New Study Fuels Debate About Source of Birds’ Magnetic Sense
New Study Fuels Debate About Source of Birds’ Magnetic Sense
A detailed analysis of cryptochrome 4 shows that the protein is highly sensitive to magnetic fields in vitro, but some researchers dispute the authors’ assertion that the findings could help explain avian magnetoreception.
New Study Fuels Debate About Source of Birds’ Magnetic Sense
New Study Fuels Debate About Source of Birds’ Magnetic Sense

A detailed analysis of cryptochrome 4 shows that the protein is highly sensitive to magnetic fields in vitro, but some researchers dispute the authors’ assertion that the findings could help explain avian magnetoreception.

A detailed analysis of cryptochrome 4 shows that the protein is highly sensitive to magnetic fields in vitro, but some researchers dispute the authors’ assertion that the findings could help explain avian magnetoreception.

navigation
Image of the Day: Flock in the Night
Image of the Day: Flock in the Night
Amy Schleunes | Feb 19, 2020
The National Weather Service’s radar in Key West captures a spectacular moment in bird migration.
Book Excerpt from <em>Physical Intelligence</em>
Book Excerpt from Physical Intelligence
Scott Grafton | Jan 13, 2020
In Chapter 2, “Surfaces,” author Scott Grafton describes the ancient process of action perception, which helps organisms navigate their environments.
Image of the Day: Virtual Landscape
Image of the Day: Virtual Landscape
Emily Makowski | Nov 25, 2019
Flashing lights activate fly navigation neurons.
Image of the Day: Eel Compass
Image of the Day: Eel Compass
Emily Makowski | Oct 14, 2019
Glass eels form a magnetic memory of their estuaries’ currents in order to migrate.
Making Sense of Magnetic Navigation
Making Sense of Magnetic Navigation
David Barrie | Jun 1, 2019
A new book about remarkable feats of migration by animals explores the front lines of research into how they do it.
Contributors
Contributors
The Scientist Staff | Jun 1, 2019
Meet some of the people featured in the June 2019 issue of The Scientist.
Memories Can Distort the Brain&rsquo;s GPS
Memories Can Distort the Brain’s GPS
Emma Yasinski | Mar 28, 2019
Two independent studies in rats find grid cells, which form the brain’s map, are more plastic than thought and are subject to the influence of reward.
A Keen Sense of Smell Appears to Go Hand in Hand with Spatial Memory
A Keen Sense of Smell Appears to Go Hand in Hand with Spatial Memory
Shawna Williams | Feb 1, 2019
Authors of a small study say the two abilities likely evolved in tandem.
Mag-Neato!
Mag-Neato!
The Scientist Staff | Aug 31, 2016
Scientists are unraveling how animals use Earth's magnetic field to navigate.
Demystifying the Brain’s GPS
Demystifying the Brain’s GPS
Tanya Lewis | Jul 12, 2016
Studies in rodents are beginning to reveal how mammalian navigational sense works.
Behavior Brief
Behavior Brief
Karen Zusi | Jan 4, 2016
A round-up of recent discoveries in behavior research
Biological Compass
Biological Compass
Bob Grant | Nov 16, 2015
A protein complex discovered in Drosophila may be capable of sensing magnetism and serves as a clue to how some animal species navigate using the Earth’s magnetic field.
Sensing North
Sensing North
Jef Akst | Apr 2, 2015
“Blind” rats fitted with a neuroprosthetic device that stimulates the brain when the animals turn their heads to the north or south can navigate mazes as well as sighted rats.
Modifying Memories During Sleep
Modifying Memories During Sleep
Anna Azvolinsky | Mar 9, 2015
Researchers create a link between a location and a reward in sleeping mice.
“Inner GPS” Support
“Inner GPS” Support
Anna Azvolinsky | Feb 5, 2015
Grid cells—the neurons that function as a spatial navigation system—require input from another set of neurons, a rat study shows.
Turtle Magnetism
Turtle Magnetism
Jenny Rood | Jan 19, 2015
Loggerhead sea turtles use the Earth’s magnetic fields to find their way home.
Python Auto-Pilot
Python Auto-Pilot
Rina Shaikh-Lesko | Mar 20, 2014
Invasive snakes in Florida show evidence of a compass sense they use to navigate back to home territory.
Behavior Brief
Behavior Brief
Rina Shaikh-Lesko | Mar 12, 2014
A round-up of recent discoveries in behavior research
Dung Beetles Navigate by Sunlight
Dung Beetles Navigate by Sunlight
Jef Akst | Jan 7, 2014
Shortly after demonstrating dung beetles’ ability to navigate by the stars, researchers in Sweden provide evidence that the insects can also use the sun to find their way.