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November 2014

Internet Insights - November 11, 2014
Forget using the Internet to track fashion trends. Internet chatter may actually be able to predict ecological changes. The idea stems from a widespread ecosystem disaster in 1997 and 1998. Warm ocean temperatures those years triggered unprecedent...

Swiss Glaciers - November 10, 2014
Time was, armies and rulers determined international boundaries. Today global warming does. That's what's happening between Switzerland and Italy, in an uninhabited area of the Alps, near the Matterhorn. The frontier used to run along th...

Horseshoe Crabs and Red Knots - November 7, 2014
The flight from Tierra del Fuego to the Arctic tops 9,300 miles. If you're a red knot, a dove-sized shorebird that makes that migration yearly, you'd be pretty hungry by New Jersey's Delaware Bay. That's where red knots stop to...

White Shark Cafe - November 6, 2014
Sharks, it seems, are not unpredictable nomads. They're more like commuters: As predictable in their travels as the office carpool. And that fact could save some endangered sharks from extinction. New research from The University of Cal...

Unidentified Floating Object - November 5, 2014
Tracy Collier of Newport News, Virginia, was walking her boss's dog near her office, when she noticed the blob. She was walking around a man-made lake, when there, In the water, jiggled a four-foot, sponge-like... eww, what is that? She th...

Stopping Stowaway Species - November 4, 2014
Humans aren't the only ones collecting frequent flier miles. Turns out bugs, seeds and pathogens are frequently hitching rides on airplanes as stowaways. Mostly accidentally, and mostly harmless. But it's a concern, says Andy Tatem, o...

Plague on the Prairie - November 3, 2014
The black plague once decimated human towns in Medieval Europe. Today it's hitting prairie dog towns on the grasslands of the northern Midwest. The plague comes from a bacteria called Yersinia pestis. It infects its victims through flea bites...