Sometimes, it's really easy for scientists to tell species of animals apart--they'll be obviously different shapes or colors. Other times, different species will look nearly identical to the naked eye. In those cases, scientists need to turn to techniques like DNA analysis to tell them apart. Or, like researchers at the Field Museum discovered when studying some near-identical millipedes, you can sometimes just shine a black light on them, and under the ultraviolet light, parts of the different species' genitals will glow different colors.
Galapagos giant tortoises, sometimes called Gardeners of the Galapagos, are creatures of habit. In the cool dry season, the highlands of the volcano slopes are engulfed in cloud which allows the vegetation to grow despite the lack of rain. On the lower slopes, however, there is no thick fog layer, and vegetation is not available year round. Adult tortoises thus spend the dry season in the higher regions, and trek back to the lower, relatively warmer zones where there is abundant, nutritious vegetation when the rainy season begins.
ATHENS, Ohio (April 18, 2019) - Paleontologists at Ohio University have discovered a new species of meat-eating mammal larger than any big cat stalking the world today. Larger than a polar bear, with a skull as large as that of a rhinoceros and enormous piercing canine teeth, this massive carnivore would have been an intimidating part of the eastern African ecosystems occupied by early apes and monkeys.
Translucent jellyfish, colorful corals and waving sea anemones have very different bodies but all fall on the same big branch in the animal family tree. Jellyfish actually start out anchored to the sea floor, just like corals and anemones. Researchers at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST) recently uncovered which genes allow jellyfish to graduate from this stationary stage and swim off into the sea.
Knowledge may help fine-tune conservation messages
Bobcats, coyotes, foxes seek green spaces in the suburbs
Evolutionary biologists demonstrate that male fruit flies manipulate their female partners
The discovery highlights the urgent need of modern DNA tools when studying rapidly declining animal groups like amphibians
The spotted lanternfly is not a strong or frequent flyer, weaknesses that may hinder its ability to travel long distances by air, according to researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.
Scant amounts of DNA reveal conservation clues, Stanford University researchers and their colleagues found
Are captive dolphins healthy and happy? A new study hopes to provide a clear answer to that question, which continues to plague animal rights groups and tourist officials all around the world.
Male chimpanzees reduce aggression when social relationships in their group are unstable
Whether it is bats, wildebeest or whales, millions of mammals move over thousands of kilometres each year. How they navigate during migration remains remarkably understudied compared to birds or sea turtles, however. A team of scientists led by the Leibniz-IZW in Berlin now combined a mirror experiment simulating a different direction of the setting sun and a new test procedure to measure orientation behaviour in bats to understand the role of the sun's position in the animals' navigation system.
Scientists observe cases of gorillas touching and grooming the bodies of dead individuals, with potential implications for the spread of diseases like Ebola