Posts

January 15, 2015

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2:00 PM | Leaving a green legacy
Getting people to care about the environment is a struggle. One problem is that we tend to ignore problems that will arise years or decades from now. But researchers may have found a way around this psychological roadblock: according to a new study, asking people to ponder the legacy they will leave behind tends to encourage
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1:30 PM | Medicinal Botanicals at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia & Early Women In Science
Medicinal Plants and Illustrated Herbals in Philadelphia The Benjamin Rush Medicinal Garden at the College of Physicians of PhiladelphiaDr. Benjamin Rush, a founding Fellow of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, first proposed that the College create a medicinal plant garden in 1787. The garden would not only provide medicinals for use by physicians, but would also be used as a pedagogic resource for the training of medical students.Rush’s vision did not come to fruition until the […]
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12:34 PM | lifeunderthewaves: Descending Sperm Whale by KeriWilk A sperm...
lifeunderthewaves: Descending Sperm Whale by KeriWilk A sperm whale in Dominica. Shot under government permit.
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1:48 AM | Which Coral Reefs Will Survive Global Warming the Longest?
Scientists have identified which parts of the Great Barrier Reef and other reefs are most capable of recovering from mass bleaching events which will become more frequent due to global warming. Continue reading →

January 14, 2015

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6:53 PM | Bet-hedging dry forest resilience to climate-change threats
The researchers conducting this study assumed that the U. S. Forest Service’s long-standing practice of paying contractors to remove small trees was intended to reduce forest fire damage. Actually, the principal reason may have been to speed the growth of harvestable trees. Continue reading →
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6:35 PM | Does salvage logging make things better or worse?
Logging is bad for forests. It removes large trees that provide essential wildlife habitat, it destroys soil microorganisms, it spreads invasive species, and it decreases water absorption. Forest stability and biodiversity decline. Continue reading →
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4:55 PM | Did palm oil expansion play a role in the Ebola crisis?
The Ebola outbreak in West Africa may have been the result of complex economic and agricultural policies developed by authorities in Guinea and Liberia, according to a new commentary in Environment and Planning A. Looking at the economic activities around villages where Ebola first emerged, the investigators analyzed a shift in land-use activities in Guinea's forested region, particularly an increase in oil palm.
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3:42 PM | The artists pushing animal rights further
This is the good art. As pointed out in the article, artists have often used animal cruelty and death in their work. The examples here are just the opposite--they favor the animals. Continue reading →
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3:29 PM | Members of Congress challenge merit of NIH monkey experiments
Respect for animals is an essential element of nature conservation. Moreover, results of drug trials on one species often don't apply to other species. Test human drugs on humans. First choice for volunteers would be CEOs and product managers from the drug maker. Continue reading →
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1:00 PM | Does salvage logging make things better or worse?
When a serious wildfire rips through a forest, it has a tendency to kill nearly all the trees in its path. Then come the logging companies. On one hand, to log a burned forest makes a good deal of sense. Some of the timber is still useful, and it’s a way to derive some economic
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8:01 AM | Inside the Mysterious World of Carnivorous Plants (Part 2—Sticky Traps)
If you thought pitcher plants were cool, enter the amazing world of sticky or flypaper traps. These traps are dominated by the genus Drosera, commonly known as the sundews, representing more than 180 species. They are the only genus of active sticky traps, which are most interesting because they often feature moving leaves, and are […]

January 13, 2015

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11:09 PM | Can a new form of accounting save animals from extinction? No.
Corporate sustainability efforts have done little to improve biodiversity.  Source: www.theguardian.com GR:  The Guardian article is about assigning value to nature so that businesses can incorporate nature in their accounting.  Aldo Leopold wrote about this 66 years ago.  He pointed … Continue reading →
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10:25 PM | The new ivory crime organisations: did we create them?
One aspect of the current elephant poaching crisis is the contribution of organised crime.  If we look back to the last time elephants were being decimated in the 1980s, this was not the case.  So understanding these criminal organisations and their motivations is important.  So far I’ve been able to show that smuggling levels, are [...]
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7:54 PM | Recovery Strategy for the Golden-winged Warbler
Environment Canada of the Canadian Wildlife Service has called for comments on their proposed recovery strategy for the threatened Golden-winged Warbler. Continue reading →
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5:41 PM | A Hole New Mystery to Consider
On my last trip to the Niobrara Valley Preserve, I photographed the bark of wildfire-killed pine trees in warm late day light.  I liked both the patterns and the color and was just trying to make some visually-interesting images.  As … Continue reading →
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4:06 PM | Vanishing big trees imperil urban wildlife
If we intend to convert Earth into a fully occupied cultural landscape, we must devote more care to preserving the trees that shelter wild animals. Continue reading →
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2:30 PM | Six things I learned about Giant Isopods while Sizing Ocean Giants
Today, Craig McClain, along with a massive team of ocean scientists (including me!) published our monumental paper: Sizing ocean giants: patterns of intraspecific size variation in marine megafauna. This massive monograph investigates patterns of size among 25 ocean giants, the biggest, most massive members of their respective taxa. You can probably guess which species I had a hand […]
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2:00 PM | Study: Pollution controls really work
In the United States, pollution control legislation passed in 1990 began to take effect for various pollutants in 1995. Twenty years later, a shocker: they actually did what they were supposed to do! The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 mandated controls in particular for sulfur dioxide and nitrous oxides, along with other molecules. These
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1:30 PM | Original Publications at our Fingertips
Systematics is the branch of biology concerned with classification and nomenclature. It is sometimes used synonymously with taxonomy.In their 1970 publication Systematics in Support of Biological Research, Michener et al. defined systematic biology and taxonomy as:Systematic biology (hereafter called simply systematics) is the field that (a) provides scientific names for organisms, (b) describes them, (c) preserves collections of them, (d) provides classifications for the organisms, keys […]
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8:58 AM | Birds of India- Red Billed Chough
One among the only two species belonging to the Pyrrhocorax genus, Red-billed Chough (Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax) will redraw the popular Indian idea of black crow. Though a member of the crow family, unlike the Indian Jungle Crow or House Crow, the Red Billed Chough has red beaks, and legs and a very different call (Watch the video, if you have never heard the call of Red Billed Chough !)
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5:05 AM | Prevent Extinction of Unique Butterfly Species
Target: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Daniel Ashe Goal: Protect brilliant unsilvered fritillary butterfly species by declaring it an endangered species The unsilvered fritillary is a species of butterfly native to California.  Source: forcechange.com GR:  Please sign the petition.Filed … Continue reading →
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4:50 AM | It’s survival of the most useful when protecting species
Consensus is growing that we are steering towards a sixth mass extinction event. There are calls for increased efforts to stop the accelerating loss of plants and animals. But do we really need to protect all species from global extinction? Continue reading →
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4:24 AM | Kathie Lynch: Yellowstone wolf report on 20th anniversary
Wolf restoration has been called the greatest conservation success story in America’s history. Over these 20 years, scientists and a worldwide audience of admirers have had the unique opportunity to watch, study, learn about, and appreciate this important apex predator and the gray wolves’ role in maintaining a healthy and complete ecosystem. Continue reading →

January 12, 2015

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10:47 PM | Sao Paulo’s Reservoirs are Drying Out When they Should Be Filling Up
The drought is impacting the great Amazon rainforest as well. Coupled with deforestation by logging and grazing interests, the drought will have a massive influence on climate. Continue reading →
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7:20 PM | Casting for another job: will fishers take up a new livelihood?
Can alternative income programs save Fiji's reef fish? Many implicate the failure of Fiji's government to prioritize sustainable management over fisheries development projects, or suggest that Fijians' mindsets must dramatically shift first.
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6:59 PM | Invasive Species
After direct habitat destruction by building, invasive species are the most destructive force that humans have dispersed through Earth ecosystems. Long before global warming has its day, invasive species will have destroyed many native habitats and species. Continue reading →
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6:20 PM | APPALLED
So many ways that we impact nature, and more discovered every day. Continue reading →
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12:45 PM | Protect Rattlesnakes from Senseless Killings
Rattlesnakes of the western U. S. tend to be shy, non-aggressive regulators of small mammal populations. Like gophersnakes that kill by squeezing, rattlesnakes are part of the complex equation that produces a balanced ecosystem. Removing them might disrupt the balance and lead to other losses. Continue reading →

January 11, 2015

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6:51 PM | Stanford professors urge withdrawal from fossil fuel investments
The fossil-fuel divestment campaign has grown rapidly over the past few years, driven by the deepening awareness that most of the world’s coal, oil and gas reserves must stay in the ground to avoid catastrophic climate change. According to the world’s leading climate scientists, those safety limits could be breached within 30 years if the world goes on burning fossil fuels at the current rate. Continue reading →
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3:43 PM | California’s Only Wolverine Spotted In Sierra Nevada
A wolverine appears to be thriving in the northern Sierra Nevada seven years after being confirmed as the first one in California since 1922 Continue reading →
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