Tag Archives | biology

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Mystery of the Red Tide

I stood with my feet buried in sand, staring at the ocean waves as they touched the beach. It was mid-October. To my untrained eye, the Monterey Bay shoreline looked like a child’s bubble bath. To California Fish and Wildlife scientists, it was a terrible déjà vu. Nine years ago, an algal bloom wreaked havoc—and…

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Olive ridley sea turtle hatchlings on the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica. Photo by Sukee Bennett.

How does one turtle’s tale promote ocean conservation?

I watched nearly 2,000 baby olive ridley sea turtles hatch while working on a sea turtle conservation project in Costa Rica. Most of them were born in our human-made hatchery from wild eggs we had relocated— each hatchling crawled and tumbled upon dozens of siblings in a sheltered plot, eager to be free. Others were…

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Mom may look like she's taking a break, but she's not. Photo courtesy of Mike Baird <www.flickr.com/photos/mikebaird/4301804307/in/photostream/> at flickr.bairdphotos.com via Flickr, Creative Commons License.

Tough life for otter moms

    Parenthood is both a universal and deeply personal experience. With my science background, I’m always contrasting what I understand as a biologist and what I feel as a mother. Sometimes the latest evolutionary/genetic/cognitive behavioral/comparative biology discovery reinforces my experiences (for example positive benefits of co-sleeping.) Other times it jars me out of a…

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Photo by: greyloch

Deep diving mammals follow their hearts.

As an ocean lover and long-time fan of “The Little Mermaid,” I’ve daydreamed about plunging into the ocean and hanging with the dolphins, sea lions, and whales. I’ve considered getting SCUBA certified, but never gone through with it. The thick wetsuits, clunky air tanks and potential for the bends give my tranquil daydream a wake…

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Kurz and Allison’s 1891 representation of the Battle of Franklin (November 30, 1864) during the American Civil War. Image credit: U.S. Library of Congress.

Perpetual War

In the American Civil War, the United States fought itself in a bloody struggle that dragged on for four years. A new study out of the University of California, Santa Cruz shines light on an even longer – and seemingly endless – conflict within ourselves. This internal struggle takes place within our genome, between an…

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Courtesy of Adam Kleifield

Plenty of Pheromones in the Sea

As we sat in my car outside a silent movie theater in Los Angeles, my friend anxiously opened a plastic bag containing a white T-shirt she’d slept in for the past three nights. “Does it smell like me?” she asked nervously, gesturing the open end toward my face. I stuck my nose into the bag and inhaled….

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