Can dogs rapidly learn words?

IMAGE: The Family Dog Project research team is investigating on these exceptionally talented dogs view more  Credit: Photo by Claudia Fugazza A new study found that talented dogs can learn new words after hearing them only four times. While preliminary evidence seems to show that most dogs do not learn words (i.e. names of objects), unless […]

Simulating evolution to understand a hidden switch

IMAGE: Using computer simulations built on reasonable assumptions and conducted under careful control, computational bioscientists can mimic real biological conditions. Starting with the original founding population (ancient phase), they can evolve… view more  Credit: © 2021 KAUST; Anastasia Serin Computer simulations of cells evolving over tens of thousands of generations reveal why some organisms retain a […]

Genomes reveal insights into much-loved Aussie animals

The genomes of egg-laying monotreme mammals, platypus and echidna, have been published in the prestigious journal Nature, providing a valuable public resource for research in mammalian biology and evolution, with applications for their conservation and health. Monotremes display a unique mix of mammalian and reptilian features and form the most distantly related, and least understood, […]

Harbor porpoises on the decline in the German North Sea

IMAGE: Populations of harbor porpoises were surveyed from a plane view more  Credit: D. Nachtsheim The North Sea is a heavily trafficked area, with major shipping routes crossing its waters, and fisheries, offshore oil rigs, and wind farms populating its waves. All this activity inevitably has an effect on marine wildlife, and scientists are particularly interested […]

Eurasian eagle owl diet reveals new records of threatened giant bush-crickets

IMAGE: Male specimen of the Big-Bellied Glandular Bush-Cricket (Bradyporus macrogaster) view more  Credit: Dragan Chobanov Bird diets provide a real treasure for research into the distribution and conservation of their prey, such as overlooked and rare bush-cricket species, point out scientists after studying the diet of the Eurasian Eagle Owl (Bubo bubo) in southeastern Bulgaria. In […]

Patient characteristics associated with telemedicine access during COVID-19 pandemic

What The Study Did: This study identified racial/ ethnic, sex, age, language, and socioeconomic differences in accessing telemedicine for primary care and specialty ambulatory care; if not addressed, these differences may compound existing inequities in care among vulnerable populations. Authors: Srinath Adusumalli, M.D., M.Sc., of the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, is the corresponding author. […]

Weedy Seadragon genomics reveal highly distinct populations

Charismatic, iconic and Instagram-friendly, the weedy seadragon is a favourite with divers and snorkellers. The first genomic study of east coast Australian seadragon populations can now reveal “weedies” from NSW, Victoria and Tasmania are significantly different. The study, published in PLOS ONE, also reveals that Victorian weedy seadragons may form a subspecies which has […]

Human-made landscape promotes coexistence of two normally separated Andean warblers

IMAGE: The two species and their habitats at the study site in Ecuador (Photos by J. Nowakowski). The higher elevation species, the Spectacled Whitestart, chooses fragmented forests with few trees and… view more  Credit: photo by Jacek Nowakowski, the coauthor of the original paper at www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-78804-2 In the mountains across the world, different types of […]

Survival of the thickest: Big brains make mammal populations less dense

IMAGE: A Barbary macaque (Macaca sylvanus) in Gibraltar view more  Credit: Manuela Gonzalez-Suarez/University of Reading Mammals with big brains tend to be less abundant in local areas than those with smaller brains, new research has shown. The University of Reading led an international team of scientists in considering the effect of brain size for the first […]

Genetic exchange discovered in anciently asexual rotifers

IMAGE: Bdelloid rotifers (A. vaga) under the microscope. view more  Credit: E.A. Mnatsakanova and O.A. Vakhrusheva/Skoltech Skoltech’s evolutionary biologists discovered recombination in bdelloid rotifers, microscopic freshwater invertebrates, which have long been regarded as ‘an evolutionary scandal’ due to their presumed ancient asexuality. The existence of such anciently asexual groups calls into question the hypothesis that sexual […]