My picks from ScienceDaily

Commercial Bees Spreading Disease To Wild Pollinating Bees:

Bees provide crucial pollination service to numerous crops and up to a third of the human diet comes from plants pollinated by insects. However, pollinating bees are suffering widespread declines in North America and scientists warn that this could have serious implications for agriculture and food supply. While the cause of these declines has largely been a mystery, new research reveals an alarming spread of disease from commercial bees to wild pollinators.

Unique Fossil Discovery Shows Antarctic Was Once Much Warmer:

A new fossil discovery- the first of its kind from the whole of the Antarctic continent- provides scientists with new evidence to support the theory that the polar region was once much warmer.

New Population Of Highly Threatened Greater Bamboo Lemur Found In Madagascar:

Researchers in Madagascar have confirmed the existence of a population of greater bamboo lemurs more than 400 kilometers (240 miles) from the only other place where the Critically Endangered species is known to live, raising hopes for its survival.

Some Earthworms Make Septic Systems Work Better, Others Do The Opposite:

The right earthworms can make home septic systems work better. The wrong ones could do the opposite.

Hormone Oxytocin May Inhibit Social Phobia:

Swedish and British scientists have shown using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) that the hormone oxytocin can inhibit feelings of anxiety in specific individuals. Their discovery might lead to a better understanding and the improved treatment of psychiatric affections in which people feel distressed when meeting others, such as in cases of autism and social phobia.

Pollination Habits Of Endangered Texas Rice Revealed To Help Preservation:

A type of wild rice that only grows in a small stretch of the San Marcos River is likely so rare because it plays the sexual reproduction game poorly, a study led by the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at The University of Texas at Austin has revealed.

Genetics Of White Horses Unraveled: One Mutation Makes Ordinary Horses Turn Grey, Then White, Very Young:

The white horse is an icon for dignity which has had a huge impact on human culture across the world. An international team led by researchers at Uppsala University has now identified the mutation causing this spectacular trait and show that white horses carry an identical mutation that can be traced back to a common ancestor that lived thousands of years ago.

Environmental Factors Linked To Sex Ratio Of Plants Discovered:

Environmental factors can transform the ratio of females to males in plant populations according to new research out of the University of Toronto.


More like this

Specializing on locomotor ecology*, my good, long-standing friend Mary Blanchard of the University of Liverpool's Department of Human Anatomy and Cell Biology has been spending a lot of time on Madagascar over the past several years, and has been looking at a lot of wild lemurs. She has studied…
Many plants depend so heavily on visits from bees that they go to great lengths to attract them, using brightly coloured flowers baited with sweet nectar. But some of their tricks are much subtler and are designed not to attract six-legged visitors, but to make their stay more convenient. The…
Loss of species that pollinate is cause for global alarm, researchers say: Birds, bees, bats and other species that pollinate North American plant life are losing population, according to a study released Wednesday by the National Research Council. This "demonstrably downward" trend could damage…
Given the diversity of lemurs on the island of Madagascar, it's not surprising that some of them have more specialized diets. Bamboo lemurs (Hapalemur sp.) are among the specialist species, their diet consisting almost entirely of bamboo. This diet results in them ingesting a considerable amount…