Topic: ecology

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Saving the Island Fox

How did a team of conservationists, veterinarians, and volunteers help a rare species of fox come back from the brink of extinction? And why did this little fox almost go extinct in the first place? This is the st...

Crow herding with urban falconry in Portland

“Downtown Portland seems to be a very inviting place for crows and I think the reason for that is due to the presence of garbage and food and lights and warmth, and it’s a relatively predator-free environment,” [bird ...

Fungi Matter, an animation for Kew

Fungi matter. They connect all life on Earth. They play a part in fighting cancer, infections, and heart disease. They provide plants with nutrients to survive. They can even break down plastics and generate biofuels....

The Pink Iguana of Galapagos

One of Galapagos’ most recently described species is also one of its genetically oldest. Pink iguanas are not just a different colour from other land iguanas; they are a completely separate species. There are only aro...

The spectacular birth of baby slugs

How many different stories can one patch of land yield? The BBC's The Lake District: A Restless Year attempts to find out in their portrait of this charming area in northwest England... including its baby slugs. I...

Planet-changing ‘invisible’ microbes on the deep sea floor

"We're making progress at a rate that's outpacing the textbooks. We can't write textbooks fast enough to cover all of the really fundamental discoveries that are happening in the field of microbial ecology right now.....

The benefits of sea cucumber poop

There are about 1,250 different species of sea cucumber across the world's oceans. This is Thelenota anax. And yes, it's doing what you think it's doing. Sea cucumber poop is surprisingly important for the ecosystem. ...

Which life form really dominates Earth?

In 2018, there are around 7.6 billion people on the planet, but weigh us all together on a giant scale and we only make up 1/10,000 of Earth’s biomass. What is biomass? And what life forms dominate the rest of the pla...

Soil Life in Action: Bioturbation with and without soil fauna

Bioturbation is the mixing of (plant) residues into soils and sediments by biotic activity. It is one of the fundamental processes in ecology, as it stimulates decomposition, creates habitats for other (micro)fauna an...

What do bluebirds eat?

Ask any birder what birds eat and you'll hear “seeds, fruits, and insects.” But during reproduction, arguably the most important weeks of a bird’s life, 96% of North American terrestrial birds eat insects and other ar...

How To Grow Coral

When visitors at Georgia Aquarium gaze upon the diverse array of colorful corals, [biologist Kim] Stone says many mistake the often stationary specimens for beautiful rocks. But corals are actually living animals—they...

Plastics 101: What is plastic and how is it made?

Once a completely natural product, much of today's plastic is man-made and largely dependent upon fossil fuels. From polymers to nurdles, learn how plastic is created and what we can do to slow the lasting repercussio...

Fungus: The Plastic of the Future

In 2014, Ecovative Designs was working to combine mycelium with local crop waste to make a compostable biomaterial for packaging, and continue to expand their efforts. One example: A collaboration with Netherlands-bas...

Dr. Jane Goodall’s Google Doodle for Earth Day 2018

In 1970, 20 million Americans came together to deliver a message: our environment sustains us, and so we too must work to sustain it. Since then, Earth Day has spawned a movement of millions across the globe working t...

Why isn’t the world covered in poop?

Each day, the animal kingdom produces roughly enough poop to match the volume of water pouring over Victoria Falls. So why isn’t the planet covered in the stuff? You can thank the humble dung beetle for eating up the ...

Transforming Human Poop Into Eco-Friendly Fertilizer

Everyone poops. But not everyone around the globe has access to a clean toilet. Some communities in Haiti have set up a clean and healthy sanitation system that can also provide a homegrown resource for boosting food ...

Is Your Fleece Jacket Polluting The Oceans?

When you hear “plastic” pollution, you might picture six-pack rings wrapped around seagulls or beaches littered with plastic bottles. But now, researchers are discovering a new menace -- microfibers. They’re tiny stra...

1000s of Bugs, 100 Islands, 1 Happy Entomologist

Community ecologist, biodiversity scientist, and entomologist Crystal Ernst is cataloging insects, spiders, and other tiny creatures for the 100 Islands Project, a multiyear island biogeography study across the Centra...

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