Scientists set out this week to drill a hole into the Indian Ocean floor to try to get below the Earth’s crust for the first time, testing theories about the make-up of the crust on the way down. —> Read More
Humans have evolved unique ‘grandparent’ genes that protect older adults against the ravages of Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases, researchers say. —> Read More
Breakthrough that can make DIAMONDS at room temperature: Researchers find new phase for carbon and say it could change the jewel making process
Scientists from North Carolina State University have discovered a new carbon phase that can be used to create these precious gems in a laboratory and at room temperature. —> Read More
Could a DOG fly a plane? Absurd? Believe it or not, a team of respected British documentary makers are trying to prove just that
In an extraordinary – and frankly barking – experiment, animal behaviour experts are attempting to teach dogs from rescue homes how to master the controls of a light aircraft. —> Read More
Post submitted by Max Allen of the Santa Cruz Puma Project.
I currently work on the Santa Cruz Puma Project in California, studying pumas that live in the highly fragmented and human-dominated Santa Cruz Mountains. Pumas who live here must navigate through a landscape that is a mosaic of different levels of human activity and housing density alongside open spaces, entailing risk during run-ins with humans. The northeastern border of our study area is Silicon Valley, an area of a high density of humans and development, but human growth and development is accelerating throughout the Santa Cruz Mountains. Having previously studied pumas in a remote area in northern California, I am often surprised by the juxtaposition of a large carnivore living so close to so many people in our study area.
As you might expect, our research shows that pumas avoid areas with the most development (Wilmers et al. 2013), and areas with the most human activity (Wang et al. 2015). Juveniles seem to have the hardest time. When kittens are around 1.5 years old, they disperse, meaning that they leave their mother’s home range in search of territory of their own. Generally, the high quality territories are already occupied by adult resident pumas, and since juveniles are not ready to control prime habitat, they are often pushed by the resident animals into marginal, suboptimal habitat. In our case, this means areas closer to higher levels of human activity and development.
The yearling pumas in this video will disperse from their mother soon, and likely live in sub-optimal habitat —> Read More
Climate change may be the one thing that threatens everyone on Earth. But the peril is much more dire for people in some countries if negotiators fail to reach a climate deal in Paris in the coming weeks.
The Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index and climate risk consulting group Verisk Maplecroft both release annual rankings of nations most vulnerable to climate change based on geographical conditions and preparedness. Below are some of the countries most threatened by a warming planet.
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The search for Mars’ ‘missing’ atmospheric carbon has been called off as the planet may not have had a thick ancient atmosphere after all. —> Read More
It’s laundry day and the only clean T-shirt sports the big logo of a brand that used to be trendy but is only embarrassing now. What can you do? Wait until the tumble dryer has finished and be too late for the date or just put on the T-shirt? How you decide in a situation like this depends on a person’s ‘brand embarrassment tendency’ (BET). —> Read More
It had been planned for several months, but as fate would have it, the University of Montreal hosted the Conférences de la montagne “Challenges of democracy” symposium less than a week after the attacks on Paris. No fewer than 1,000 people arrived at the University of Montreal’s Ernest-Cormier Amphitheatre on November 19, 2015 to hear two great voices of political philosophy – Charles Taylor, Professor Emeritus of McGill University, and Michael J. Sandel, professor at Harvard University, exchange their views on the issues facing the contemporary world with regard to the rise of terrorism. Terrorism had forced another scheduled and highly anticipated speaker, the French sociologist and intellectual Pierre Rosanvallon, to return to France a few days before the conference. —> Read More
NPR’s Ari Shapiro talks with Jennifer Morgan, global director of the Climate Program at the World Resources Institute. They discuss what success in Paris would be and what has to happen afterward.