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Yellowstone: the return of the wolf

Many of us carry childhood memories of the ravening wolf that haunted us through fairy tales and often hearing a wolf's howl still send a shiver down our spine. But after so many years of conflict between man and this enigmatic species, the time has come to finally say: ‘maybe they’re not so bad’? The successful reintroduction of wolves into Yellowstone National Park shows that they aren’t that all bad and are an important part of the natural system.

Yellowstone is the world's oldest national park and one of the first UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Wolves were well established here when the park was created back in 1872. But people have since been at odds with them over agriculture and hunting, and almost eliminated them from the park. It was only in the 1990s that efforts to bring the wolf back to Yellowstone began.

Now, after a 70 year absence, the wolf has returned to the park thanks to a successful reintroduction programme. This film shows the impact that this has had on the park’s biodiversity and explains how the reintroduction of wolves became part of a large-scale conservation effort for the area.

Baliem Valley: a paradise in peril

The island of New Guinea is recognised globally for its extraordinary biodiversity, including almost all of the world’s Birds of Paradise. Papua still has 70% forest cover, yet its Baliem Valley, which includes part of the Lorentz National Park World Heritage Site, supports one of the highest rural population densities in Papua.

The Samdhana Institute and the Department of Forestry of the Government of Indonesia, both Members of IUCN, are working to identify sustainable options for Baliem Valley’s forests and its dependents, who live in the heart of Papua, the Indonesian half of New Guinea.

The future of World Heritage

IUCN Deputy Director General Poul Engberg-Pedersen explains the role IUCN plays in the work of the World Heritage Convention and outlines some of the challenges that need to be addressed to improve its effectiveness.