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Posts Tagged "whale"

@ScientificAmerican

Whale.FM: Where Citizen Science, Whale Songs and Education Come Together

Above all, science is a collaborative enterprise, where researchers working together can span the continents. Increasingly, nonspecialists—citizen scientists—are pitching in as well. Whale.FM—a collaborative effort of Scientific American, Zooniverse and the research institutions WHOI, TNO, the University of Oxford and SMRU—lets citizen scientists help marine researchers who are studying what whales are saying. (You can [...]

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Expeditions

Copepods, everywhere you look (and even where you don’t)

Editor’s Note: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution oceanographer and photographer Chris Linder and science writer Helen Fields are taking part in a six-week cruise of the Bering Sea, a scientific expedition to study the effects of climate change on this polar ecosystem. This is the fifth blog post. To see all their posts, see "60 Seconds [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Leopards, Tortoises, Harlequin Frogs and other Links from the Brink

amur leopard

Last year I wrote somewhere around 150 articles about endangered species. I could have easily written closer to 1,000. One blog simply can’t cover all of threatened species around the world, as hard as I try. But I hate letting news items (not to mention species) fall through the cracks. And so, here is the [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Amazing: Rarest Whale Seen for First Time in History, but Not at Sea

spade-toothed beaked whale

In another example of how little we know about the natural world, scientists recently got their first up-close glimpse at the rare and elusive spade-toothed beaked whale (Mesoplodon traversii). Tragically, the discovery was not of living whales but a mother and her male calf that died after beaching themselves. Until now, the spade-toothed beaked whale [...]

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Extinction Countdown

Rights wronged: North Pacific right whale nearly extinct in Bering Sea

North Pacific Right Whale

One of the world’s only two populations of North Pacific right whale (Eubalaena japonica) has declined to the point where it will probably not survive. According to new research published online June 30 in Biology Letters, a journal of the Royal Society in London, the eastern population of North Pacific right whale has shrunk to [...]

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Observations

A whale of a fossil is named in honor of Herman Melville

new fossil of giant sperm whale named for Herman Melville attacking a baleen whale

The large leviathan that was the bane of Ahab’s existence in Herman Melville’s Moby Dick has a new ancient relative that might have lived up to the fictional beast’s monstrosity. Leviathan melvillei, a giant toothed whale, is described in a new paper, published online June 29 in Nature (Scientific American is part of Nature Publishing [...]

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Observations

The grandmother factor: Why do only humans and whales live long past menopause?

killer whales live past menopause like humans do

Most mammals don’t live long past their reproductive years, failing to serve much evolutionary purpose after they can stop passing on their genes to offspring. Only three long-lived social mammalian species are known break that mold. Killer whales (Orcinus orca), pilot whales (Globicephala macrorhynchus) and humans (as well as possibly some other great apes) all [...]

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Symbiartic

Get Geeked – BoneDusters Paleo Ale is Bottled!

14-016FEATURE

For those of you who have been following the story of Bone Dusters Paleo Ale, the beer made with yeast living on a 35-million-year old whale fossil, there’s exciting news out of Lost Rhino Brewery today. The beer is being bottled! Here are some photos from the source: All images © Jason Osborne, used with [...]

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Symbiartic

Bone Dusters Paleo Ale Gets A Rockin’ Label

14-016FEATURE

Sometimes you never know where your work will end up. Take this figure depicting the evolution of whales that I created for Jerry Coyne’s book, Why Evolution is True. Pretty academic and dry, right? When I created it I never thought it would have appeal outside of the occasional textbook reuse or request to include [...]

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Symbiartic

Bone Dusters Paleo Ale, Brewed from Real Fossils!

14-010FEATURE

With craft brewing on the rise and many breweries tinkering with flavorings that range from the somewhat obvious (honey or citrus) to the eyebrow-raising (jalapeño, hemp, or even peanut butter cup) it was only a matter of time before someone stared a 35-million year old fossil in the face and thought, “would you make a [...]

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The Thoughtful Animal

Can You Hear Me Now? Human Noise Disrupts Blue Whale Communication

BlueWhale_Tail1

When you dive into the frigid waters of the Pacific Ocean off the coast of southern California, the first thing you notice is the silence. Other than the bitter cold. Your body begins to adapt to the chilly water as blades of slimy kelp brush across your ankles. You spit out the bit of brackish [...]

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The Thoughtful Animal

Whale Poop

ResearchBlogging.org

Earlier this week we talked about how to use whale snot for science. I especially enjoyed blog bff Scicurious‘s take on the study: Budgetary requirement: $5000 for series of expensive remote control helicopters. Source: Toys R Us. Justification: Need something that can fly close to a whale and collect snot for measurement. Also, this is [...]

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The Thoughtful Animal

Whale Snot

humpback_whale.jpg

The question is: what do you use to study the health of whales in the wild? The answer is: not what you’d think. Unlike smaller sea mammals like seals or sea lions, it is very hard to obtain blood samples from whales without first killing them. Meet Karina Acevedo-Whitehouse, from the Zoological Society of London. [...]

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