Eastern chimpanzees don't want to be judged. Image by Ikiwaner at Wikimedia.com.Whether they have one true love for life, multiple partners, or are free-loving, animals have many different mating systems. We have different scientific terms for these different mating systems, and most of these terms have very specific meanings. An animal is socially monogamous when it has one exclusive mating relationship, but maybe has sex with others outside of that relationship. It is sexually monogamous when ........ Read more »
Smashing out of its egg is only the first step in a baby sea turtle's grueling early days. The turtle fights free of its eggshell only to find itself buried underground. It has to intuit which way is up, then dig out of the packed sand. As soon as it breaks onto the surface of the beach, it begins a mad sprint to the ocean. All around are its brothers and sisters, flailing toward the water as fast as their own flippers will carry them. In the sea they'll keep swimming frantically, trying ........ Read more »
Rusli, M., Booth, D., & Joseph, J. (2016) Synchronous activity lowers the energetic cost of nest escape for sea turtle hatchlings. The Journal of Experimental Biology, 219(10), 1505-1513. DOI: 10.1242/jeb.134742
The human microbiome is an important component of human health and disease. It is an ecosystem of microbes that exists in and on humans, and can affect disease states through disturbances in composition, diversity, metabolism, etc. Understanding the human microbiome will not only allow us to better understand human health, but it will also allow us to treat medical conditions in new and effective ways (e.g. Fecal Microbiota Transplants).... Read more »
Knowles B, Silveira CB, Bailey BA, Barott K, Cantu VA, Cobián-Güemes AG, Coutinho FH, Dinsdale EA, Felts B, Furby KA.... (2016) Lytic to temperate switching of viral communities. Nature, 531(7595), 466-70. PMID: 26982729
The bacteria in and on our bodies have been shown to be vital for human health, influencing nutrition, obesity and protection from diseases. But science has only recently delved into the importance of the microbiome of plants. Since plants can't move, they are especially reliant on partnerships with microbes to help them get nutrients.
... Read more »
This week’s Video Tip of the Week is actually a whole bunch of videos. Although I’ll highlight one here as our tip, there are many great talks from the recent JGI Genomics of Energy & Environment meeting. Although typically we focus on specific software tools for our tips, I think this is a nice case […]... Read more »
Afshinnekoo, E., Meydan, C., Chowdhury, S., Jaroudi, D., Boyer, C., Bernstein, N., Maritz, J., Reeves, D., Gandara, J., Chhangawala, S.... (2015) Geospatial Resolution of Human and Bacterial Diversity with City-Scale Metagenomics. Cell Systems, 1(1), 72-87. DOI: 10.1016/j.cels.2015.01.001
No two bacteria are identical - even when they are genetically the same. A new study from researchers reveals the conditions under which bacteria become individualists and how they help their group grow when times get tough. Whether you are a human or a bacterium, your environment determines how you can develop.
... Read more »
Schreiber, F., Littmann, S., Lavik, G., Escrig, S., Meibom, A., Kuypers, M., & Ackermann, M. (2016) Phenotypic heterogeneity driven by nutrient limitation promotes growth in fluctuating environments. Nature Microbiology, 16055. DOI: 10.1038/nmicrobiol.2016.55
"Dance like nobody's watching" is fine advice, unless somebody is watching, and she needs to translate your dance steps into instructions to find food. That's the case for honeybees. But even though the rest of the colony must interpret their dance moves carefully, it turns out honeybees are pretty sloppy dancers.
When honeybees return to the hive after finding nectar or other food, they famously do a "waggle dance" to tell their sisters where the food was. The waggle is a shimmying ........ Read more »
Schürch R, Ratnieks FL, Samuelson EE, & Couvillon MJ. (2016) Dancing to her own beat: honey bee foragers communicate via individually calibrated waggle dances. The Journal of experimental biology. PMID: 26944504
by Casper van der Kooi in genome ecology evolution etc
Many male and female-specific traits share a common genetic basis. Selection on these traits may, however, differ between the sexes, leading to sexual conflict. Sex-dependent dominance, where the dominant allele in one sex is recessive in the other, is expected … Continue reading →... Read more »
Barson, N., Aykanat, T., Hindar, K., Baranski, M., Bolstad, G., Fiske, P., Jacq, C., Jensen, A., Johnston, S., Karlsson, S.... (2015) Sex-dependent dominance at a single locus maintains variation in age at maturity in salmon. Nature, 528(7582), 405-408. DOI: 10.1038/nature16062
Emerge into Brazil’s swamp, with Chiara and the Wildlife Conservation Society.... Read more »
Rodrigo Luiz Simas de Aguiar, & Keny Marques Lima. (2012) A arte rupestre em cavernas da região noroeste de Mato Grosso do Sul discussões preliminares. Espeleo-Tema, 23(2). info:/
By Hayley TrzinskiImage by Hayley TrzinskiThe Princess and the Frog is a very fun and imaginative children’s story… but not when pesticides are involved. Have you ever wondered how dangerous pesticides can be? Well, pesticides can harm more than just pests and weeds, and in the case of frogs, many pesticides and herbicides are causing problems. Atrazine, a chemical commonly used as an herbicide, can cause reproduction in male African clawed frogs to be impossible. In some cases, atrazine i........ Read more »
Hayes, T., Khoury, V., Narayan, A., Nazir, M., Park, A., Brown, T., Adame, L., Chan, E., Buchholz, D., Stueve, T.... (2010) Atrazine induces complete feminization and chemical castration in male African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis). Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(10), 4612-4617. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0909519107
Mnif, W., Hassine, A., Bouaziz, A., Bartegi, A., Thomas, O., & Roig, B. (2011) Effect of Endocrine Disruptor Pesticides: A Review. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 8(12), 2265-2303. DOI: 10.3390/ijerph8062265
The Eatles are feasting on an African Grey Parrot. Come read about the natural history and conservation of this animal, courtesy of Animalia, Inc and the Organ Laboratory at Indiana University School of Medicine.... Read more »
The Amazons were a mythical race of warrior women who, in one version of the story, removed their right breasts to be more hardcore. But an all-female race of salamanders doesn't suffer from missing body parts. In fact, these animals have super-powered regeneration: when they lose an appendage, they can grow it back much more quickly than other salamanders do.
The secret lies somewhere in the salamanders' bizarre genetics. "They sort of defy definition," says Rob Denton, a graduate studen... Read more »
Saccucci, M., Denton, R., Holding, M., & Gibbs, H. (2016) Polyploid unisexual salamanders have higher tissue regeneration rates than diploid sexual relatives. Journal of Zoology. DOI: 10.1111/jzo.12339
Sleeping reptiles show brain patterns resembling sleep cycles in mammals and birds.... Read more »
Ólafsdóttir, H., Barry, C., Saleem, A., Hassabis, D., & Spiers, H. (2015) Hippocampal place cells construct reward related sequences through unexplored space. eLife. DOI: 10.7554/eLife.06063
Shein-Idelson, M., Ondracek, J., Liaw, H., Reiter, S., & Laurent, G. (2016) Slow waves, sharp waves, ripples, and REM in sleeping dragons. Science, 352(6285), 590-595. DOI: 10.1126/science.aaf3621
Did you know this is Hedgehog Awareness Week? The British Hedgehog Preservation Society has dedicated May 1 through 7 to the spiny garden animal. The society won't go so far as to call it Hedgehog Appreciation Week—perhaps that would be too much of an imposition?—but it does want to highlight some of the problems faced by hedgehogs. For example, weed whackers, which apparently in the U.K. are called "strimmers."
The society suggests posting pro-hedgehog leaflets around your neighborho........ Read more »
Recio, M. (2016) Crowded house: nest sharing among solitary European hedgehogs in New Zealand. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 14(4), 225-226. DOI: 10.1002/fee.1269
It is notoriously difficult to estimate mortality rates for zooplankton populations in the open ocean. In a new paper, Kvile and colleagues demonstrate that mortality estimation can be improved using a statistical regression approach (SRA) that takes into account advection and spatiotemporal trends in recruitment. Using this method on
Calanus finmarchicus survey data from the Norwegian Sea–Barents Sea, they find indications of increased mortality for the old........ Read more »
AKSNES, D., & OHMAN, M. (1996) A vertical life table approach to zooplankton mortality estimation. Limnology and Oceanography, 41(7), 1461-1469. DOI: 10.4319/lo.19188.8.131.521
Kvile, K., Stige, L., Prokopchuk, I., & Langangen, �. (2016) A statistical regression approach to estimate zooplankton mortality from spatiotemporal survey data. Journal of Plankton Research. DOI: 10.1093/plankt/fbw028
It was the summer of 1882, and grape farmers in the Médoc region of southwest France (north of Bordeaux, on the Atlantic coast) had a problem.Schoolchildren (or university students, or just anyone travelling the roads along which the grapevines grew, depending on what source you're reading) were pilfering their grapes. To try and ward them off, some farmers decided to dissolve some slaked lime and copper sulfate in water and spray it on their grapevines closest to the roads. The idea was... Read more »
Pimentel J, & Marques F. (1969) 'Vineyard sprayer's lung': A new occupational disease. Thorax, 24(6), 678-688. DOI: 10.1136/thx.24.6.678
Emerge into Brazil's swamp, with Chiara and the Wildlife Conservation Society.... Read more »
Keuroghlian, A., Andrade Santos, M., & Eaton, D. (2015) The effects of deforestation on white-lipped peccary (Tayassu pecari) home range in the southern Pantanal. Mammalia, 79(4). DOI: 10.1515/mammalia-2014-0094
By Nick Gremban Male speckled wood butterflies will “perch” on leavesand ends of twigs to look out over their territory for females. However, they have been known to be quite aggressivewith any intruding males! Photo by Alvesgaspar atWikimedia Commons, modified by Nick Gremban.Think about any territorial animal. Now think about its aggressiveness while it is defending its territory. Was your animal a butterfly? No? You mean the colorful wings and the natural association with flowers d........ Read more »
Bergman, M., Olofsson, M., & Wiklund, C. (2010) Contest outcome in a territorial butterfly: the role of motivation. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 277(1696), 3027-3033. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2010.0646
Swarming Red Crabs, 11,000-year-old shaman headdress, 'superfast' wing muscles, slowdown of giant airstreams, and sexually transmitted infections in Neanderthals. Here are five of the latest scientific studies published open-access this week, ... Read more »
Pineda, J., Cho, W., Starczak, V., Govindarajan, A., Guzman, H., Girdhar, Y., Holleman, R., Churchill, J., Singh, H., & Ralston, D. (2016) A crab swarm at an ecological hotspot: patchiness and population density from AUV observations at a coastal, tropical seamount. PeerJ. DOI: 10.7717/peerj.1770
Little, A., Elliott, B., Conneller, C., Pomstra, D., Evans, A., Fitton, L., Holland, A., Davis, R., Kershaw, R., O’Connor, S.... (2016) Technological Analysis of the World’s Earliest Shamanic Costume: A Multi-Scalar, Experimental Study of a Red Deer Headdress from the Early Holocene Site of Star Carr, North Yorkshire, UK. PLOS ONE, 11(4). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0152136
Fuxjager, M., Goller, F., Dirkse, A., Sanin, G., & Garcia, S. (2016) Select forelimb muscles have evolved superfast contractile speed to support acrobatic social displays. eLife. DOI: 10.7554/eLife.13544
Stadtherr, L., Coumou, D., Petoukhov, V., Petri, S., & Rahmstorf, S. (2016) Record Balkan floods of 2014 linked to planetary wave resonance. Science Advances, 2(4). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1501428
Houldcroft, C., & Underdown, S. (2016) Neanderthal genomics suggests a pleistocene time frame for the first epidemiologic transition. American Journal of Physical Anthropology. DOI: 10.1002/ajpa.22985
Growing evidence suggests that the telomeres’ length (a non-coding DNA sequence localized at the end of the chromosomes) is related to individual breeding performances and survival rates in several species.
... Read more »
Le Vaillant, M., Viblanc, V., Saraux, C., Le Bohec, C., Le Maho, Y., Kato, A., Criscuolo, F., & Ropert-Coudert, Y. (2015) Telomere length reflects individual quality in free-living adult king penguins. Polar Biology, 38(12), 2059-2067. DOI: 10.1007/s00300-015-1766-0
Carney Almroth, B., Skold, M., & Nilsson Skold, H. (2012) Gender differences in health and aging of Atlantic cod subject to size selective fishery. Biology Open, 1(9), 922-928. DOI: 10.1242/bio.20121446
Ovenden, J., Berry, O., Welch, D., Buckworth, R., & Dichmont, C. (2015) Ocean's eleven: a critical evaluation of the role of population, evolutionary and molecular genetics in the management of wild fisheries. Fish and Fisheries, 16(1), 125-159. DOI: 10.1111/faf.12052
Do you write about peer-reviewed research in your blog? Use ResearchBlogging.org to make it easy for your readers — and others from around the world — to find your serious posts about academic research.
If you don't have a blog, you can still use our site to learn about fascinating developments in cutting-edge research from around the world.
Research Blogging is powered by SMG Technology.
To learn more, visit seedmediagroup.com.