Science

6:48pm

Wed June 26, 2013
Science

New Bugs In Florida Stymie Researchers, Threaten Crops

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 5:34 am

The psyllid, discovered eight years ago in Florida citrus groves, has been problematic for researchers and farmers alike.
University of California, Davis AP

With its pleasant climate, Florida has become home to more exotic and invasive species of plants and animals than any other state in the continental U.S. Some invasive species have been brought in deliberately, such as the Burmese python or the Cuban brown snail. But the majority of species are imported inadvertently as cargo.

Amanda Hodges, who heads the biosecurity research lab at the University of Florida, says that until recently, scientists saw about a dozen new bugs arrive in Florida each year.

Read more

5:30pm

Wed June 26, 2013
Shots - Health News

Ultramarathoners: Faster, Higher, Stronger And Sleepier

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 4:54 pm

French ultramarathoner Chistophe Le Saux took third place in the Tor de Gentes.
Courtesy of Enrico Romanzi

In the decidedly nutty sport of ultramarathoning, the stakes keep getting higher. The courses get longer and the terrain steeper, but runners continue to push the boundaries of human endurance and sheer will.

Read more

5:12pm

Wed June 26, 2013
Humans

Pitch-Perfect: Why Our Shoulders Are Key To Throwing

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 5:01 pm

Harry Kaplan practices pitching during Home Run Baseball Camp at Friendship Recreation Center in June. Kaplan's arm is stretched long and toward the ground as his hips are faced away from the catcher. A chimp, in contrast, could never throw a fastball.
Heather Rousseau NPR

The ability to throw a baseball or any object with speed and precision is unique to us humans. And that ability depends on certain features of our anatomy that arose in our ancestors over 2 million years ago, according to a study published in this week's issue of the journal Nature.

Read more

4:50pm

Wed June 26, 2013
Health

'The Lyme Wars' That Tiny Ticks Have Wrought

In the current New Yorker, Michael Specter explores the conflict among some people who suffer from Lyme disease, and the doctors who study it.
aanton iStockphoto.com

Until 1977, Lyme disease was almost unknown. But in the decades since a Yale rheumatologist first described an unusual cluster of arthritis cases in Lyme, Conn., the disease has become the most commonly reported tick-borne illness in the country. Acute symptoms of Lyme disease commonly include a bull's-eye rash followed by flu-like symptoms.

Read more

4:16pm

Wed June 26, 2013
The Salt

Can You Be Addicted To Carbs? Scientists Are Checking That Out

Originally published on Sat June 29, 2013 9:33 pm

Eating refined carbohydrates like bagels may stimulate brain regions involved in reward and cravings, research suggests.
iStockphoto.com

Fresh research adds weight to the notion that certain foods (think empty carbs like bagels and sweet treats) can lead to more intense hunger and overeating.

Fast-digesting carbohydrates can stimulate regions of the brain involved in cravings and addiction, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Read more

4:10pm

Wed June 26, 2013
Shots - Health News

NIH Takes Another Step Toward Retirement Of Research Chimps

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 9:32 am

Chimpanzees play at Chimp Haven, a retirement home for former research animals, in Keithville, La.
Gerald Herbert AP

The National Institutes of Health says it will retire hundreds of chimpanzees that the agency had been using for research. Animal rights activists see the move as a big step towards ending the use of chimps in research, but it will be awhile before any of the research chimps find their way into retirement homes.

Read more

2:42pm

Wed June 26, 2013
The Two-Way

Black Bear Roams In D.C., Days After Red Panda's Jaunt

A black bear was captured in northwest Washington, D.C., Wednesday, two days after Rusty the red panda escaped from the National Zoo into a nearby area.
YouTube

First there was Rusty, the red panda. Now there are reports that a bear was captured after roaming around in Washington, D.C., Wednesday, prompting (mostly unserious) concerns of a possible siege on the nation's capital.

Read more

9:03am

Wed June 26, 2013
The Salt

Fruity With A Hint Of Bologna: A Slacker's Guide To Wine Tasting

Originally published on Sat June 29, 2013 9:29 pm

Swigging for science: A hint of oak, our wine tasting newbies learned, is more common in reds than whites. It's a marker for expense in both.
Heather Rousseau NPR

Wine tasting has taken it on the chin recently.

"There are no two ways about it: the bullsh*t is strong with wine."

That's what Robert T. Gonzales recently wrote on io9.com in a post that eviscerated wine tasting as a form of skilled craft. "Wine tasting. Wine rating. Wine reviews. Wine descriptions," he writes. "They're all related. And they're all egregious offenders, from a [expletive deleted] standpoint."

Read more

8:33am

Wed June 26, 2013
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

Laws Of Man And Laws Of Nature

The Sundarbans, a mangrove forest at the edge of the Bay of Bengal, stretch across parts of southwestern Bangladesh and southeastern India.
NASA

We humans are an unruly bunch. So much so that we need laws to keep order, to make sure we stay on track. Without our laws, society would quickly descend into chaos. The laws of man are guarantors of order, a necessary control against the inherent greediness of our species.

Read more

4:11pm

Tue June 25, 2013
The Salt

How Well Do You Know Your Fish Fillet? Even Chefs Can Be Fooled

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 12:42 pm

Jessica McConnell, 26, of Silver Spring, Md., tries to identify halibut, red snapper and salmon at a dinner hosted by Oceana and the National Aquarium in Washington, D.C.
Heather Rousseau NPR

In the world of seafood, looks can be very deceiving. And unfortunately for anyone who buys fish, it's easy for people above you in the supply chain to sell you something other than what you want.

Read more

Pages