Researchers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst recently published a pair of papers that, together, provide the most detailed maps to date of how 144 common invasive plants species will react to 2° Celsius of climate change in the eastern U.S., as well as the role that garden centers currently play in seeding future invasions.
After more than 35 years of surveillance, Michigan State University researchers are exposing some of the secret workings of mobs. To be clear, these mobs are made up of spotted hyenas.
A malaria-carrying mosquito that thrives in urban environments is moving into Africa where a construction boom may be one factor helping the newcomer feel at home.
Bees help pollinate over a third of the world’s crops, contributing an estimated US$235 billion to $577 billion in value to global agriculture. They also face a myriad of stresses, including pathogens and parasites, loss of suitable food sources and habitat, air pollution, and climate-driven weather extremes.
New research from Scripps and NOAA scientists has discovered ecological correlations that could help explain the booms and busts of California’s anchovy population. If the correlations hold up to further research, they could one day help inform management of California’s anchovy fishery and improve conservation.
Just like us, corals breathe in oxygen and eat organic carbon. And just like us, as a byproduct of converting energy and oxygen in the body, corals produce reactive oxygen species (ROS), a family of chemical compounds that are naturally made by cells during cell division, while fighting off pathogens, and performing other physiological functions.
The cool of the forest is a welcome escape on a hot day. This is especially true for mammals in North America’s hottest regions, according to a study from the University of California, Davis. The study indicates that, as the climate warms, preserving forest cover will be increasingly important for wildlife conservation.
Nearly 1,000 birds were killed Oct. 4–5 when they collided with an illuminated glass building in Chicago. Though mass fatalities of this magnitude are rare, light pollution poses a serious—and growing—threat to migrating birds.
Polar bears are icons of the Arctic, elusive and vulnerable. Detailed monitoring of their populations is crucial for their conservation—but because polar bears are so difficult to find, we are missing critical data about population size and how well-connected those populations are. Scientists have now developed a new tool to help: DNA analysis using skin cells shed in the bears’ footprints in the snow.
James Cook University researcher Matthew Connors has discovered two new praying mantis species with the help of citizen scientists. The finds have been published in Zootaxa.
As a result of climate change, the Golden State’s farms are expected to face a surge in agricultural pests, which poses a threat to California’s specialty crops industry.
Born tail first, bottlenose dolphin calves emerge equipped with two slender rows of whiskers along their beak-like snouts—much like the touch-sensitive whiskers of seals. But the whiskers fall out soon after birth, leaving the youngster with a series of dimples known as vibrissal pits. Recently, Tim Hüttner and Guido Dehnhardt, from the University of Rostock, Germany, began to suspect that the dimples may be more than just a relic.
New research from Northern Arizona University has explained coast redwood’s remarkable ability to recover from very severe fire, a rare sign of optimism amid a landscape increasingly scarred by severe fires.
By studying the skull shapes of dipsadine snakes, researchers at The University of Texas at Arlington have found how these species of snakes in Central and South America have evolved and adapted to meet the demands of their habitats and food sources.
Animals often use vocalizations to warn of nearby danger to others. While this information is generally intended for members of the same species, other species can eavesdrop on the warnings to use the information for their own benefit. Sentinels are animals that have warning calls so widely understood by others that those other species will form groups with them, relying on the sentinels to provide warnings of danger.
A new study of a migratory songbird shows that individuals with average-sized white tail spots—a trait that is critical to successful foraging—live longer than individuals with more extreme amounts of white in the tail.
Ana Mateos and Jesús Rodríguez, scientists at the Centro Nacional de Investigación sobre la Evolución Humana (CENIEH), have published a paper in the journal Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology showing that large herbivore carrion, a resource that had formerly been abundant and accessible to hominins, became scarcer at the end of the Early Pleistocene due to changes in the Iberian fauna.
There’s a species of ant that is so rare, only a handful of records exist from across the entire eastern United States. North Carolina State University researcher Michelle Kirchner not only found these ants in the Triangle region of North Carolina, she is the first to document an entire colony for scientists, taxonomists and ant-thusiasts everywhere.
Agriculture, like other sectors of the economy, is a profit-driven business. Simple cultivation systems such as monocultures have therefore become firmly established, because they promise higher returns. However, they are more susceptible to diseases and parasites, which can cause total crop failure among other things.
In a study published in Current Biology, researchers from the Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden (XTBG) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, together with their collaborators, reveal a groundbreaking discovery: Morphology of the orchid mantis’ petal-shaped femoral lobes actually serves as structures for gliding, rather than the long-held belief that these lobes mimic flowers to attract pollinating prey.
We humans are fixated on big brains as a proxy for smarts. But headless animals called brittle stars have no brains at all and still manage to learn through experience, new research reveals.
Farmland often harbors a multitude of pathogens which attack plants and reduce yields. A Swiss research team has now shown that inoculating the soil with mycorrhizal fungi can help maintain or even improve yields without using additional fertilizers or pesticides. In a large-scale field trial, plant yield increased by up to 40%.
A team of evolutionary biologists and limnologists affiliated with multiple institutions in the U.S. has described the synchronous bioluminescent signals they observed being produced by a type of marine ostracod (Crustacea; Luxorina). In their paper published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the group describes their study of the synchronized mating behavior of the tiny creatures.
A new study has confirmed that pesticides, commonly used in farmland, significantly harm bumblebees—one of the most important wild pollinators. In a huge study spanning 106 sites across eight European countries, researchers have shown that despite tightened pesticide regulations, far more needs to be done.
Biodiversity—the total variation of life—is multidimensional. Its study encompasses multiple facets, such as taxonomy (the variety of species), phylogenetics (their evolutionary history) and functionality (the ecological roles that species play in ecosystems). Protecting biodiversity implies safeguarding all of these dimensions.
A new Griffith-led study has developed a framework to operationalize global “theories of change,” coordinating local and global actions to secure a future where humans live in harmony with nature.
A new study from the University of Southampton sheds light on the impact climate change is having on marine environments in a relatively recent global phenomenon known as “tropicalization.”