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Preview: Brightsurf Science News :: Endangered Species News

Endangered Species Current Events and Endangered Species News from Brightsurf



Endangered Species Current Events and Endangered Species News Events, Discoveries and Articles from Brightsurf



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Helpers at the nest may allow mother birds to lay smaller eggs

Thu, 23 Nov 17 00:08:40 -0800

Cooperatively breeding birds and fish may have evolved the adaptive ability to reduce the size of their eggs when helpers are available to lighten the parental load, a new study suggests. The findings indicate that in some species, the social environment may influence female reproductive decisions even prior to the birth of offspring.



Small but distinct differences among species mark evolution of human brain

Thu, 23 Nov 17 00:10:10 -0800

The most dramatic divergence between humans and other primates can be found in the brain, the primary organ that gives our species its identity. However, all regions of the human brain have molecular signatures very similar to those of our primate relatives, yet some regions contain distinctly human patterns of gene activity that mark the brain's evolution and may contribute to our cognitive abilities, a new Yale-led study has found.



Galapagos study finds that new species can develop in as little as 2 generations

Thu, 23 Nov 17 00:09:10 -0800

A study of Darwin's finches, which live on the Galapagos Islands in the Pacific Ocean, has revealed direct genetic evidence that new species can arise in just two generations.



Species may appear deceptively resilient to climate change

Wed, 22 Nov 17 00:07:50 -0800

Natural habitats play a vital role in helping other plants and animals resist heat stresses ramping up with climate change -- at least until the species they depend on to form those habitats become imperiled.



Felling pines: Doing it sooner rather than later is better for fynbos

Wed, 22 Nov 17 00:11:20 -0800

Here's some advice for landowners wanting to remove pine trees in the hope of seeing fynbos plants on their properties again: do so before the trees have grown there for more than 30 years. The longer they wait, the less likely the chances that any fynbos seeds will be left in the soil to sprout successfully, according to researchers from Stellenbosch University and the City of Cape Town, in the South African Journal of Botany.



Droplet explosion by shock waves, relevant to nuclear medicine

Wed, 22 Nov 17 00:11:00 -0800

In a study published in EPJ D, Eugene Surdutovich from Oakland University, Rochester, Michigan, USA and colleagues have examined the possibility of observing the multi-fragmentation of small droplets due to shock waves initiated by ions that passed through them. The discovery of ion-induced shock waves will significantly affect our understanding of how radiation damage occurs in biomolecules due to ions.



Camponotini ant species have their own distinct microbiomes

Wed, 22 Nov 17 00:06:10 -0800

Camponotini ant species have their own distinct microbiomes and the bacteria may also vary by developmental stage, according to a study published Nov. 22, 2017, in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Manuela Oliveira Ramalho from the Universidade Estadual Paulista 'Júlio de Mesquita Filho,' Brazil, and colleagues.



EU trade ban brings down global trade in wild birds by 90 percent

Wed, 22 Nov 17 00:05:30 -0800

Trade of wild birds has dropped 90 percent globally since EU banned bird imports in 2005. A new study in Science Advances demonstrates how it decreased the number of birds traded annually from 1.3 million to 130,000. International trade of wild birds is a root cause of exotic birds spreading worldwide. The study was led by Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate, University of Copenhagen and CIBIO-InBIO Research Centre in Biodiversity and Genetic Resources, University of Porto.



Bowhead whales come to Cumberland Sound in Nunavut to exfoliate

Wed, 22 Nov 17 00:04:50 -0800

Aerial drone footage of bowhead whales in Canada's Arctic has revealed that the large mammals molt and use rocks to rub off dead skin.



Penn study identifies new malaria parasites in wild bonobos

Tue, 21 Nov 17 00:04:40 -0800

Malaria parasites, although widespread among wild chimpanzees and gorillas, have not been detected in bonobos, a chimp cousin. Although the researchers saw evidence of a new malaria species in bonobos, it was limited to one small area of their range. This work helps the hunt for biological loopholes to potentially exploit the life history of ape pathogens to better understand how they cross over to humans.



Eight-year research stretch yields treatise on tapeworms along with hundreds of new species

Tue, 21 Nov 17 00:13:30 -0800

A special publication titled



New discovery: Common jellyfish is actually two species

Tue, 21 Nov 17 00:03:20 -0800

UD professor and alum discover sea nettle jellyfish found in Rehoboth and Chesapeake Bay is actually two species.



Climate change models of bird impacts pass the test

Tue, 21 Nov 17 00:09:40 -0800

A major study looking at changes in where UK birds have been found over the past 40 years has validated the latest climate change models being used to forecast impacts on birds and other animals.



Recovery of West Coast marine mammals boosts consumption of chinook salmon

Mon, 20 Nov 17 00:16:30 -0800

The researchers estimate that from 1975 to 2015, the yearly biomass of chinook salmon consumed by pinnipeds (sea lions and harbor seals) and killer whales increased from 6,100 to 15,200 metric tons, and from five to 31.5 million individual salmon.



Tiger bones? Lion bones? An almost extinct cycad? On-the-spot DNA checks at ports of entry

Mon, 20 Nov 17 00:00:50 -0800

Wildlife species are going extinct faster than humankind can reliably keep track of. Meanwhile, wildlife crime evolves quickly, with new tricks fueling a lucrative illegal global trade. As a result, customs and other port-of-entry officials confronted with unidentifiable bits of animals and plants need to make rapid decisions based on reliable information. LifeScanner LAB-IN-A-BOX, a portable DNA barcoding lab can serve as a new tool for rapid on-site species identification, adding to law enforcement's arsenal.



Ancient fish scales and vertebrate teeth share an embryonic origin

Mon, 20 Nov 17 00:00:40 -0800

Latest findings support the theory that teeth in the animal kingdom evolved from the jagged scales of ancient fish, the remnants of which can be seen today embedded in the skin of sharks and skate.



Albatross populations in decline from fishing and environmental change

Mon, 20 Nov 17 00:00:20 -0800

The populations of wandering, black-browed and grey-headed albatrosses have halved over the last 35 years on sub-antarctic Bird Island according to a new study published today (Nov. 20) in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.



Another danger sign for coral reefs: Substitute symbiont falls short

Mon, 20 Nov 17 00:00:10 -0800

For reef-building corals, not just any symbiotic algae will do, new research shows. The findings are important because they amount to another danger sign for the world's coral reefs.



Twisted sex allows mirror-image snails to mate face-to-face, research finds

Mon, 20 Nov 17 00:03:40 -0800

A study led by the University of Nottingham has found that differently-coiled types of Japanese land snails should in fact be considered a single species, because -- against all odds - they are sometimes able to mate, a result which has implications for the classification of other snails.



The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change

Fri, 17 Nov 17 00:04:20 -0800

Leipzig. Forests fulfil numerous important functions, and do so particularly well if they are rich in different species of trees. In addition, forest managers do not have to decide on the provision of solely one function, such as wood production or nature conservation: several services provided by forest ecosystems can be improved at the same time. These are the results of two studies led by scientists from Leipzig University and the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), and published in Ecology Letters.



No more deer in the headlight: Study finds large mammals do use road crossing structures

Fri, 17 Nov 17 00:07:10 -0800

A pilot study finds that large mammals are more likely to use wildlife crossing structures than move past a random location in the surrounding habitat. Animal movement also varied between crossing structures in different locations, suggesting that location might be more important than design. These findings are a first step towards a better understanding of the effectiveness of wildlife crossing structures.



Warmer water signals change for Scotland's shags

Fri, 17 Nov 17 00:08:20 -0800

An increasingly catholic diet among European shags at one of Scotland's best-studied breeding colonies has been linked to long-term climate change and may have important implications for Scotland's seabirds.



A sub-desert savanna spread across Madrid fourteen million years ago

Fri, 17 Nov 17 00:09:30 -0800

The current landscape of Madrid city and its vicinity was really different 14 million years ago. A semi-desert savanna has been inferred for the centre of the Iberian Peninsula in the middle Miocene. This ecosystem was characterised by a very arid tropical climatic regime with up to ten months of drought per year, according to a recent paper published in PLOS ONE. Scientists reached such conclusions after comparing mammal faunal with Africa and Asia ones



eDNA tool detects invasive clams before they become a nuisance

Fri, 17 Nov 17 00:11:10 -0800

When seeking a cure for a disease, early detection is often the key. The same is true for eliminating invasive species. Identifying their presence in a lake before they are abundant is vital. A recent University of Illinois study successfully used environmental DNA to detect invasive clams in California and Nevada lakes. Researchers believe this tool can help identify pests before they become a problem.



Species in the north are more vulnerable to climate change

Thu, 16 Nov 17 00:04:00 -0800

For the first time, researchers have proposed the hypothesis that animals that live in climate zones at a safe distance from both the poles as well as the tropics have the most to gain from acclimating to changes in climate. The findings contradict previous research in the field.



Production timings could stem illegal wildlife laundering

Thu, 16 Nov 17 00:11:00 -0800

Production timings for artificially propagated plants and animals could help flag items offered for sale before they should legally be available.



Passenger pigeon genome shows effects of natural selection in a huge population

Thu, 16 Nov 17 00:14:50 -0800

The passenger pigeon is famous for the enormity of its historical population and for its rapid extinction in the face of mass slaughter by humans. Yet it remains a mystery why the species wasn't able to survive in a few small populations. One theory, consistent with the findings of a new study published in Science, suggests that passenger pigeons were well adapted to living in huge flocks, but poorly adapted to living in smaller groups.



Using eDNA to identify the breeding habitat of endangered species

Thu, 16 Nov 17 00:07:30 -0800

Using wide-ranging eDNA analysis combined with traditional collection survey methods, Japanese researchers have identified the breeding site of critically endangered fish species Acheilognathus typus in the mainstream of Omono River in Akita Prefecture, Japan. The findings were published on November 14 in the online edition of The Science of Nature - Naturwissenschaften.



Scientists team up on study to save endangered African Penguins

Wed, 15 Nov 17 00:16:10 -0800

A first-of-its-kind study on prognostic health indicators in the endangered African Penguin provides invaluable information to preserve and rehabilitate this seabird. Competition with fisheries, oil spills, climate change, diseases and predators are all contributing factors in their dramatic population decline, which has been as high as 80 percent in some South African colonies. Until now, limited data existed on the factors contributing to their successful rehabilitation.



Pacific Island countries could lose 50 -- 80% of fish in local waters under climate change

Wed, 15 Nov 17 00:09:10 -0800

Many Pacific Island nations will lose 50 to 80 percent of marine species in their waters by the end of the 21st century if climate change continues unchecked, finds a new Nippon Foundation-Nereus Program study published in Marine Policy. This area of the ocean is projected to be the most severely impacted by aspects of climate change.



Parasitic plants rely on unusual method to spread their seeds

Tue, 14 Nov 17 00:13:20 -0800

Three species of non-photosynthetic plants rely mainly on camel crickets to disperse their seeds, according to new research from Project Associate Professor Suetsugu Kenji (Kobe University Graduate School of Science). These findings were published on Nov. 9 in the online edition of New Phytologist.



Food supplements

Tue, 14 Nov 17 00:14:40 -0800

The Aloe genus comprises approximately 250 species of succulent dry climate plants (xerophytes). The best known species is Aloe barbadensis (syn. Aloe vera), the inner leaf pulp of which has many uses in the food and cosmetics sector as Aloe vera gel.



More stress and lower survival rates for birds in young, managed forests

Tue, 14 Nov 17 00:00:20 -0800

Birds experience less stress during the winter months when they shelter in old forests rather than in younger, managed plantations suggests new research. The study in Springer's journal The Science of Nature was led by Indrikis Krams of the University of Latvia and the University of Tartu in Estonia.



Study finds 'black box' methods used by biologists probably overestimate number of new species

Tue, 14 Nov 17 00:03:20 -0800

A study published in the journal Molecular Ecology demonstrates the misuse and abuse of methods scientists commonly use to place boundaries between different species.



Study provides insights for combating devastating amphibian disease

Tue, 14 Nov 17 00:04:30 -0800

Amphibian chytridiomycosis, caused by infection with the Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis fungus, is the most devastating vertebrate disease on record.



Microbiome transplants provide disease resistance in critically-endangered Hawaiian plant

Tue, 14 Nov 17 00:07:50 -0800

A team of researchers at the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa and the O'ahu Army Natural Resources Program transplanted microbes to restore the health of a critically endangered Hawaiian plant that, until now, had been driven to extinction in the wild and only survived in managed greenhouses under heavy doses of fungicide.



In bee decline, fungicides emerge as improbable villain

Tue, 14 Nov 17 00:12:50 -0800

When a Cornell-led team of scientists analyzed two dozen environmental factors to understand bumblebee population declines and range contractions, they expected to find stressors like changes in land use, geography or insecticides. Instead, they found a shocker: fungicides, commonly thought to have no impact.



The pros and cons of large ears

Mon, 13 Nov 17 00:05:20 -0800

Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have compared how much energy bats use when flying, depending on whether they have large or small ears.



A genus of European paper wasps revised for the first time using integrative taxonomy

Mon, 13 Nov 17 00:06:00 -0800

The European and Mediterranean species of the paper wasp genus Polistes were revised by scientists at the SNSB-Zoologische Staatssammlung München. For the first time for this group, scientists applied an integrative taxonomic approach which combines traditional morphological methods with DNA barcoding. As a result, the researchers were able to identify a new species from Morocco. For this well-researched wasp group, this is a little sensation. The study is published in the open access journal ZooKeys.



Now you see me! New insect mimics dead leaves -- but sings loud enough for humans to hear

Mon, 13 Nov 17 00:09:00 -0800

A new species of bushcricket which mimics dead leaves to the point of near invisibility and sings so loud humans can hear it has been examined for the first time using advanced technologies to reveal unusual acoustic properties of its wings. Scientists investigating the newly-described species, named Typophyllum spurioculis, found that when the males sing the entire wing resonates at the frequency of the call -- something which does not happen in other species of bushcrickets.



Seals, birds and humans compete for fish in the Baltic Sea

Mon, 13 Nov 17 00:08:20 -0800

In Sweden and in other parts of Europe there are concerns that seals and birds compete with humans for fish resources. For the Baltic Sea, an international study now shows that this competition is a reality.



15,000 scientists in 184 countries warn about negative global environmental trends

Mon, 13 Nov 17 00:10:00 -0800

Human well-being will be severely jeopardized by negative trends in some types of environmental harm, such as a changing climate, deforestation, loss of access to fresh water, species extinctions and human population growth, scientists warn in today's issue of BioScience, an international journal.



How #ScientistsWarningtoHumanity signed up 15,000 scientists

Mon, 13 Nov 17 00:09:50 -0800

Twenty-five years ago, a majority of the world's Nobel Laureates united to sign a warning letter about the Earth; today, scientists have taken grassroots action, with a scorecard -- created in the United States and seeded in Australia going viral and continuing to gain signatures -- showing that of nine areas only one has improved. More than 15,000 scientists have signed this latest second warning -- an overwhelming response initially stemming from a few tweets.



Researchers find first wild alligator snapping turtle in Illinois since 1984

Mon, 13 Nov 17 00:12:40 -0800

Researchers report the first sighting in 30 years of a wild alligator snapping turtle in Illinois. The discovery may be a sign of hope for this state-endangered species, or the animal could be the last of its kind to have survived in Illinois without human intervention, the researchers say.



Crunch time for food security

Fri, 10 Nov 17 00:12:20 -0800

Insects have been a valuable source of nutritional protein for centuries, as both food and feed. The challenge now is to broaden their appeal, safely and sustainably



Mushrooms are full of antioxidants that may have antiaging potential

Thu, 09 Nov 17 00:13:40 -0800

Mushrooms may contain unusually high amounts of two antioxidants that some scientists suggest could help fight aging and bolster health, according to a team of Penn State researchers.



Not all milkweed is equal for egg-laying monarchs, U of G study reveals

Thu, 09 Nov 17 00:14:30 -0800

Milkweed plants in agricultural areas have 3 1/2 times more monarch butterfly eggs than milkweed growing in urban gardens, natural areas and roadsides, according to a new University of Guelph study. The researchers also found monarchs prefer small patches of the plant to larger ones. These findings have implications for current initiatives underway that involve planting milkweed to help the survival of this endangered butterfly.



Metagenomic analysis software reveals new causes of superbug emergence

Thu, 09 Nov 17 00:00:10 -0800

Researchers from ITMO University and Center of Physical and Chemical Medicine developed an algorithm capable of tracking the spread of antibiotic resistance genes in gut microbiota DNA and revealed additional evidence of resistance genes transfer between different bacterial species. The method can not only contribute to the development of effective therapy schemes, but also curb the spread of superbugs. The results of the research were published in 'Bioinformatics' journal.



Size matters: How thrips choose their partners

Wed, 08 Nov 17 00:10:20 -0800

The bigger the male, the higher his chances to successfully mate -- this applies, at least, to thrips, insects that are hard to recognise with the naked eye. The larger males not only drive off their smaller rivals, they also have better immune systems and produce more sperm. This is a discovery that was made by biologists at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) that recently appeared in the international Journal of Insect Behaviour.



Has protecting marine species become a job for statisticians?

Wed, 08 Nov 17 00:11:20 -0800

Fishermen have no way of separating the fish they catch when they cast their nets at sea. Protected species with no market value end up being trapped and dying for no reason. In an attempt to minimize this incidental fishing, statisticians from UNIGE, Dalhousie University and the Australian National University have devised a new statistical method for predicting bycatches more accurately in the future. The technique can also be applied to other research fields.