Biologists have revealed for the first time the genetics linking pheromone signals produced by female moths and the neuronal response driving male attraction to females. The ability to predict mate choice will help in understanding how species diverge, and how to control agricultural pests.
The first study to analyze snake removals in a social-ecological context was recently published by an Arizona State University conservation biologist working with a local rattlesnake removal company."I think one of the surprises was that people don't hate snakes," said researcher Heather Bateman of the College of Integrative Sciences and Arts. "A lot of them responded that the snakes are important to the desert ecosystem and the snake belongs in the desert, just not in my garage."
Radical changes to the food system are needed to safeguard our food supply and combat malnutrition in the face of climate change, environmental degradation and epidemics, says new report.
A dengue virus vaccine candidate has passed an important milestone, with promising results in animal model testing providing hope to the 390 million people infected every year.
Earthworms improve the soil by aerating it, breaking down organic matter and mineralizing nutrients. Now, researchers reporting in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology have dug up another possible role: reducing the number and relative abundance of antibiotic-resistance genes (ARGs) in soils from diverse ecosystems. These results imply that earthworms could be a natural, sustainable solution to addressing the global issue of antibiotic resistance, the researchers say.
Road networks extend some 20 million miles across the globe, and that number is projected to increase by an additional 15 million miles or so by 2050.
A team of researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena, Germany, demonstrates how the horseradish flea beetle regulates the accumulation of mustard oil glucosides in its body. The beetles have special transporters in the excretory system that prevent the excretion of mustard oil glucosides. This mechanism enables the insect to accumulate high amounts of the plant toxins in its body, which it uses for its own defense.
Susceptibility of their microbial partners to the herbicide may be an underestimated weak spot of insects that could add to their decline.
The morphological compatibility between flowers and insects was given in the famous textbook example of Darwin's orchids and hawkmoths. As in this example, many studies have shown that geographical variations in flower size match the size of insects in each region. In other words, studies have shown "flower-sized regional adaptation" in which large flowers evolve in areas pollinated by large insects and small flowers evolve in areas pollinated by small insects.
Researchers made a surprising finding while examining areas where sand flies rear their young: a new species of bacteria that is highly attractive to pregnant sand flies. The findings could advance the production of ecologically safe baits or traps to reduce sand fly populations.