Well, it now appears that the ivory-billed woodpecker does exist. The three skeptics who had questioned the evidence presented in a Science paper that the birds were living in an Arkansas swamp now say they are ?strongly convinced that there is at least a pair of ivory bills out there,? according to the New York Times.Very good for ornithologists, the woodpecker, and for those who champion the millions being spent to maintain natural habitats. What was curious about the episode from a scientific publishing standpoint, however, was that the skeptical authors submitted their (now withdrawn) rebuttal of a Science paper to?..the Public Library of Science. I asked one of the authors, Jerome Jackson, why they made that decision. He told me via Email yesterday that he had nothing to do with making it ? the senior author, Richard Prum, did ? but his sense was that Science treats rebuttals...
Interested in reading more?
Become a Member of
Receive full access to more than 35 years of archives, as well as TS Digest, digital editions of The Scientist, feature stories, and much more!