Monthly Archives: November 2018

Eleven seal species narrowly escaped extinction

Their fur was used as a raw material for coats; their fat was used for oil lamps and cosmetics: right up to the end of the nineteenth century, millions of seals were being hunted and killed every year worldwide. The consequences of this episode of commercial hunting for today's seal populations is the subject of...

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Predatory behavior of Florida's skull-collecting ant

"Add 'skull-collecting ant' to the list of strange creatures in Florida," says Adrian Smith a scientist at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences and North Carolina State University. His new research describes the behavioral and chemical strategies of a Florida ant, Formica archboldi, that decorates its nest with the dismembered body parts of other...

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Human pharmaceuticals change cricket personality

Crickets that are exposed to human drugs that alter serotonin levels in the brain are less active and less aggressive than crickets that have had no drug exposure, according to a new study led by researchers from Linköping University. The findings have been published in Scientific Reports.

Individuals in many animal species show different personality types....

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Drop your weapons!

Animal weapons such as antlers, tusks and limbs specialized for fighting require a large energy expenditure to produce and may cost even more to maintain. Because the leaf-footed bug sheds its large hind limbs, used as weapons in male-male battles, scientists working at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama could measure energy use...

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Animal populations are shrinking due to their high-risk food-finding strategies

A study using animal-attached technology to measure food consumption in four very different wild vertebrates has revealed that animals using a high-risk strategy to find rarer food are particularly susceptible to becoming extinct, as they fail to gather food for their young before they starve.

In the first study of its kind, a team of researchers...

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