Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Notes for March 10th, 2010

  • Parasites are awesome. Here's a neat article explaining how goldenrod reacts to the parasitism of a Gall Fly.
  • More discussion about the 'impact theory' regarding the dinosaur extinction. Here's my thing: Nobody agrees on what would constitute compelling evidence. There's certainly little debate that some object hit the earth at about the same time as the dinosaurs went extinct. However, there also seems to be some evidence that dinos were already on the decline (although it was more than just dinosaurs that went extinct, so that evidence is not exactly compelling), and there were certainly other big, big things happening at the time. Considering the number of other massive impact craters we know of that didn't result in mass extinctions, I'm just still very skeptical that this is the best explanation.
  • Vaccinating kids reduces the transmission of a disease community wide. Which, if you have children, is no surprise at all.
  • White-nose syndrome is a big problem for bats. A big problem. The Smithsonian is trying to breed bats in captivity to insure higher survival. Long-term, I'm not sure how viable such a strategy is, and short term, things don't seem to be going well.
  • A very educational explanation of primate origins.

No comments: