Posts

October 06, 2014

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6:55 PM | Kids and Bugs
Not long ago I reported about the start of our famous School Malaise Trap Program. The trapping period is over and this week we will be receiving all the traps and collecting bottles at our institute. Then it is time for sorting, counting, sub-sampling, imaging, data-basing, DNA-extraction, PCR, and sequencing. We will have to work through 60 schools' samples, 2 bottles each. That's a lot of bugs even this time of the year.The program already got tremendous feedback through our blog. All […]
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6:26 PM | Are we using Facebook to boost our self-esteem?
When people are in a bad mood, they are more likely to head to social networking sites like Facebook in search of people who seem worse off than they are, a new study finds.Image from the study courtesy of Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick and Benjamin JohnsonResearchers have found that people often use social media to connect with others who are posting positive and success-oriented updates. "But when people are in a negative mood, they start to show a lot more interest in the less […]
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6:00 PM | Tastes Great, Less Drilling
By Brian Palmer The Bavarian beer purity law of 1516, known as the Reinheitsgebot, limited brewers to three ingredients: barley, hops, and water. For 498 years, water has trailed distantly behind the other two ingredients in the hearts of beer drinkers. Some people like malty beer. Other people like hoppy beer. No one likes watery beer.When I started brewing my own beer, I, too, focused on barley and hops. I dumped nine kinds of malt and four kinds of hops […]
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3:38 PM | High Temps on the High Seas
By John Upton This story originally appeared at Climate Central.The RV Kaharoa motored out of Wellington, New Zealand on Saturday, loaded with more than 100 scientific instruments, each eventually destined for a watery grave. Crewmembers will spend the next two months dropping the 50-pound devices, called Argo floats, into the seas between New Zealand and Mauritius, off the coast of Madagascar. There, the instruments will sink and drift, then […]
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2:07 PM | Protected: Understanding past sea-level change
There is no excerpt because this is a protected post. The post Protected: Understanding past sea-level change appeared first on Climatica.
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2:00 PM | Why Scientists are Seen as Competent but Untrustworthy (and Why it Matters)
According to a recent study, the public's distrust of scientists has gotten so bad that they are now on par with CEOs and lawyers. This loss of trust will almost certainly have profound implications for our future.
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1:27 PM | Usability Testing, the Report on the Environment, and My Time at EPA
By Taylor Katz As a student of Environmental Health at George Washington University, I was excited to be asked to contribute to the Agency’s Report on the Environment (ROE). The Report is a compilation of information on the best available indicators of national conditions and trends in air, water, land, human heath, ecological systems, and […]
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1:00 PM | Do Wearables and Health Apps Belong in the Doctor’s Office?
Wearables and health apps made a multi-billion-dollar industry out of healthy peoples' desires to count calories and rack up steps. Now can this technology make the transition to a medical setting, to help people with chronic illnesses?
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12:36 PM | A New Toy for Weather Junkies
By Susan Cosier This image may look like some epic Game of Thrones battle between winter zombies and dragon fire taking place across North America, but it’s really just a fancy new weather map. The colors—ranging from bright yellow (113 degrees Fahrenheit) to white (freezing)—represent the temperatures measured last week when the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration unveiled its High-Resolution Rapid Refresh model. The new […]
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10:00 AM | The Best Computer-Generated Face Ever
Computer graphics artist Chris Jones has created an amazingly realistic-looking head using the latest software. Watch the short video below. Will you forget that it is computer generated animation?Jones is based in Australia. "Mr. Head," is being called the "most realistic human head simulation" by critics around the web.According to Jones, the model is a work in progress. Also known as "Ed," it was made with Lightwave, Sculptris and Krita, and composited with Davinci Resolve Lite. Jones also […]
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3:39 AM | Do urban green corridors “work”? It depends on what we want them to do. What ecological and/or social functions can we realistically expect green corridors to perform in cities? What attributes define them, from a design and performance perspective?
No summary available for this post.
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3:30 AM | California: drought resiliency
To follow up on my post earlier in the week asking that we look beyond Porterville to California communities that aren’t running out of water, and think about what they’ve done to build resiliency in drought, here’s Steve Scauzillo: In 1991, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, which imports water from Northern California and the ...Continue reading ‘California: drought resiliency’ »

October 05, 2014

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9:40 PM | virtual water, dairy style
Moving large quantities of water long distances is expensive. But there are alternatives: The third-generation dairy farmer was forced to idle a quarter of his 1,200 acres in Tulare County, land that once also bristled with wheat and alfalfa. Now he is buying feed from out of state, paying record-high prices to contractors in Nevada, ...Continue reading ‘virtual water, dairy style’ »
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5:34 PM | Moving forward
Ryan and I have been away for the weekend, a last minute break booked on Thursday evening when it looked – again – like the purchase of our new house* was going to fall through. We have been to Hayling Island, and seen the Tangmere Military Aviation Museum, Fishbourne Roman Palace and Gardens, and West Dean Gardens. More on those last two later in the week. It was gone 5pm on Friday when we finally heard that the contracts had all been exchanged, and that we will be moving in the […]

October 04, 2014

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4:39 PM | Sloth Bears Confirmed Extinct in Bangladesh
A massive project to assess the health of wildlife in Bangladesh has confirmed conservationists’ longstanding suspicions that sloth bears no longer exist in that country. Sloth bears (Melursus... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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1:04 PM | Top Ten Things Owls Give a Hoot About
Here’s our countdown of the things owls love. From mice to eyelids and spinning their heads around, these animals have some pretty diverse interests.

October 03, 2014

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8:53 PM | Don’t Drink the Farm
By Susan Cosier Toxic algae blooms choke Lake Erie almost every year. But this August, that algae made its way into Toledo's drinking water, leaving more than 400,000 people without their taps for two days and making headlines across the country.Now the scientists and public officials who have been warning about Lake Erie's problems for years are determined to finally do something about it. And that means farmers, they're looking at you.Fertilizer […]
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8:50 PM | #22: When in Doubt Eat PIZZA!!!
A large fire is built to heat the oven to over 500 degrees. The last couple weeks of any field season is filled with mixed emotions.  Frustration - where are the whales? Overwhelmed - we have so much to do before closing up the field station. Defeated - I didn't accomplish everything you wanted to during the field season. Everyone has a different way of dealing with all these feelings.  My
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8:42 PM | Understanding California’s drought: the “Porterville problem”
I imagine that if I was a reporter in California, trying to cover the drought, I’d end up in Porterville too. It’s the little community in Tulare County where the taps have gone dry. Jennifer Medina of the New York Times took us there this week, and for residents of a nation used to running ...Continue reading ‘Understanding California’s drought: the “Porterville problem”’ »
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7:42 PM | This Week in EPA Science
By Kacey Fitzpatrick It’s the first week of October which happens to be my favorite month of the year. I love October, and fall in general, because the crisp weather and leaves changing color make it the best time of year to be outside. Visiting an orchard, hiking a trail, or just taking a nice […]
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5:35 PM | Friday Fiction Facts: Land of the Rising Suns
Welcome to Friday Fiction Facts: sciency things that fiction writers need to know. So you’ve got this great idea for a story and you decide, just to make life interesting, you’ll place it on a planet that has two suns. Why not? It worked for Star Wars, it can work for you. Yes it can, […]
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5:34 PM | Happy World Smile Day
Do you have a toothy grin like a zebra, a sly smirk like an alpaca or a cheetah chuckle? Check out these top ten smiling animals and see which one you look like when you smile!
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4:52 PM | Pennies for the Planet
By Brian Palmer French President Francois Holland pledged nearly $1 billion to the Green Climate Fund at the United Nations climate summit last week, in an effort to help developing countries move away from fossil fuels.Green Climate Fund—qu'est-ce que c'est? The Green Climate Fund is so obscure in the United States that most of the journalists who covered the French pledge didn’t mention the fund by name in their headlines. (And neither did I.) […]
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4:50 PM | A Family Meal a Day May Keep Obesity Away
Adolescent obesity rates in the United States are rising quickly, and so is the likelihood that obesity will carry forward into adulthood. Researchers from the University of Minnesota and Columbia University report that family meals could reduce obesity. On average, family meals tend to include more fruits, vegetables, calcium, and whole grains that quick food eaten on the go.Jerica M. Berge and colleagues collected data from 2,287 people over 10 years in a study dubbed Project EAT (Eating […]
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3:57 PM | Severe Weather = the New Normal is a Fraught Meme
This week NPR asks: When can a big storm or drought be blamed on climate change? If you have been nodding in approval to everything that Bill McKibben and his fellow climate concerned advocates say on this subject, then you already have your answer. And if you are familiar with the “new normal” meme, which I […]The post Severe Weather = the New Normal is a Fraught Meme appeared first on Collide-a-Scape.
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3:49 PM | Invasion of the Mediterranean
The Mediterranean sea is home to 17,000 species, of which around 20% occur nowhere else. Millions of tourists visit the Mediterranean Sea each year, but what no one knows is that underwater we are witnessing the largest invasion currently underway on Earth. Almost 1,000 alien species, including fish, crustaceans, and algae have become established from other seas largely through human activities. These invasive species disrupt the balance of this unique marine ecosystem. For example, Siganus […]
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3:03 PM | Getting Beyond the 2-Degree Threshold on Global Warming
An author of a commentary questioning the value of a hard danger threshold for planetary temperature defends his views.
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2:38 PM | University of Texas-San Antonio Releases Report on Economic Impact of Eagle Ford Shale
In a report released by the University of Texas-San Antonio (UTSA) entitled “Economic Impact of the Eagle Ford Shale”, researchers from the Center for Community and Business Research at the University’s Institute for Economic Development found that extraction of oil, … Continue reading →
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2:00 PM | Set Your Alarm for the Early Morning Total Lunar Eclipse on October 8
In the wee morning hours of Wednesday, October 8, a total lunar eclipse will occur, delighting anyone of the lucky side of the Earth willing to set their alarms extra early.
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12:17 PM | The Pygmy Owl's Big Day in Court?
By Susan Cosier You wouldn’t think you would need extra protection when you make your home in a cactus. But that’s not the case for the ferruginous pygmy owl. Habitat loss, livestock grazing, wildfires, invasive species, and border disputes are disrupting this bird’s southwestern lifestyle, which consists of eating lizards and peeking adorably out of saguaro cacti. Yes, the owl is 6.5 inches of pure cuteness, but fewer than […]
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