Posts

July 16, 2014

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8:38 AM | Update: Plant Health News (16 Jul 14)
Here’s a taste of some of the latest stories about plant health, including the varying effects of rain on crops in Ivory Coast, the discovery of wheat genes that control boron tolerance and the projects managed by FAO that aim to improve food security in Africa. Click on the link to read more of the […]

July 15, 2014

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9:09 PM | Occupational Health News Roundup
Workers at an Alabama car seat manufacturer speak out about workplace illnesses; worker death at a Pennsylvania sugar plant could have been prevented; Los Angeles activists join fight for a living wage; and income inequality gets a laugh.
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8:51 PM | For bees (and flowers), tongue size matters
When it comes to bee tongues, length is proportional to […]
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7:40 PM | June US historical precipitation, a quick analysis
The NCDC June climate summary for the United States is out. June’s a real important month in the Northern Hemisphere, especially agriculturally. I’ll use these data as a chance to demonstrate the probability that June 2014 precipitation (P) in the … Continue reading →
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2:08 PM | Is Uppsala city a Bumblebee hotspot?
Sorry, no data to backup my thoughts today… but I feel that the number of bumblebees I saw in the last two years doubles the previous 30 years of my life. Uppsala is a smallish city in Sweden. Has lots … Continue reading →
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12:32 PM | Nature in NSF’s Backyard
2014 marks the 3rd consecutive year that a pair of black vultures (Coragyps atratus) have chosen the roof of the National Science Foundation to raise their family. NSF is an independent federal agency that promotes the progress of science by funding basic research across all fields of science and engineering research and education. [Editor's note: NSF has provided funding for a number of Your Wild Life projects through grants to our principal investigator, Rob Dunn, including School of Ants and […]
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11:35 AM | Biology-themed potlucks
Back when I was in grad school my classmates often used to hold potluck dinners. I recall one that had a “Brassica” theme (so, mustards, cabbages, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, etc.). Every dish had to contain a member of the … Continue reading →
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1:34 AM | My Letter to Senator Baldwin and a Message To Anti-Willdife Democrats
my-letter-to-senator-baldwin-and-a-message-to-anti-willdife-democrats Continue reading →
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12:13 AM | Stop the Grizzly Bear Hunt in British Columbia, Canada
Stop-the-grizzly-bear-hunt-in-british-columbia-canada. Continue reading →

July 14, 2014

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11:43 PM | The mountaineer’s privelege
There are turning-points in all men’s lives which must give them both pause and retrospect. In long Sierra journeys the mountaineer looks forward eagerly, gladly, till pass or ridge-crest is gained, and then, turning with a fonder interest, surveys the … Continue reading →
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11:24 PM | “Our eyes often ranged upward”
At last, after climbing a long, weary ascent, we rode out of the dazzling light of the foot-hills into a region of dense woodland, the road winding through avenues of pines so tall that the late evening light only came … Continue reading →
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8:36 PM | Living Without Herbicides
The herbicides used to kill weeds have two undisputed dangers: They can poison arthropods and the animals that eat them, and they eliminate plants that are hosts for Monarch Butterflies and many other small creatures. Continue reading →
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6:54 PM | Dwindling Bird Numbers Linked to Pesticides-Dutch Study
Bird declines linked to pesticides. Continue reading →
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5:06 PM | That stinky gorilla may be trying to say something
Wild ThingsAnimals by Sarah Zielinski 4:10pm, July 14, 2014 Western lowland gorillas (the species often found in zoos) communicate partly by scent in the wild, according to a new study.Eric Kilby/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)Animals can use scent as simple signs of things like “I’m scared” or “I’m stressed.” This can reach a more complex level of communication, […]
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3:18 PM | We are asking the four questions of biodiversity conservation at #NACCB2014 – What’s your answer?
Why is this week different from all other weeks? Because this week, Emily Grason and Fletcher Halliday are serving as . . .
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1:00 PM | Pre-tenure Advice: Blocking out time for your research
As part of the Carnival that Prof-like Substance is organizing on Pre-tenure advice, I thought I’d throw in a piece of advice that anyone who asks me this question gets from me. Here it is: Create a calendar and block out time for you. Sounds simple, and honestly a little stupid, but it’s the best […]
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12:24 PM | Students Discover: The second week
Last Friday marked the end of the second week of the Students Discover externship for the 12 incredible Kenan Fellows partnered with four postdocs in the labs at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences. This past week continued to provide authentic scientific experiences for the teacher-scientists as they delved further into their research. Each group started on creating citizen science-focused lesson plans and even began testing them with museum visitors!   As an added bonus […]
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12:09 PM | Introducing the New Hubbard Fellows!
We have entered the second year of our Hubbard Fellowship program.  Eliza Perry and Anne Stine completed their Fellowships earlier this season, and we brought in two new Fellows, Jasmine and Dillon, on June 2nd.   They have seen and learned … Continue reading →
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12:00 PM | EPA’s trichloroethylene (TCE) risk assessment: Will it succeed in protecting workers?
What do these places have in common: Camp Lejeune in North Carolina; Mountain View, California, where Google headquarters are located; Endicott, NY – the birthplace of IBM; and 389 Superfund sites in at least 48 states plus Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands? All are contaminated by trichloroethylene (TCE), a carcinogenic solvent. TCE's health hazards are well-documented. So why are Republicans rushing to condemn EPA's just-completed TCE risk assessment?
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11:08 AM | Navigating the Tenure Track
This post is for the pre-tenure survival blog carnival that proflikesubstance is hosting. It has some of my general thoughts on navigating the tenure track. These are things that worked for me or that I wish I’d known/thought about while … Continue reading →
Editor's Pick
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11:00 AM | The Environmental Benefits of Hydroponics
Hydroponic gardening is a great way to grow your vegetables, fruits, and herbs under totally controlled conditions. You'll hear many a naturalist extolling the virtues of growing food and perennials in the earth, under the sun. However, many of their arguments are misguided.
Editor's Pick
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11:00 AM | Parental care and scientific careers: a fish metaphor
Dads typically do less parental care than the mom, at least in the US. This is a problem, especially for the mom’s career. Many men, and I suspect particularly academics, are genuinely focused on parenting. They want to do right by their partners, and make sure that they don’t create an inequitable parental burden. Parenting is a joy,…

July 13, 2014

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7:17 PM | Ohio Collecting Day 1: Marietta
My first collecting day in Ohio took place near Marietta, on a trail system I've walked many times. It's where I learned to identify many spring wildflowers and hunted for morel mushrooms, so I already knew where to find areas with good millipede habitat. In particular, I was searching for an unknown millipede that was found there last fall.I arrived a little after 2 PM on June 18th, and the weather was in the high 70s/low 80s. A nice perk of hunting for millipedes is that I'm in forests most […]
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4:40 PM | A search for the science of the mind
More history of the scientists who wanted to understand the mind. Turns out, there was a lot of racism in early 20th century science – what a surprise. He modelled the brain’s structure as though it was an archaeological site, the different levels supposedly reflecting evolutionary advances. The neocortex, shared by all mammals, controlled basic […]
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2:58 PM | Birdbooker Report 328-9
SUMMARY: Books, books, beautiful books! This is a list of biology, ecology, environment, natural history and animal books that are (or will soon be) available to occupy your bookshelves and your thoughts. “Words in leather and wood”. Bookshelves in the “Long Room” at the old Trinity College Library in Dublin. Image: Nic McPhee from Morris, MN, USA. 2007. (Creative Commons.) Books to the ceiling, Books to the sky, My pile of books is a mile high. How I love them!... Read […]
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4:04 AM | Project Coyote!
project-coyote Continue reading →
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12:28 AM | Ebola epidemiology data scraper
I wanted to find certain statistics for the West African Ebolavirus (EBV) outbreak from its inception, e.g. short-term case and death rates, among others. But the sites where’d I’d expect to find such (WHO, CDC etc) didn’t have them. However, … Continue reading →
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12:26 AM | Why Mountain Biking is Inappropriate in Wilderness
why-mountain-biking-is-inappropriate-in-wilderness Continue reading →

July 12, 2014

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8:31 PM | Hamsters, pizzas and playgrounds
SUMMARY: Dwarf hamsters are small but they have an outsized effect on one's life. Phodopus sungorus. Image: Ko1 (CC by SA 2.5). Once again, it's caturday, which means it's time for us to relax and recover from that most recent post-World Cup game hangover by watching animals doing fun stuff! This week's cute animal videos were inspired by a piece I wrote a little while ago, about a study of wheel-running behaviour in wild mice. Although that study focused on... Read more
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6:56 PM | BLM, Cattle, Wild Horses, and Biodiversity on Western U. S. Ranges
Are we sacrificing vegetation, soil, and biodiversity in the western U. S. to protect domestic cows? Continue reading →
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