Popular Science articles about Biology & Nature

Green monkeys acquired Staphylococcus aureus from humans

Many deadly diseases that afflict humans were originally acquired through contact with animals. New research published in ASM's Applied and Environmental Microbiology shows that pathogens can also jump the species barrier to move from humans to animals. The study, that...

The feel of food

Some people love avocados. Others hate them. For many of the latter, the fruit's texture is the source of their intense dislike. What gives?

New rare species of whale identified

Researchers have identified a new rare species of beaked whale with a range in the remote North Pacific Ocean.

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Should the gray wolf keep its endangered species protection?

Gray wolves are currently protected under the US Endangered Species Act (and are not always gray).Research by UCLA biologists published today in the journal Science Advances presents strong evidence that the scientific reason advanced by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove the gray...

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Morphology suggests an endangered goby in southern California is a new species

The upper right panel shows the measurements that are larger in the Southern Tidewater Goby (<em>E. kristinae</em>) in red and larger in the Northern Tidewater Goby (<em>E. newberryi</em>) in blue, with graphs of the five most distinguishing measurements. The range map on the right shows the geographic boundary between the historic ranges of the two species. Note the inferred range (blue dash), historically verified sampled range (yellow bar) and current populations (red dots) of the Southern Tidewater Goby. A photograph of the Southern Tidewater Goby appears in the Lower left.An endangered fish along the coast of California--the tidewater goby--may actually be two species rather than one, according a study published July 27, 2016 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE...

Towards smarter crop plants to feed the world

Researchers surveyed 75 plant species to identify top performing enzymes that will help increase the yields of staple food crops such as wheat.Plant scientists at Lancaster University, with support from the University of Illinois, have made an important advance in understanding the natural diversity of a key plant enzyme which could help...

Male frogs have sex on land to keep competitors away

When it comes to the birds and the bees, frogs are remarkably diverse: They do it in water, on land and on leaves.

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Living on borrowed time

This is a Greater sage grouse.Unfortunately, loss of plant and animal habitat leads to local species extinctions and a loss of diversity from ecosystems. Fortunately, not all of the extinctions occur at once. Conservation actions...

Nottingham researchers show novel technique that can 'taste' DNA

Scientists at The University of Nottingham have demonstrated for the first time that it is possible to selectively sequence fragments of DNA in real time, greatly reducing the time needed...

Quantitating the complete human proteome

This is an illustration of SRM peaks and a human face.Reporting in the journal Cell, Senior Research Scientist Dr. Ulrike Kusebauch, of Institute for Systems Biology (ISB), describes the results of a collaboration between scientists at ISB, ETH Zurich and...

Scientists warn about health of English bulldog

According to new research it could be difficult to improve the health of the English bulldog, one of the world's unhealthiest dog breeds, from within its existing gene pool. The findings will be published in the open access journal Canine...

Evolution drives how fast plants could migrate with climate change: UBC study

Seeds are ready to disperse from the <em>Arabidopsis thaliana</em> plant in a greenhouse.New research from the University of British Columbia suggests evolution is a driving mechanism behind plant migration, and that scientists may be underestimating how quickly species can move.

Cuttlefish do not bluff in battle

Two male giant Australian cuttlefish performing the lateral display in an attempt to gain access to a female hiding under the rockMale cuttlefish do not bluff. When their body language shows they are agitated, they are. This was one of the findings from a study on the giant Australian cuttlefish in...

Tuned gels reveal molecules that drive stem cell differentiation

This photograph shows molecular gels with tunable stiffness used to direct stem cell fate.By monitoring stem cell differentiation on gels that mimic the stiffness and nanofibrous structure of biological tissue, researchers have identified the specific molecules that stem cells use when selecting bone...

Videos reveal birds, bats and bugs near Ivanpah solar project power towers

Video surveillance is the most effective method for detecting animals flying around solar power towers, according to a study of various techniques by the U.S. Geological Survey and its...

Nottingham Dollies prove cloned sheep can live long and healthy lives

Three weeks after the scientific world marked the 20th anniversary of the birth of Dolly the sheep new research, published by The University of Nottingham, in the academic journal Nature...

Invasive garden 'super ants' take hold faster than ever in UK, new research finds

First discovered in 2009, there are now a total of six known UK infestations of the Lasius neglectus which thrive in greenhouses and domestic gardens. Originating from Asia, they are...

UMD researchers discover a way that animals keep their cells identical

<p>Roundworms (<em>Caenorhabditis elegans</em>) with a disabled <em>eri-1</em> gene can lose their ability to control repetitive DNA. In the absence of <em>eri-1</em>, even two age-matched siblings can look dramatically different. These differences are because of variable expression from high-copy DNA (green) but not from low-copy DNA (magenta) in the worms' intestinal cells. In worms with a functional <em>eri-1</em> gene, even multi-copy DNA is expressed uniformly in all animals. Image credit: Antony Jose (Click image to download hi-res version.)Cancers arise in skin, muscle, liver or other types of tissue when one cell becomes different from its neighbors. Although biologists have learned a lot about how tissues form during...

Human 'super predator' more terrifying than bears, wolves and dogs

Bears, wolves and other large carnivores are frightening beasts but the fear they inspire in their prey pales in comparison to that caused by the human 'super predator.'

Unusual new zoantharian species is the first described solitary species in over 100 years

An individual polyp removed from the sand, with a semi-closed oral disk at the top that would extend out from the sand. The remaining portion of the polyp is anchored in the soft sediment.A very unusual new species of zoantharian surprised Drs Takuma Fujii and James Davis Reimer, affiliated with Kagoshima University and University of the Ryukyus.

Researchers discover how honey bees 'telescope' their abdomens

This is a honey bee foraging for pollen and nectar. During nectar feeding, a honey bee's abdomen does high-frequency respiratory exercises and assists the suction behavior of mouthparts to improve the intake efficiency.Honey bees are able to wiggle their abdomens in a variety of ways. Now new research published in the Journal of Insect Science shows how they are able...

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