The idea is that brown tree snakes will eat these snacks from the sky. Then, it's hoped, the snakes will die because the mice will be laced with painkillers. The active ingredient in those drugs should be toxic to the snakes.
The book club regulars visit Gorillas in the Mist, Dian Fossey's memoir of her years studying mountain gorillas in a remote African rainforest. Gorilla expert Annette Lanjouw joins the club to give an update on how this endangered subspecies of gorilla is faring.
Despite inhabiting sewers and cesspools, cockroaches are quite clean — or at least their exteriors are, according to entomologist Coby Schal of North Carolina State University. That's because cockroaches are constantly grooming themselves, particularly their antennae. Publishing in PNAS, Schal and colleagues investigate why they groom.
Bees and flowers communicate in colors, scents and shapes. Now scientists have discovered that bumblebees can also sense flowers' electric fields. This sixth sense helps them remember and recognize nectar-rich blooms while foraging.
Some dogs need to be on specialized diets for health reasons, but most eat just about anything. That wasn't always the case, however. The domestic dog's ancestor, the wolf, ate only meat. Research suggests for dogs to live with humans, they had to adapt to a starchy diet.
Small amounts of the drugs that people take end up in wastewater and then in streams and rivers. It's usually not enough to harm the health of humans who swim in or drink the water. But there is growing evidence that pharmaceuticals in wastewater may affect wildlife.
In the town of Leesburg, Va., a flock of 200 turkey vultures takes over suburban backyards every few years. Despite their seeming abundance, the birds are protected by federal law, so the residents called in backup for some official vulture harassment.
A team of researchers from the British Antarctic Survey stumbled upon some interesting satellite images in 2009: a trail of penguin poop that showed signs of a huge colony of emperor penguins. A team of researchers finally made it out to visit the 9,000-strong colony last December, marking the first human contact the animals had experienced.
The idea that a comet or asteroid impact led to the downfall of the dinosaurs has been around for years. Now, Paul Renne and colleagues report in Science that they've narrowed down the timing of that collision. It's practically simultaneous with dinosaur extinction.
What killed the dinosaurs? It's history's ultimate murder mystery, and for decades the prime suspect has been a giant asteroid. New data suggest that it struck right before the extinction. But scientists say it still may not tell the full story of what happened to the dinosaurs.