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Yellowstone's Thermal Springs -- Their Colors Unveiled

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Researchers at Montana State University and Brandenburg University of Applied Sciences in Germany have created a simple mathematical model based on optical measurements that explains the stunning colors of Yellowstone National Park’s hot springs and can visually recreate how they appeared years ago, before decades of tourists contaminated the pools with make-a-wish coins and other detritus. The model, and stunning pictures of the springs, appear today in the journal Applied Optics.

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Epithelial Tube Contraction

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Researchers at the Mechanobiology Institute (MBI), National University of Singapore (NUS) have identified a novel mechanosensitive regulation of epithelial tube contraction. These findings are published on 19 December 2014 in Current Biology (Pei Yi Tan and Ronen Zaidel-Bar. Transient membrane localization of SPV-1 drives cyclical actomyosin contractions in the C. elegans spermatheca, Current Biology, 19 Dec 2014, doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2014.11.033)

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Citizen Science Project Abuzz Over Bees, Wasps

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More than 600 people around the world helped UF/IFAS scientists by collecting valid data from nesting habitats they built for bees and wasps. Scientists hail this as another victory for "citizen science."

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Professor’s Weather Nowcasting Company Advances in Launchpad Competition

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NextStorm Inc., a University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) professor’s startup weather nowcasting company, has advanced to the second round of Alabama Launchpad startup business competition.

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Nova Southeastern University Researcher Identifies New, RARE, Sea Lily Species

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Charles Messing, Ph.,D., has identified a new, very rare species of sea lily. Rather than name the creature himself, he's providing the opportunity of a lifetime and auctioning off those rights on eBay. Funds to help further research.

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Virus Causing Mass Duck Die-Offs on Cape Cod Identified

Since 1998, hundreds and sometimes thousands of dead eider ducks have been washing up every year on Cape Cod’s beaches in late summer or early fall, but the reasons behind these cyclic die-offs have remained a mystery. A team of scientists from Cornell, Tufts University, University of Georgia, the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have pinned down one of the agents responsible: a pathogen they’re calling Wellfleet Bay virus (WFBV). Their findings shed light on why eider ducks (also called common eiders) die on Cape Cod every year and offer hints about how the virus spreads.

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South Sudan War Threatens Existence of Elephants, Giraffes, and Other Wildlife

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News and images from South Sudan where WCS continues conservation work under extremely challenging conditions.

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Grasshoppers Signal Slow Recovery of Post-Agricultural Woodlands, Study Finds

By comparing grasshoppers found at woodland sites once used for agriculture to similar sites never disturbed by farming, UW-Madison Philip Hahn and John Orrock show that despite decades of recovery, the numbers and types of species found in each differ, as do the understory plants and other ecological variables, like soil properties.

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Tropical Inspiration for an Icy Problem

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Ice poses major impediments to winter travel, accumulating on car windshields and airplane wings and causing countless unsuspecting pedestrians to dramatically lose their balance. A team of researchers from Arizona State University (ASU) has developed a new way to prevent ice buildup on surfaces like airplane wings, finding inspiration in an unusual source: the poison dart frog.

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Deep-Earth Carbon Offers Clues on Origin of Life on Earth

Scientists reveal details about carbon deep beneath the Earth’s surface and suggest ways it might have influenced the history of life on the planet.

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