Zoology News -- ScienceDaily Zoology. News and videos on animal life sciences. Read the latest research in zoology. Updated daily.

  • Turtles and technology advance understanding of lung abnormality
    on November 21, 2017 at 6:25 pm

    A study of an unusual snapping turtle with one lung found shared characteristics with humans born with one lung who survive beyond infancy. New digital 3-D anatomical models made the detailed research possible. […]

  • Refining pesticides to kill pests, not bees
    on November 21, 2017 at 5:14 pm

    Scientists have unlocked a key to maintain the insecticide's effectiveness in eliminating pests without killing beneficial bugs, such as bees. The study shows that molecular tweaks can make the difference. […]

  • Arctic shorebird decline noted by study
    on November 20, 2017 at 10:44 pm

    A new study addresses concerns over the many Arctic shorebird populations in precipitous decline. Evident from the study is that monitoring and protection of habitat where the birds breed, winter, and stopover is critical to their survival and to that of a global migration spectacle. […]

  • Rise in oxygen levels links to ancient explosion of life, researchers find
    on November 20, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    Scientists have found that oxygen levels appear to increase by roughly 80 percent at about the same time as a three-fold increase in biodiversity during the Ordovician Period, between 445 and 485 million years ago. […]

  • Plesiosaur flippers inspire a steering mechanism for swimming robotic vehicle
    on November 20, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    Plesiosaurs, who thrived during the early to middle Jurassic Period, used four paddlelike flippers of nearly equal size and musculature to swim. Despite the seemingly subpar engineering, the fossil record reveals that plesiosaurs were widespread and prolific. This inspired a team to explore how swimming with four flippers might be advantageous compared to two. […]

  • Tiger bones? Lion bones? An almost extinct cycad? On-the-spot DNA checks at ports of entry
    on November 20, 2017 at 1:54 pm

    Wildlife species are going extinct faster than humankind can reliably keep track of. Meanwhile, wildlife crime evolves quickly, with new tricks fueling a lucrative illegal global trade. As a result, customs and other port-of-entry officials confronted with unidentifiable bits of animals and plants need to make rapid decisions based on reliable information. LifeScanner LAB-IN-A-BOX, a portable DNA barcoding lab can serve as a new tool for rapid on-site species identification, adding to law enforcement's arsenal. […]

  • Recovery of West Coast marine mammals boosts consumption of chinook salmon
    on November 20, 2017 at 1:54 pm

    The researchers estimate that from 1975 to 2015, the yearly biomass of chinook salmon consumed by pinnipeds (sea lions and harbor seals) and killer whales increased from 6,100 to 15,200 metric tons, and from five to 31.5 million individual salmon. […]

  • A sub-desert savanna spread across Madrid 14 million years ago
    on November 17, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    The current landscape of Madrid city and its vicinity was really different 14 million years ago. A semi-desert savanna has been inferred for the center of the Iberian Peninsula in the middle Miocene. This ecosystem was characterized by a very arid tropical climatic regime with up to ten months of drought per year, according to a recent paper. Scientists reached such conclusions after comparing mammal fauna with Africa and Asia ones. […]

  • When to fish: Timing matters for fish that migrate to reproduce
    on November 17, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    A new study points to yet another human factor that is hampering the ability of fish to reproduce: the timing of our fishing seasons. The study considers how the timing of fishing efforts might disproportionately target certain fish and change the life history patterns of entire populations. […]

  • No more deer in the headlights: Study finds large mammals do use road crossing structures
    on November 17, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    A pilot study finds that large mammals are more likely to use wildlife crossing structures than move past a random location in the surrounding habitat. Animal movement also varied between crossing structures in different locations, suggesting that location might be more important than design. These findings are a first step towards a better understanding of the effectiveness of wildlife crossing structures. […]

  • Using eDNA to identify the breeding habitat of endangered species
    on November 17, 2017 at 3:37 pm

    Using wide-ranging eDNA analysis combined with traditional collection survey methods, researchers have identified the breeding site of critically endangered fish species Acheilognathus typus in the mainstream of Omono River in Akita Prefecture, Japan. […]

  • Aquatic plant may help remove contaminants from lakes
    on November 16, 2017 at 11:39 pm

    A tiny aquatic plant called duckweed might be a viable option for remove phosphorus, nitrates, nitrites and even heavy metals from lakes, ponds and slow-moving waterbodies. […]

  • Old World monkeys could be key to a new, powerful rheumatoid arthritis therapy
    on November 16, 2017 at 7:21 pm

    A peptide only found in Old World monkeys has the potential to stop rheumatoid arthritis progression better than established treatments, new research indicates. […]

  • Bacterium in a beetle makes it a leaf-eater
    on November 16, 2017 at 6:27 pm

    A leaf-eating beetle has evolved a symbiotic relationship that allows the insect to break down pectin. The findings on the novel function of the bacterium, which has a surprisingly tiny genome -- much smaller than previous reports on the minimum size required for an organism not subsisting within a host cell. […]

  • How the songbird changes its tune
    on November 16, 2017 at 6:27 pm

    Researchers have shown how the Bengalese finch, a domesticated songbird, can learn to tweak its song in specific ways depending on context, which could shed light on how the human brain learns to apply different rules depending on the situation, and have implications for understanding human language and movement disorders. […]

  • More than a numbers game: New technique gauges microbial communities by biomass
    on November 16, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    New technique provides deeper look at microbial communities by assessing their biomass. […]

  • How a tiny sea animal feeds itself, and the ocean
    on November 15, 2017 at 6:02 pm

    Dime-sized ocean organisms thought to graze on any particles in their path are actually picky eaters, and their food-filtering process may be vital to how organic materials are distributed from surface waters to the ocean floor, report investigators. […]

  • Shifting presence of North Atlantic right whales tracked with passive acoustics
    on November 15, 2017 at 3:48 pm

    A new study confirms what marine mammal researchers have suspected for a while: right whales use nearly the entire eastern seaboard during the winter, and they move around a lot more than was previously thought. How long they spend in some areas of their range has also changed in recent years. […]

  • Amazonian streams found teeming with fish species are lacking protection
    on November 15, 2017 at 2:24 pm

    Hundreds of thousands of Amazonian streams are teeming with highly diverse populations of fish species, a new study reveals. […]

  • Organic farming can make an important contribution to world nutrition, research shows
    on November 15, 2017 at 2:21 pm

    A global conversion to organic farming can contribute to a profoundly sustainable food system, provided that it is combined with further measures, specifically with a one-third reduction of animal-based products in the human diet, less concentrated feed and less food waste, shows new research. […]

  • 'Left-handed' fish and asymmetrical brains
    on November 15, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    Biologists have discovered the relationship between “handedness”, brain structure and genes in extremely specialized cichlid fish. […]

  • Flower attracts insects by pretending to be a mushroom
    on November 15, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    The mysterious flowers of Aspidistra elatior are found on the southern Japanese island of Kuroshima. Until recently, scientists thought that  A. elatior  had the most unusual pollination ecology among all flowering plants, being pollinated by slugs and amphipods. However, direct observation of their ecosystem has revealed that they are mainly pollinated by fungus gnats, probably thanks to their resemblance to mushrooms. […]

  • Saving endangered African penguins
    on November 15, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    A first-of-its-kind study on prognostic health indicators in the endangered African Penguin provides invaluable information to preserve and rehabilitate this seabird. Competition with fisheries, oil spills, climate change, diseases and predators are all contributing factors in their dramatic population decline, which has been as high as 80 percent in some South African colonies. Until now, limited data existed on the factors contributing to their successful rehabilitation. […]

  • Tumbling bumblebee populations linked to fungicides
    on November 15, 2017 at 12:50 am

    When a team of scientists analyzed two dozen environmental factors to understand bumblebee population declines and range contractions, they expected to find stressors like changes in land use, geography or insecticides. Instead, they found a shocker: fungicides, commonly thought to have no impact. […]

  • Low dose, constant drip: Pharmaceutical, personal care pollution impacts aquatic life
    on November 14, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    Traditional toxicity testing underestimates the risk that pharmaceutical and personal care product pollution poses to freshwater ecosystems. Criteria that account for ecological disruption -- not just organism death -- are needed to protect surface waters, which are under pressure from a growing population and escalating synthetic chemical use. […]

  • Combating devastating amphibian disease
    on November 14, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    Amphibian chytridiomycosis, caused by infection with the Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis fungus, is the most devastating vertebrate disease on record. […]

  • Parasitic plants rely on unusual method to spread their seeds
    on November 14, 2017 at 3:42 pm

    Three species of non-photosynthetic plants rely mainly on camel crickets to disperse their seeds. […]

  • Early-life behavior of grey seal pups at sea
    on November 14, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    Male and female grey seal pups show distinct behavioral differences as they learn to forage effectively in the early stages of their independence. […]

  • Investment portfolio theory helps scientists predict animal population growth
    on November 14, 2017 at 12:52 am

    A new "landscape portfolio" theory is based on Markowitz's "portfolio theory" in economics, melded with ecological landscape theory to predict population growth of living things. […]

  • California birds nesting a week earlier than they did a century ago
    on November 13, 2017 at 8:38 pm

    Many birds are adjusting their life styles to breed 5-12 days earlier to avoid warming that has occurred since the early 1900s, an ongoing survey of California birds and comparison with century-old data shows. This strategy, combined with the trend of other birds to move northward in range or upward in elevation, allows adaptation to climate change, though eventually the cool window for breeding may become too short for some species. […]