Posts

March 04, 2015

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10:35 PM | #sciart Who loves some cool ammonite art??
So, just got back from Japan and busy playing catchup and recovering from jet lag... so in the meantime, here's some cool ammonite art to go along with the #sciart hashtag currently producing such neat things on Twitter!Paleoecology 19th Century style!A wonderful piece by Ieuan Edwards!with a cool "making of" pic..This one is awesome!
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8:10 PM | Rules for the black birdwatcher
SUMMARY: Black bird watchers are rare birds themselves, and there are special rules that the black birder must observe to remain safe when out in the field chasing rare birds. . “Any bird that’s black is my bird.” Are you a bird watcher, especially one who chases rare birds? If so, you most likely are white, fifty-five or older, and male. Female birders and young birders are unusual (in my experience), but the rarest birds of all are non-white birders.... Read more
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2:38 AM | For Hoff Yeti Crabs Food, Sex, and Birth Determine Living Space At Vents  
Within just a few short centimeters the temperature drops from 350˚C to -1.5˚C (692 to 29.3˚F). At 2.6 kilometers deep in the Antarctic Ocean lies the East Scotia Ridge (ESR) dotted with hydrothermal vents. Here, in this unique spot the world’s coldest ocean is in contact with one of the seafloor’s hottest environments. Life residing at hostile vents […]
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2:38 AM | For Hoff Yeti Crabs Food, Sex, and Birth Determine Living Space At Vents  
Within just a few short centimeters the temperature drops from 350˚C to -1.5˚C (692 to 29.3˚F). At 2.6 kilometers deep in the Antarctic Ocean lies the East Scotia Ridge (ESR) dotted with hydrothermal vents. Here, in this unique spot the world’s coldest ocean is in contact with one of the seafloor’s hottest environments. Life residing at hostile vents […]

March 03, 2015

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9:41 PM | 17 actually worthwhile things to know about mosquitoes
Tanjim Hossain is an NSF graduate research fellow at the University of Miami. His research focuses on the intersection of microclimatology and mosquito vector ecology from an epidemiological perspective. Follow him on twitter here BuzzFeed: the epitome of unnecessary hyperbole and an amalgam of often unoriginal content. I’ve long been convinced that this website is […]
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2:00 PM | Alphabet Soup and the Budget
Paul's off to Washington this week for the annual alphabet soup convention, a/k/a budget pushing time in DC. The first week of March is customarily when NOAA's CZM programs — the NERRS and the SGCPs — get together with EPA's NEPs for a few days on the hill. Reserve director Dest will hunch over the tureen with his colleagues to taste test their parent agencies' justifications for spending. They'll explore nuances and compare notes, discerning seasonings before whisking to their […]

March 02, 2015

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8:43 PM | More trash talk
I am always on the lookout for topics to write about here, and when I get a request from a reader for a specific post, I am both happy to oblige and relieved not to have to cast about for a theme. Seanetter Warren Mumford is a Cape Cod resident but was unable to attend […]
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1:27 PM | Birdbooker Report 362
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 […]

February 27, 2015

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8:36 PM | What Leonard Nimoy and Spock meant to me as a Jewish conservation biologist
Inspirational, beloved marine biologist Dr. Eugenie Clark passed away at the age of 92 on February 25, 2015. She touched a lot of lives in her very full career. Here's how ocean twitter reacted.
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4:57 PM | Diversity and extinction of tongues and species
Some years ago, at a rather posh function in a swanky London venue, I got talking to a peer of the realm. By this point I had been drinking my endless glass of wine for some time (they have stealthy waiters at these kinds of dos), and didn’t quite catch his name, but he had been, apparently, head of a large supermarket chain. And his response to me mentioning the word ‘biodiversity’ has stuck with me. “When I took over... Read more
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3:37 PM | Fun Science FRIEDay – Ocean Acidification, More Than Just pH
You have probably heard that as the global climate changes due to human influence the sea surface is going to rise and the oceans will get warmer and more acidic. The bit about the oceans increasing in acidity is particularly troubling because it implies calcium carbonate based organisms (oysters, snails, corals, etc.) will simply dissolve […]
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3:33 PM | EnviroHack 2015 kicks off
NERC's Head of Science Information and Data Management Coordinator, Mark Thorley, opened the NERC EnviroHack today.This 'hackathon' event provides an exciting opportunity to collaborate and create value from environmental data sets. EnviroHack was organised by the British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC) and the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH).Mark Thorley kicks off the NERC EnviroHack ©Data collected by environmental scientists are being made available for 'hackers' to explore […]

February 26, 2015

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5:13 PM | 10 Cool Facts About Dolphins
1. Dolphins are mammals and breathe air through the blowhole at the top of their head. Their blowhole doesn’t shoot out water, only air. 2. Killer Whales, or Orcas, are the largest dolphin and grow up to 23 feet (7 meters) long. 3. The most common and recognizable dolphin is the Bottlenose Dolphin. 4. Some […]
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4:21 PM | Rough Reputation: Are Invasive Species All Bad?
[php]Pick up any news article about invasive species and you may confuse it with a police blotter. Generally, invasive species are "almost bulletproof" "marauders," "terrorizing" ecosystems and wildlife. The one-inch amphipod Dikerogammarus villosus—better known as "killer shrimp"—is "vicious" and "violent,"...
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12:30 PM | Set research free with IGoR!
Dr. Mickey von Dassow is a biologist who studies how biomechanics affects development-environment interactions. He received his PhD in Integrative Biology at UC Berkeley, studying how fluid flow affects colonial marine animals. As a postdoc (U. of Pittsburgh), he studied the mechanics of tissue movements that shape amphibian embryos. Currently he is a guest research […]
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1:20 AM | Do not flip-flop variables to make them work in your #@%*^& ANOVA
I was reading a paper this morning. It included a perversion of a common statistical analysis that is fundamentally wrong, utterly unneccesary, and has an easy solution. This perversion, unfortunately, is also distressingly common. Inspired by O’Hara and Kotze’s 2010 … Continue reading →

February 25, 2015

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3:19 PM | #SciSpends : Scientists are paying to do their jobs
Dr. Edward Hind is a marine sociologist who specializesin the research of local ecological knowledge. He has spent the last five years investigating how the knowledge of fish harvesters may support marine management in both Ireland and the Turks and Caicos Islands. He was recently a lecturer at the School for Field Studies and is […]
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3:11 PM | Rescuing historic Maltese tide gauge data
By restoring historic tide gauge data from Malta and making it available to the public, researchers at the British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC) and the UK Hydrographic Office (UKHO) hope to shed new light on past tsunamis and climate change in the Mediterranean.Chart from Valetta, Malta, 2nd April 1872, after undergoing conservation, showing the 'seiching' ©A tide gauge installed in the Maltese port of Valetta working in 1871 offers the only continuous record of the sea level in […]
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11:45 AM | Some Excellent Japanese Echinoderms! Textures and Closeups!
I've been in Japan for the last 6 weeks studying Japanese sea stars at the National Museum of Nature and Science in Tsukuba, Japan!As this is my last week at the museum I thought I would share some neat pics of some of the interesting echinoderms that I've encountered over the last few weeks....Trophodiscus almus. This is an unusual species, which brood baby sea stars on its top surface! You see those weird round to star shaped white spots on the surface? Those are the juveniles which live on […]

February 24, 2015

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2:33 PM | Tale of two beaches
Over the weekend, I had the great pleasure of serving on a panel discussing waste disposal and the impacts of human trash on the environment and human and wildlife health. Many thanks to Annie Hooper and Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary for inviting me! While we were down on the Cape for our whirlwind, sub-24 hour […]
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8:11 AM | Shelf Life: the Olinguito’s Skull
SUMMARY: Instead of travelling to remote locations in faraway countries, scientists sometimes discover a new species by looking a little more closely at an old specimen in a museum drawer. Today’s video is from the American Museum of Natural History. It is the fourth episode in their year-long Shelf Life video series. Shelf Life is a bite-sized video exploration of some of the many natural treasures housed at the AMNH, how these specimens came to be there, the stories they... Read more

February 23, 2015

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5:06 PM | Birdbooker Report 361
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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5:05 PM | Unearthing Information About Invasives From the Bottom of a Cargo Ship
[php]I am once again leaving my familiar world behind and descending into the abyss below. The first dive of an entirely new expedition is the most magical. I am a member of a scientific research dive team studying biological invasions in coastal marine ecosystems off the coast of Bermuda for the Smithsonian Marine Invasions Research Lab. As I sink beneath the belly of a massive cargo ship, I glide my hand down the side of the vessel. The painted metal feels like smooth skin, but it is covered […]

February 22, 2015

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5:37 PM | I get emails: Do Dolphins Have Prehensile Penises?
I’ve been busy these past weeks/months working on a new writing project, but I just had to take a few moments today to answer an intriguing question I received from a curious reader.  Especially since it involves a dolphin-science myth – something I always enjoy investigating. He/she writes: “There’s this common myth about male dolphins [&hellip

February 20, 2015

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3:06 PM | Fun Science FRIEDay – Evolution, what’s it good for?
It is widely accepted that the world around us is changing, and as a result the organisms that exist adapt with that change or are resigned to the fossil record. Evolution, it’s a fact of life… or is it? UCLA paleobiologist J. William Schopf, and colleagues,  have discovered an organism that has remained relatively unchanged over a […]
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2:53 PM | Hvalreki
Hvalreki really should have been the title of my last post. It is my favorite Icelandic word, which I learned visiting that country almost five years ago. It translates to “windfall” in English, and, like that word, originally referred to … Continue reading →
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2:00 PM | Snowball Warming
The following was published in the Biddeford-Saco Journal Tribune Sunday edition, 2/22/2015. I learned a new word this year. Subnivean, from the Latin for “under” (sub) and “snow” (nives). It’s the zone within and underneath the snowpack. It’s where we’ve all been living lately. What a winter wonderland it was, after that first blizzard. By the fifth storm, even my four-year-old was over it. He doesn’t like the snow nearly as much anymore. […]
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12:19 AM | Atlantic Spiny Dogfish Sustainability Certificate Suspended
In 2012, the Atlantic spiny dogfish fishery became one of the first shark fisheries to be certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council (the first was another dogfish fishery, this one targeting North Pacific spiny dogfish in British Columbia waters).  The MSC is the most well-known eco-certification group for fisheries, so this was a […]

February 19, 2015

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11:24 PM | Hail hydra ! Taking a super villain approach to conservation #scicomm
Rarely do conservation or environmental issues solely deal with just one group of homogenous people. Most who deal with “on the ground” conservation realize that typically issues have multiple, often conflicting, groups with multiple view points and values. So why do some many attempts as conservation science communication just have one line of attack? I was at […]
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2:56 PM | Film screening this week for my Cape Cod friends
Hello, dear Seanetters and miscellaneous readers. I apologize for the relative dearth of posts lately–having a full time teaching job, as it turns out, really limits the time I have to blog about dead birds. This week, however, I will be finding a bit of time on Saturday to talk about dead birds and trash. […]
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