Exotic Species News
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- The origins of farming insects more than 100 million years agoon June 23, 2021 at 3:38 pm
A beetle bores a tree trunk to build a gallery in the wood in order to protect its lay. As it digs the tunnel, it spreads ambrosia fungal spores that will feed the larvae. When these bore another tree, the adult beetles will be the transmission vectors of the fungal spores in another habitat. This mutualism among insects and ambrosia fungi could be more than 100 years old, more than what was thought to date.
- Salt marsh plants may signal carbon capture capacityon June 22, 2021 at 4:33 pm
Coastal wetlands like seagrass meadows, mangroves, and salt marshes play vital roles along the shoreline, from providing a buffer against storm surges, to providing critical habitat for animals, to capturing atmospheric carbon. We are still just beginning to comprehend the intricate workings of these highly productive ecosystems and their role in mitigating the climate crisis, but researchers are one step closer to understanding how salt marsh vegetation, their bacterial communities, and vegetation can help predict a marsh's potential to be a blue carbon reservoir.
- Mushroom growing out of fossilized ant reveals new genus and species of fungal parasiteon June 22, 2021 at 4:33 pm
Oregon State University research has identified the oldest known specimen of a fungus parasitizing an ant, and the fossil also represents a new fungal genus and species.
- Dragonflies: Species losses and gains in Germanyon June 18, 2021 at 5:40 pm
Over the past 35 years, there have been large shifts in the distributions of many dragonfly species in Germany. Those of standing water habitats have declined, probably due to loss of habitat. Running-water species and warm-adapted species have benefited from improved water quality and warmer temperatures. The study highlights the importance of citizen science and natural history societies for long-term data collection.
- Climate warming can influence fungal communities on oak leaves across the growing seasonon June 18, 2021 at 5:40 pm
Climate warming plays a larger role than plant genes in influencing the number and identity of fungal species on oak leaves, especially in autumn. This research by ecologists sheds light on how warming and tree genes affect the dynamics of fungal communities across the season.
- New cause for intensification of oyster diseaseon June 18, 2021 at 5:40 pm
Researchers reveal that intensification of major oyster disease was due to evolving parasite, not just drought as previously thought.
- Passive rewilding can rapidly expand UK woodland at no coston June 17, 2021 at 6:58 pm
A long-term passive rewilding study has shown that natural woodland regeneration could make a significant contribution to meeting the UK's ambitious tree planting targets - potentially at no cost and within relatively short timescales. The research found natural growth due to seed dispersal by birds, mammals and wind can produce biodiverse and resilient woodland.
- 'Unshackled' palm-destroying beetles could soon invade Australiaon June 17, 2021 at 3:55 pm
A destructive pest beetle is edging closer to Australia as biological controls fail, destroying home gardens, plantations and biodiversity as they surge through nearby Pacific islands.
- New beetle-dwelling roundworm species discovered in Japanon June 17, 2021 at 3:55 pm
A new species of nematode (roundworm), named Cryptaphelenchus abietis, was isolated from bark beetles from a dead log collected in Nagano, Japan. The females of this newly described species can be identified based on the size of the post-uterine sac and the conical tail with an elongate posterior part. The males have seven genital papillae and a narrow bursal flap-like extension. The culturability of this species means it may be useful in further nematode research.
- Dorsal navigation found in a flying insecton June 17, 2021 at 2:12 pm
Sweat bees navigate through dark tropical forests guided by canopy patterns.
- New beetle species discovered and named after iconic sci-fi heroineson June 16, 2021 at 11:15 pm
Entomologists have discovered more than three dozen species of ambrosia beetles -- beetles that eat ambrosia fungus -- previously unknown to science.
- Poison frog tadpoles can survive (almost) anywhereon June 16, 2021 at 3:38 pm
A group of researchers were part of an expedition to French Guiana to study tropical frogs in the Amazon. Various amphibian species of this region use ephemeral pools of water as their nurseries, and display unique preferences for specific physical and chemical characteristics. Researchers were surprised to find tadpoles of the dyeing poison frog surviving in an incredible range of both chemical (pH 3-8) and vertical (0-20 m in height) deposition sites.
- Snails carrying the world's smallest computer help solve mass extinction survivor mysteryon June 15, 2021 at 5:22 pm
More than 50 species of tree snail in the South Pacific Society Islands were wiped out following the introduction of an alien predatory snail in the 1970s, but the white-shelled Partula hyalina survived.
- Biodiversity 'hotspots' imperiled along California's streamson June 14, 2021 at 7:39 pm
A study of woodland ecosystems that provide habitat for rare, endangered species along streams, rivers throughout California reveals some ecologically important areas are inadvertently benefiting from water humans are diverting for their own needs. Though it seems a short-term boon to these ecosystems, the artificial supply creates an unintended dependence on its bounty, threatens the long-term survival of natural communities and spotlights the need for changes in the way water is managed across the state.
- Barks in the night lead to the discovery of new specieson June 14, 2021 at 1:06 pm
A new study finds that the barking hyraxes are a separate species from their shrieking neighbors. The newly described species, Dendrohyrax interfluvialis, populates the wet and dry forests that lie between the two rivers in coastal regions of southeastern Ghana, southern Togo and Benin, and southwestern Nigeria. The researchers based their conclusion on the distinctive calls combined with anatomical and genetic differences they identified among tree hyrax populations.
- Florida python hunters may have a new toolon June 10, 2021 at 8:24 pm
Researchers have published a first- of-its-kind study that shows that near-infrared (NIR) spectrum cameras can help python hunters more effectively track down these invasive snakes, especially at night.
- How the amphibians got their vertebraeon June 9, 2021 at 6:34 pm
A group of ancient amphibians called temnospondyls evolved stiffer spinal columns to adapt to aquatic life, contrary to previous hypotheses, according to a new study.
- Aspirin takes the headache out of ecological restorationon June 9, 2021 at 6:33 pm
New research has shown how a readily available, cheap and safe-to-use product found in the medicine cabinet of most homes could be the key to better ecological restoration practices with major benefits for the environment and agriculture. The study revealed that aspirin, which naturally occurs in the bark of the willow tree and other plants, can improve the survival of grass species important for ecological restoration and sustainable pasture when applied in a seed coating.
- Climate change a bigger threat to landscape biodiversity than emerald ash boreron June 8, 2021 at 12:22 am
Despite the devastating impact the emerald ashborer beetle has had on forests in the eastern and midwestern parts of the U.S., climate change will have a much larger and widespread impact on these landscapes through the end of the century, according to researchers.
- Infrared imaging leaves invasive pythons nowhere to hideon June 7, 2021 at 8:10 pm
Researchers report that a near infrared camera helped people detect Burmese pythons at distances up to 1.3 times farther away than was possible using a traditional visible-wavelength camera.