party have the opportunity to see the rare Spectacled Bear and the endangered Andean Condor, they also saw new roads coming into these critical forest ecosystems that will surely have negative impacts unless these areas are protected. Read his article here.



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Once Around the Sun with the
Calanda Wolves

The European Wilderness Society writes in their blog about a new web documentary about the famous Swiss Wolf-pack brought to film by Peter Dettling. The Swiss filmmaker followed the wolves from 2013 to 2016 resulting in a 52-episode documentary (one episode per week) about the wolves who had been absent from the Swiss Alps for 150 years. See the European Wilderness Society blog post here for more information.



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Wild Heart

We are god’s funny family talking on a big open radio line

By Michael McBride

Soul Lions hide in the dry language grasses,

Speak your poetry aloud,

Set fire to the thickets,

Drive the lions toward us.

Wade into the streams of your emotions,

Your torn shirt in tatters, some blood on your sleeve,

Wrap this new dawn around yourself without hesitation.

Claim nothing, regret but little, be one with the world,

Abandon the word struggle from your vocabulary,

Become an ember that is coaxed to flame by the breeze.

Fill your dreams with longing,

For birds and flowers and children

(apologies to Coleman Barks and Jelaluddin Rumi)


Book Reviews

New Books by ILCW Members

Gathering from the Grassland: A Plains Journal 2017

Linda M. Hasselstrom High Plains Press
Paperback and Hardback, 320 pages

This book is a rumination on the daily lives of an extraordinary writer-rancher, on the folk who raised her, and on the many ways physical and spiritual in which grass has sustained them and their cattle on this daunting South Dakota land. Hasselstrom s new journal, created day by day over an entire year, one blade at a time, unfolds like a new season s grasses. On the horizon, encircling everything she has seen, are echoes from the past. In offering a companion volume to her thirty-year-old Windbreak, Hasselstrom brings her prairie to life and puts her own self, and her forebears, under the microscope and makes sense of what once seemed chaotic.

Linda Hasselstrom’s lyrical journal grows, organically, out of a passionate love for the land, the land s creatures, and the land s people, present and part of her personal past. This enduring, endearing litany of a year in the life of a writer, a poet, and a rancher takes us deep into the heart of what it means to belong to a place, to live a deeply-rooted life to grow old with the land and to remain young with it, too. A precious glimpse into a year richly, uniquely, profoundly lived.
--Susan Wittig Albert: author of Together, Alone: A Memoir of Marriage and Place, and other memoirs, historical fiction, and mysteries, including the China Bayles series

Linda M. Hasselstrom owns a small family ranch in western South Dakota. Her seventeen published books of poetry and nonfiction include Feels Like Far: A Rancher s Life on the Great Plains, autobiographical essays. With the Great Plains Native Plant Society, Hasselstrom dedicated the Claude A. Barr Memorial Great Plains Garden in 2001 to preserve native shortgrass prairie plants on 350 acres of her ranch, and the Bird Conservancy of the Rockies established a riparian protection area on her land along Battle Creek.



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Tread Softly

By Diana Woodcock
2018, FutureCycle Press
Paperback and Kindle, 90 pages

After living on the Arabian Peninsula and the Tibetan Plateau, in the Everglades (as a poet-in-residence), in Macau, Thailand, and Chengdu, China—a city so polluted the sun seldom breaks through the smog to shine—Diana Woodcock now follows Christina Georgina Rossetti’s mandate, “Tread softly! All the earth is holy ground.” This, her third collection of poems, was inspired by it. Perhaps for a poet who grew up memorizing nature psalms of the Old Testament and singing “This is My Father’s World,” it was inevitable that her poetry eventually would take a turn toward ecological concerns, merging her spirituality with her love for all earthly beings. For more information, click here.



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The Light Shines from the West
A Western Perspective on the Growth of America

By Robert C. Baron
2018, Fulcrum Publishing
Hardcover, 288 pages

Traditionally the complex history of America’s westward development was told from learned scholars from the eastern US. That was where the major universities were located. Bob Baron, ILCW member/co-founder, breaks tradition by writing about the western expansion of the US through a western perspective. He and five chapter authors cover many aspects of this transition of a country. Page Lambert (ILCW member) writes beautifully about the Rural West. Elizabeth Darby (ILCW member) tells of the many women who were key in the West’s development and they are not ladies of the evening (like many sources portrayed women in the frontier West, if they mentioned them at all). And the medical perspective and innovations that came out of the Western US, and not the East, that are written about by Dr. Bruce Paton (ILCW member). This book is an exploration of the innovations and expansions that have shaped the West and the American landscape from 1800 to today. It provides an overdue and insightful overview of western American history. For more information, click here.



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Words the Turtle Taught Me

Susan Richardson (ILCW member UK) announces her fourth poetry collection, Words the Turtle Taught Me, published by Cinnamon Press. Described by writer Philip Hoare as ‘vital, glorious, salutary’, it grew out of Susan’s recent poetry residency with the Marine Conservation Society Fostering engagement with endangered ocean species, it blends poetry and prose, science and shamanism, contemporary ecological peril and ancient myth. For more information, click here>

“Susan Richardson’s work is a suspended state, caught between the us we presume to be and the species with which we share this watery, fragile planet. Cut and precise, archaic and innovative, transcendent and in-the-moment, she sees the life of the sea as a mirror of ourselves, and vice versa: always changing, always the same. This beautifully written and exquisitely illustrated compendium summons up the sea we always thought it to be, but which now hovers in the balance…Words The Turtle Taught Me comes as a vital, glorious and salutary lesson for us all.”
Philip Hoare
author ofLeviathan & The Sea Inside

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Calls for Work and Retreats

Alluvian accepts creative nonfiction, science journalism and science narratives, cartoons and art, and/or narrative analysis of data related to sustainability, climate change, the environmental sciences, the human engagement with nature, or other topics about the environment. Authors must be an undergraduate or have graduated with an undergraduate degree within the last 18 months.



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The Fourth River has launched Tributaries, a weekly, online publication of "...the brief and the inspiring, that which sustains and takes us through unexpected courses..." Nature or placed based short prose (500 words ), one poem, or one piece of visual art can be submitted here.  Each week we will feature a new piece on the front page of web site.

Thank you to Adrienne Ross Scanlan (ILCW member, USA) for the “Calls for Works and Retreats” information. To subscribe to her newsletter, click here.


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 Upcoming Screenings

The Hudson: A River at Risk

Jon Bowermaster, ILCW member (USA) and filmmaker has set up a series of screenings about the Hudson River and the environmental dangers it encounters. To see if there is a screening near you (or to schedule one) click here.To see the film trailer click here.

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Urban Birder Tours
Note: ILCW member David Lindo is the Urban Birder

Dec 1-5, 2018
Northern Serbia Winter Tour – Long-eared Owl Tour

March 3-15, 2019
Sri Lanka
– Whales, Rails, and Quails

April 27-May 1, 2019
Spring Around the Po Delta, Italy

Slender-billed Gulls and Pygmy Cormorants

May 4-21, 2019
– Northern Territory and Queensland

May 5-12, 2019
Springtime in Estonia
– Great Snipe and Woodpeckers

And more, click here.


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November 26, 2018

Book Signing for
The Light Shines from the West

History Colorado, 1-2, presentation and book signing. 1200 Broadway, Denver, CO










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December 12-14, 2018

Science Forum South Africa
CSIR International Convention Centre, Pretoria, South Africa
More information here.

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Late 2019

WILD 11, the 11th World Wilderness Congress to be held in Beijing, China.
For more information, click here.

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“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
~Mahatma Gandhi

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Do you have news?

Let us know if you have won an award, written a new book, or launched a creative endeavor to bring awareness to conservation. Chances are the ILCW membership is not aware of these things, so be sure and tell us. Send items







Limited Edition Prints

World renowned Conservation Photographer Boyd Norton has selected 16 of his favorite prints that are available to make your own. Check out these amazing images from the winner of the Ansel Adams award here.

ILCW now on Facebook 

ILCW members, please check out the ILCW Facebook page and add content.

Tell us what you are working on, what changes you see in the area of conservation (good and bad) in your area, include news from you: have you recently won any awards or accolades? Have you recently published a new book or article or perhaps finished a piece of art, performance piece, photo that glorifies the natural world? This page is for you, please enjoy and generate interest in ILCW and what we do.

ILCW facebook

 Looking for Creative People Who Appreciate Nature 

Do you have a friend or a colleague who is passionate about Nature and believes that we should protect what we have for future generations? ILCW welcomes all creative people (not just writers) who use their talent to bring awareness to the plight of our natural world. Have them apply to be an ILCW member at


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