The Loom

Archives for February, 2006

Congratulations to Dan Vergano of USA Today, Michelle Nijhuis of High Country News for winning the 2006 journalism awards from the American Geophysical Union. The AGU is the country’s leading organization of Earth scientists. Both reporters won for articles on global warming. You can read Vergano’s article here, and Nijhuis’s here, here, and here. I…

Or at least at the bottom of a movie poster.

Do Not Arm-Wrestle With Hobbits

Peter Brown, one of the discoverers of Homo floresiensis a k a the Hobbit (previous posts

The movie Flock of Dodos, which takes a look at the evolution-creationism struggle, will have a free showing on Monday in New Haven, Connecticut. I’ll be there as part of a panel discussion after the movie, moderated by Michael J. Donoghue, the director of Yale’s Peabody Museum. The panel will also include Randy Olson, the…

Irish elk of the Jurassic

Dinosaur paleontologists don’t look for fossils simply because dinosaurs are cool. They want to solve evolutionary mysteries. Like all living things, dinosaurs form groups of species. You’ve got your long-necked sauropods, your head-shield-sporting ceratopsians, and so on. The distinctiveness of a group can make it difficult to determine how it evolved from an ancestor. Whales…

Hey Wonkette!

Don’t insult leeches.

I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, I need more stories about leeches. I want to find out what scientists are learning about how leeches evolved. And I know that’s not all you want. You want to watch a leech video. And you want a podcast about leech evolution. Well, you’re in luck. Here’s the…

The Wisdom of Parasites

I collect tales of parasites the way some people collect Star Trek plates. And having filled an entire book with them, I thought I had pretty much collected the whole set. But until now I had somehow missed the gruesome glory that is a wasp named Ampulex compressa. As an adult, Ampulex compressa seems like…