snake eating another snake
Male Snakes Cannibalizing Females Present Evolutionary Puzzle
Chloe Tenn | Nov 15, 2021
The Scientist speaks with organismal biologist Xavier Glaudas about possible reasons for his recent finding that male Montpellier snakes cannibalize female conspecifics.
spider jumping while making silk
Webless Jumping Spiders Spin Super Strong Silk
Chloe Tenn | Nov 12, 2021
The silk draglines made by zebra jumping spiders are tougher than the silk webbing of orb weaver spiders, even though they’re made at 25 to 35 times the speed.
Lizard on glass tank
Engineered Stem Cells Grant Geckos “Perfectly” Regenerated Tails
Chloe Tenn | Nov 5, 2021
Geckos injected with neural stem cells modified to block cartilage growth developed the skeletal and nervous components normally lacking from regrown tails.
Deer at grass field with autumn trees at the background stock photo
Researchers Detect Coronavirus in Iowa Deer
Chloe Tenn | Nov 3, 2021
Multiple white tailed deer tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 likely transmitted from humans, a study finds, indicating the species could act as a reservoir for the virus.
a spiny mouse sits on a piece of wood holding a small morsel to its mouth
Spiny Mice Appear to Regenerate Damaged Kidneys
Dan Robitzski | Nov 3, 2021
The mice, already known to regenerate skin, seem to avoid the tissue scarring that leads to organ failure in other animals.
Illustration showing how seagull chicks know when predators are lurking
Infographic: Animal Embryos Coopt Sound to Survive and Thrive
Amanda Heidt | Nov 1, 2021
Across the tree of life, animals use sound and other vibrations to glean valuable sensory information about their environments even before they are born.
Conceptual image of an embryo with sound waves
Embryonic Eavesdropping: How Animals Hear and Respond to Sound
Amanda Heidt | Nov 1, 2021
Recent findings buck the traditional idea that embryos are passive agents and instead suggest that by tuning into vibrations, organisms can better prepare to enter the outside world.
Several tadpoles in clear eggs
Slideshow: How Animal Embryos Eavesdrop on the Outside World
Amanda Heidt | Nov 1, 2021
Watch and listen to reptiles, amphibians, insects, and birds respond to sound from inside their eggs.
Dongsha Atoll in the South China Sea
Ubiquitous Little Earthworms Might Have Got Around on Driftwood
Annie Melchor | Nov 1, 2021
Researchers also tried placing the worms on pigeons as part of a study aiming to uncover how the tiny invertebrates ended up all around the world.
spider on a web
Spider Uses Its Web Like a Giant Engineered Ear
Dan Robitzski | Oct 29, 2021
Bridge spiders “outsource” their hearing by building webs that double as acoustic arrays, allowing them to perceive sounds from great distances.
a California condor tending to a chick
Flying Solo: Parthenogenesis Discovered in California Condors
Christie Wilcox | Oct 29, 2021
Genetic analyses uncover asexual reproduction by two female California condors despite access to fertile mates.
Common vampire bats on a black background
The Genes Vampires Lost
Alejandra Manjarrez | Oct 28, 2021
According to a preprint, the common vampire bat lacks 13 genes present in other bat species, which may help explain their blood-only diet and other curious aspects of their lifestyle.
A colorful mandarinfish on a reef
Genome Spotlight: Mandarinfish (Synchiropus splendidus)
Christie Wilcox | Oct 28, 2021
The high-quality genome sequence sheds light on the colorful nature of these popular aquarium fish.
macaque in zoo enclosure
Leading Japanese Primate Research Center is Closing
Chloe Tenn | Oct 19, 2021
Kyoto University is shuttering its Primate Research Institute after its director was dismissed for misuse of funding.
The head of a tadpole is pictured. Its eye is black, but the rest of its head is various shades of green
Scientists Use Photosynthesis to Power an Animal’s Brain
Abby Olena | Oct 13, 2021
Injecting oxygen-generating algae into tadpoles allows brain activity to continue in the absence of oxygen, researchers find.
snails and algae on a rock
Warm-Water Species Remain 5 Years Post-Heatwave
Erica Nielsen, Sam Walkes | Oct 7, 2021
Five years after largest marine heatwave on record hit northern California coast, many warm-water species have stuck around.
ABOVE: A pair of Labroides dimidiatus cleaner fish cleaning a puffer fish
Cleaner Fish Alter Behavior if Partners Can See Them “Cheating”
Chloe Tenn | Oct 7, 2021
A study of feeding behavior suggests the fish feed differently in front of their partners—a behavioral feature also found in primates.
Chelonibia testudinaria barnacle on turtle shell
Some Barnacles Can Move Around to Improve Feeding Position
Chloe Tenn | Oct 6, 2021
The Scientist spoke with marine biologist and barnacle researcher John Zardus about why turtle barnacles—previously thought to be immobile—in fact slowly travel. He thinks the answer is food.
Photographs of animals
Numerosity Around the Animal Kingdom
Catherine Offord | Oct 1, 2021
Research in recent decades has explored how animals other than humans perceive different numbers of objects
hagfish slime on hands
Hagfish Slime Cells Tailored to Deter Predation
Chloe Tenn | Sep 28, 2021
The Scientist spoke with Chapman University’s Yu Zeng about his lab’s finding that the slime-producing cells of the slippery marine fish vary with the creature’s size, which may be an adaptation to thwart different predators.