Two bonobos facing each other on a tree branch
Q&A: In Battle of the Sexes, Dominance Doesn’t Always Equal Power
Raegan Scharfetter | May 18, 2022
The Scientist spoke to hyena researcher Eve Davidian for a broad look at power relationships between male and female mammals.
A mosquito sucks blood from human skin
Malaria Mosquitoes Bite More During the Day Than Previously Thought
Andy Carstens | May 17, 2022
While malaria control strategies have focused on mosquitoes’ nocturnal activity, almost one-third of bites occur while the sun is up, a new study estimates.
brown spotted octopus blending in with its background
Steroids May Explain Octopuses’ Self-Starvation
Andy Carstens | May 16, 2022
Two glands increase steroid production after female California two-spot octopuses mate, a study finds. Those hormones may be responsible for the animals’ self-destructive behavior.
A fossil imprint of the stridulatory apparatus from an extinct cricket species
Listen to Extinct Crickets Chirp
David George Haskell | May 16, 2022
The land’s first known singer may have sounded like a raspier version of today’s familiar insect fiddlers.
A fossil imprint of the stridulatory apparatus from an extinct cricket species
Book Excerpt from Sounds Wild and Broken
David George Haskell | May 16, 2022
In a chapter entitled “Predators, Silence, Wings,” author David George Haskell explores the soundscapes of bygone eras of animal communication.
a Hawaiian bobtail squid (Euprymna scolopes) resting on a reflective surface
Reshuffled Genomes May Explain Cephalopods’ Smarts
Sophie Fessl | May 13, 2022
In two related studies, researchers describe huge chromosomal rearrangements and about 500 novel gene clusters in the octopus, squid, and cuttlefish genomes, which they say could help explain how they evolved their extraordinary brains.
Bat perching upside down in a cave.
Some Bats Buzz Like Hornets to Deter Predators
Natalia Mesa | May 9, 2022
The behavior is the first example of a mammal mimicking a more-dangerous species.
Image of a juvenile vaquita
Science Snapshot: Down but Not Out
Lisa Winter | May 6, 2022
Inbreeding depression won’t bring the 10 remaining vaquitas to extinction.
A white mouse huddles with some of her nine-day-old pups.
In Vivo Gene Therapy Cures Infertility in Mice
Dan Robitzski | May 2, 2022
Mice rendered infertile through ovary cell–targeting mutations gave birth to seemingly normal offspring through natural mating after a virus-based gene therapy was injected into their ovaries.
Photo of fish in the Haemulidae family
Fish Are Chattier Than Previously Thought
Connor Lynch | May 2, 2022
Once thought to be silent, fish turn out to produce a range of vocalizations—so polluting the oceans with noise could pose a danger to them.
Photo of John Calhoun crouches within his rodent utopia-turned-dystopia
Universe 25, 1968–1973
Annie Melchor | May 2, 2022
A series of rodent experiments showed that even with abundant food and water, personal space is essential to prevent societal collapse.
Image of not-to-scale renderings of the skulls of various primate species
Surface Area of Tooth Roots Predicts Primate Body Size
Maddie Bender | May 2, 2022
Researchers determine that a primate’s tooth root, and not just its crown, can yield reliable information about body size, but the relationship between root surface area and diet isn’t as clear.
Dogs of various breeds running in the field.
They’re All (Potentially) Good Dogs
Natalia Mesa | Apr 29, 2022
Research finds that a dog’s behavior has little to do with its genes.
leatherback sea turtle making its way across a beach
Fifteen-Year Project Quantifies Threat to Reptiles
Shawna Williams | Apr 28, 2022
The study estimates that one-fifth of reptile species worldwide are at risk of extinction.
Bee on purple flower
Dopamine Drives Bee Desires: Study
Natalia Mesa | Apr 28, 2022
Like in humans, the neurotransmitter appears to play a role in generating wanting-like behavior and, perhaps, happy memories in honeybees.
A tubifer cardinalfish
Genome Spotlight: Tubifer cardinalfish (Siphamia tubifer)
Christie Wilcox | Apr 28, 2022
These tiny reef fish harbor luminous bacteria, and the chromosome-level assembly of the species’ genome may facilitate the duo’s use as a vertebrate model for symbiosis.
Philoponella prominens spiders mating
Spiders Catapult Themselves to Avoid Becoming Their Mate’s Meal
Hannah Thomasy | Apr 25, 2022
During their escape, male spiders can reach speeds in excess of 3 kilometers per hour thanks to their springy front legs.
A Northern Bahamian Rock Iguana cranes its neck to eat a grape that’s speared on the end of a stick.
Grape-Doling Tourists Gave Endangered Iguanas High Blood Sugar
Dan Robitzski | Apr 21, 2022
Research finds that a high-sugar diet supplied by tourists is giving Bahamian rock iguanas the lizard equivalent of high blood sugar.
A landscape showing a forest that’s been cleared to make room for a farm.
Climate Change and Agriculture Together Halve Insect Populations
Dan Robitzski | Apr 21, 2022
Insect populations and species diversity are drastically reduced in areas affected by both climate change and agriculture-related habitat destruction, according to a new study.
bat flying in front of tan building
Fruit Bats Echolocate During the Day Despite Having Great Vision
Natalia Mesa | Apr 20, 2022
Contrary to what researchers had assumed, Egyptian fruit bats don’t rely solely on sight to orient themselves as they drink and forage for food in daylight.