Recent Posts by Joseph

Crowded urban areas have fewer songbirds per person

People in crowded urban areas -- especially poor areas -- see fewer songbirds such as tits and finches, and more potential "nuisance" birds, such as pigeons, magpies and gulls, new research shows.

The University of Exeter and the British Trust for Ornithology examined ratios of birds-to-people and found areas of high-density housing have fewer birds overall...

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Extremely fast dives help peregrine falcons maneuver to catch agile prey

Computer simulations of peregrine falcon attacks show that the extreme speeds reached during dives from high altitudes enhance the raptors' ability to execute maneuvers needed to nab agile prey that would otherwise escape. Robin Mills and colleagues of the University of Groningen, Netherlands, and Oxford University, UK, report this discovery in PLOS Computational Biology.

By attaching...

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Viruses can evolve in parallel in related species

Viruses are more likely to evolve in similar ways in related species -- raising the risk that they will "jump" from one species to another, new research shows.

Scientists from the universities of Exeter and Cambridge compared viruses that evolved in different species and found "parallel genetic changes" were more likely if two host species were...

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Droughts mean fewer flowers for bees

Bees could be at risk from climate change because more frequent droughts could cause plants to produce fewer flowers, new research shows.

Droughts are expected to become more common and more intense in many parts of the world, and researchers studied the impact on flowering plants using a field experiment.

They found that drought roughly halved the...

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New method prioritizes species for conservation in the face of uncertainty

A new way to prioritize species for conservation efforts outperforms other similar methods, according to research presented in PLOS ONE by Rikki Gumbs of Imperial College London, UK, and colleagues at the Zoological Society of London, UK.

The ongoing "sixth mass extinction," driven by human activity, threatens species around the world. A variety of different metrics...

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