Menopausal Mother Nature

News about Climate Change and our Planet

biodiversity

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Dry tropical forests may be more at risk than wet rainforests, study says

Dry tropical forests are more vulnerable to the impacts of global heating than had been thought, according to new research, with wildlife and plants at severe risk of harm from human impacts. Some tropical forests are very wet, but others…

Why are the offspring of older mothers less fit to live long and prosper?

(Marine Biological Laboratory) In a new study in rotifers (microscopic invertebrates), scientists tested the evolutionary fitness of older-mother offspring in several real and simulated environments, including laboratory culture, under threat of predation in the wild, or with reduced food supply. They confirmed that this effect of older maternal age, called maternal effect senescence, does reduce evolutionary fitness of the offspring in all environments, primarily through reduced fertility during their peak reproductive period. They also suggest an evolutionary mechanism for why this may occur.

Learn from the pandemic to prevent environmental catastrophe, scientists argue

(University of Cambridge) COVID-19 is comparable to climate and extinction emergencies. All share features such as lagged impacts, feedback loops, and complex dynamics. Delayed action in the pandemic cost lives and economic growth, just as it will with environmental crises – but on a scale ‘too grave to contemplate’, say scientists from UK and US.

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Gold mining restricts Amazon rainforest recovery

Gold mining significantly limits the regrowth of Amazon forests, greatly reducing their ability to accumulate carbon, according to a new study. The researchers warn that the impacts of mining on tropical forests are long-lasting and that active land management and restoration will be necessary to recover tropical forests on previously mined lands.

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Deforestation and land-clearing are taking a toll on Brazil’s corn yield

(Dartmouth College) Brazil is one of the top three producers of both soy and corn globally, and its agricultural sector accounts for one-fifth of the country’s economy. Deforestation and land-clearing practices have long been linked to decreases in biodiversity, and increases in temperature, stream flow, fire occurence, and carbon dioxide emissions. According to a Dartmouth study published in Nature Sustainability, these land-clearing practices in Brazil are also altering the climate and can significantly reduce corn yields

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Tiny Japanese dinosaur eggs help unscramble Cretaceous ecosystem

A research team has excavated over 1300 eggshell fossils from the Lower Cretaceous Ohyamashimo Formation of Hyogo Prefecture, Japan. Over 96% of these fossils, including numerous fragments, four partial and almost complete eggs in an in situ nest, belonged to a new ootaxon the authors named Himeoolithus murakamii, attributed to a small non-avian theropod dinosaur. The remaining eggshell fragments, belonging to five additional small theropod ootaxa, showed notable biodiversity.

Fancy Aussie bees flew in from Asia

(Flinders University) Ancestors of a distinctive pollinating bee found across Australia probably originated in tropical Asian countries, islands in the south-west Pacific or greater Oceania region, ecology researchers claim. Describing the likely dispersal corridor for the ancestral lineage of the bee genus Homalictus will help understand the social evolution of the vibrant halictine bees, South Australian, Czech and PNG researchers say in a new paper.