Check out my new article on Wired. For fun you may want to check out the comments. We are currently in a biodiversity crisis. A quarter of all mammals face extinction, and 90 percent of the largest ocean fish are gone. Species are going extinct at rates equaled only five times in the history . . . → Read More: The Mass Extinction of Scientists Who Study Species | Wired Science | Wired.com
Lepas anatifera from Washington state, USA. Photo credit: David Cowles 1997. Barnacle evolution was recently rewritten by a large effort of Perez-Losada and colleagues in 2008. Using a combination of genes and morphological traits they rejected some of the ideas that were foundational to barnacle biology and taxonomy, while giving new support for other . . . → Read More: Barnacle Evolution I: Phylogeny Served Without Plates
A professor once told me that if you removed everything from earth and just left the nematodes you would still recognize the outlines of everything. I have absolutely no idea if this is even remotely true. I do know that, hyperbole aside, nematodes represent one of the most abundant forms of life on earth. The . . . → Read More: How Many Deep-Sea Nematodes Are There & Why We Many Never Know
Inspired by the Are Headlines Hogwash? series at Dr. Carin Bondar’s wonderful blog, the editors at DSN (i.e. Kevin and I) have initiated a news series called Bull Patrol! Our goal is to call out the media for the getting carried away with headlines and reports, not doing their homework, making a mockery of colleagues’ . . . → Read More: Bull Patrol: NEW SPECIES DISCOVERED zOMG!
I found a great quote and analogy from an essay published in Current Biology by Peter Lawrence titled The Mismeasurement of Science. This essay takes a look at how science is measured and examines the use of impact factors and other metrics that measure scientific progress for individual scientists, academic departments and institutions. The quote . . . → Read More: How to Retard Scientific Progress
This awesome design is a t-shirt you can buy from Zazzle!! (click on image) As part of Darwin Day on Friday, I gave a brief talk at Duke Marine Lab during happy hour about Darwin and his beloved barnacles. I was going to post the slides but didn’t think they did the 201 year legacy . . . → Read More: Ex Omnia Conchis: Darwin and His Beloved Barnacles
Image adapted from the book cover of New Crustacean Species from the Phillipines. This week’s Mad Taxonomic Skillz challenge will utilize the awesome freely available resource for everything crustacean – Crustacea.net! We think that if crustaceans were easier to identify and to learn about, then they would be used more often in survey work, in . . . → Read More: Mad Taxonomic Skillz III – Crustacean Hunt!
The World's Authoritative Guide to Vent Fauna Clearly, last week’s Cephalopod Beak ID Contest was too easy! So This week’s contest is going to be a little harder. I’m testing you guys out, seeing where your limits are. This week I am highlighting the Handbook of Deep-Sea Hydrothermal Vent Fauna by veteran deep sea colleagues . . . → Read More: Mad Taxonomic Skillz Contest II – What Vent Worm Am I?
Due to popular demand and a limited run the authors of the Cephalopod Beak Guide for the Southern Ocean have their book freely available for download on the internet! The guide is published by the British Antarctic Survey and is available is 10mb low-res download and well as a 55mb hi-res download. As the only . . . → Read More: The Cephalopod Beak Guide Contest
Over ten years ago Fred Grassle, a marine biologist with deep-sea tendencies, and Jesse Ausubel, program director for Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, started conversing on an initiative to document the biodiversity of the oceans. That program, the Census of Marine Life, started in 2000 with the goal “to advance a major new international observational program . . . → Read More: Cataloging Life On the Deep-Sea Floor