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29-Jun-2018 11:50 AM EDT
Some of the World’s Poorest People Are Bearing the Costs of Tropical Forest Conservation

Researchers from Bangor University in the UK and the University of Antananarivo in Madagascar show that new conservation restrictions in Madagascar bring very significant costs to local people. In their paper published in PeerJ – the Journal of Life & Environmental Sciences, the researchers estimate that 27,000 people have been negatively impacted by the conservation project.

27-Mar-2018 11:00 AM EDT
Sea Turtles Use Flippers to Manipulate Food

Sea turtles use their flippers to handle prey despite the limbs being evolutionarily designed for locomotion, a discovery by Monterey Bay Aquarium researchers published today in PeerJ.

10-Jan-2018 7:00 AM EST
New Turkey-Sized Dinosaur From Australia Preserved in an Ancient Log-Jam

The partial skeleton of a new species of turkey-sized herbivorous dinosaur has been discovered in 113 million year old rocks in southeastern Australia. The fossilized tail and foot bones give new insight into the diversity of the small, bipedal herbivorous dinosaurs called ornithopods.

7-Dec-2017 3:00 PM EST
Water Extraction in the Colorado River Places Native Species at Risk of Extinction

Agriculture and domestic activities consume much of the Colorado River water that once flowed to the Colorado Delta and Northern Gulf of California. The nature and extent of impact of this fresh-water loss on the ecology and fisheries of the Colorado Delta and Gulf of California is controversial. A recent publication in the journal PeerJ reveals a previously unseen risk to the unique local biodiversity of the tidal portion of the Delta.

Released: 11-Dec-2017 7:00 AM EST
Scientists Urge Endangered Listing for Cheetahs

In a study published today in the open-access journal PeerJ, researchers present evidence that low cheetah population estimates in southern Africa support a call to list the cheetah as “Endangered” on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.

6-Oct-2017 10:00 AM EDT
Researchers Map the Illegal Use of Natural Resources in the Protected Brazilian Amazon

New research published in the open access peer-reviewed journal PeerJ uses law enforcement data collected from 2010 to 2015 to understand the geographical distribution of the illegal use of natural resources across the region’s protected area network.

Released: 3-Oct-2017 7:00 AM EDT
Ancient Petrified Salamander Reveals Its Last Meal

A new study on an exceptionally preserved salamander from the Eocene of France reveals that its soft organs are conserved under its skin and bones. Organs preserved in three dimensions include the lung, nerves, gut, and within it, the last meal of the animal, according to a study published in the peer-reviewed journal PeerJ.

25-Aug-2017 5:05 AM EDT
An Alternative to Wolf Control to Save Endangered Caribou

In a recent study, researchers used a new Canadian government policy as an experiment and found that reducing invasive moose populations has led to population stability for endangered caribou herds.

25-Aug-2017 7:00 AM EDT
Woolly Rhino Neck Ribs Provide Clues About Their Decline and Eventual Extinction

Researchers from the Naturalis Biodiversity Center in Leiden examined woolly rhino and modern rhino neck vertebrae from several European and American museum collections and noticed that the remains of woolly rhinos from the North Sea often possess a ‘cervical’ (neck) rib—in contrast to modern rhinos. The study, published in the open access journal PeerJ today, reports on the incidence of abnormal cervical vertebrae in woolly rhinos. Given the considerable birth defects that are associated with this condition, the researchers argue it is very possible that developmental abnormalities contributed towards the eventual extinction of these late Pleistocene rhinos.

18-Aug-2017 7:05 PM EDT
A Potential Breeding Site of a Miocene Era Baleen Whale

Baleen whales are amongst the largest animals to have ever lived and yet very little is known about their breeding habits. One researcher’s second look at previously found baleen whale fossils from Japan provides new evidence of a now long-gone breeding ground of the extinct baleen whale Parietobalaena yamaokai dating back over 15 million years.

27-Jul-2017 12:05 PM EDT
Can Insects Be Used as Evidence to Tell if a Body Has Been Moved?

The use of insects as indicators of post-mortem displacement is a familiar technique depicted on many crime investigation TV shows. In reality, this practice is far from clear-cut. To cut through the hype, researchers have looked across existing studies to review how exactly insects have been used in legal investigations and to what extent these methods have been useful.

27-Jun-2017 2:00 PM EDT
Gigantic Crocodile with T. Rex Teeth Was a Top Land Predator of the Jurassic in Madagascar

Little is known about the origin and early evolution of the Notosuchia, hitherto unknown in the Jurassic period. New research on fossils from Madagascar, published in the peer-reviewed journal PeerJ by Italian and French paleontologists, begin to fill the gap in a million-year-long ghost lineage.

21-Jun-2017 3:00 PM EDT
The Blue-Winged Amazon: A New Parrot Species From the Yucatán Peninsula

In 2014, during a visit to a remote part of the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico, ornithologist Dr. Miguel A. Gómez Garza came across parrots with a completely different colour pattern from other known species. A study published today in the open-access journal PeerJ names these birds as a new species.

1-Jun-2017 4:05 PM EDT
How the Famous Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Bone Bed Came to Be

The Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry is the densest collection of Jurassic dinosaur fossils. Since its discovery in the 1920s, numerous hypotheses have been proposed to explain the origin of the quarry. Were the dinosaurs poisoned? Did they die due to drought? Were they trapped in quick sand? A new study suggests that the quarry represents numerous mortality events which brought the dinosaurs to the site over time, rather than a single fatal event.

30-Apr-2017 12:05 AM EDT
New Dinosaur Species Increases the Diversity of the 'Whiplash Dinosaurs'

New sauropod species is named Galeamopus pabsti by the same team which recently reinstated the brontosaurus as a distinct genus.

30-Mar-2017 7:00 PM EDT
“Spiderman” Worm-Snails Discovered on Florida Shipwreck

Scientists have discovered a new species of worm-snails that are brightly colored, live on shipwrecks, filter-feeds like a whale, and shoot webs. Their discovery could play an important role in coral reef restoration work.

1-Mar-2017 1:05 PM EST
First Underwater Video Footage of the True´s Beaked Whale

The True´s beaked whale is a deep-diving mammal so rarely seen that it often defies recognition at sea by researchers. Scientists have now obtained the first images of a calf along with the first underwater video of these whales – helping to reveal the secrets of this species.

14-Feb-2017 12:05 PM EST
Seven New Species of Night Frogs From the Western Ghats Biodiversity Hotspot Including Four Miniature Forms

Scientists from India have discovered seven new frog species belonging to the Night Frogs genus. Four out of seven of the new species are miniature-sized frogs (12.2–15.4 mm), which can comfortably sit on a coin or a thumbnail. These are among the smallest known frogs in the world.

1-Feb-2017 11:05 AM EST
A New Species of Gecko with Massive Scales and Tear-Away Skin

Many lizards can drop their tails when grabbed, but one group of geckos has gone to particularly extreme lengths to escape predation with large scales that tear away with ease, leaving them free to escape whilst the predator is left with a mouth full of scales. Scientists have now described a new species that is the master of this art, possessing the largest scales of any gecko.

24-Jan-2017 6:05 PM EST
Boxer Crabs Acquire Anemones by Stealing From Each Other, and Splitting Them Into Clones

Researchers have described a little known yet fascinating aspect of the behavior of Lybia crabs, a species which holds sea anemones in each of its claws (behavior which has earnt it the nickname ‘boxer’ or ‘pom-pom’ crab). In a series of experiments, they showed that when these crabs need an anemone, they will fight to steal one from another crab and then both crabs will split their anemone into two, creating identical clones.

7-Nov-2016 5:05 PM EST
Three New Species of Miniaturized Tropical Salamanders Are Already Endangered

Researchers working in Mexico have discovered and named 3 new species of the enigmatic genus Thorius. With adults smaller than a matchstick, these salamanders are the smallest tailed tetrapods and are already endangered.

30-Sep-2016 7:00 AM EDT
Extensive Deep Coral Reefs in Hawaii Harbor Unique Species and High Coral Cover

Researchers has completed a comprehensive investigation of deep coral-reef environments throughout the Hawaiian Archipelago. The study spanned more than two decades and the researchers documented vast areas of 100% coral-cover at depths of 50-90 meters extending for tens of square kilometers, discovering that these deep-reef habitats are home to many unique species.

Released: 31-Aug-2016 11:05 AM EDT
The Great Elephant Census Reports Massive Loss of African Savannah Elephants

Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Inc. today announced the results of the $7 million, three-year Great Elephant Census, the first-ever pan-African survey of savanna elephants using standardized data collection and validation methods. The researchers report that the current rate of species decline is 8 percent per year, primarily due to poaching.

30-Aug-2016 7:00 AM EDT
New Species of Pterosaur Discovered in Patagonia

Scientists today announced the discovery of a new species of pterosaur from the Patagonia region of South America. The researchers have named this new species ‘ Allkauren koi’ from the native Tehuelche word ‘all’ for ‘brain’, and ‘karuen’ for ‘ancient’.

Released: 18-Jul-2016 4:05 PM EDT
PeerJ Launches a Free ‘Jobs Board’ for Academic Positions

PeerJ (an open access publisher of scholarly journals in biology, medicine, health and computer sciences) today launched a free-to-use “Jobs Board” (available at

Released: 30-Jun-2016 5:05 PM EDT
UK Author And Collaborator APC Relief At PeerJ

In light of the “leave” result in the June 23rd United Kingdom EU referendum, PeerJ will be offering a $100 discount to any publication with a UK author.

7-Jun-2016 1:05 PM EDT
Discovery of a New Mating Position in Frogs

Six mating positions (amplexus modes) are known among the almost 7,000 species of frogs and toads found worldwide. However, the Bombay night frog mates differently. In a new study, scientists have described a new (seventh) mode of amplexus—now named as dorsal straddle.

Released: 10-May-2016 3:05 PM EDT
Peerj Announces the Formation of the “PeerJ Preprints Advisory Group”

PeerJ is pleased to announce the formation of the new ‘PeerJ Preprints Advisory Group’. Made up of 15 individuals with a broad range of experience, this group will help advise PeerJ on matters relating to the academic community’s adoption of preprints.

Released: 10-May-2016 12:05 PM EDT
Northern Galápagos Islands Home to World’s Largest Shark Biomass

Scientists from the Charles Darwin Research Station (CDRS) and the National Geographic Society revealed that the northern Galápagos islands of Darwin and Wolf are home to the largest shark biomass reported to date (12.4 tons per hectare).

Released: 4-May-2016 11:05 AM EDT
First-of-Its-Kind Global Analysis Indicates Leopards Have Lost Nearly 75 Percent of Their Historic Range

The leopard (Panthera pardus), one of the world’s most iconic big cats, has lost as much as 75 percent of its historic range. This study represents the first known attempt to produce a comprehensive analysis of leopards’ status across their entire range and all nine subspecies.

30-Mar-2016 1:00 PM EDT
Architecture of the Sperm Whale Forehead Facilitates Ramming Combat

A new study addresses a controversial hypothesis regarding the potential ramming function of the sperm whale’s head. This hypothesis was instrumental in inspiring Herman Melville to write the novel Moby Dick but its mechanical feasibility had never been addressed.

16-Mar-2016 9:05 AM EDT
Researchers Identify a Single Bacteria That Grows 60 Percent Better on the International Space Station Than on Earth

Researchers at the University of California, Davis grew microbes collected from sports teams, historical monuments, museums, spacecraft, and schools and sent them to the International Space Station (ISS) for growth in space. While most of the microbes looked similar on Earth and in space, one type of bacteria actually grew much better in space.

21-Feb-2016 4:00 AM EST
Untangling the Spider Tree of Life

Employing cutting edge bioinformatics & next generation sequencing techniques, scientists have reconstructed the spider ‘tree of life’ to come to intriguing new conclusions about the evolution of the web, something which has important implications for the overall story of spider evolution.

Released: 2-Feb-2016 2:05 PM EST
Ship Noise Extends to Frequencies Used by Endangered Killer Whales

When an endangered orca is in hot pursuit of an endangered salmon, sending out clicks and listening for their echoes in the murky ocean near Seattle, does the noise from the nearby shipping lane interfere with them catching dinner? To find out scientists measured underwater noise as ships passed their study site 3,000 times. This unprecedented characterization of ship noise will aid in the understanding of the potential effects on marine life, and help with possible mitigation strategies.

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