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biology

Bluefin Tuna, Big Game Hunters, and the Conservation Vortex

biology, Conservation, ecology, fisheries, marine science, Natural Science, ScienceNovember 29, 2011

Why are we still killing Bluefin Tuna? This question has resonated through the ocean blogosphere recently, as various experts weigh the issues surrounding overfishing and wonder why, when we know how limited the Bluefin Tuna populations are, and how precipitously they’ve declined in the last decade, do they demand record-breaking prices able to support an industry […]

America’s lust for gigantic breasts leads to impotence: the population genetics of captive-reared turkeys

biology, Conservation, ecology, evolution, Natural Science, ScienceNovember 23, 2011

The noble turkey, a centerpiece of the American Thanksgiving supper. It looms large from its prominent position on the dining room table. The master of ceremonies – or, in my case, the guy who keeps slicing himself open with various sharp objects yet is inexplicably the one people call on when there’s knife-work needs doing […]

A slimehead by any other name should never be on your plate

biology, deep sea, ecology, marine science, Natural Science, ScienceOctober 26, 2011

Slimehead is not a word you would expect to find on the menu of a fancy restaurant. Like dolphin*, toothfish*, goosefish*, mudbug*, hog*, and gizzard fish*, slimeheads have undergone a bit re-branding over the last few decades to make their name as palatable as their fillets. Enter the Orange Roughy, a dull, uninspired name that […]

In sexual selection and thermoregulation, bigger is better, at least for fiddler crabs

biology, ecology, evolution, marine science, Natural Science, ScienceSeptember 21, 2011

Imagine yourself a fiddler crab. For this exercise, imagine yourself a male fiddler crab. Are you with me? Great. Check out your right claw, it’s a sleek, slender machine, perfect for picking through the sand as you sift out bacteria and other microorganisms for food. It also makes a handy shovel for digging nice deep […]

What killed this lemon shark? University of Miami scientists perform necropsy to solve this mystery

biology, Life in the Lab, marine science, Natural Science, Science, sharksAugust 15, 2011

Last week, volunteers monitoring a sea turtle nesting beach on Virginia Key came across a beached lemon shark. They called in scientists from the University of Miami’s RJ Dunlap Marine Conservation program, including myself . Dunlap program director Dr. Neil Hammerschlag decided to film the necropsy to use as an online teaching tool. The end […]

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