Declining calcium levels in some North American lakes are causing major depletions of dominant plankton species, enabling the rapid rise of their ecological competitor: a small jelly-clad invertebrate. Scientists say increasing “jellification” will damage fish stocks and filtration systems that allow lakes to supply drinking water, and that lakes may have been pushed into an entirely new ecological state.
Engineers have created a new way to use lidar technology to identify and classify landslides on...
Leave it to long-dead short-tailed shrew and flying squirrels to outfox climate modelers trying...
Random testing of shallow groundwater in the Northern Plains oil patch found no evidence of contamination from an energy boom that's already seen more than 8,500 wells drilled, federal scientists have said.
Despite an agreement between the world's two two polluting countries this week, a global agreement is still needed to limit future warming to levels that experts deem acceptable. Research on negotiations suggests that getting all countries to agree on an overall agreement is still a big job.
Today’s climate models predict a 50 percent increase in lightning strikes across the U.S. during this century as a result of warming temperatures associated with climate change.
Not long ago, it would have taken several years to run a high-resolution simulation on a global climate model. But using some of the most powerful supercomputers now available, a climate scientist was able to complete a run in just three months.
How homing pigeons find their way home is still largely a mystery. Now, researchers have found that homing pigeons are affected by disturbances in the gravity field and suggest that the birds navigate using an internal gyroscope to guide themselves home.
Plant diseases attack trees and crops and can hurt lumber and food production, but biologists have found that pathogens that kill tree seedlings actually can make forests more diverse.
When munched by grazing animals, some herbaceous plants overcompensate– producing more plant matter and becoming more fertile than they otherwise would. A new study is the first to show that a plant’s ability to dramatically rebound after being cut down relies on a process called genome duplication, in which individual cells make multiple copies of all of their genetic content.
Monitoring efforts along the Pacific Coast of the U.S. and Canada have detected the presence of small amounts of radioactivity from the 2011 Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant accident 100 miles due west of Eureka, Calif. Scientists found the trace amounts of telltale radioactive compounds as part of their ongoing monitoring of natural and human sources of radioactivity in the ocean.
Next time you pour a glass of wine, raise a toast to the 30-million-year-old viruses that have contributed to the genetic make-up of modern grapes. Viruses are usually a curse to farmers because of the damage they cause to crops, but this study also suggests they play a vital evolutionary role.
Global warming stops at nothing– not even groundwater, as a new study reveals: the groundwater’s temperature profiles echo those of the atmosphere, albeit damped and delayed. Researchers used uninterrupted long-term temperature measurements of groundwater flows around the cities of Cologne and Karlsruhe, where the operators of the local waterworks have been measuring the temperature of the groundwater for 40 years.
Using robotic ocean gliders, researchers have found that swirling ocean eddies, similar to atmospheric storms, play an important role in transporting warm waters to the Antarctic coast— a discovery that will help the scientific community determine how rapidly the ice is melting and, as a result, how quickly ocean levels will rise.
Dead zones occur when fertilizer runoff clogs waterways with nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorous. That leads to an explosion of microbes and leaves the water depleted of oxygen, harming marine life. Global warming is likely playing a bigger role than previously thought in dead zones in oceans, lakes and rivers around the world and it's only going to get worse, according to a new study.
Last year’s long, harsh winter was brutal, and caused some experts to predict the “polar vortex” would turn into the “pollen vortex,” and make allergy sufferers more miserable than ever before. But the pollen vortex didn’t happen– at least not everywhere.
Scientists advocate using tools like thinning and prescribed burns to manage the severity of wildfires while allowing them to play their natural role in ecosystems. But, new research says the debate over fuel-reduction techniques is only a small part of a much larger problem that will make society increasingly vulnerable to catastrophic losses unless it changes its approach from fighting fire to coexisting with fire as a natural process.
Chinese officials and businesspeople used a state trip by President Xi Jinping and other high-level visits to smuggle ivory out of Tanzania, an environmental watchdog said today, casting doubt over Beijing's efforts to end the illegal trade that has led to rampant elephant poaching throughout Africa.
The eggs of amniotes— mammals, reptiles and birds— come in a remarkable variety of shapes and sizes. Now, evolutionary biologists have addressed shape variety in terrestrial vertebrates' eggs, pinpointing morphological differences between the eggs of birds and those of their extinct relatives, the theropod dinosaurs.
Results of a new study strongly suggest that there will be notable increases in grass pollen production and allergen exposure up to 202 percent in the next 100 years, leading to a significant, worldwide impact on humans. The predicted upsurge in pollen is because of increases in carbon dioxide and ozone due to climate change.
The road that connects also divides. This dichotomy– half-century-old roads connecting portions of Bahamian islands while fragmenting the tidal waters below– leads to rapid and interesting changes in the fish living in those fragmented sections, according to a new study.
Today’s natural resource manager tending to the health of a stream in Louisiana needs to look upstream. Way upstream– like Montana. Now, scientists have invented a way to more easily manage the extensive nature of streams. A team has presented a new database and algorithm that allows other researchers and conservation managers to understand what’s coming downstream without being weighed down by data files.
Emperor penguins are notoriously shy. When researchers approach, these penguins normally back away and their heart rate goes up. That's not what the scientists need when they want to check heart rate, health and other penguin parameters. So, international scientists and filmmakers have created a remote control rover disguised as a chick to snuggle up to shy penguins.
Researchers have found an unusual mass of rock deep in the active fault line beneath Chile that influenced the rupture size of a massive earthquake that struck the region in 2010. The geological structure is unusually dense and large for this depth in the Earth's crust. The body was revealed using 3-D seismic images of Earth's interior based on the monitoring of vibrations on the Pacific seafloor.
Researchers are reporting that oxygen levels during the billion or more years before the rise of animals were only 0.1 percent of what they are today. Earth’s atmosphere couldn’t have supported a diversity of creatures, regardless of other factors.
From the playground to the board room, people often conform to the behavior of those around them as a way of fitting in. New research shows that this behavioral conformity appears early in human children, but isn’t evidenced by apes like chimpanzees and orangutans.
New research has shown that despite moving house frequently, bats choose to roost with the same social groups of “friends.” The study found that different social groups roost in separate, though adjacent, parts of woodland. The findings have important implications for conservation as bats may not be able to move to another area if a section of woodland is felled.
New research suggests air pollutants released by unconventional oil and gas production are well over recommended levels in the U.S. The study is the first to be based on community sampling by people who live near production sites and could be used to supplement official air-quality monitoring programs.
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