Love at first smell: Can birds choose mates by their odors?
Posted November 28, 2014
Mate choice is often the most important decision in the lives of humans and animals. Scientists have found the first evidence that birds may choose their mate through odor. The researchers compared the preen gland chemicals of black-legged kittiwakes with genes that play a role in immunity. Kittiwakes that smell similarly to each other also have similar genes for immunity. Since the birds prefer to mate with unrelated mates, the scientists have now found the likely mechanism by which they recognize relatedness.
How can we avoid kelp beds turning into barren grounds?
Posted November 27, 2014
Urchins are marine invertebrates that mold the biological richness of marine grounds. However, an excessive proliferation of urchins may also have severe ecological consequences on marine grounds as they reduce algal cover and affect the survival of other marine species. To explore global dynamics and the factors that turn kelp beds into barren grounds is the main objective of a new study.
Dogs hear our words and how we say them
Posted November 26, 2014
When people hear another person talking to them, they respond not only to what is being said -- those consonants and vowels strung together into words and sentences -- but also to other features of that speech -- the emotional tone and the speaker's gender, for instance. Now, a report provides some of the first evidence of how dogs also differentiate and process those various components of human speech.