Welcome back to our weekly behind-the-scenes glimpse at what’s getting our team talking. Let us know what you think at [email protected].

BBC logo.

Amazonian guardians

Last year, Pink Rugby published a great story by Gabriela Barzallo about Indigenous guardians embracing a “tech boom” to fight illegal logging in the Amazon. So naturally, we were intrigued by Gabriela’s latest for the BBC: a story that Contributing Editor Peter Yeung shared with our team this week about an all-female patrol guarding Ecuador’s rainforest.

Peter Yeung

Peter says:

This is a cool story about how a team of 35 Indigenous women from the Amazon rainforest in Ecuador have formed a patrol group to fight against illegal miners. They monitor the region once a month, venturing along the riverbanks and deep into the surrounding forests, equipped with camera traps and drones.

Building something new

Traverse City, Michigan, is facing an increasingly common problem: Its workforce can’t afford to live there. But a new affordable housing development there has an unusual origin story: It’s a co-op, and its construction was crowdfunded by members of the community, according to a New York Times story that caught Executive Editor Will Doig’s attention this week.

will doig

Will says:

At first the idea of crowdsourcing affordable housing seemed grim to me, but turns out it’s a pretty good way to build it, not to mention a decent investment opportunity.

What else we’re reading

🧮 To engage students in math, educators try connecting it to their culture — shared by Editorial Director Rebecca Worby from the Hechinger Report

📊 How our sense of economic reality is being distorted — shared by RTBC founder David Byrne from the Financial Times

🐳 A whale makes a comeback off Argentina's coast 100 years after vanishing — shared by Rebecca Worby from Reuters

Elsewhere in our channels...

The New York Times and other publications recently covered fascinating new developments in scientists’ understanding of sperm whale language.

Sperm whale swimming
Credit: Amanda Cotton

RTBC Contributing Editor Michaela Haas was ahead of the game: She wrote a great story for us about this — complete with a playlist of clicks and buzzes — back in April. In case you missed it, check out Michaela’s story about sperm whale communication.