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Mini video cameras offer peek at hard-to-observe bird behavior
Fledging behavior -- when and why baby birds leave the nest -- is something scientists know very little about. Rarely is someone watching a nest at just the right moment to see fledging happen. To get around this, the researchers behind a new study deployed miniature video cameras to monitor over 200 grassland bird nests in Alberta, North Dakota, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, and they found that fledglings' decision-making process is more complex than anyone guessed. (2018-09-12)

Turtles' mating habits protect against effects of climate change
The mating habits of marine turtles may help to protect them against the effects of climate change. The study shows how the mating patterns of a population of endangered green turtles may be helping them deal with the fact that global warming is leading to a disproportionate number of females being born. (2012-01-24)

Penguins, food and robots
In a study reported in the Nature publication Scientific Reports, University of Delaware oceanographers consider whether Adelie penguins and gentoo penguins -- newcomers to the Palmer Station region over the last two decades -- may be competing for the same food resources and whether this might exacerbate the Adelie population decline. (2016-01-07)

University of Georgia unveils technique to improve success rate of cattle cloning
Researchers at the University of Georgia today announced a technique which may dramatically improve the success rate of cattle cloning, and displayed eight cloned cattle ranging in age from two months to four months as evidence of their success. As little as two years ago, the highest rate of success for cloning attempts was one in 20; this technique has a success rate of one in seven, almost three times as high. (2001-06-27)

University of Georgia unveils technique to improve success rate of cattle cloning
Chemists W. Harry Mandeville, Ph.D., and S. Randall Holmes- Farley, Ph.D., of GelTex Pharmaceuticals Inc. in Waltham, Mass., were honored June 26 by the world's largest scientific society for designing a new class of polymer-based drugs to treat kidney disease and elevated cholesterol. They received one of two 2001 Industrial Innovation Awards at the American Chemical Society's Northeast regional meeting in Durham, N.H. (2001-06-26)

Disentangling the plant microbiome
With the human population expected to climb from 7.4 billion to more than 11 billion people by 2100, some scientists hope that manipulating the microbial communities in, on and around plants, the plant microbiome, could open up new ways to meet the growing demand for food. But breeding a better microbiome may be easier in some plant tissues and growing conditions than others, finds a study led by researchers at Duke University. (2016-07-12)

Emperor Penguins breeding on ice shelves
Antarctic emperor penguins may be adapting to warmer temperatures. (2014-01-08)

New public-private hybrid rice group aims to raise rice yields in the tropics
The Hybrid Rice Research and Development Consortium, established by the International Rice Research Institute, will strengthen public-private sector partnership in hybrid rice. (2007-11-09)

Cranberry breeding program may soon bear fruit for growers
A cranberry variety developed by University of Wisconsin-Madison scientists with the help of local cranberry growers is now poised to give those same growers a competitive edge. (2004-05-24)

Jujube genome study sheds light on fruit tree's domestication
Researchers at BTI and the Northwest A&F University have sequenced the genome of the dry jujube. They identified the genomic region that underlies the sugar and acid content of the fruits -- a key factor in jujube domestication -- as well as genes involved in fruit texture and breeding compatibility. The genome will serve as a resource for jujube breeding efforts. (2016-12-22)

To the Antarctic or Brazil for new feathers
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology have studied the migratory behavior of thin-billed prions and discovered that the animals spend their molting season in two areas that are at a considerable distance from each other. Thus, it would appear that some seabirds can be extremely flexible and change their habitat if required -- a vital adaptation to the unpredictable conditions found on the high seas. (2010-03-15)

Insomniac flies resemble sleep-deprived humans
Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have created a line of fruit flies that may someday help shed light on the mechanisms that cause insomnia in humans. The flies, which only get a small fraction of the sleep of normal flies, resemble insomniac humans in several ways. (2009-06-02)

Climate change impacts on endangered wildlife massively under reported
A team of scientists reporting in the journal Nature Climate Change say that negative impacts of climate change on threatened and endangered wildlife have been massively underreported. (2017-02-13)

City birds better than rural species in coping with human disruption
New research shows birds that inhabit urban areas can adapt to a much larger range of conditions than their rural cousins. (2007-09-25)

Only few seabird species contract avian malaria
Climate differences have less impact on the transmission of blood parasites than expected. (2011-12-12)

New research expands genetic base of cultivated strawberry
Michigan State University researchers attempting to increase the genetic base of today's most common cultivated strawberry (F. ananassa) and introduce novel genetic diversity into the cultivated gene pool crossed elite clones of two wild strawberry species and hybridized them to produce 26 reconstructed populations. The study found that the reconstruction of F. ananassa by crossing elite genotypes of F. chiloensis and F. virginiana appears to be an effective strategy for strawberry improvement. (2011-01-16)

A good tern deserves another
A new report in the International Journal of Computational Science and Engineering, reveals details of an energy-efficient system for monitoring wild birds that reduces power consumption without significantly compromising image quality. (2014-01-24)

In a warming climate, Arctic geese are rushing north
As Arctic temperatures continue to rise, migratory barnacle geese have responded by speeding up their 3,000-kilometer migration in order to reach their destination more quickly with fewer stops along the way, according to new evidence reported in Current Biology on July 19. Unfortunately, the birds' earlier arrival isn't making as much of a difference as one might expect. (2018-07-19)

Computerized tool takes a bite out of traditional apple testing
To measure the crispness of apples without relying on human test panels, researchers used a computerized penetrometer to assess firmness and texture of apple varieties and compared the results with sensory data from an expert panel. The scientists found a significant correlation between the penetrometer crispness value and the sensory crispness value and concluded that data from the test instrument was more useful than data from either a standard penetrometer or acoustic resonance test alone. (2011-12-13)

Optimising mushroom spawn production in Uganda
Scientists at the Institute of Food Research are helping in the expansion and diversification of mushroom cultivation in Uganda. A new two year project ultimately aims to improve the diets of Ugandans, increase the incomes of local farmers and create a sustainable trade through training and research. (2014-06-17)

Analysis of wild tomatoes elucidates genetic basis underlying fruit traits
Wild tomato species represent a rich gene pool for numerous desirable traits lost during domestication. An international research team, including scientists from Weizmann Institute of Science and IPK, exploited an introgression population of wild desert-adapted species and a domesticated tomato cultivar to investigate the transfer of wild species-associated fruit traits on the genetic, regulatory and metabolic level. The results have been published in the magazine ''Nature Genetics''. (2020-09-28)

Drones can be a source of disturbance to wintering waterbird flocks
Newly published research, carried out by the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) in Scotland, shows that wintering waterbirds, such as ducks, geese, swans and wading birds can easily be scared into flight by drones. (2020-09-01)

Healthy mom with lots of help key to thriving brood say scientists
What does it take to raise successful, self-sufficient offspring? A healthy mom with lots of in-house help, says Utah State University researcher Dan MacNulty. While this advice may benefit humans, a recent study by MacNulty and colleagues, published in the Journal of Animal Ecology, actually focuses on another group of large, social mammals -- namely, wolves. (2012-10-09)

Doubled haploid technology for quickly developing inbred corn lines offered at ISU
An ISU agronomist has launched a Doubled Haploid Facility that can develop pure, inbred corn lines in less time than traditional methods. (2010-04-05)

Study finds PHS gene that prevents wheat from sprouting
Researchers have found and cloned a gene that prevents wheat from preharvest sprouting. The finding will to be most beneficial to white wheat production, which loses $1 billion annually. (2013-08-20)

Rutgers researchers discover secrets of nutritious corn breed that withstands rigors of handling
Rutgers researchers have discovered the basis for what makes corn kernels hard, a quality that allows corn to be easily harvested, stored and transported. The findings could lead to better hybrids and increase the supply for people in developing countries who rely on it as a nutritional staple. The study examines (2010-07-06)

Analysis estimates mortality from fungal infections of ash trees
The ash dieback epidemic, caused by the fungus Hymenoscyphus fraxineus, has swept across Europe over the past 20 years and caused widespread damage and death in ash tree (Fraxinus excelsior) populations. A recent analysis of surveys of ash dieback across Europe, published in Plants, People, Planet, reveals mortality rates as high as 85 percent in plantations and 70 percent in woodlands. (2018-12-05)

USDA grant supports UNH research on how plants recognize friends and foes
Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have received a near $400,000 grant from the USDA to investigate the chemical processes that allow certain plants and bacteria to signal each other that they are friends, not foes, and thus work together in an ecologically mutual partnership. (2014-12-03)

Is more better: Counting birds may only tell part of the story
Inspired by an article written by Beatrice Van Horn in 1983, Carl Bock and Zach Jones (University of Colorado -Boulder) reviewed studies from the past 20 years, looking at whether a large number of birds in an area meant the birds would successfully reproduce and survive. (2004-10-07)

Climate change and fishing create 'trap' for penguins
Endangered penguins are foraging for food in the wrong places due to fishing and climate change, new research shows. (2017-02-09)

A small leak will sink a great ship
New insights into the function of microRNAs in plants: abolishing a microRNA converts petals to stamens. (2007-06-26)

Scientists optimize prime editing for rice and wheat
Recently, a research team led by Prof. GAO Caixia of the Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences reported the optimization of a prime editing system (PPE system) for creating desired point mutations, insertions and deletions in two major cereal crops, namely, rice and wheat. The main components of a PPE system are a Cas9 nickase-RT fusion protein and a pegRNA. (2020-03-16)

Corpus luteum cells of cats successfully cultivated and comprehensively characterized
The reproduction of lynxes is highly mysterious. Unlike other wild cats, most lynxes are only receptive for a few days once a year. The Berlin team has now achieved another breakthrough in solving the puzzle: they were able to isolate several cell types of corpus luteum from domestic cat tissue and characterise their function with the help of cell cultures. The new method can also be applied to endangered felids such as the Iberian lynx. (2019-12-20)

Vineyard weeds found to host Pierce's disease of grapes
New research just released in the September issue of Plant Disease suggests that weeds commonly found in California's wine country may enable the spread of Pierce's disease of grapes, one of the most destructive plant diseases affecting grapes. (2005-09-21)

Scientists use eBird data to propose optimal bird conservation plan
A new paper published today in the journal Nature Communications shows a blueprint for conserving enough habitat to protect the populations of almost one-third of the warblers, orioles, tanagers, and other birds that migrate among the Americas throughout the year. (2019-04-15)

$40 million project to revitalize Africa's orphaned crops announced
A visionary $40 million effort to boost Africa's health and economic vitality by genetically sequencing and breeding some of the continent's most important, but neglected, native crops was announced today during the Clinton Global Initiative meeting in New York City by a consortium of international partners, including the University of California, Davis. An integral part of the initiative will be the African Plant Breeding Academy, developed in Ghana by UC Davis to train African scientists. (2011-09-21)

Scientists develop new potato lines to wage war on wireworms
When wireworms feast on potatoes, the results aren't pretty: The spuds' surfaces are left punctured, pitted and unappealing. For the past few years, US Department of Agriculture scientists and their colleagues have sought a solution in the form of spuds with genetic resistance to the worms, with special attention focused on two wild potatoes from Chile and Bolivia: Solanum berthaultii and S. etuberosum. (2011-09-19)

Annals of Internal Medicine commentary urges public to take precautions against West Nile Virus
West Nile virus (WNV) has become endemic in North America with cases in 2012 exceeding that of any other year. Health care professionals and the public need to be on alert for WNV. (2012-09-10)

Spot the difference: Two identical-looking bird species with very different genes
While reports of species going extinct are sadly becoming common, an international team of scientists has identified a new species of bird living on the Southern coast of China, that diverged from their Northern relatives around half a million years ago. (2019-11-13)

Sea lice treatment increased in Norwegian fish breeding in 2009
A large increase in sales of agents used in sea lice infestations was seen in 2009. There was also a smaller increase in the use of antibacterials and anesthetics for fish. Sales of anthelmintics and fungicides were lower than in 2008. Increasing resistance to sea lice treatment has led to the reintroduction of many older drugs that have not been used for many years. (2010-03-16)

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