Monthly Archives: April 2015

Personal Attacks in Peer Review

The debate around sexism in science lit up on Twitter today after a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Sussex in the UK posted an incendiary excerpt from a review she received in response to a paper on gender and … Continue reading

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Off With His Head

Unable to help himself, a sturdy labourer turns towards a waft of fresh air and staggers towards the light beckoning from the end of a tunnel. Once outside in the sunshine, he wanders aimlessly, seemingly oblivious to his surroundings, making … Continue reading

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Species Lag Time

Of all of the species that exist in the world’s oceans, forests, streams, and soils, scientists have managed to describe only a small fraction. In the case of charismatic megafauna with the wide eyes and fur that everyone loves, scientists … Continue reading

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Have you lost your senses?

This entry is part of a recurring series called Use It Or Lose It that looks at those things that didn’t make the evolutionary cut and have been lost in modern species. As I’m reading, I inhale deeply and catch … Continue reading

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Screaming “Don’t Eat Me!”

This summer, I was hiking in the Norwegian mountains and experienced a phenomenon known as smågnagerår or ‘little gnawing animal year’. It occurs when a particularly mild winter and plentiful summer create the perfect conditions for a boom in the … Continue reading

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Ice Plants in Africa

This week’s species extraordinaire is the ice plant, Mesembryanthemum crystallinum, a member of the fig-marigold family (Aizoaceae). The plant’s common name ‘ice plant’ is in reference to the plants leaves, which look like they are covered in glistening, pebbly ice. … Continue reading

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Anther Smut Disease Causes Transgender Transformations

This post is the latest in a recurring series called the Difference Between Boys and Girls, which talks about gender inequality and the battle of the sexes in biology. A group of students in an arctic biology class are lying … Continue reading

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