Links to share

The more we learn about microbes, the more we realise they are essential symbiotes for most (all?) life forms. In the insect world, it’s stunning how specific and unique these interactions can be: The Wasp That Paints Its Nursery In Bacteria A nice article explaining the complexity of the interactions that form each spring: The […]

Declines in insect biomass

I had a surreal conversation with my (conservative) uncle this Christmas. It went a little like this: Me: A study in Germany this year showed a large decline in insect biomass…75% over the past thirty years or so (Hallmann et al 2017, open access). We call it the “windscreen effect“, where when you used to […]

Links to Share

You can’t make this stuff up: Silent and Deadly: Fatal Farts Immobilize Prey Bad news bears: Monsanto Attacks Scientists After Studies Show Trouble For Weedkiller Dicamba Love this new review by Jeff Ollerton…favourite quote: “the recent description of an asclepiad (Apocynaceae: Asclepiadoideae) flower from Dominican amber together with its termite pollinator, is both a paleontological […]

A new great ape species! and traveling

Scientists have declared this genetic variant of orangutan a separate species, making it the first new great ape species in a century. I don’t get toooooo excited about primates, but this is an intriguing example of the ways in which phylogenetics can change the way we perceive animals and conservation. I heard a talk recently […]

The Dicamba struggle

I have to be careful about wading into this topic, as it is highly controversial, but I feel the need to discuss it. But before I talk about Dicamba, I need to talk about Roundup. Roundup is the most widely used herbicide *in the world*. Like WD-40, it is also a desiccant (it dries out […]

Links to share

Fascinating article on the weird ctenophore. Not sure if I am 100% on board with the conclusions drawn, but nonetheless a worthy read: Aliens in our midst: The ctenophore’s brain suggests that, if evolution began again, intelligence would re-emerge because nature repeats itself As usual, superb photos in the Audobon photography competition. One day I […]

Links to Share

Saw this first hand when I was in Kenya earlier this year where brutal droughts are devastating the country. It’s very sad because many people don’t have another way to live. The farmers in Kenya were more ready to discuss climate change with me than suburbanites in Pennsylvania…: As The Climate Changes, Kenyan Herders Find […]