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Horse Sense

Looking a little inbred, this herd of Przewalki’s horse are the ideal-more than a simple breed-an actual subspecies that has remained wild (and stubborn) since their speciation; Przewalski herd image; Credit: © Shutterstock The Yukon horse and the Nevada horse represented the last traces of a North American phenomenon that has perplexed us for generations-the Read More

We’re mad about Madagascar.

The tomato frog, Dyscophus antongilii, is a near-threatened endemic from Antongili Bay in Madagascar’s north east. The species’ situation is yet another example of gross negligence and lack of understanding, as pet-traders profited from the export of vast numbers from the island. Beautiful and endangered, like all of the unique wildlife of this “great natural Read More

Interesting albatross personalities

Albatross and chick image; Credit: © Shutterstock The albatross is perhaps one of the iconic birds, with its traditional mythology among ancient and modern sailors of different views! The personality of the bird is likely to be well-developed, given the great life-span, the niche as a top marine predator and its tremendous journeying across expanses Read More

Ocean acidification threat to coral reproduction

New research puts the entire life cycle of coral reefs at risk from acidification of the oceans. This is the first study to look at the impact of acidifying oceans on the reproductive cycle of corals, though its disastrous effects on the ability of marine creatures to build their calcium carbonate skeletons and shells is Read More

Roller nestlings respond to fear and predation threats by vomiting

The beautiful Eurasian Roller is “near-threatened” in western Europe, but increasing its numbers in newly forested areas in eastern Europe. It sits on isolated trees and takes off to capture large insect prey; Credit: Shutterstock The hormonal adrenalin response is well known to humans. The Eurasian roller, or blue roller (Coracias garrulus) has a much Read More

Horses look back

Przewalski horse via Shutterstock Przewalski’s horse represents the only physical link to ancestral horses, but after the dog, the boar and many ovines and bovines came the horse. We domesticated horses last. Perhaps we couldn’t catch them earlier! Science has advanced now to the extent that we can look back in history through the mitochondrial Read More

Nations ‘need to work together’ to save wildlife

Countries will have to improve their co-operation if they are to protect endangered wildlife in an age of climate change, according to an international study. A team of scientists have come up with a conservation index designed to help policy-makers to deal with the effects of climate change on birds in Africa, the theory of Read More

Woolly mammoth range dynamics are discovered

This mammoth sees the winter arrive but many of his species will have died out, after the warmer summers following the last Ice Age drove them north; woolly image; Credit: © Shutterstock How to imagine the Pleistocene? It was a period when drops in sea-level of up to 100m created land bridges and many Ice Read More

Dolphin innovation and culture uses their social abilities

Juvenile female learnt this sponging from her mother!; Credit: © Ewa Krzyszczyk Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) hunt with sponges by extracting prey organisms on the sea bed. Human cultural behaviour also involves activity like this, with “homophily” or copying behaviour is evident. If a child sees his parent using a tool it frequently follows that Read More

Earthquake damage report for 2011 published by CATDAT

Destruction caused by the M6.3 earthquake on February 22, 2011 in Christchurch, New Zealand via Shutterstock Armand Vervaeck regularly quotes tectonic news on www.earthquake‐, but with James Daniell, he has now released an annual report on the cost and damage caused by earthquakes and volcanoes in 2011. It was to date the most damaging year Read More

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