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Birdbooker Report 352

SUMMARY: Books, books, beautiful books! This is a list of biology, ecology, environment, natural history and animal books that are (or will soon be) available to occupy your bookshelves and your thoughts. “Words in leather and wood”. Bookshelves in the “Long Room” at the old Trinity College Library in Dublin. Image: Nic McPhee from Morris, MN, USA. 2007. (Creative Commons.) Books to the ceiling, Books to the sky, My pile of books is a mile high. How I love them!... Read more

 

Morsels For The Mind – 19/12/2014

Every day we provide you with Six Incredible Things Before Breakfast to nibble away at. Here you can fill your brain with the most intellectually stimulating “amuse bouches” from the past week – a veritable smorgasbord for the cranium. They’re all here for you to load up your plate – this week’s “Morsels for the mind”. Enjoy! If you do nothing else, make sure to check out the “Reads / views / listens of the week”. **** Feather, fur &... Read more

 

Ecologists as rock stars? Oh how I wish it were so…

Posted by Tom Webb in Mola Mola

The annual meeting of the British Ecology Society last week was unusual in a couple of ways: it was held in France, as a joint meeting with Societé Française d’Écologie; and, for the first time since I started going in the late 1990s, I wasn’t there. Rather than throw an almighty sulk about the injustice of this, I followed #BESSfe on Twitter as best I could, and felt I got a reasonable flavour of the conference - minus the hangovers, as an... Read more

 

The Ongoing Issue of Dark Matter

New research data is shining an ever brighter light on the Big Bang – but dark matter remains elusive. Astronomers Conference at Ferrara (Italy), December 2014 In early December 2014, in Ferrara, Italy, leading astronomers discussed measurements taken by the Planck space observatory. From 22 December, the European Space Agency wants to make all data relating to this mission accessible online. The data seems to confirm the cosmological theory of inflation. However, the same data makes another theory look much... Read more

 

Science Storytelling Workshop at AGU14

"What does this look like?" "Zombies!" one of the scientists suggested. "Right," the cinematographer agreed. He reinforced the idea of shifting the frame to give the person on camera space for their gaze to travel - 'Lookroom'. He'd noted before that when there's an empty space looming behind a person's back it creates tension. Perhaps a zombie is about to stagger up from behind. Whoever's filming needs to keep in mind framing, or the way that visual elements are placed... Read more

 

Homo Celebrans Secundus — HPV Prevention: Persistence Conquers Warts

More celebrations of science and scientists. HPV, human papillomavirus virus vaccine has had a major effect on improving human health and preventing death from cervical cancer. The long-standing team of Douglas Lowy and John Schiller from the National Cancer Institute, NIH, received the National Medal of Technology and Innovation from US President Barack Obama November 20, 2014 in the White House. Doug Lowy first published on viruses in 1971; he kept studying and understanding viruses, and eventually his team developed... Read more

 

Mumps in the National Hockey League: A Wakefield Legacy?

Several days ago, Dave Lozo, lead writer for the National Hockey League, wrote in the Bleacher Report about an outbreak of mumps among NHL players. As of December 15, 2014, there were 15 NHL hockey players who'd come down with mumps during the 2014-15 season. Apparent several referees have also gotten mumps. Mumps is a viral disease, spread by direct or indirect contact with the saliva or mucus of an infected person. Hand washing can help prevent transmission of the disease.... Read more

 

Blogging for Science Outreach, Blogging for Myself

A few weeks ago, I blogged about a new paper that came out in Public Understanding of Science on science bloggers’ practices, motivations and target audiences. In the paper, Mathieu Ranger and Karen Bultitude interviewed seven authors of popular science blogs. Among their findings, most of the bloggers they interviewed cited personal motivations to blog about science: “The most commonly reported motivation was intrinsic in nature, relating to personal interests and enjoyment. Blogging was related to a love of science and a love of writing. […] No mention was... Read more

 

Update On Bighorn Sheep Released Near Tucson

On December 11, 2014, the Arizona Daily Star reported that a bighorn ewe recently transplanted to the Santa Catalina Mountains near Tucson was killed by a mountain lion. The Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD) confirmed the kill. The yearling sheep was the first documented kill since 30 sheep were released last month to join the 12 surviving sheep from a group of 31 transplants released in November of 2013. The status of a number of lambs born last spring... Read more

 

Ageing, God and Lindau: An Interview with Aaron Ciechanover

Nobel Laureate Aaron Ciechanover is talking about medical progress and its implications. What was your dream job when you were a kid? Aaron Ciechanover: I wanted to be a physician. And I am a physician, so I fulfilled that dream. I did not know anything about science. I did not know what one was supposed to do in science. I wanted to be a doctor, and I became indeed a doctor. But then, sometimes into my practice in medicine I... Read more

 

“We are beginning to understand how cognition works”: Double interview with John O’Keefe and Edvard Moser

Two 2014 Nobel Laureates in Physiology or Medicine about childhood, dream jobs and the next big thing in neuroscience. What is your earliest memory as a child? John O’Keefe: That’s a very good question. I do remember a few things from the age of about three years old, when I interacted with some of my relatives. I remember spending a summer with my aunt and her children in New Jersey, and I remember when we used to go to Rockaway,... Read more

 

Homo Celebrans — Man: the only animal that celebrates its accomplishments

What distinguishes man from other creatures? Certainly the religious and philosophical implications of that question have created terabytes of information and many of the world’s religions. The British Blue Tit in England learns and remembers that shiny caps on milk bottles can be punctured with its beak to yield a rich, fatty meal. Your pet remembers many events and behaviors, although it does not have a great internal clock for celebrating its birthday, or its winning of the Westminster Kennel... Read more

 

Thoughts about Scientific American Blog Changes

Today, I've been mulling over some of the changes going on within Scientific American's blog network (for a summary of these changes, see Matt Shipman's post here at SciLogs.com). I have many thoughts on the network's new guidelines for bloggers, which I'll probably flesh out in a later post. The public publishing of science blogging guidelines (which until now have been largely unspoken for most blog networks) is relevant to my dissertation research on science blogging practices and content decisions. Without talking to the editors at... Read more

 

Birdbooker Report 349-351

SUMMARY: Books, books, beautiful books! This is a list of biology, ecology, environment, natural history and animal books that are (or will soon be) available to occupy your bookshelves and your thoughts. “Words in leather and wood”. Bookshelves in the “Long Room” at the old Trinity College Library in Dublin. Image: Nic McPhee from Morris, MN, USA. 2007. (Creative Commons.) Books to the ceiling, Books to the sky, My pile of books is a mile high. How I love them!... Read more

 

Big Changes at the Scientific American Blog Network

Scientific American posted an announcement Dec. 15, stating that editors will be “reshaping” the Scientific American Blog Network and releasing new editorial guidelines for the network. What wasn’t entirely clear in the post, titled “A New Vision For Scientific American’s Blog Network,” was that a number of blogs on the network have been eliminated. The Dec. 15 post does not say that any blogs have been cut, but as soon as the post was published a number of announcements began... Read more