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Large blocks of Sumatra's endangered rainforest may be put up for mining, logging

Large blocks of Sumatra's endangered rainforest may be put up for mining, logging | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The Indonesian province of Aceh on the western tip of the island of Sumatra may be preparing to lift the protected status of key areas of lowland rainforest potentially ending its bid to earn carbon credits from forest conservation and putting...
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Gaia Diary
“The more we nurture the planet, the better and more natural a life we'll have.”  Chris d'Lacey, Icefire
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Carl Sagan's Pale Blue Dot OFFICIAL - YouTube

"It is sometimes said that scientists are unromantic, that their passion to figure out robs the world of beauty and mystery. But is it not stirring to understand how the world actually works — that white light is made of colors, that color is the way we perceive the wavelengths of light, that transparent air reflects light, that in so doing it discriminates among the waves, and that the sky is blue for the same reason that the sunset is red? It does no harm to the romance of the sunset to know a little bit about it It is sometimes said that scientists are unromantic, that their passion to figure out robs the world of beauty and mystery. But is it not stirring to understand how the world actually works — that white light is made of colors, that color is the way we perceive the wavelengths of light, that transparent air reflects light, that in so doing it discriminates among the waves, and that the sky is blue for the same reason that the sunset is red? It does no harm to the romance of the sunset to know a little bit about it."
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New species of lemur found on Madagascar

New species of lemur found on Madagascar | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A team of researchers with members from the State University of New York Polytechnic Institute, Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium, Global Wildlife Conservation and the Madagascar Biodiversity Partnership has discovere
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Volcanologist suggests Mt. Etna behaves more like a giant hot spring than a volcano

Volcanologist suggests Mt. Etna behaves more like a giant hot spring than a volcano | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Mt. Etna is a volcano situated on the northeastern side of the island of Sicily, which is just off the toe of the boot of Italy. It is the tallest volcano in Europe, and is famous because it is so active. In addition to spewing tons of lava, it also emits an enormous amount of steam, sulphur dioxide and carbon dioxide. It is these other emissions that has Ferlito convinced that there is something different going on with the volcano.
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Zoology: Luminescent lizards

Zoology: Luminescent lizards | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Chameleons are known to communicate with conspecifics by altering their surface coloration. Munich researchers have now found that the bony tubercles on the heads of many species fluoresce under UV light and form impressive patterns.
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The Largest Cave Mouth in the World

The Largest Cave Mouth in the World | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
At 705 feet high, Brazil's "House of Stone" could swallow up a skyscraper.
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Mass extinctions remove species but not ecological variety

Mass extinctions remove species but not ecological variety | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Though mass extinctions wiped out staggeringly high numbers of species, they barely touched the overall 'functional' diversity -- how each species makes a living, be it filtering phytoplankton or eating small crustaceans, burrowing or clamping onto rocks. University of Chicago scientists documented this surprising trend in a study on extinctions published Jan. 5 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
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Wildlife – Winners 2017 – Australian Photography Awards

Wildlife – Winners 2017 – Australian Photography Awards | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
© Australian Photography Awards 2017
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Indus river dolphin numbers on the rise with the help of local communities

Indus river dolphin numbers on the rise with the help of local communities | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A new WWF survey says there are now an estimated 1,816 Indus river in Pakistan—50% more than the 1,200 dolphins estimated after an initial census in 2001 when the species appeared to be on the brink of extinction.
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Germany's wolf population on the rise, new data shows | DW Environment | DW | 23.11.2017

Germany's wolf population on the rise, new data shows | DW Environment | DW | 23.11.2017 | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Researchers have found 60 packs of wolves living across Germany. That's 13 more than last year. The news is likely to frustrate some farmers who believe the predators are dangerous and attack livestock.
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From egg to the air: 21 days of #bee development condensed into one mesmerising minute | Aeon Videos

From egg to the air: 21 days of #bee development condensed into one mesmerising minute | Aeon Videos | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
After just three weeks of development, worker bees emerge from their brood cells fully formed, flying out to begin supporting their hive. In a stunning high-definition time-lapse video, the US photographer Anand Varma follows the bee's stages of development from egg to larvae to pupa to worker bee, with a sprightly score to match the insects’ rather startling journey into being.
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Birds learn from each other's 'disgust,' enabling insects to evolve bright colors

Birds learn from each other's 'disgust,' enabling insects to evolve bright colors | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Many animals have evolved to stand out. Bright colours are easy to spot, but they warn predators off by signalling toxicity or foul taste.

Yet if every individual predator has to eat colourful prey to learn this unappetising lesson, it's a puzzle how conspicuous colours had the chance to evolve as a defensive strategy.

Now, a new study using the great tit species as a "model predator" has shown that if one bird observes another being repulsed by a new type of prey, then both birds learn the lesson to stay away.

By filming a great tit having a terrible dining experience with conspicuous prey, then showing it on a television to other tits before tracking their meal selection, researchers found that birds acquired a better idea of which prey to avoid: those that stand out.

The team behind the study, published in the journal Nature Ecology & Evolution, say the ability of great tits to learn bad food choices through observing others is an example of "social transmission".

The scientists scaled up data from their experiments through mathematical modelling to reveal a tipping point: where social transmission has occurred sufficiently in a predator species for its potential prey to stand a better chance with bright colours over camouflage.
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Country diary: the omnivorous blackbird shares a taste for blood

Country diary: the omnivorous blackbird shares a taste for blood | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Rockland St Mary, Norfolk This adaptable bird feeds on fruit, insects, worms – and sometimes something even more substantial
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Crocodile lizard is one of 115 new species found in Greater Mekong

Crocodile lizard is one of 115 new species found in Greater Mekong | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A snail-eating turtle found in a food market and a bat with a horseshoe-shaped face are among 115 new species discovered in the Greater Mekong region.

A report from the conservation charity WWF reveals that three new mammals, 11 amphibians, two fish, 11 reptiles and 88 plants were found by scientists in Cambodia, Laos, Burma, Thailand and Vietnam
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Warming Arctic climate constrains life in cold-adapted mammals

Warming Arctic climate constrains life in cold-adapted mammals | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A new study led by Joel Berger has uncovered previously unknown effects of rain-on-snow events, winter precipitation and ice tidal surges on the muskoxen.
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New study suggests shark declines can lead to changes in reef fish body shapes

New study suggests shark declines can lead to changes in reef fish body shapes | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Scientists studying nearly identical coral reef systems off Australia discovered something unusual on the reefs subjected to nearly exclusive fishing of sharks—fish with significantly smaller eyes and tails. The study i
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New application for acoustics helps estimate marine life populations

New application for acoustics helps estimate marine life populations | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego were part of an international team that for the first time used hydroacoustics as a method for comparing the abundance of fishes within and outside marine protected areas (MPAs).
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Environmental DNA Analysis

Environmental DNA Analysis | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Environmental DNA analysis makes it possible to detect water organisms without having to capture them first. For the first time, a team at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) systematically investigated the effect of various environmental factors on environmental DNA analyses. By doing so, the researchers have made an important step towards the standardized application of this method for the monitoring of water bodies.
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Cerro Blanco

Cerro Blanco | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Discover Cerro Blanco in Naska pruwinsya, Peru: This unimaginably large pile of sand near Nazca is one of the tallest dunes in the world.
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Two Biologists Explore the Remote Rainforests of the Ecuadorian Andes to Document Fungi

Two Biologists Explore the Remote Rainforests of the Ecuadorian Andes to Document Fungi | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Biologists estimate that 3.2 million species of fungi may exist on Earth, and of that only around 120,000 are known to science which leaves potentially millions organisms of left to discover, photograph, and document before it’s too late. The majority of undescribed species live in the tropics where mycologists Danny Newman and Roo Vandegrift have traveled extensively to document fungi in regions threatened by climate change and development.
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It’s So Cold Right Now That Niagara Falls Becomes A Frozen Wonderland, And The Pictures Are Breathtaking

It’s So Cold Right Now That Niagara Falls Becomes A Frozen Wonderland, And The Pictures Are Breathtaking | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Niagara falls are a spectacular place to visit at any time of year, however in winter, especially seriously cold winters like North America is currently
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Blue Planet II: from octopus v shark to fish that crawl, the series’s biggest discoveries

Blue Planet II: from octopus v shark to fish that crawl, the series’s biggest discoveries | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The documentary’s marvels are not just new to television – many are new to science as well. From hyper-intelligent fish to the origin of life itself, we round up the series’s breakthrough moments
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Five things you didn't know about Christmas trees

Five things you didn't know about Christmas trees | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
In the wild, evergreen conifers survive drastic temperature swings, grow to towering heights and create ecosystems that shelter strange and wonderful creatures.

Here are some the secrets of Christmas trees and their tough, tenacious lives.
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#Bees use invisible heat patterns to choose flowers

#Bees use invisible heat patterns to choose flowers | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A new study, led by scientists from the University of Bristol, has found that a wide range of flowers produce not just signals that we can see and smell, but also ones that are invisible such as heat.

In the hidden world of flower-pollinator interactions, heat can act not only as life-sustaining warmth, but can also be part of the rich variety of sensory signposts that flowers use to provide advertisement and information for their insect pollinators.

The majority of flowers examined, including many common in gardens, such as poppies and daisies, had complex patterns of heat across their petals, echoing the colourful patterns that we see with our own eyes.
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VIDEO: Watch lava shoot from erupting Italian volcano Stromboli

VIDEO: Watch lava shoot from erupting Italian volcano Stromboli | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Experts are monitoring the Stromboli volcano in southern Italy after a new lava flow appeared over the weekend.
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Combination of warmer water, chemical exposure intensifies harmful effects in a coastal fish

Combination of warmer water, chemical exposure intensifies harmful effects in a coastal fish | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Warmer water temperatures, combined with exposure to chemicals already known to be harmful to aquatic life, could threaten organisms that have temperature-sensitive sex determination.

Researchers found that inland silversides (Menidia beryllina) exposed to endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs) exhibited altered sex ratios, lower fertility rates and deformities. Further, the effects were more acute in the fish exposed at the warmer water temperatures predicted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

The study was published in the journal Scientific Reports.
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