Popular Squirrels News and Current Events

Popular Squirrels News and Current Events, Squirrels News Articles.
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Researchers examine contaminants in hunted wildlife
Concerning environmental contaminants, game species are not subject to the same safety testing as commercially marketed livestock. (2017-08-09)

Video tags reveal surprising details of blue whale feeding behavior
The lunge feeding of blue whales is an extraordinary biomechanical event in which the largest animal on Earth accelerates and opens its mouth under water, expanding its enormous throat pouch to engulf a huge volume of water, then filtering out its prey. A new study of blue whale feeding strategies reveals surprising preferences with respect to how much and which direction they roll during lunge feeding in order to maximize efficiency. (2017-11-20)

Humans take up too much space -- and it's affecting how mammals move
A study recently published by Science found that, on average, mammals living in human-modified habitats move two to three times less far than their counterparts in areas untouched by humans. (2018-01-25)

Study suggests native UK Pine martens are helping to control invasive gray squirrels
For many years, populations of a little red squirrel with cute ear tufts, a native of Great Britain, Ireland and Europe, have been in serious decline because of competition for food from an invasive North American gray squirrel and a pox it carries for which the native animal has no defense. Now, new research suggests that native pine martens, also once on the decline, are suppressing the invading squirrels' numbers. (2018-03-06)

A European origin for leprosy?
New research by an international team has revealed that there was much more diversity in the leprosy strains circulating in Medieval Europe than previously thought. This finding, based on the sequencing of 10 new ancient genomes from the leprosy-causing bacterium Mycobacterium leprae, complicates prior assumptions about the origin and spread of the disease, and also includes the oldest M. leprae genome sequenced to date, from about 400 AD in the United Kingdom. (2018-05-10)

Hibernating ground squirrels provide clues to new stroke treatments
In the fight against brain damage caused by stroke, researchers have turned to an unlikely source of inspiration: hibernating ground squirrels. While the animals' brains experience dramatically reduced blood flow during hibernation, just like human patients after a certain type of stroke, the squirrels emerge from their extended naps suffering no ill effects. Now, a team of NIH-funded scientists has identified a potential drug that could grant the same resilience to stroke patients. (2017-11-17)

Baby boomer squirrels master tricky timing
Female squirrels who align their reproduction to take advantage of food-rich years and align have more pups that survive to maturity, according to new research from UAlberta biologists (2017-08-24)

First winged mammals from the Jurassic period discovered
Two 160-million-year-old mammal fossils discovered in China show that the forerunners of mammals in the Jurassic Period evolved to glide and live in trees. With long limbs, long hand and foot fingers, and wing-like membranes for tree-to-tree gliding, Maiopatagium furculiferum and Vilevolodon diplomylos are the oldest known gliders in the long history of early mammals. (2017-08-09)

Finnish forest management guidelines fail to protect the flying squirrel
A new study determined the habitat requirements for flying squirrels and compared them to those included in the recently amended Forest Act. The main finding was that the Finnish Nature Conservation Act does not adequately protect the old growth forests where flying squirrels live. (2018-06-26)

Lichen is losing to wildfire, years after flames are gone
As increasingly hot and severe wildfires scorch the West, some lichen communities integral to conifer forests aren't returning, even years after the flames have been extinguished, according to a study from scientists at the University of California, Davis. (2018-08-09)

Do squirrels teach bears to cross the railroad? Grizzlies dig squirrel middens for grains
Grains have been reported to regularly trickle from hopper cars travelling via the railway through Canada's Banff and Yoho National Parks. As a result, the local red squirrels collect and bury the spilled seeds in their winter larders, which are sometimes discovered by hungry grizzly bears. Grain-conditioned bears may frequent the railway more often than usual, resulting in increased mortality by trains strikes. The case is discussed in the open access journal Nature Conservation. (2017-08-30)

Food for thought: Why did we ever start farming?
In UConn researcher Elic Weitzel's recent publication, he hopes to shed light on the question regarding the adaptation farming in early populations in the Eastern United States. (2019-04-02)

Great scat! Bears -- not birds -- are the chief seed dispersers in Alaska
In southeastern Alaska, brown and black bears are plentiful because of salmon. Their abundance also means they are the primary seed dispersers of berry-producing shrubs, according to a new study. (2018-01-16)

Hold the mustard: What makes spiders fussy eaters
It might be one of nature's most agile and calculating hunters, but the wolf spider won't harm an insect that literally leaves a bad taste in its mouth, according to new research by a team of Wake Forest University sensory neuroscientists, including C.J. Saunders. (2019-04-15)

Squirrels use 'chunking' to organize their favorite nuts
Like trick-or-treaters sorting their Halloween candy haul, fox squirrels apparently organize their stashes of nuts by variety, quality and possibly even preference, according to new UC Berkeley research. (2017-09-13)

Genomes of seven unusual animals reveal new parts of the human genome for disease
To unearth new functional regions in the human genome with potential roles in shaping clinically important traits, researchers searched for how elephants, hibernating bats, orcas, dolphins, naked mole rats, and ground squirrels changed critical parts of the human genome that are shared with most other mammals. These regions are highly conserved, but to evolve their highly distinctive traits, these seven species had to change how these conserved DNA elements work. (2018-03-06)

For 100 million years, amber freezes a tableau of tick's worst day ever
This is the first time this kind of interaction between ticks and spiders has been documented in the fossil record. Even though ticks aren't a typical staple of spider diets, spiders can occasionally prey on ticks in modern ecosystems. (2018-06-13)

Camera trap study reveals the hidden lives of island carnivores
Researchers placed 160 cameras on 19 of the 22 Apostle Islands in northern Wisconsin to see which carnivores were living there. After taking more than 200,000 photos over a period of three years, the team discovered that several carnivores are living on various islands in this remote archipelago in Lake Superior. (2018-12-21)

Monkeys benefit from the nut-cracking abilities of chimpanzees and hogs
Researchers of the University of Amsterdam and the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology describe for the first time the scavenging behaviour of mangabey monkeys, guinea fowls, and squirrels on energy-rich nut remnants cracked by chimpanzees and red river hogs. The team used data collected by camera traps in the rain forest of Tai National Park in Ivory Coast. The results reveal new unknown interactions between different species and increase our understanding of the complex community of animals foraging around tropical nut trees. (2018-07-19)

Researcher studies increased predation of sagebrush songbirds in natural gas fields
While such development has encroached on and hindered nesting habitat for three types of sagebrush-obligate birds, predation of these birds has increased because rodent populations in the vicinity of oil and gas wells have increased. (2016-12-14)

Berry-gorging bears disperse seeds through scat and feed small mammals
Mice and voles scurry to bear scats to forage for seeds, finding nutritional value in the seeds and in some cases further dispersing them. (2018-07-05)

Humans don't use as much brainpower as we like to think
When it comes to brainpower, humans aren't as exceptional as we like to think. For years, scientists assumed that humans devote a larger share of calories to their brains than other animals. Although the human brain makes up only 2 percent of body weight, it consumes more than 25 percent of the body's energy budget. But a comparison of the relative brain costs of 22 species found that other animals have hungry brains too. (2017-10-31)

Research with squirrels provides clues on hormone's role in human learning
Tests on the influence that a stress-related hormone has on learning in ground squirrels could have an impact on understanding how it influences human learning, according to a University of Chicago researcher. The study has found that when they perform normal survival tasks, ground squirrels learn more quickly if they have a modest amount of cortisol, a hormone produced in response to stress, than those with either high or low levels of cortisol. (2008-03-14)

Two new truffle species discovered in Florida pecan orchards
Two new species of truffles were recently discovered on the roots of pecan trees in Florida orchards. The good news is that you can eat them - the bad news is that you wouldn't want to. (2018-08-23)

Giant flying squirrel fossil from a Barcelona landfill clarifies the squirrel family tree
A study just published in eLife shows a fossil found in a Barcelona landfill to be about 11.6 million years old -- making the Miopetaurista neogrivensis specimen the oldest-known giant flying squirrel discovered. (2018-10-24)

This curious animal grew larger over time -- but its brain didn't quite keep up
Study finds that the ancestor of the modern day mountain beaver had a larger relative brain size, offering a rare example of brain size decrease over time. (2018-06-27)

An ecological invasion mimics a drunken walk
A theory that uses the mathematics of a drunken walk describes ecological invasions better than waves, according to Tim Reluga, associate professor of mathematics and biology, Penn State. (2017-01-09)

Study shows hibernating bears conserve more muscle strength than humans on bed rest do
A new study from the May/June 2007 issue of Physiological and Biochemical Zoology quantifiably measures the loss of strength and endurance in black bears during long periods of hibernation. T.D. Lohuis (Alaska Department of Fish and Game) and his co-authors find that black bears in hibernation lose about one-half as much skeletal muscle strength as do humans confined to bed rest for similar periods of time. (2007-04-24)

Study: Internet perpetuates job market inequality
Recent research finds the internet is giving employers and job seekers access to more information, but has not made the hiring process more meritocratic. Instead, lower-wage jobs have become 'black holes,' with intense competition for positions, while many higher-wage jobs are going to targeted candidates and are open to only limited competition. (2019-06-26)

New species of flying squirrel from Southwest China added to the rarest and 'most wanted'
Described in 1981, the genus Biswamoyopterus is regarded as the most mysterious and rarest amongst all flying squirrels. It comprises two species, each known from a single specimen. Recent research by Chinese and Australian scientists described a third species found to inhabit low-altitude forests in Yunnan Province, China. By publishing their discovery in the open-access journal ZooKeys, the research team aims to promote further study and conservation of these squirrels. (2019-07-18)

Ancient birds flew on all-fours
The earliest known ancestor of modern-day birds took to the skies by gliding from trees using primitive feathered wings on their arms and legs, according to new research by a University of Calgary paleontologist. In a paper published in the journal Paleobiology, Department of Biological Sciences Ph.D. student Nick Longrich challenges the idea that birds began flying by taking off from the ground while running and shows that the dinosaur-like bird Archaeopteryx soared using wing-like feathers on all of its limbs. (2006-09-22)

In the squirrel world, prime real estate is determined by previous owner, study reveals
Researchers found that if a squirrel inherits territory from a male rather than a female, it will have about 1,300 more cones in its midden. This stored energy will keep the squirrel alive an extra 17 days. For females it means she will enough food to breed earlier, resulting in her offspring leaving the nest earlier. This shows how the behavior of a complete stranger can impact the genetic contribution of another. (2019-02-13)

Dog training methods help JHU teach robots to learn new tricks
With a training technique commonly used to teach dogs to sit and stay, Johns Hopkins University computer scientists showed a robot how to teach itself several new tricks, including stacking blocks. With the method, the robot, named Spot, was able to learn in days what typically takes a month. (2020-10-26)

Grey squirrels beat reds in 'battle of wits'
Problem-solving powers may help to explain why grey squirrels have taken over from native red squirrels in the UK, new research says. (2018-02-20)

Squirrels show softer side by adopting orphans, study finds
Squirrels will take in orphaned pups if the babies are closely related to the adoptive mother, according to new University of Guelph research. Although adoptions occur among species that live in extended family groups, it's much less common among asocial animals, such as squirrels, who are territorial, live alone and rarely interact with one another. The study also shows squirrels are able to asses which pups they are related to before determining whether to adopt. (2010-06-01)

Lucky squirrels born with 'silver spoon' effect
A study of female red squirrels revealed that advantageous (2008-04-04)

Highway medians are a source of food for wildlife, study shows
Vegetated highway medians are a proverbial buffet for small mammals, according to new research by University of Alberta biologists. Animals such as weasels, mink, and chipmunks use the roadside bands of vegetation as habitat to find food. (2019-07-08)

Lost in translation: Traffic noise disrupts communication between species
Research by scientists at the University of Bristol has found that man-made noise can hinder the response of animals to the warning signals given by other species, putting them at greater risk of death from predators. (2017-01-30)

Selective neural connections can be reestablished in retina after injury, study finds
The brain's ability to form new neural connections, called neuroplasticity, is crucial to recovery from some types of brain injury, but this process is hard to study and remains poorly understood. A new study of neural circuit repair in the retina shows that neurons can make new connections to the right types of photoreceptors to restore selective connectivity after an injury. (2018-05-24)

Scientists discover why elusive aye-aye developed such unusual features
A new study has, for the first time, measured the extent to which the endangered aye-aye has evolved similar features to squirrels, despite being more closely related to monkeys, chimps, and humans. (2018-07-31)

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