Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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  • To know a scorpion by its tail: the tail strike of scorpions differs between species
    There are almost 2,500 species of scorpions in the world, and many differ in the shape and size of their venomous tail. The reasons for this large variation in tail shape are often not known. While scorpions sting their insect prey slowly and precisely, they defend themselves from attackers with a fast and swooping strike of their tail. The defensive strike may therefore be the more demanding beha...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Feed or fight: Food availability and intraspecific aggression for an island lizard
    Islands are great natural biological laboratories to investigate how organisms can adapt to different selective pressures. This study by Donihue et al (www.colindonihue.com) takes advantage of the different sizes of islands in the Greek Archipelago to investigate how a common lizard, Podarcis erhardii, differs in body size, head shape, and bite force depending the size of the island The authors...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Why do Anolis lizard dewlaps glow? An analysis of a translucent visual signal
    Anolis lizards are well known for their colorful, expandable throat fan, called the dewlap, which they use to attract mates and repel rivals. The dewlap is a very thin structure and some of the light that strikes its surface shines through it, becoming colored and spreading in all directions as it does. If strongly lit from behind – for example when the sun is on the opposite side of the dewlap f...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Bird song properties and auditory sensitivity
    For effective communication, there should be a close match between bird song characteristics and the auditory mechanisms that facilitate signal processing, so birds should be good at hearing the kinds of songs they make. In this study, the authors looked at three species that inhabit forest areas, three species that live in intermediate, scrub-like areas, and three species that live in open areas....
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Massive armature trumps running for stag beetles
    Stag beetles are renowned for their spectacular male-male battles. In these scuffles, males fight each other with their long jaws over mates or desirable stumps of rotten wood. As a result of this, their jaw is strongly shaped by sexual selection and in some species, can become as long as their own body. How does this effect their ability to run? Intuitively, one would expect that such large stru...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Hovering on a high fructose diet: hummingbirds can fuel expensive flight with glucose or fructose
    Unlike humans, some animals evolved on a sugar diet equally rich in glucose and fructose. Hovering hummingbirds are rare among vertebrates in their ability to rapidly make use of ingested sugars to fuel energetically expensive hovering flight, powering up to 100% of their metabolic needs with the sugars they drink, while humans athletes max out at around 30%. Until now, we haven't understood to wh...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • The effects of weather on dispersal behaviour of free-ranging lizards in tropical Australia
    Animals move within natural habitats in complicated ways, in response to many aspects of the environment. To understand those patterns of movement, we need new methods to gather highly detailed information on exactly where a free-ranging animal spends its time; and new methods of analysis to extract maximum insight from those data. We attached miniature GPS transmitters to large lizards- bluetongu...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Garden plants for flower-visiting insects-- quantifying variation in attractiveness
    Bees and other pollinating insects are declining in many countries. Many people are concerned and want to help reverse this decline, but do not know how. One way that the general public can help is via their gardens, by growing ornamental plants that are also attractive to flower-visiting insects. Although individual gardens are relatively small, collectively they comprise a substantial area. But ...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Does forest colour tell how much carbon dioxide is absorbed by deciduous trees?
    Forests play the important role of fixing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and storing the carbon as biomass and soil organic matter. In the northern hemisphere, CO2 concentration fluctuates with the seasonality of photosynthesis of plants. Recent global warming has made the arrival of spring earlier, and leaves appear sooner. How does this influence the carbon cycle in forests? In an oak-...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Running lizards provide climate clues
    Although climate change is heating polar and temperate areas faster than the tropics, evidence is mounting that tropical ectotherms (animals that don't produce their own heat) will be negatively affected by the relatively mild warming they do experience. Duke researchers tested this idea at a fine scale with the Puerto Rican crested anole, Anolis cristatellus, by combining data on the lizard's cur...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Hide and seek in the rainforest: how do bats tell food from foliage?
    Many bats use echolocation to find insects and other arthropods for food. They emit ultrasonic calls and listen for the returning echoes to detect and localize their snack. In cooperation with Prof. Tigga Kingston from Texas Tech University and Prof. Rosli Hashim from The University of Malaya, Dr. Björn Siemers and Daniela Schmieder from the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology plunged deep into t...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Behaviour & stress physiology in fish
    Gabrielle Archard and colleagues describe their study in which they investigated the relationship between hormonal and behavioural stress responsiveness in multiple natural populations of a tropical freshwater poeciliid fish, Panamanian bishop, that experience different levels of predation pressure and hence encounter different rates of stressful events. Archard, G. A., Earley, R. L., Hanninen, A...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Does Ecotourism in the Bahamas affect Tiger Shark Movement and Behavior?
    This video is a visual overview of the following scientific publication in Functional Ecology (http://www.functionalecology.org/). Video by: Christine Shepard (http://christineshepard.com/) Contributing photographer & cinematographer: Jim Abernethy (http://www.scuba-adventures.com) Contributing photographer & cinematographer: Austin Gallagher (http://austingallagher.com/) ------------ Don't bit...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • Setting the trap
    In this video Thornham et al describe a novel form of myrmecotrophic mutualism in which the ants' cleaning behaviour maintains the effectiveness of a pitcher plant's prey capture mechanism. To read the paper: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2435.2011.01937.x/abstract To read the journal: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/(ISSN)1365
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New YouTube videos detected.

  • The foraging tight-rope
    The foraging tight-rope is a matter of concentration for free-ranging bushbabies as they choose the right plants to eat whilst avoiding their enemies. McArthur and colleagues explain strategies used by bushbabies to keep safe. To read the author lay summary: http://www.functionalecology.org/view/0/summaries.html#foraging To read the paper: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2435.2...
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • Denver’s High Line Canal: A History of Irrigation & Recreation
    By Liz Clift One of the easiest ways to get water from one place to the next is to let gravity do the work. While on the extreme end, this creates waterfalls, if the change in elevation is more gradual, it can create a meandering waterway. This is also the principle behind high line canals. […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New blog articles detected.

  • Something Fishy This Way Comes
    By Liz Clift One of the definitions of ecology is the study of how organisms relate to one another and their environment. Think back to your childhood classrooms when you considered food chains. For the most part, they were structurally pretty simple. Slightly more complex are food webs, which showed interrelated dietary preferences. Animals with […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New blog articles detected.

  • Healthy & Connected Floodplains
    By Liz Clift What does it mean to have a connected and healthy floodplain? First, let’s start with what floodplain even means. It’s the relatively flat land adjacent to a river or stream that is inundated with water during high flow events, which most of us simply call floods. As a result of this flooding, […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • Spotlight on Datura: A Poison Plant
    By: Liz Clift This is the time of year when, in the evenings, I can find bees buried into the trumpeted blossoms of Datura sp. These plants are commonly called datura, as well as devil’s trumpets, moonflowers, and jimsonweed (among other names). Datura is part of the nightshade family (Solanaceae) and all species of datura […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • Soil as Iowa’s Heart of Agriculture
    By Liz Clift Iowa became part of the heart of American agriculture, due to the rich—and thick—topsoil it contained as white settlers moved across the plains. Iowa’s nutrient-dense is, in part, due to Iowa’s placement between the Missouri and the Mississippi Rivers, which form the majority of the eastern and western borders of the state. […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • Hands On Erosion
    By Liz Clift Editor’s Note: This post provides a hands-on experiment you can do with children to help them understand how erosion and floodplains work to re-distribute nutrients, especially in flood events. You may want to couple this with reading news reports about floods (new or old) for older children, or with a visit to […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • 2017 Waterfront Alliance Conference Round-Up
    By Michael Kaminski Last week Great Ecology staff boarded a yacht to attend the 2017 Waterfront Conference along New York City’s Hudson Riverfront. The annual event is hosted by the NYC-based non-profit Waterfront Alliance and features a variety of talks and panel discussions. This year’s topics ranged from how current national politics may impact our […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • Attracting Monarch Butterflies: Or, Which Milkweed is the Right Choice?
    By: Liz Clift Milkweed is sometimes considered a noxious weed, because its propagates readily – each seedpod contains hundreds of seeds. As such, it has been discouraged from growing on a variety of landscapes. However, monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) rely on milkweed (Asclepias spp.) to reproduce – milkweed is the sole source of food for […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • Native Wildflowers are Critical for Pollinators
    By: Liz Clift It’s National Wildflower Week—and from a restoration ecology perspective, it’s important to realize that wildflowers aren’t the same everywhere. If you decide to plant wildflowers in your yard, try to stay away from wildflower seed mixes, as these can contain varieties that aren’t native to your area (and may even be considered […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • If a Tree Falls in the Forest, Did a Foley Artist Create the Sound?
    By: Liz Clift If you read this blog regularly, you know I listen to a lot of podcasts. Recently, 99% Invisible ran an episode called “Sounds Natural,” focused on the ways that the nature documentaries that we watch might be altered from real reality. For instance, there’s the now-infamous scene in Disney’s 1958 documentary White […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
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New blog articles detected.

  • A Shout Out for Science
                    By: Ashley Tuggle Ecologists and ectobiologists, meteorologists and meterologists, geologists and geochemists, biomedical researchers and mechanical engineers, everything in between, and regular science enthusiasts came out in force on April 22nd in support of the March for Science. Great Ecology’s own intrepid crew in San Diego struck […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • Teaching Watershed Science to Young People
    By: Liz Clift I used to teach an introductory version of watershed science to school children. Depending on how much time I had with these young people, this might include diverse topics such as where our water came from, the water cycle, and/or the movement of pollutants and/or particulates through a system. In the summer […]
Great Ecology
Great Ecology
Blog Post

New blog articles detected.

  • Soil Health: Shifting the Carbon-Nitrogen Balance (Part I)
    By Liz Clift Whether you’re adding carbon-rich materials to soil for ecological restoration purposes, trying to figure out how to make your compost more efficient, or perhaps figuring out why last year’s chop-and-drop mulch in your garden isn’t breaking down the way you expected it to, it’s important to understand carbon to nitrogen ratios (C:N). […]

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