Monthly Archives: August 2015

South Australian orchid a sad symbol of lack of federal funds for botanical research

Could the rather prosaically named two-bristle greenhood (Pterostylis psammophila) be one of the world’s rarest orchids? If so (and there are only around 90 left out there in the Barossa Valley) then the federal government appears to be hedging its … Continue reading

Posted in biodiversity, botany, federal politics, greenhood orchid, plants | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Global coffee demand creating a thirsty monoculture with little benefit for farmers

So, who ultimately benefits from all those glitzy global barista competitions, and the gastro-hipster babble about acidity levels and preferences for wet or dry processed coffee? Probably the coffee bean brokers, importers, distributors and upmarket cafes, but not the coffee … Continue reading

Posted in coffee, ethical choices, farms, trade | Tagged , , ,

CSIRO likely to lose long-term Sydney research site to real estate developers

Sydney’s over-heated housing  market looks likely to claim one of the CSIRO’s oldest and biggest research sites, with a Shanghai-based investment company looking to redevelop the North Ryde property as prime residential housing. Yes, that’s North Ryde – home of the … Continue reading

Posted in CSIRO, federal politics, Research, science | Tagged , , ,

Study shows migratory songbirds make baffling altitude changes during night flights

A tracking study by US scientists has found small migratory songbirds change their altitude frequently, making large ascents and descents during long-distance flights. A research team led by Melissa Bowlin of the University of Michigan-Dearborn used miniature radio transmitters to … Continue reading

Posted in biodiversity, birds, songbirds, Swainson's thrush, thermals | Tagged , , , ,

Australia’s non-believers and Buddhists more likely to act on climate change says Charles Sturt study

Australia’s agnostics, atheists and Buddhists are more likely to accept that climate change is occurring than most Christian denominations, according to research by Charles Sturt University in rural New South Wales. Buddhists and secularists are also more likely to think … Continue reading

Posted in Buddhism, climate change, Research | Tagged , , ,

Disease and pollution causing global increase in mass deaths of species says US study

Mass die-offs of animal species are increasing, with fish accounting for 56 per cent of all mass mortality events reported across the world since 1940, according to a US study. Disease is the most frequent cause, followed by man-made pollution … Continue reading

Posted in biodiversity, climate change, fish, Research | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Global study confirms 60 per cent of breaking news now appears first on Twitter

At least 60 per cent of news appears first on Twitter before being picked up by mainstream media, according to an analysis of news coverage from more than 62 countries by Spanish and Swiss researchers. The study, by researchers from … Continue reading

Posted in data, environment, News, Research, social media | Tagged , , ,