Squished Squirrels Evolve

Squished squirrels evolve as road kill victims of “evolutionary illusions”. New Scientist 22 April 2006, p11 reported they are doing things they “evolved to do, but at the wrong time or in the wrong place.” Ecologist Joel Brown of University of Chicago, Illinois claims this explains why so many squirrels end up being squashed on […]

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Squirrels and Spruce Boom and Bust

Squirrels and spruce boom and bust. According to a new study published in Science on 21 December 2006 (DOI: 10.1126/science.1135520), spruce trees in the Canadian Yukon, and parts of Belgium and Italy, have evolved a synchronized boom and bust approach to seed production in an attempt to thwart Red Squirrels (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus,) that feed on […]

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Spikey Watering System

Spikey watering system described in About the Garden, Australia, Spring 2005. An article on the spines on cacti and succulent plants reminded us that they are generally claimed to have evolved to protect plants from being eaten. However the author brought out a positive side to the spines existence in that “their main function is […]

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Obama’s “Carbon Pollutics”

Obama’s “carbon pollutics” described in a White House press release 25 June 2013. After citing a list of recent natural disasters and claiming “the 12 warmest years in recorded history have all come in the last 15 years”, President Obama has announced “a plan to cut carbon pollution; a plan to protect our country from […]

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Hurricane Blows Off Global Warming

Hurricane blows off global warming, according to a report in Science News vol. 171, p358, 9 June 2007. Since the mid 1990’s there has been an average of four Category-3 or stronger hurricanes in the North Atlantic and Caribbean, and many scientists and environmentalists have blamed this high number of strong hurricanes on global warming. […]

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How to Win Climate Change Deniers

How to win climate change deniers reported in Nature Climate Change 17 June 2012, doi: 10.1038/nclimate1532, and ABC News in Science 18 June 2012. A team of psychologists at the University of Queensland admits that in spite of enormous efforts to convince the general public that man-made global warming was real, “since 2008 the number […]

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High Oxygen Atmosphere No Fire Risk

High oxygen atmosphere no fire risk, according to an article in New Scientist, 1 May 2004, p18. A controversy over the oxygen content on the earth’s atmosphere in the past may have been solved by Richard Wildman of the California Institute of Technology. Some scientists have suggested that earth’s atmosphere once had more oxygen during […]

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Extinction in the Anthropocene

In an article entitled “Defaunation in the Anthropocene” in Science vol. 345 p401, 25 July 2014, doi: 10.1126/science.1251817, an international team of scientists write: “Among terrestrial vertebrates, 322 species have become extinct since 1500, and populations of the remaining species show 25% average decline in abundance. Invertebrate patterns are equally dire: 67% of monitored populations […]

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A Tale of Two Davids

A tale of two Davids – Bellamy and Attenborough, from the Independent 13 January 2013 and Telegraph 22 January 2013. The Independent article begins: “They share a name – David – and a passion for nature. For a while they also shared a place in the vanguard of nature documentary-making, broadcasting from every corner of […]

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Brush Turkey

Birds Downsized Downunder

Birds downsized downunder, as described in ABC News, BBC News 14 June 2017 and Royal Society Open Science doi: 10.1098/rsos.170233, published online 14 June 2017. Three scientists at Flinders University in South Australia have carried out a review of fossils of a group of extinct birds, named megapodes, which means “big feet,” found throughout Australia. […]

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