Posts

October 12, 2014

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6:06 PM | As the Population of Humans Doubles, the Number of Animals Halves
Across the land you can hear the battle cry: "Out of the way, animals, we’ve got diapers and baby carriages to buy.” Continue reading →
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5:37 PM | China Is Selling Off Vital Panda Habitat To The Highest Bidder
Melissa Cronin:  “There are an estimated 1,600 pandas left in the wild in China, and thanks to new legislation, that number may change very soon — for the worse. “The Chinese government is currently in the midst of introducing its “forest … Continue reading →
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5:37 PM | Panda Habitat Threatened
We estimate that $1,229 million in effective eco-compensation payments could prevent an estimated 15% decline in the giant panda population, whereas an additional $3,707 million for effective eco-compensation and restoration of potential habitat could restore the giant panda population to an estimated 40% above current levels. Continue reading →
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4:10 PM | Unrelated to all that, 10/12 edition
The Big Problem With Mini-Pigs In 2012, as a favor to a friend, Canadians Steve Jenkins and Derek Walter adopted a three-pound (1.4-kilogram) “mini-pig” named Esther. Or so they thought. Within two years Esther wasn’t so mini. In fact, she … Continue reading →
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12:40 AM | The Ghost in the GMO Machine – Cascadia TimesCascadia Times
Of course, other species are harmed as well, making it unacceptable to use these pesticides and the GMOs bred for compatibility. Continue reading →

October 11, 2014

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6:44 PM | Alaska’s stranded walruses face a new threat: oil drillers
Shell's wells will be upstream of Hanna Shoals, a biologically rich shallow shelf that tends to hold sea ice longer than other areas. Continue reading →
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5:37 PM | These 14 states have a plan for climate change. The rest of you are screwed.
Most states are still failing to prepare for the impacts of climate change, and there has been mixed progress among states with concrete plans, according to a first-of-its-kind compilation of data released Thursday by the Georgetown Climate Center. Continue reading →
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4:44 PM | Network Theory Seminar (Part 1)
  With luck, this video will be the first of a series. I’m giving a seminar on network theory at U.C. Riverside this fall. I’ll start by sketching the results in this new paper: • John Baez and Brendan Fong, A compositional framework for passive linear networks. It’s a big paper, and I also want […]
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2:27 PM | Top Ten Animals in Disguise
These species may look like one thing, but they are actually something else!
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3:26 AM | The red of bearded vultures—allure or cure?
We now know that bearded vultures deliberately dust themselves red. But why?

Negro JJ, Margalida A, Hiraldo F & Heredia R (1999). The function of the cosmetic coloration of bearded vultures: when art imitates life., Animal behaviour, 58 (5) PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10564620

Citation

October 10, 2014

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11:39 PM | New York dairy farm workers organize for justice: ‘Law or no law, we are going to organize’
“Yes, you can use my name because it doesn’t matter. They have already done everything they can do to me.” Those are words from Eliceo, a former dairy farm worker in upstate New York. Earlier this year, Eliceo, 36, decided to speak up and share his story with local advocates who are tirelessly working to improve conditions on New York dairy farms and end persistent reports of workplace safety violations, preventable work-related injuries, wage theft, exploitation and in some […]
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8:51 PM | Turning to Darwin to Solve the Mystery of Invasive Species
A new study suggests that some parts of the world are evolutionary incubators, producing superior competitors primed to thrive in other environments. Source: www.nytimes.com GR:  The research described in this article is a fine confirmation of familiar ideas. I was … Continue reading →
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8:46 PM | When Mushrooms Grow Hair: Spinellus and Syzygites megalocarpus
Spinellus fusiger parasitizes Mycena species, like this M. haematopus.Spinellus fusiger Though it's hot as stink outside right now, and dry, to boot, most of this summer has been unseasonably cool and moist—perfect growing conditions for all kinds of interesting fungal fruitings, including one I've wanted to see for years, Spinellus fusiger. The weather has, in fact, been so accommodating that I've found this spectacular bread-mould-related growth four separate times. It's hard to […]
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7:42 PM | Team Sunflower!
Meet Elizabeth, Tia, Alannah and Shawnice – four friends working together to help protect animals and preserve the environment.
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5:05 PM | Before They Were Scientists: Jonathan Bujak
Dr. Jonathan Bujak (on the right in the photo above) had a reputation for causing trouble, one that started on his first day of school. Read on to learn how doing a little better in chemistry helped him survive the 1960s, how chance played a very special role in his life, and how finding a fern in an Arctic ocean sediment core completely changed the trajectory of his career. Lea: How about you tell me a little bit about where you were in middle school between the ages of 10 and 14? Jonathan: I […]
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4:05 PM | Plantwise Data Management Training in Mozambique
Since its launch early this year, the partnership between the Plantwise Initiative and the Ministry of Agriculture in Mozambique (MINAG) continues to grow. The National Directorate of Agrarian Services (DNSA) that falls under MINAG is the Plantwise implementing institution in Mozambique. There are currently 5 plant clinics established and running in Maputo and Manica provinces. […]
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2:31 PM | What we’re reading: QTLs of pine growth, climate-niche evolution, and the shape of Twitter conversations
In the journals Li Z., H.R. Hällingback, S. Abrahamsson, A Fries, B.A. Gull, M.J. Sillanpää and M.R. García-Gil. 2014. Functional multi-locus QTL mapping of temporal trends in Scots pine wood traits. G3: Genes | Genomes | Genetics. doi: 10.1534/g3.114.014068. Two … Continue reading →
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1:03 PM | Photo of the Week – October 10, 2014
For the second time in two weeks, I got to travel west into drier, shorter prairie.  This week, our crew attended the Nebraska Natural Legacy Conference in Gering, Nebraska – at the far western end of the state.  While there, … Continue reading →
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12:00 PM | Recommended reads #37
“If you wouldn’t say it in person, don’t say it in an anonymous review.” Boat parts or names of unvaccinated children? A quiz. I’m not a big fan of crowdfunding, because of the asymmetries in who gets money. And I’ve seen firsthand that expressed need sometimes doesn’t match reality. Caveats aside, I really like this one: Planting…
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11:55 AM | FLUMP – Plant populations, insect diversity
It’s Friday and that means that it’s time for our Friday link dump, where we highlight some recent papers (and . . .
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11:52 AM | Friday links: dump the Canadian CCV, unreclaiming zoology, billion dollar grant, and more
Also this week: new videos for teaching ecology, social media as professional development, the pluses and minuses of minority-focused conferences, the best ecology blog you’ve (well, I’d) never heard of, and more. From Meg: I added two fun, deep sea-related … Continue reading →
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3:09 AM | Office of the Auditor General of Canada—Mitigating Climate Change
Overall, we found that federal departments have made unsatisfactory progress in each of the four areas examined. Continue reading →
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12:39 AM | Saving Caribbean Coral Reefs
IUCN used data from 35,000 surveys conducted at 90 Caribbean locations since 1970, and showed that reefs have declined by more than 50% since the 1970s. Continue reading →
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12:07 AM | Ocean Acidification: The Complete Loss of Tropical Coral Reefs By 2050 to 2100
"The pace at which humans are increasing ocean acidification has never been seen before in the geological record. So the blow that is coming to many of the animals we rely on is worse than anything witnessed in Earth’s past." Continue reading →

October 09, 2014

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11:26 PM | Joyce 2014 field season preview
This upcoming field season we will be getting to know Lake Joyce of the Antarctic McMurdo Dry Valleys very well.  For seven weeks, 5-7 of us will live and work within the confines of Pearse Valley, with a valley floor all of 3 miles long and 1.5 miles wide.   Our field camp in Pearse Valley, 2010Our attention will be focused on the bottom of Lake Joyce and the microbial communities that call it home.  In previous seasons, we dove on one side of the lake, near locations where […]
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11:01 PM | Still Life
I thought it would be a nice idea to have the occasional photography contest on the blog. So starting today and running until Monday 10th November anyone can submit one photograph to this Dropbox folder. Don’t make it obvious that it’s your image in case it biases the judge. The theme for this month will be ‘Changing Seasons’. Prizes will be determined in due course. I just want to say good luck. We’re all counting on you. Author: Adam Kane, […]
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7:27 PM | Looking Back at the Water Taste Challenge
Find out what Earth Rangers like you had to say about the Water Taste Challenge!
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6:47 PM | How many markers does it take to make a dataset “genomic”?
A new paper in Ecology Letters by Matthew Fitzpatrick and Stephen Keller proposes to use some a class of statistical methods developed for understanding the distribution of species in different environments to understand the distribution of genetic variants in different … Continue reading →
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6:43 PM | World wildlife populations ‘plummet’
The global loss of species is even worse than previously thought, with wildlife populations halving in just 40 years, a report says. Continue reading →
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6:33 PM | Wildlife decline: Why does biodiversity matter anyway? – Christian Science Monitor
Half of the planet's wildlife populations suffered severe decline between 1970 and 2010, according to a new report from the WWF. So what does dwindling biodiversity mean for us? Continue reading →
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