November 27, 2014

4:02 AM | Ocean Things to Be Thankful For: Megalodon is Dead, but We Still Have Sharks (and Whales)
This time of year, it’s appropriate to think of things to be thankful for.  This being an ocean-focused blog, I’d like to share something ocean-related that I’m thankful for, and hopefully spread a little Ocean Optimism in the process.  What I’m thankful for is that Carcharocles megalodon is extinct.  This may not seem like cause […]

November 26, 2014

3:55 PM | Ocean things we’re thankful for, West Coast Edition
As some of you know (especially if you follow us on OpenExplorer), Amy and I have once again made the vast, continent-spanning migration from the Pacific to Atlantic coast, this time settling down in rural Virginia. While we enjoyed our time out in the weirdly foggy, impossibly dry San Francisco Bay Area, we also learn […]
3:32 PM | New calendar celebrates primates and raises money for their survival
Humans, or Homo sapiens sapiens, are really just upright apes with big brains. We may have traded actual jungles for gleaming concrete and steel ones, but we are still primates, merely one member of an order consisting of sixteen families. We may have removed ourselves from our wilder beginnings, but our extant relatives—the world's wonderful primates—serve as a gentle living reminder of those days.
1:31 PM | Thank You
Thanksgiving (the holiday) is tomorrow, but I didn’t want to wait to express a quick, but heartfelt, THANK YOU to all of you who read this little blog.  When I started this project about four years ago, I really didn’t … Continue reading →
1:00 PM | Accounting for meat: The hidden emissions in your steak
Each year, the average American chows down on a whopping 120 kilograms of meat. The same is true in New Zealand and Australia. Most Europeans and South Americans dine on slightly more than half that amount of meat each year. Combined that means that as a species, we’re eating some 310 metric tons of meat

November 25, 2014

7:33 PM | Meet the world's rarest chameleon: Chapman's pygmy
In just two forest patches may dwell a tiny, little-known chameleon that researchers have dubbed the world's most endangered. Chapman's pygmy chameleon from Malawi hasn't been seen in 16 years. In that time, its habitat has been whittled down to an area about the size of just 100 American football fields.
6:30 PM | Reeling in religious messages: how faith impacts fisheries in Fiji
Marrying religion and conservation could be key to making Fiji's fisheries sustainable. Fijians have strong religious beliefs, which were primarily introduced by Christian missionaries in the 1835, and today profoundly guide their daily lives. Fijians primarily depend on fisheries close to shore for their survival, which is the case for most small Pacific island countries.
2:00 PM | Could seals follow acoustic fish tags to find dinner?
Humans making noise in the oceans is generally considered a bad thing these days. Ship motors, military sonar, and other sources have been shown to interrupt marine mammal communication, increase stress of many sea creatures, and simply drive some animals out of the area they’d like to stay in. A new study, though, shows that
1:30 PM | Of Birds and Poetry: Alexander Wilson and The Foresters
Wilson, Alexander. The Foresters. 1838. years ago, in an autumn not unlike our own today, Alexander Wilson set out with two companions on a 1,300 mile trek, mostly on foot, from Philadelphia to Niagara Falls. Enchanted by the natural beauty of his adopted homeland, Wilson, Scottish by birth, detailed his two-month-long adventure in an epic 2,219 line poem entitled The Foresters: A Poem Descriptive of a Pedestrian Journey to the Falls of […]
3:29 AM | Hi. What would animal fat floating in the ocean and then beached smell like? Thank you.
…………….bad? If nothing had eaten it already. 
1:15 AM | Hubbard Fellowship Blog – The Amazing Burying Beetle
This post was written by Dillon Blankenship, one of our current Hubbard Fellows.  All photos are by Dillon. Back in September I had an interesting experience while sweeping out the shop. With a dustpan full of grass and dirt, I stepped … Continue reading →

November 23, 2014

5:05 PM | Readers Write In: Two Fall Snakes from the West Coast
It's getting quite cold here on the East Coast of the USA, so that means there are fewer snakes being encountered to identify. But, fortunately we have readers on the West Coast to bail us out. A friend of mine recently took this picture and he thinks this is a rattle snake. We live in Northern Nevada (Great Basin) and we do have rattlesnakes but there is nothing about this snake that looks
3:42 PM |

November 22, 2014

12:17 AM | Buffalo’s 2014 November Snowstorm
Global-warming weather extremes increasing. Continue reading →

November 21, 2014

9:39 PM | Can Tax and Dividend Work Politically in the US?
I am pessimistic about the political prospects for a straightforward tax and dividend plan in America. [more]
8:32 PM | BLM Issues Deadly Permit for Wolf Derby
Originally posted on Straight from the Horse's Heart:Source: The Teton Valley News “The BLM’s self-righteous propensity to play God over the native creatures of our public lands stretches far beyond the destruction of our wild horses and burros…
7:55 PM | Fun Science FRIEDay – Death Star
Happy Fun Science FRIEDay! While Ebola wreaks havoc on Homo sapiens in the terrestrial world, there has been an even more virulent disease causing the destruction of a marine animal, the sea star. Today we talk about this deadly condition impacting sea star populations and the recent discovery of just what is causing this affliction.   […]
1:30 PM | The Latest News from BHL
Sharks, Passenger Pigeons, Scientific Illustrations, Crowdsourcing, National Agricultural Library, GBIF, and Semantic Metadata. What do all these things have in common? They're all BHL news stories from the past few months!Get the latest BHL project news in our latest quarterly report and newsletter! Don't get our newsletter? Sign up today!
1:00 PM | Unlikely partners: Rhino poaching & sea snake exploitation
Each month, hundreds of squid fishing vessels return to port in Vietnam loaded not just with squid, but also with sea snakes harvested from the Gulf of Thailand. Each month, the seven major snake processing facilities move an average of 6,500 kilograms of sea snakes, which are sold for between $10 and $40 per kilogram,
12:51 PM | Podcast from my Interview on Near FM’s Enviro Show
I was recently invited to participate on the Enviro Show hosted on Dublin’s Community Radio Station, Near FM. We chatted about red squirrels, grey squirrels, pine marten, invasive species and more. The interview starts about 29 mins into the podcast. Enviro 17/11/14 by Enviro On Nearfm on Mixcloud
10:27 AM | It’s a special moment when your best friends are also your...
It’s a special moment when your best friends are also your partners in conservation! Dennis is doing incredible work in Malapascua and I’m honoured to support him in protecting the island’s reefs. After years of friendship we’ve both grown into the conservation professionals that can work together and achieve some really great outputs. Today was a big day. The dream discussed over many years and beers - forming multi-stakeholder partnerships to regulate and protect […]
2:14 AM | NASA: October 2014 Tied For Hottest on Record
Originally posted on robertscribbler:(October was again a global temperature record setter. Image source: NASA.) NASA’s monthly global temperature analysis is in and the results are once again record-making. For according to NASA’s global monitor, world temperatures were 0.76 degrees…
1:37 AM | China’s New Great Wall Threatens One Quarter of World’s Shorebirds
In a society now relentlessly focused on short-term profit that seems like a wonderful bargain, and the collateral loss of vast areas of shorebird habitat merely an incidental detail. Continue reading →

November 20, 2014

8:55 PM | Photo of the Week – November 20, 2014
It’s been a cold week, though we’re finally starting to warm up again.  As a way to feel a little less chilly, I went back through some photos from the summer and found these three shots from late August.  All … Continue reading →
8:52 PM | What is it like in a day of a wildlife biologist?
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2:00 PM | Does climate change spell trouble for airlines?
As if airplane travel weren’t already bad enough, scientists have found yet another problem that might arise with climate change. In warmer air, planes could have more trouble taking off and may need to shed cargo or passengers to get aloft. Airlines already deal with this issue: planes have specific weight restrictions depending on the
1:30 PM | Lepidochromy: Butterfly Transfer Prints
This post was originally published on the Smithsonian Libraries' blog. It was written by Daria Wingreen-Mason, Special Collections Technical Information Specialist in the Joseph F. Cullman 3rd Library of Natural History.Dorsal and ventral views of specimen from Waller’s Butterflies collected in the Shire Valley East Africa.Horace Waller was an English missionary and anti-slavery activist in the 19th century. In 1859 Waller joined the Universities’ Mission to Central Africa (UMCA). […]
3:11 AM | Holiday Gravy
Vegetarian gravy for tofu turkey. Continue reading →

November 19, 2014

11:29 PM | Jane Goodall: 5 reasons to have hope for the planet
Jane Goodall is not only arguably the most famous conservationist who ever lived, but also the most well-known and respected female scientist on the planet today. Her path to reach that stature is an unlikely as it is inspiring. Told to 'never give up' by her mother, Goodall set out in her 20s to pursue her childhood dream: to live with animals in Africa. By the time she was 26 she doing just this.
1:30 PM | Digital Object Identifiers and BHL
The importance and need for unique, persistent identifiers for reliable access to published literature has become widely accepted, and the literature for the biodiversity informatics community is no exception.  For published works, these generally take the form of Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs). BHL has been consistently assigning CrossRef DOIs to monographic publications for three years. However, the number of items in BHL with DOIs remains relatively small with just over 68,000 […]
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