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I am going to try to keep all the climate science ice bucket challenges here as they occur. At present there are quite a few individuals who have not yet answered the challenge. I’m sure they will. Some of them, in the Northern Hemisphere, may be waiting for it to get colder so the act…

There may be over 10 billion of us by 2100

Climate change may be the existential threat, but underlying this is, of course, population size. And this is a problem that never seems to go away. There are of course two ways, broadly speaking, to limit population growth aside from draconian policies governing reproduction (such as China’s One Child policy). One is sometimes called the…

The Polar Vortex hurt. We who lived in it, through it, with it, are like farm animals that got zapped by the electric fence a couple of times … notice all that long grass growing by the fence. Stay away. It hurt! So we are worried that this will happen again. It is a reasonable…

That Facebook Book Meme Thing

My friend Iain Davidson tagged me with the facebook novel meme. Here are the rules: Oh, hell, never mind the rules. I wanted to provide links to the books so I decided to do this as a blog post which I’ll paste on my facebook page (and of course tag some unlucky facebook friend). Here…

Ten Thousand Birds

There are over 10,000 species of bird on the Earth today. There is one blog called “10,000 Birds” for which I write a monthly article, in case you did not know. But this post is about Ten Thousand Birds: Ornithology Since Darwin, a book by Tim Birkhead, Jo Wimpenny and Bob Monegomerie. Birds and various…

Did you ever read a textbook on economic history, or an in-depth article on the relative value of goods over the centuries expressed in current US dollars? Have you ever encountered a graphic that shows long term trends in rainfall patterns or other climate variables, using a couple of simple lines, designed to give a…

Giant Semiaquatic Predatory Dinosaur

It is called Spinosaurus aegyptiacus but it sounds a bit more like Godzilla. Spinosaurus is a theropod dinosaur (that’s the groups birds evolved within) found in what is now NOrth Africa, between about 112 and 97 million years ago. It was first discovered about one century ago, though those bones were destroyed during WW II.…

In the earlier days of the West African Ebola outbreak, it was not uncommon to hear people note that we should not panic about Ebola because, after all, far more people are killed from Malaria than Ebola. This is of course an irrelevant argument. That is like telling a person who has lost their family…

Polar Vortex Begets Baby Boom?

Nine months after the Polar Vortex covered a good part of American with freezing cold, there appears to be a baby boom, according to one unverified news story: MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – It’s been nine months since our bitter cold winter ended. Now, delivery rooms are bracing themselves for a Polar Vortex baby boom. All 39…

Titanic Fearless Dinosaur Unearthed

I’m sure you’ve heard. The most complete skeleton of a titanosaur, a newly named species, Dreadnoughtus schrani, is being reported from Argentina. It is not a bird. I mention that because we’ve been talking about how birds are dinosaurs lately (see:”Honey, I shrunk the dinosaurs” and “Flying Dinosaurs: A new book on the dinosaur bird…