Here are some recent articles by science writing students that caught my eye over the past week or so...

First, amazing longform article by Douglas Main, of NYU, at Popular Mechanics:

How to Make Antivenom—And Why the World is Running Short:

When Eric Bortz's monocled cobra bit him in January, he thought the pain would be the worst part. The dealer who sold the snake said its venom glands had been removed. Unfortunately for Bortz, that wasn't so. Within hours, the New Jersey man began to have trouble breathing and was rushed to a nearby hospital. But like most hospitals, this one was ill-equipped to treat such a specialized malady. So doctors transferred Bortz to Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx, which specializes in snakebite treatment. Were it not for Jacobi's access to a wide array of antivenom through its partnership with the Bronx Zoo (which houses exotic snakes from around the world), Bortz could have died. Instead, he was treated and released days later....

Nadia Drake, of UCSC school, now interning at ScienceNews wrote this - short, but the paper in question is very short itself, and very cool (click on the image to enlarge):

The lion eats tonight...: Attacks on humans peak after a full moon:

Beware the full moon, for as it fades, hungry lions emerge to reclaim the night?—?and prowl for human flesh. Scientists studying lion attack trends in Tanzania found that predation peaks in the evenings after a full moon. The finding is the first to link lunar cycles with predation on humans, long a source of superstition and lore...

That is the lede as it ran. But Nadia informs me that the original lede she wanted to use was much more alliterative and poetic:

"Fear not the full moon, fragile friends, but its fickle light. For as it fades to black, ferocious felines emerge in search of human flesh."

By Rachel Nuwer, from NYU at Scienceline:

Parasitized throughout the ages: Nubian mummies chronicle a modern plague :

Along the muddy, slow-moving canals of the Nile River, people today know what may lurk in the water. Schistosomiasis, caused by blood-devouring worms reliant on snails for transmission, currently ranks after malaria as the second most socio-economically devastating parasitic disease in the world. And research reveals that this trend is far from a recent development: Schistosomiasis has plagued Nile populations for over a millennium, and in much the same way as it does today...

Finally, this one is old (March 2011) but I just saw it and I liked it a lot - by Andrew Purcell of Imperial College, in Felix Online:

Urban Ecology: Machete in hand, Andrew Purcell sets off to explore our urban jungle...:

Over half of the world’s 6.9 billion people now live in urban areas. So, perhaps it’s time for us to embrace the ecology of our urban areas, look at the species that thrive in these environments and take steps to protect them. At the same time, we must ensure that our urban environments do not unnecessarily encroach upon remaining green spaces and our cities do not grow in an unsustainable manner...