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As if Hawaii didn’t already have enough to boast about – beautiful beaches, luscious green mountains, and lava – it now also wears the crown for the highest recorded levels of endemic coral reef fishes in the world.  In Hawaii, “endemic” fishes, or fishes that reside only in the Hawaiian Islands and…

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Big animals make lots of dung. And where there’s dung, there’s dung beetles. Researchers counted fossilized dung beetles to figure out the quantity of megafauna–animals weighing 97 pounds or more–at 98 sites from four time periods in Great Britain. The higher the percentage of fossilized dung beetles,…

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What comes to mind when you think of crocodiles? You might think of ancient reptiles, or “living fossils,” that have been around, little changed, since the time of dinosaurs. It is true that crocodile-like species (Pseudosuchia) have been around since the Early Triassic. In fact, they were once the dominant…

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Off the west coast of Peru, seabirds deposit thick layers of guano that accumulates on the ground because of the lack of rain. Guano has historically played a key role in agriculture worldwide because it is rich in plant nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorous. Now, researchers from Wageningen University and…

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Mitochondrial DNA studies shows the occurrence of three well-defined groups of pipefish populations – which independently evolved in a Pleistocene scenario – for Syngnathus abaster in the western Mediterranean and Adriatic Seas. We marvel at the diversity of morphological variability in the pipefish…

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Ever since the nineteenth century scientists have recognised that some regions contain more species than others, and that the tropics are richer in biodiversity than temperate regions. But why are there more species in the tropics? A new study published on 28 January in the Open Access journal PLOS…