Wild Things: Life as We Know It
Drought crises, Florida panthers, humpback whales and more...
- By T. A. Frail, Jesse Rhodes, Jessica Righthand, Brandon Springer and Sarah Zielinski
- Smithsonian magazine, December 2010
Large parts of the world seem to be getting drier, according to a study led by Germany's Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry. Researchers analyzed 27 years of data from remote sensing devices and meteorological stations. Soil evaporation has been decreasing since 1998, especially in the Southern Hemisphere. The authors suggest there's less moisture in the soil—possibly because of climate change—and the trend could harm plants and contribute to heat waves.
"Investigations into the status of a new taxon of Salanoia (Mammalia: Carnivora: Eupleridae) from the marshes of Lac Alaotra, Madagascar," Joanna Durbin et al., Systematics and Biodiversity, September 15, 2010
"Recent decline in the global land evapotranspiration trend due to limited moisture supply," Martin Jung et al., Nature, October 10, 2010
"A quarter of a world away: female humpback whale moves 10,000 km between breeding areas," Peter T. Stevick et al., Biology Letters, October 13, 2010
"Ritualized fighting and biological armor: the impact mechanics of the mantis shrimp's telson," J. R. A. Taylor and S. N. Patek, Journal of Exerimental Biology, October 1, 2010
"Genetic Restoration of the Florida Panther," Warren E. Johnson et al., Science, September 24, 2010