Peru's carbon quantified: Economic and conservation boon

Eureka Alert! - 9 hours 6 min ago
(Carnegie Institution) Today scientists unveiled the first high-resolution map of the carbon stocks stored on land throughout the entire country of Peru. The new and improved methodology used to make the map marks a sea change for future market-based carbon economies. The new carbon map also reveals Peru's extremely high ecological diversity and it provides the critical input to studies of deforestation and forest degradation for conservation, land use, and enforcement purposes.
Categories: Eureka Alert!, General

Big data confirms climate extremes are here to stay

Eureka Alert! - 9 hours 6 min ago
(Northeastern University) In a new paper, Northeastern researchers show how they've used advanced computational data science tools to demonstrate that despite global warming, we may still experience severe cold snaps due to increasing variability in temperature extremes.
Categories: Eureka Alert!, General

Space sex gecko experiment is safe – for now

Nature Newsblog - Tue, 2014-07-29 06:40

Posted on behalf of Katia Moskvitch.

Phew. Five experimental geckos that were feared lost in space have phoned home, restoring hopes that research into their zero-gravity sex lives can go on.

Probing the sex lives of others, in space

Bjørn Christian Tørrissen/CC BY-SA 3.0

The four females and one male are onboard a satellite as part of an experiment to investigate sexual activity and reproduction in microgravity carried out by Russia’s space agency. Roscosmos launched the lizards using a six-tonne Foton-M4 rocket on 19 July. But the fate of the tiny cosmonauts became uncertain when their satellite briefly lost contact with ground control on Thursday 24 July. 

Luckily, technicians managed to restore control on Saturday, and Roscosmos announced on its website that since then it has communicated with the satellite 17 times.”Contact is established, the prescribed commands have been conducted according to plan,” said Roscosmos chief Oleg Ostapenko.

Keeping the geckos company are Drosophila fruit flies, as well as mushrooms, plant seeds and various microorganisms that are also being studied. There is also a special vacuum furnace on board, which is being used to analyse the melting and solidification of metal alloys in microgravity.

Foton-M4 is set to carry out experiments over two months, and involves a “study of the effect of microgravity on sexual behaviour, the body of adult animals and embryonic development”, according to the website of the Institute of Medico-Biological Problems of the Russian Academy of Sciences, which has developed the project along with Roscosmos.

Specific aims of the Gecko-F4 mission include:

  • Create the conditions for sexual activity, copulation and reproduction of geckos in orbit
  • Film the geckos’ sex acts and potential egg-laying and maximise the likelihood that any eggs survive
  • Detect possible structural and metabolic changes in the animals, as well as any eggs and foetuses

Scientists plan to perform additional experiments when Foton-M4 returns to Earth after its two-month mission. That is, assuming contact isn’t lost again. If contact with ground control was lost altogether, the satellite would stay in its 357-mile orbit for about four months, and then re-enter the atmosphere in an uncontrolled way and burn up.

Roscosmos engineers are now trying to figure out what led to the loss of control, with the main theory being that it may have been hit by space debris. The geckos’ craft is located in low Earth orbit, which stretches from about 160 kilometres above the planet’s surface out to some 2,000km. As a result, the intrepid lizards share the orbit with almost 20,000 objects, including more than 500 active satellites and the International Space Station, which circles the Earth at about 400 km above the surface.

It is not the first time Roscosmos has studied sex in zero gravity. In 2007, it sent a crew of geckos, newts, snails, Mongolian gerbils and cockroaches to space – and brought them back to Earth 12 days later. The cockroaches conceived while in space, and one, named Nadezhda, which means “hope” in Russian, became the first animal to give birth in space. Russian researcher Dmitry Atyakshin commented at the time that the roaches “run faster than ordinary cockroaches, and are much more energetic and resilient”.

Brace yourselves for super-geckos in September, when the current mission is due back on Earth.

Categories: General, News

Researcher using next-generation sequencing to rapidly identify pathogens

Biology News - Mon, 2014-07-28 18:50

Benjamin Hause has joined the Kansas State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory as a research assistant professor. Hause uses next-generation sequencing and other new methods to rapidly identify pathogens. He calls himself the bug hunter, but the target of his work consists of viruses that can only be found and identified with special methods and instruments. Benjamin Hause, an assistant research professor at the Kansas State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory at Kansas State University, recently published an article about one of his discoveries, porcine enterovirus G, which is an important find in the United States.

Categories: Biology News, General

Forced mutations doom HIV

Biology News - Mon, 2014-07-28 18:50

Fifteen years ago, MIT professor John Essigmann and colleagues from the University of Washington had a novel idea for an HIV drug. They thought if they could induce the virus to mutate uncontrollably, they could force it to weaken and eventually die out — a strategy that our immune system uses against many viruses.

Categories: Biology News, General

Stress-tolerant tomato relative sequenced

Biology News - Mon, 2014-07-28 18:50

Wild tomato species are not edible, but they can be bred with domestic tomatoes to introduce new traits such as flavor and drought resistance. A new genome sequence for wild... The genome of Solanum pennellii, a wild relative of the domestic tomato, has been published by an international group of researchers including the labs headed by Professors Neelima Sinha and Julin Maloof at the UC Davis Department of Plant Biology. The new genome information may help breeders produce tastier, more stress-tolerant tomatoes.

Categories: Biology News, General

New book list, July 23, 2014

Ernst Mayr Library Blog - Thu, 2014-07-24 15:00

Amazonia–landscape and species evolution: a look into the past. [E-book]
Edited by C. Hoorn, F.P. Wesselingh; editorial advisors, H.B. Vohnof, S.B. Kroonenberg, H. Hooghiemstra. Chichester, U.K.; Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley-Blackwell, 2010. HOLLIS# 012537791
QH112.A445 201 [e-book]

Among chimpanzees: field notes from the race to save our endangered relatives.
By Nancy J. Merrick. Boston: Beacon Press, [2014]. HOLLIS# 014117340
QL737.P96 M47 2014

Animal madness: how anxious dogs, compulsive parrots, and elephants in recovery help us understand ourselves.
By Laurel Braitman. First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, [2014]. HOLLIS# 014117344
QL751.B6834 2014

The art of migration: birds, insects, and the changing seasons in Chicagoland.
Paintings by Peggy Macnamara; text by John Bates and James H. Boone; with a foreword by John W. Fitzpatrick. Chicago; London: University of Chicago Press, [2013]. HOLLIS# 013774629
QL674.M293 2013

Aspectos reproductivos del Cangrjo Rojo de Manglar (Ucides occidentalis) en el Golfo de Guayaquil, Diciembre 2011 – Abril 2012 =reproductive aspects of the mangrove ghost crab (Ucides occidentalis) in the Gulf of Guayaquil, December 2011 – April 2012.
Editores Proyecto USAID Costas y Bosques Sostenibles, Instituto Nacional de Pesca (INP). Guayaquil, Ecuador: Instituto Nacional de Pesca, 2013. HOLLIS# 014115866
QL444.M33 A76 2013

Australian beetles. Volume 1. Morphology, classification, and keys.
Collingwood, Vic.: Csiro Publishing, [2013]- . HOLLIS# 014113097
QL594.L382 2013

Bees: a natural history.
By Christopher O’Toole. Richmond Hill, Ontario: Firefly Books, 2013. HOLLIS# 014052678
QL568.A6O858 2013

Beetles of eastern North America.
By Arthur V. Evans. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2014. HOLLIS# 014117372
QL581.E93 2014

The cognitive neuroscience of mind: a tribute to Michael S. Gazzaniga. [E-book]
Edited by Patricia A. Reuter-Lorenz … [et al.]. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, c2010. HOLLIS# 012346491
QP360.5.C3694 2010 [e-book]

Colloque international sur l’histoire de la biologie marine; les grandes expéditions scientifiques et la création des laboratoires maritimes.
Banyuls-sur-Mer, 2-6 septembre 1963, Laboratoire Arago. Paris, Masson, 1965. HOLLIS# 014107752
QH91.25.A1C6 1963

Deep-sea fauna of the Sea of Japan.
Edited by Toshihiko Fujita. Tokyo: National Museum of Nature and Science, [2014]. HOLLIS# 014119451
QL125.5.D47 2014

Discovery, diversity, and distribution of the amphibians and reptiles of Sulawesi and its offshore islands.
[By] André Koch. Frankfurt: Andreas S. Brahm, 2012. HOLLIS# 014113074
QL664.I55 H63 2012

Dolphins: ecology, behavior, and conservation strategies.
Editor, Joshua B. Samuels. Hauppauge, New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc., 2014. HOLLIS# 014117513
QL737.C432 D656 2014

Dragonflies of North America: the Odonata (Anisoptera) fauna of Canada, the continental United States, northern Mexico and the Greater Antilles.
By James G. Needham, Minter J. Westfall, Jr., Michael L. May. Third edition. Gainesville, FL: Scientific Publishers, 2014. HOLLIS# 013771528
QL520.2.A1 N43 2014

The eastern cougar: historic accounts, scientific investigations, and new evidence. [E-book]
Edited by Chris Bolgiano and Jerry Roberts. 1st ed. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books, c2005. HOLLIS# 009767444
QL737.C23 E16 2005 [e-book]

Encyclopedia of biometrics. [E-book]
Edited by Stan Z. Li. New York; London: Springer, 2009. HOLLIS# 012192054
QH323.5.E539 2009eb [e-book]

Encyclopedia of entomology. [E-book]
Edited by John L. Capinera. 2nd ed. [Dordrecht; London]: Springer, c2008. HOLLIS# 011967389
QL462.3.E47 2008eb [e-book]

Evaluación de la población de Pinchagua (Opisthonema spp.) en aguas Ecuatorianas = Thread herring (Opisthonema spp.) population assessment in Ecuadorian waters.
By Cristian Canales, Manuel Peralta y Viviana Jurado. Guayaquil, Ecuador: Instituto Nacional de Pesca, 2013. HOLLIS# 014115935
SH351.H5 C25 2013

Field guide to fishes of the Chesapeake Bay.
By Edward O. Murdy and John A. Musick; illustrated by Val Kells. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, c2013. HOLLIS# 013947898
QL628.C5 M867 2013

5 easy pieces: how fishing impacts marine ecosystems. [E-book]
By Daniel Pauly. Washington, DC: Island Press, c2010. HOLLIS# 012586224
QH545.F53 P38 2010 [e-book]

Fruitless fall: the collapse of the honey bee and the coming agricultural crisis.
By Rowan Jacobsen. 1st U.S. ed. New York: Bloomsbury, 2008. HOLLIS# 011583648
SF538.3.U6 J33 2008

Godwits: long-haul champions.
By Keith Woodley. North Shore, N.Z.: Raupo, 2009. HOLLIS# 013598099
QL696.C48 W68 2009

Guide to Great Lakes fishes.
By Gerald R. Smith; illustrations by Emily S. Damstra. Ann Arbor: Michigan Sea Grant: University of Michigan Press, c2010. HOLLIS# 012692158
QL625.5.S65 2010

Herpetology in Montana: a history, status summary, checklists, dichotomous keys, accounts for native, potentially native, and exotic species, and indexed bibliography.
By Bryce A. Maxell … [et al.]. Olympia, Wash.: Society for Northwestern Vertebrate Biology, 2003. HOLLIS# 009386838
QL653.M9 H47 2003

Infectious disease: a Scientific American reader.
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008. HOLLIS# 011818125
RA643.I652 2008

John Scouler (c1804-1871), Scottish naturalist: a life, with two voyages.
By E. Charles Nelson; with a contribution by Maggie Reilly and Richard Sutcliffe. Glasgow: Glasgow Natural History Society, 2014. HOLLIS# 014118817
QH31.S37 N45 2014

The manual of museum management.
By Gail Dexter Lord and Barry Lord. 2nd ed. Lanham, MD: AltaMira Press, c2009. HOLLIS# 011966188
AM121.L66 2009

Meanderings in the bush: natural history explorations in outback Australia.
By Richard E. Macmillen; with Barbara J. MacMillen. Indianapolis, IN: Dog Ear Publishing, c2007. HOLLIS# 014112923
QH197.M33 2007

Neurospora: contributions of a model organism. [E-book]
By Rowland H. Davis. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000. HOLLIS# 011508527
QK623.S6 D28 2000eb [e-book]

An obsession with butterflies: our long love affair with a singular insect.
By Sharman Apt Russell. Cambridge, MA: Perseus Pub., 2003. HOLLIS# 009805835
QL544.R87 2003

Olenekian (Early Triassic) stratigraphy and fossil assemblages in northeastern Vietnam.
Edited by Yasunari Shigeta … [et al.]. Tokyo: National Museum of Nature and Science, 2014. HOLLIS# 014119454
QE732.O54 2014

Principles of terrestrial ecosystem ecology.
By F. Stuart Chapin III, Pamela A. Matson, Peter M. Vitousek. 2nd ed. New York: Springer, c2011. HOLLIS# 014106518
QH541.C3595 2011

Puertos, caletas y asentamientos pesqueros artesanales en la costa continental del Ecuador =ports, coves and artisanal fishing settlements on the mainland coast of Ecuador.
By Marco Herrera, Rómulo Castro, Dialhy Coello, Ingrid Saa y Esteban Elías; colaborador Santiago Ferreyros. Guayaquil, Ecuador: Instituto Nacional de Pesca, 2013. HOLLIS# 014115706
SH241.H47 2013

A reason for everything: natural selection and the British imagination.
By Marek Kohn. London: Faber & Faber, 2004. HOLLIS# 009534695
QH375.K64 2004

The reef: a passionate history.
By Iain McCalman. First American edition. New York: Scientific American, 2014. HOLLIS# 014056442
DU280.G68 M44 2014

Remarkable insects of South Africa.
By Lambert Smith. 1st ed. Pretoria, South Africa: Briza, 2008. HOLLIS# 012041995
QL485.S6 S65 2008

Reptiles & amphibians of Australia.
By Harold G. Cogger. Seventh edition. Collingwood, VIC: CSIRO Publishing, [2014]. HOLLIS# 014058543
QL663.A1 C63 2014

Revision of Ufens Girault, 1911: Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae. [E-book]
By Albert K. Owen. Berkeley, Calif.: University of California Press, c2011. HOLLIS# 013109233
QL568.T7 O84 2011eb [e-book]

Upwelling: mechanisms, ecological effects and threats to biodiversity.

William E. Fischer and Adams B. Green, editors. New York: Nova Science Publisher’s, Inc., [2013]. HOLLIS# 013905633
GC228.5.U68 2013

Wheatears of Palearctic: ecology, behaviour and evolution of the genus Oenanthe.
By Evgeniy N. Panov; [edited by M.G. Wilson]. Sofia: Pensoft, 2005. HOLLIS# 008221760
QL696.P288 P25 2005

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