What do young children from diverse cultural communities think about the natural world? How does a child's existing knowledge and beliefs influence their subsequent learning? Questions like these have remained unanswered, largely because research in this area has focused almost exclusively on urban and suburban children living in majority-culture communities. The study reveals ecological knowledge in 4-year-old children from urban Native American, rural Native American and urban non-Native American communities.
Dodder, a parasitic plant that causes major damage to crops in the US and worldwide every year, can silence the expression of genes in the host plants from which it obtains water and nutrients. This cross-species gene regulation, which includes genes that contribute to the host plant's defense against parasites, has never before been seen from a parasitic plant.
In the course of genomic analyses of the fungus behind white-nose-syndrome, a devastating disease that has killed millions of bats in North America, US Forest Service scientists discovered something very surprising: brief exposure to UV-light kills Pseudogymnoascus destructans.
An invasive Australian tree is now posing a serious threat to a global diversity 'hotspot' in the natural forests of Jamaica's Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park. The tree species, Pittosporum undulatum, known locally as 'mock orange', is threatening many rare and endangered species, some of which are found nowhere else in the world. Scientists are urging the relevant institutions to prioritise a program of control of this species.