December 09, 2014

2:00 PM | Warm green feeling: Environmentalism can raise your temperature
It’s getting cold outside. But don’t think warm thoughts—think green ones! New research suggests that acting in an environmentally friendly manner can raise your perception of the temperature. In other words, going green can actually elicit a “warm glow” in people. “Literature suggests that people’s psychological state can affect their thermal state in the form
1:30 PM | Early Women In Science: Trekking Through Nature, Trailblazing Their Way Through History
The sixteen women featured in the “Early Women In Science” exhibition are each extraordinary for unique reasons.  One trait they all share is that they were doing work in scientific fields reserved for men. They sometimes had to fight for recognition of their work—or went completely unrecognized for some of their major contributions. For instance, Maria Emma Gray (1787-1876) was a talented natural history illustrator. She not only contributed to the work of her […]

December 08, 2014

5:06 PM | Indigenous leader murdered before he could attend Climate Summit
Days before José Isidro Tendetza Antún was supposed to travel to the UN Climate Summit in Lima to publicly file a complaint against a massive mining operation, he went missing. Now, the Guardian reports that the body of the Shuar indigenous leader has been found, bound and buried in an unmarked grave on the banks of the Zamora River.

December 06, 2014

8:07 PM | Climate Change, Drought, and the Fall of California Agriculture
In a way, we have to get back to the land ourselves. Planting community gardens, growing our own vegetables, shopping at local Farmer's Markets - these are all ways we can survive without relying on the bounty California has provided. We have no choice, so may as well get started now. Continue reading →
6:19 PM | Collaborative conservation plan eyed for Wyoming toad
Originally posted on Summit County Citizens Voice:A Wyoming toad. Photo via USFWS. Voluntary conservation easements would protect habitat and traditional land use Staff Report FRISCO — Federal biologists are seeking input on a draft plan to protect habitat for…
5:15 PM | Major hurricane direct hit on Manila megacity
The Manila metro area is in the expected track of a large hurricane (“Hagupit”) that peaked at Cat 5. Storm surge and winds will have somewhat subsided by the time it hits Manila but the storm is moving slowly and producing enormous rainfall rates over a large area. Severe disruption can be anticipated. [more]
2:16 AM | Water, canned food, candles, matches, chargers, torches. Bolting...
Water, canned food, candles, matches, chargers, torches. Bolting down the hatches for big fat Ruby (Hagupit). Not going to get to your questions for a while guys! 
2:01 AM |
[youtube] These have been done for various countries. The French Canadian one is here and is a good deal scarier.

December 05, 2014

11:49 PM | A Huff to the Pufferfish's Puff
This is a guest post by PhD student and science writer Jake Buehler. He blogs over at Sh*t You Didn't Know About Biology, which is full of his "unrepentantly celebratory insights into life on Earth's under-appreciated, under-acknowledged, and utterly amazing stories."   Nature is a rough place. If you live your life skirting along the more vulnerable, fragile, tasty threads of the food web, the world is just a whirlwind of claws and fangs flung about by cruel […]
1:00 PM | Selective logging misses the forest for the trees
Some four million square kilometers of Earth’s tropical forests have been designated for logging. That’s an area larger than the size of India. And that’s a problem for the wildlife that calls those forests home. Compromises in conservation have always been a tricky sell, because environmental harms have a way of rippling out beyond what’s
6:02 AM | Super storm Hagupit off Philippines
Super storm Hagupit off Philippines: Here we go again…
4:56 AM | Tradeoff: Sabah banks on palm oil to boost forest protection
Last month Sabah set aside an additional 203,000 hectares of protected forest reserves, boosting the Malaysian state's extent of protected areas to 21 percent of its land mass. But instead of accolades, Sabah forestry leaders were criticized for how they went about securing those reserves: allowing thousands of hectares of deforested land within an officially designated forestry area to be converted for oil palm plantations
12:00 AM | wtfevolution: Evolution may have gotten a little too into the...
wtfevolution: Evolution may have gotten a little too into the detailing on the Port Jackson shark. It’s a fish, not a Baroque cathedral, okay? Source: Flickr / John Turnbull / licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

December 04, 2014

10:51 PM | The Compact Traveller: 2014 version
On Monday I’m flying out to Kenya, for a workshop on ivory economics.  This is to contribute to a study being supported by the World Bank on the dimensions and drivers of this traffic.  Hopefully I can elaborate more when I get back. The constraint this time is that the last leg of the flight [...]
10:28 PM | Photo of the Week – December 4, 2014
When I photograph small creatures, I often try to position myself so I can look right into their eyes.  I like face-to-face images because they feel very personal.  One of the most important catalysts of conservation is the personal connection … Continue reading →
7:20 PM | I bet James Bond never had to put up with this … why are there so many “experts” on biological issues?
In the film Notting Hill, the character Max (Tim McInnerny) turns around in his car to face the passengers squabbling about the route to take, tells them to shut up because he’ll decide the route, and exclaims: “I bet James Bond never had to put up with this $%&#!” This is something to which many […]
2:45 PM | Seals use signals from acoustic tags to find fish
Michelle Jewell is a Zoologist specialized in predator/prey behaivour and the Scientific Communicator for EDNA Interactive.  She has spent the past 4 years studying the behaviour of white sharks and Cape fur seals at Geyser Rock, ‘Shark Alley’, South Africa.   Anyone who has worked with seals knows they are crafty critters that will always find the easiest […]
2:00 PM | Botanic gardens: plant oases or invasions waiting to happen?
A relaxing stroll in a botanic garden sounds like a lovely way to spend an afternoon. These green oases can encourage people to appreciate nature and bring attention to conservation issues. But some botanic gardens might harbor an ecological threat: they could be prime sources for invasive species to spread into the wild. Some might
1:30 PM | New Online Exhibitions! Notable Women and Latinos in Natural History
We are pleased to announce the release of two new BHL online exhibitions: Early Women in Science and Latino Natural History.Earlier this year, the Smithsonian Women's Committee awarded a one-year grant to Smithsonian Libraries (SIL) to build online exhibitions to showcase the scientific and historical contributions of Women and Latino naturalists and illustrators. The project, entitled Notable Women and Latinos in Natural History, draws from content in BHL and uses the Biodiversity Library […]
8:00 AM | wtfevolution: "Hey, this is basically fish-shaped, right?" "Um…...
wtfevolution: "Hey, this is basically fish-shaped, right?" "Um… I guess so? What’s with the horns?" "I’m going for kind of a surrealist thing." "Hm. I don’t know, evolution. It looks weird." "That’s sort of the point." "I don’t think anyone’s going to get it." "Look, if people don’t ‘get’ the longhorn cowfish, so be it. All truly great art is misunderstood, right?" "Just keep telling yourself that." Source: Wikimedia Commons / H. […]

December 03, 2014

11:36 PM | I want to be a marine biologist! I'm a junior in high school right now, so I'm pushing to figure out where I'm going for college. Did you get your bachelor's in marine bio? Or did you wait until grad school for that degree? Thank you!
I did it for my BSc - check out my about section :)
7:18 PM | One-two punch: farming, global warming destroying unique East African forests
Lush mountains speckle East Africa's grasslands and desert, from Mozambique to Ethiopia. These isolated habitats are home to a plethora of species, and are considered by scientists to be some of the most biodiverse regions in the world. However, their forests are being cut down for farmland and are threatened by global warming, putting at risk multitudes of species that have nowhere else to go.
6:53 PM | New survey finds surprisingly large population of endangered owl
The Anjouan scops owl—an elusive owl found only on its tiny eponymous island—was once considered among the world's most endangered owls, and even the most threatened birds. However, the first in-depth survey of the owls on the island finds that, in fact, the population is far larger than initially estimated.
2:25 PM | 2015-2016 Hubbard Fellowship – Apply Now!
We are now accepting applications to join our 2015-2016 class of Hubbard Fellows.  Please share this with anyone who might be interested. The Claire M. Hubbard Fellowship Program bridges the gap between school and career by providing Fellows with a broad set of … Continue reading →
1:00 PM | The little-known downsides to captive breeding programs
The answer is: California condors, Black-footed ferrets, and Kihansi spray toads. The question is: what species would surely be extinct if not for captive breeding efforts? And they’re not the only species whose very existence is thanks to the hard work of zoos and other conservation institutions as they implement captive breeding and reintroduction programs
9:08 AM | Some colleagues aren’t quite in the Christmas spirit yet!
Some colleagues aren’t quite in the Christmas spirit yet!

December 02, 2014

9:28 PM | The Montado, the Mouse and Landscape Connectivity
It’s been quite a few years since I visited Portugal during my third year field trip as part of my undergraduate Applied Ecology degree in University College Cork.  It was a memorable trip where we learned a great deal about Mediterranean ecology from our UCC lecturers. I believe one of the lasting influences  from the […]

Mullins J, Ascensão F, Simões L, Andrade L, Santos-Reis M, Fernandes C (2014). Evaluating connectivity between Natura 2000 sites within the montado agroforestry system: a case study using landscape genetics of the wood mouse (Apodemus sylvaticus), Landscape Ecology, DOI: 10.1007/s10980-014-0130-z

2:25 PM | Are Namibia’s Rhinos Now Under Siege?
Originally posted on strange behaviors:Early this year in The New York Times, I wrote an op-ed in praise of Namibia’s work in restoring populations of endangered black rhinos and, more important, in avoiding the poaching nightmare taking place next…
2:00 PM | Cliché or no, climate change really is coming for the polar bears
Polar bears are the easy target, the global warming victim too cute and obvious to really mean what we want them to mean, right? Look at that guy up at the top; enviros just picked this species as a poster child because they’re amazing and adorable, right? They can’t really be that threatened by rising temperatures
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