ecology

This Beautiful, Newly Discovered Species Is About To Disappear Soon

“Just described ‘microjewel’ snail in extinction danger,” announces NewScientist. Every time I see a headline like that and I look a the picture, it really makes me sad. Just admire that beautiful, delicate little beast. Which secrets will this soon-to-be-gone species take away with it?


This Wind-Powered Tumbleweed Robot Aims To End Desertification

Robots have a hard time walking. They’re getting better! But we’re a ways away from having a robot that you can send on an excursion through a dune-covered desert. That’s why, when he wanted to design a robot to collect climate data, designer Shlomi Mir looked to nature. Specifically, to tumbleweeds.


How A Poorly Camouflaged Insect Reshapes Its Ecosystem

For an insect trying to avoid becoming dinner, the consequences of bad camouflage are clear. What’s less obvious is how the effects then ripple like an aftershock through an entire ecosystem, subtly changing which shrubs are eaten and which critters thrive. For example, the consequences of a single species of badly camouflaged walking stick insect can cascade throughout the California hills.


Swarms Of Drones Will Be Mapping The World All By Themselves In No Time

You’re probably used to hearing about drones as these scary, deadly things causing chaos in Pakistan, but the scientific community is actually pretty pumped up about the technology. Why wouldn’t they be? Drones can makes 3D maps of mountains.


This Bee Skyscraper Could Help Decimated Populations Thrive

Bees: they’ve had a tough couple of years. Between the mysterious Colony Collapse Disorder and pesticide poisoning, the Department of Agriculture recently estimated that around 10 million hives have been lost over the past seven years.


California Deploys Wasp Army To Counter Apple Moth Threat

In the unceasing war between man and nature, the ranks of homo sapiens is about to use a dirty trick – using the natural world against itself. Californian agricultural officials are sending in wasps as instinctive mercenaries.


Arctic Ozone Levels Dropped By As Much As Half In Past Year

Check out the stark difference between these two satellite images, taken on March 19, 2010, and March 19, 2011. The left image shows much more ozone (in red) over the Arctic than the right image. What’s happened?


SciSpy App For iOS Lets You Practice Being A Real Ecologist

Do you believe, deep down, that it is your hidden calling to become a masterful ecologist? SciSpy, the Science Channel’s new app, lets you dabble in this field by allowing you to document the natural world around you—even if you don’t go any further than your own backyard.


BioBot Makes Bio Diesel at Home!

You would think that making your own Bio Diesel at home would be a tough, multi-stepped procedure that has a few dangerous spots to misstep. Well before the BioBot, a system that makes Bio Diesel from old cooking oil, you would have been right. Unfortunately, after the BioBot, you would have been right, too. Here is their simple, 8+ step process to make gas at home. And don’t worry, that chemistry beaker is just for show!