Once upon a time there lived a little crustacean inside a little shell. This is not a usual state of affairs for a crustacean. Most are clad in figure-hugging armor (like lobsters or crabs), but they don’t live inside clam-like shells...
Last year I blogged about the surprising discovery that mosses released after 400 years of frozen glacial ensquashment had managed to survive and sprout new growth, a finding that radically altered our ideas about regrowth during the retreat of ice ages...
When I took Mycology 101 in grad school, the textbook situation was so bad that the one we used came on a CD-ROM. Not came with a CD-ROM. It was one.
Have you noticed that wine seems to be packing more punch? Well, it’s not your imagination. Over the past 20 years, wine really has been getting stronger for some reasons that may surprise you...
Nerds have a particular fascination for the Cthulhu mythos of horror novelist and all-around-weird-guy H. P. Lovecraft. In Lovecraft’s stories, Cthulhu was a tentacle-faced titanic god-monster who slept in a mythic undersea lair called R’lyheh, dreaming of the day he could emerge to destroy humanity...
In spite of their sedentary reputations (putting down roots being, perhaps, the ultimate symbol of stability), plants are capable of a surprising range of movements, and not just the Venus flytraps of the world...
How many ways are there to be multicellular on Earth? You know, organisms made of more than one cell? Let’s see . . . plants, animals, and fungi.
It’s a strange but true fact that the young of many familiar sea creatures look nothing like them. Drifting on currents to distribute their kind, they are an unsung part of the plankton, itself an unsung part of the sea...
When HIV jumped from chimpanzees to humans sometime in the early 1900′s, it crossed a gulf spanning several million years of evolution.
This past year, I made a pilgrimage that every natural history lover should, if possible, make. I visited the Natural History Museum in London, the house that Richard Owen built, the home of the first dinosaur bones ever discovered, the first Archaeopteryx fossil, and a first-edition copy of “On the Origin of Species”...
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