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Society

Nature interrupted: Impact of the US-Mexico border wall on wildlife

Scientists on both sides of the border are working to understand how the barrier is affecting the area’s biodiversity. Meanwhile, communities try to save animals left without access to water.

The most common wombat is also the least understood

Australia’s iconic marsupial has been viewed as a food source, pest, mascot and, now, a conservation concern. Scientists are breaking down myths — using genetics, robots and citizen science — and finding new ways to protect the animals.

Cleaning up cow burps to combat global warming

New tools for lowering methane emissions from livestock are on their way

A lifetime of love for the charismatic narwhal

An independent scientist working with the Inuit has unraveled many mysteries of the one-tusked ‘unicorn of the sea’

The hornet has landed: Scientists combat new honeybee killer in US

An invasive yellow-legged wasp has been decimating beehives in Europe — and bedeviling Georgia since last summer. Researchers are working nest by nest to limit the threat while developing better eradication methods.

Time for half-year resolutions?

If your good intentions from a few months ago haven’t led to much, take note. A psychologist tells us what we can learn from studies on willpower.

In defense of wild meat’s place at the table

Sustainable and safe consumption of wildlife is possible, and important for those who depend on it, says a conservation researcher

From toxic fungus to soy sauce superstar

Today the koji mold is a master fermenter, but it has a checkered past

When are parents responsible for their kids’ behavior?

A researcher weighs in on who’s accountable, when and why, in the eyes of the law — and whether the measures work as intended

How next-gen data analytics is changing American football

At the NFL’s Big Data Bowl, scientists compete to develop new stats that better capture player performance

Why do some people always get lost?

Research suggests that experience may matter more than innate ability when it comes to a sense of direction

Inching toward a global treaty on plastic pollution

Delegates from 175 nations are working on an international agreement that would tackle the vast amounts of plastic waste in the environment. A marine scientist specializing in plastic pollution discusses the problem and her hopes for the proceedings.

Why isn’t dental health considered primary medical care?

Ailments of the mouth can put the body at risk for a slew of other ills. Some practitioners think dentistry should no longer be siloed.

Nuclear’s role in a net-zero world

Is nuclear power a necessary part of the energy transition away from fossil fuels? As the debate rages on, new technologies and smaller reactors may be shifting the balance.

Psychedelic drugs and the law: What’s next?

The push to legalize magic mushrooms, MDMA, LSD and other hallucinogens is likely to heighten tensions between state and federal law, drug law expert Robert Mikos says

How to overcome political polarization on climate change

Conversations — in real life — can help bridge the partisan divide, but the trick is to have some structure to the discussion, says a human ecologist

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