Category Archives: Plants & Animals

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The Trees Sing To Us And We Sing To The Trees

The ultrasonic din of dying trees inspires a new kind of research to save forests from beetle attacks — and battle climate change.

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Spicy Peppers Protect Themselves

The new research provides convincing evidence that the bitter and sometimes toxic chemicals found in many fruits serve to prevent microbial attack — a popular idea that has been difficult to demonstrate.

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A Pollinator Likes A Drink Now And Then

A tiny tree-shrew that lives on alcoholic nectar could – pound for pound – drink the average human under the table, scientists have discovered.

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Ants Are A Plants’ Best Friend

Despite their small size, ants represent the ’glue’ for many ecological interactions. In the future, the natural defense systems of ant-plants could have useful applications for agriculture. Could ants offer ’free’ pest control to crops?

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Make Leaves Not War

Genetic analysis reveals an evolutionary trend for milkweed plants away from resisting predators to putting more effort into repairing themselves faster than caterpillars — particularly the monarch butterfly caterpillar — can eat them.

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Trees To Protect Us From Ticks And Mosquitos

This newly-discovered repellent can be prepared inexpensively from pine oil feedstock in ton quantities for large-scale commercial application.

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Bees Must Envy Orchids

If the orchids thrive on imitating female bees, the match should be as perfect as possible…. Unless, of course, the males like their girls just a little bit different.

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Bushmeat Crisis Threatens Trees

Recent research shows that in those regions of the South American rain forests where monkey species have been exterminated, certain tree species have little chance of survival.

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Benefits of Invasive Plants

According to the research, the existence of invasive plants in invaded sites can increase visits from insects to the majority of native plants. In this way the ‘floral market’ hypothesis in which only the invasive flowers are seen to benefit and the native flowers are no longer visited by insects is contradicted.

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You Gotta Work It!

Flowers 'wave' at insects to get their attention, scientists have discovered. The finding helps explain why many flowers waft in the breeze, and reveals a hitherto unknown trick used to attract pollinators.