Natural born heroes
Monthly update from the world's largest community of environmental experts.
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All over the world thousands of people, many of whom face danger, hostility, and harsh working conditions, are part of a growing grassroots movement that is trying to turn the tide for the natural world. From park rangers who put their lives at risk in protecting wildlife--some of them getting killed in action--to people fighting to improve the lives of vulnerable people, we highlight their passion, the challenges they face and their achievements. 

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> Watch IUCN's Director General introduce our heroes feature

Trapped in the Amazon!

Emeterio Nunnonca and Renata Leite Pitman treating an ocelot

Renata Leite Pitman - Brazil
“Ten years ago, moved by curiosity, I planned a three-month expedition to the south east of Peru to learn more about an elusive species, and maybe trap and radio collar it. Ten years latter, I feel it was the animal that trapped me!,”

> Read full story

The man who saves turtles

Having just caught his first Flatback turtle during a ‘turtle rodeo’ trip in Australia, Nick celebrates in turtle style.

Dr Nicolas Pilcher - Malaysia
Nick saves sea turtles. In a nutshell that’s what he does. But he has to look far beyond their nesting grounds to make it work.

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Rumbles in the jungle

GPS radio collaring of a rhino

Naresh Subedi, Nepal
Office? The jungle. Colleagues? Elephants, rhinos and tigers. Naresh Subedi has many stories to tell. Stories that are not only fascinating and impressive but that can also make your hair stand on end.

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A blessing in disguise

Tahir Qureshi

Tahir Qureshi – Pakistan
“In 1984, when I was a Divisional Forest Officer, I was kidnapped in the thick forest of Dadu, in southern Pakistan.”

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Be a hero on holiday

My hotel in action

Find out how the hotel you're staying at can help protect biodiversity.

> Watch video

Help save our species!

SOS - Save Our Species - join now!

Save Our Species is a global coalition to build the biggest species conservation fund, supporting on-the-ground conservation projects all over the world. We need to act now to stop the biodiversity crisis!

> Watch Save Our Species video

Nature: to die for?

Gorilla guard in Volcano National Park, Rwanda How can we protect the people who put their lives on the line to save nature? This is the subject of the first of our new World Conservation Debates and we’d like to hear your views.
> Read the article and post your comments


Pascal and Prudence See our heroes in action!
> View photos


Natural born heroes Are you an eco-warrior or an eco-calamity?
> Take our quiz!


More than 1,000 rangers are estimated to have lost their lives in the line of duty in the last 15 years.
> More facts


Rhinos in crisis

Black rhino (Diceros bicornis) Africa’s rhinos face worst poaching upsurge in decades.
> Read full story


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IUCN, International Union for Conservation of Nature © 2011

IUCN helps the world find pragmatic solutions to our most pressing environment and development challenges. It supports scientific research, manages field projects all over the world and brings governments, non-government organizations, United Nations agencies, companies and local communities together to develop and implement policy, laws and best practice.

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Photo credits: Header banner and quiz © ewa Magiera; Trapped in the amazon © Nigel Pitman; The man who saves turtles © Carmen Pilcher; rumbles in the jungle © Naresh Subedi; A blessing in disguise © IUCN Pakistan; Nature: to die for © Jim Thorsell; our heroes in action © Ernesto Noriega; Other news © Jeffrey Mc Neely