Marine scientists have long known that some species of fish possess a unique physiological characteristic — a web of arteries and veins lying very close together — that enables them to raise their internal temperatures higher than that of the water surrounding them. Now, a new study has demonstrated that species possessing the ability to warm their core — a process called endothermy — are able to swim two and a half times faster than those whose body temperature doesn’t change.
A new study on the impact of ‘drive-hunting’ dolphins in the Solomon Islands is casting a spotlight on the increasing vulnerability of small cetaceans around the world. From 1976 to 2013, more than 15,000 dolphins were killed by villagers in Fanalei alone, where a single dolphin tooth can fetch the equivalent of 70 cents — an increase in value of five times just in the last decade.
Good management has brought the $559 million United States sea scallop fishery back from the brink of collapse over the past 20 years. However, its current fishery management plan does not account for longer-term environmental change like ocean warming and acidification that may affect the fishery in the future. A group of researchers hopes to change that.
A new study of teeth belonging to a particularly phallic-looking creature has led to the compilation of a prehistoric ‘dentist’s handbook’ which may aid in the identification of previously unrecognised specimens from the Cambrian period, 500 million years ago. The carnivorous Penis Worm, or Ottoia, known from 500-million-year-old fossils, was a fearsome beast: it could turn its mouth inside out to reveal a tooth-lined throat that looked like a cheese grater.
Researchers have found a way to make jet fuel from a common black fungus found in decaying leaves, soil and rotting fruit. The researchers hope the process leads to economically viable production of aviation biofuels in the next five years.
Scientists are researching how population size and genetic drift affect the limits to a species’ range. In a new article, they explain why sharp range margins arise in natural populations.
Most people know the health benefits of taking daily supplements, but what about endangered corals? A new study has found that the critically endangered Staghorn coral may benefit from supplemental nutrition to mitigate the adverse impacts of global climate change.
Scientists have figured out the likely way that white-nose syndrome breaks down tissue in bats, opening the door to potential treatments for a disease that has killed more than six million bats since 2006 and poses a threat to the agricultural industry.
As greater atmospheric carbon dioxide boosts sea temperatures, tropical corals face a bleak future. New climate model projections show that conditions are likely to increase the frequency and severity of coral disease outbreaks, reports a team of researchers.
Western conservation groups are seeking stricter law enforcement to tackle a trade in endangered wildlife, but a researcher warns that this is not a ‘silver bullet’ solution. He highlights the case of the Bali starling, where bringing in tougher laws back-fired — only serving to make the bird more popular among the elite. He highlights how sometimes local people who know the realities on the ground get better results.