Reshuffled Rivers Bolster the Amazon’s Hyper-Biodiversity

Reshuffled Rivers Bolster the Amazon’s Hyper-Biodiversity

The relationship between geographic change and biodiversity is “one of the most contentious topics in evolutionary biology,” said Musher, who did the study as part of his doctoral work.

Ki uta ki tai: NIWA’s role in mountains-to-sea estuarine management

Ki uta ki tai: NIWA’s role in mountains-to-sea estuarine management

Researchers from Sustainable Seas and Our Land & Water National Science Challenges are involved in a two-year project called Ki uta ki tai: Estuaries, thresholds and values, which includes interwoven critical steps funded by MfE.

‘Flash Droughts’ Are the Midwest’s Next Big Climate Threat

‘Flash Droughts’ Are the Midwest’s Next Big Climate Threat

Fast-moving droughts like this one are developing more and more quickly as climate change pushes temperatures to new extremes, recent research indicates—adding a new threat to the dangers of pests, flooding, and more long-term drought that farmers in the US already face.

Spring Flowers Are Blooming Earlier in Greater Yellowstone

Spring Flowers Are Blooming Earlier in Greater Yellowstone

But climate change is knocking the timing of flowering and fruiting out of whack for many plants in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem according to a new study authored by scientists at The Nature Conservancy (TNC) in Wyoming.

The Desert’s Fragile Skin Can’t Take Much More Heat

The Desert’s Fragile Skin Can’t Take Much More Heat

Eighty-five miles from the small town of Moab, Utah, located on the Colorado Plateau in the southwest of the US, soil ecologist Rebecca Finger-Higgens is hopscotching on copper-toned sandstone to avoid stepping on the desert’s black, burnt-looking crust of soil.

Biofuels Are Getting a Second Look—and Some Tough Questions

Biofuels Are Getting a Second Look—and Some Tough Questions

The RFS was supposed to reduce reliance on fuel imports and lessen the environmental impact of the transportation sector, but when it was introduced some scientists warned that it might end up increasing overall emissions.

Climate Change Is Disrupting the Global Supply Chain Too

Climate Change Is Disrupting the Global Supply Chain Too

A 2020 study in the Journal of Waterway, Port, Coastal, and Ocean Engineering that Becker coauthored found that of 85 US maritime infrastructure engineers who responded to a survey, only 29 percent said their organizations had a policy or planning document for sea level rise, let alone had acted on one.

Offshore Wind Turbines Could Mess With Ships’ Radar Signals

Offshore Wind Turbines Could Mess With Ships’ Radar Signals

It turns out that massive wind turbines may interfere with marine radar systems, making it risky for both big ships passing through shipping channels near offshore wind farms and smaller vessels navigating around them.

Africa’s Oldest DNA Is Helping Address Science’s Racial Bias

Africa’s Oldest DNA Is Helping Address Science’s Racial Bias

Now a new discovery of the oldest African DNA is pushing back against this bias, and in the process revealing how our ancestors lived and moved around the continent tens of thousands of years ago.

The US Mountain West Could Soon Face Snowless Winters

The US Mountain West Could Soon Face Snowless Winters

And while extreme events will continue to happen with greater frequency, what will also start to become common are “episodic low- to no-snow” events, when at least half of a mountain basin experiences low snow or none for five consecutive years.

Climate Change May Make Hurricanes Hit Sooner and Last Longer

Climate Change May Make Hurricanes Hit Sooner and Last Longer

In a study published in November in the journal Earth’s Future, a team from three universities examined storm tracking data from the past 100 years and used it in a global climate model that takes into account changes in environmental conditions caused by heat-trapping greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane.

Meet the Cyberpunk Albatrosses Scanning for Secret Explosions

Meet the Cyberpunk Albatrosses Scanning for Secret Explosions

“And you can’t put instruments on every single one of those volcanoes and be able to maintain them all the time.” But detectors hundreds of miles away can hear this eruptive infrasound just fine, and there is no risk they will be annihilated by volcanic fury.

How 'Green' Are Wood Pellets as a Fuel Source?

How 'Green' Are Wood Pellets as a Fuel Source?

The wood pellet industry argues that it provides an alternative to coal and relies on a sustainable resource: forests that will regrow in the future and remove carbon from the atmosphere .But many scientists and conservation groups say the opposite: that burning wood is as dirty as coal, and the claim of carbon neutrality is an error that will boost emissions and make it impossible to keep the planet from warming further.

This Dam Simple Trick Is a Big Green Energy Win

This Dam Simple Trick Is a Big Green Energy Win

There is even more potential out there: A 2016 US Department of Energy report found that an additional 4.8 gigawatts of electricity could be generated by retrofitting non-powered dams over the next three decades.

Seeing Red: What the Color of House Finches Can Tell Us

Seeing Red: What the Color of House Finches Can Tell Us

As an ornithologist and doctoral student at the University of Michigan, Hill began looking for a system where he could test the basic theory as to why birds evolve these “ornaments”, particularly their colorful feathers.

Why Skincare That Burns Is So Satisfying

Why Skincare That Burns Is So Satisfying

In the case of skincare, the sense of justice arises when we feel like we have done more to earn the effects of our painful creams and microneedlers.

How Healthy Is a Farm's Soil? Check How Active Its Microbes Are

How Healthy Is a Farm's Soil? Check How Active Its Microbes Are

Since he started farming for himself in the early 1990s, he’s tried any number of tests that measure soil health, like basic nutrient profiles and fatty acid assays.“A lot of what people currently do is look at what the structure of soil is, but not what it does—the microbial activity,” Mohamed says.

The Long-Lost Tale of an 18th-Century Tsunami, as Told by Trees

The Long-Lost Tale of an 18th-Century Tsunami, as Told by Trees

They could use them to better understand the aftermath of quakes and tsunamis in this highly populated yet risky zone, and to validate the flooding models that policymakers use to prepare for future disasters.

A Third of Shark and Ray Species May Face Extinction

A Third of Shark and Ray Species May Face Extinction

The health of “entire ocean ecosystems” and food security is in jeopardy, said Dulvy, a former co-chair of the shark specialist group of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).The number of species of sharks, rays, and chimaeras, known together as chondrichthyan fishes, facing “a global extinction crisis” has more than doubled in less than a decade, according to the paper published September 6 in the journal Current Biology.

Dolphins Eavesdrop on Each Other to Avoid Awkward Run-Ins

Dolphins Eavesdrop on Each Other to Avoid Awkward Run-Ins

In their experiment, Curé’s team tested how dolphins responded when the researchers parked their boats overhead and played them social noises recorded from other groups.So to test how the animals respond, researchers play a recording of those sounds over a speaker and watch what happens.

Have You Seen A Weasel Lately?

Have You Seen A Weasel Lately?

“The authors of this paper are active field biologists, and we noticed that we just don’t see weasels in our data after field work,” says coauthor Roland Kays, research professor of forestry and environmental resources at North Carolina State and head of the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences’ Biodiversity Lab.

How Citizen Science Aids Horseshoe Crab Conservation

How Citizen Science Aids Horseshoe Crab Conservation

Females are bigger than males, and instead of mating then laying eggs, the females drop eggs in sandy nests and then males, which have attached themselves to the females, release sperm directly on top of the eggs, says Berlynna Heres, Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission researcher and lead author of the recent paper “Using Citizen Science to Track Population Trends in the American Horseshoe Crab.”.

This Tiny Robot Mimics the Mantis Shrimp's Mighty Punch

This Tiny Robot Mimics the Mantis Shrimp's Mighty Punch

Now, a team of Harvard University researchers has come up with a new biomechanical model for the mantis shrimp's mighty appendage , and it built a tiny robot to mimic that movement, according to a recent paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Radioactive Rat Snakes Could Help Monitor Fukushima Fallout

Radioactive Rat Snakes Could Help Monitor Fukushima Fallout

Gerke’s recent study suggests that rat snakes may be useful bioindicators of radioactive contamination in nuclear disaster zones.

This Barnacle-Inspired Glue Seals Bleeding Organs in Seconds

This Barnacle-Inspired Glue Seals Bleeding Organs in Seconds

Yet it’s hard to create a seal on wet tissue, and most commercial products used to stop dangerous bleeding rely on coagulants which take minutes to work.In a study published this month in Nature Biomedical Engineering, his team demonstrated how this arthropod-like glue can stop bleeding in seconds.

Sunny-Day Flooding Is About to Become More Than a Nuisance

Sunny-Day Flooding Is About to Become More Than a Nuisance

Those higher sea levels coupled with another lunar cycle will drive a national leap in high-tide flooding, starting with what Thompson and researchers call “a year of inflection.”.

Shrinking Birds with Longer Wings?

Shrinking Birds with Longer Wings?

Her most recent research, published this summer in the Journal of Animal Ecology , focuses on a unique data set: A collection from the Chicago Field Museum that goes back four decades and includes more than 70,000 birds killed during migration in collisions with the Windy City’s skyscrapers.

Is Your Name Ruining Your Life?

Is Your Name Ruining Your Life?

Follow-up enquiries from a journalist employing a similar tactic got the same result—the fictitious parent with the Muslim-sounding name was denied a place at the nursery for their child, while applicants with white-sounding names were given options and information on how to enroll.

Study discovers microplastics in New Zealand’s seabed

Study discovers microplastics in New Zealand’s seabed

A pilot study carried out by NIWA and the University of Auckland has found microplastics in samples collected from the seafloor in the Marlborough Sounds.

Reforestation Is Great! But We're Running Out of Seeds

Reforestation Is Great! But We're Running Out of Seeds

“Over the years, I’ve built up a network of people in the different collecting areas who helped me with seed collection,” Swift said.But while there’s a huge focus on planting trees, there’s little on where those seedlings will come from.