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Key: Meeting Journal Funder
Public Release: 22-Jul-2014
Journal of Zoology
New York squirrels are nuts about city life
Curtin University-led research has shown squirrels have adapted to New York City's human behaviour, allowing them to thrive just as well, if not better, than their fellow squirrels in the woods. Dr Bill Bateman, Senior Lecturer at Curtin's Department of Environment & Agriculture, led the study that proved eastern grey squirrels were able to modify their behaviour in urban environments and prevent unnecessary responses when humans acted in a predictable manner, such as staying on the footpath.

Contact: Megan Meates
Curtin University

Public Release: 22-Jul-2014
Journal of Insect Science
New planthopper species found in southern Spain
Not much is known about the genus of planthopper known as Conosimus, which now includes six species after a new one was recently discovered in the southern part of the Iberian Peninsula in the Spanish city of Jaen. A description of it appears in the open-access Journal of Insect Science.

Contact: Richard Levine
Entomological Society of America

Public Release: 22-Jul-2014
The Cryosphere
Has Antarctic sea ice expansion been overestimated?
New research suggests that Antarctic sea ice may not be expanding as fast as previously thought. A team of scientists say much of the increase measured for Southern Hemisphere sea ice could be due to a processing error in the satellite data. The findings are published today in The Cryosphere, a journal of the European Geosciences Union.

Contact: Bárbara Ferreira
European Geosciences Union

Public Release: 22-Jul-2014
Self-cooling solar cells boost power, last longer
Scientists may have overcome one of the major hurdles in developing high-efficiency, long-lasting solar cells -- keeping them cool, even in the blistering heat of the noonday Sun. By adding a specially patterned layer of silica glass to the surface of ordinary solar cells, a team of researchers led by Shanhui Fan, of Stanford University has found a way to let solar cells cool themselves by shepherding away unwanted thermal radiation.

Contact: Jake Lynn
The Optical Society

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Mammoth and mastodon behavior was less roam, more stay at home
UC research on mammoths and mastodons could benefit modern-day elephants.

Contact: Tom Robinette
University of Cincinnati

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Geophysical Research Letters
Global warming 'pause' since 1998 reflects natural fluctuation
Statistical analysis of average global temperatures between 1998 and 2013 shows that the slowdown in global warming during this period is consistent with natural variations in temperature, according to research by McGill University physics professor Shaun Lovejoy.

Contact: Chris Chipello
McGill University

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Environmental Research Letters
Water, water -- not everywhere: Mapping water trends for African maize
Researchers at Princeton University analyzed trends in the water cycle in 21 African countries between 1979 and 2010 and found that the majority of maize-growing areas experienced increased water availability, although the trends varied by region. The greater availability of water generally resulted from a mixture of increased rainfall and decreased evaporation and transpiration.
US Army Corps of Engineers Institute for Water Resources, NASA Measures Program

Contact: Catherine Zandonella
Princeton University

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Environment: Science and Policy for Sustainable Development
Researchers provide guide to household water conservation
A paper co-written by an Indiana University researcher and published in the current issue of the journal Environment describes how households can reduce water use substantially by simple actions such as installing more efficient appliances and changing day-to-day habits involving water consumption.

Contact: Steve Hinnefeld
Indiana University

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Fires and Smoke in Canada's Northern Territories
Environment Canada has issued a high health risk warning for Yellowknife and surrounding area because of heavy smoke in the region due to forest fires. Currently 160 wildfires are burning across the region.

Contact: Rob Gutro
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
NASA satellite sees Typhoon Matmo brush eastern Philippines
A NASA satellite captured an image of the western quadrant of Typhoon Matmo brushing over the eastern Philippines on July 20.

Contact: Rob Gutro
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Philosopher uses game theory to understand how words, actions acquire meaning
The latest work from a Kansas State University philosopher appears in the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, which is a rarity for philosophy research.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Elliott Wagner
Kansas State University

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Climatic Change
Climate: Meat turns up the heat
Eating meat contributes to climate change, due to greenhouse gasses emitted by livestock. New research finds that livestock emissions are on the rise and that beef cattle are responsible for far more greenhouse gas emissions than other types of animals.

Contact: Ken Caldeira
Carnegie Institution

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Typhoon Rammasun made final landfall near China and Vietnam border
Typhoon Rammasun made landfall in southern China on July 19 bringing heavy rain and typhoon-strength winds to the south China/Vietnam border. NASA and NOAA's Suomi NPP satellite captured an infrared image the typhoon that showed strong thunderstorms with heavy rain potential.

Contact: Rob Gutro
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Fires in Indonesia, July 2014
Terra and Aqua satellites detected 154 hotspots in areas across Riau province on Sunday, July 20, indicating forest and land fires had increased again following a decline in rainfall.

Contact: Rob Gutro
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Tropical Storm Wali no more, but remnants soaked Hawaii
On July 19, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Central Pacific Hurricane Center noted that Wali didn't even make it to the Big Island, but moisture associated with the storm did. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's GOES-West satellite captured an image of the remnant low southwest of the Big Island, and a moisture stream that extended over it.

Contact: Rob Gutro
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Ecology Letters
Study provides insights into birds' migration routes
By tracking hybrids between songbird species, investigators have found that migration routes are under genetic control and could be preventing interbreeding. The research, which is published in Ecology Letters, was conducted using geolocators that, like GPS, record the position of a bird and allow its long distance movement to be tracked.

Contact: Nicole Weingartner

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Geophysical Research Letters
Examining the causes of a devastating debris flow
Storm-triggered landslides cause loss of life, property damage, and landscape alterations. For instance, the remnants of Hurricane Camille in 1969 caused 109 deaths in central Virginia, after 600 mm of rain fell in mountainous terrain in 6 hours. More recently, on 8 August 2010, a rainstorm-induced landslide devastated the Chinese county of Zhouqu, causing more than 1000 deaths. A new modeling study by Ren examines the multiple factors, both natural and human caused, that came together to produce this event.

Contact: Nicole Weingartner

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Energy Science and Engineering
Replacing coal and oil with natural gas will not help fight global warming
Both shale gas and conventional natural gas have a larger greenhouse gas footprint than do coal or oil, especially for the primary uses of residential and commercial heating.

Contact: Nicole Weingartner

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Current Protocols in Microbiology
Researchers simplify process to purify water using seed extracts
Researchers have streamlined and simplified a process that uses extracts from seeds of Moringa oleifa trees to purify water, reducing levels of harmful bacteria by 90 percent to 99 percent. The hardy trees that are drought resistant are cultivated widely throughout many countries of Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Contact: Nicole Weingartner

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
The real price of steak
New research reveals the comparative environmental costs of livestock-based foods.

Contact: Yivsam Azgad
Weizmann Institute of Science

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
European Physical Journal E
Refined biological evolution model
Models for the evolution of life try and clarify the long term dynamics of an evolving system of species. A recent model accounts for species interactions with various degrees of symmetry, connectivity, and species abundance. This is an improvement on previous, simpler models, which apply random fitness levels to species. The findings published in the European Physical Journal E demonstrate that the resulting replicator ecosystems do not appear to be a self-organized critical model, unlike the so-called Bak Sneppen model.

Contact: Laura Zimmermann

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
NRL reveals new meteorological insight into mid-level clouds
At medium altitudes ranging from 6,000 feet to 20,000 feet above mean sea level, water droplets in altocumulus clouds can remain in a supercooled liquid phase that cannot be reasonably resolved in current atmospheric models. New meteorological research characterizes mid-level, mixed phase altocumulus clouds in unprecedented detail.

Contact: Daniel Parry
Naval Research Laboratory

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Nature Genetics
Marmoset sequence sheds new light on primate biology and evolution
An international team of scientists led by the Baylor College of Medicine and Washington University St. Louis, including a researcher from the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna have completed the genome sequence of the common marmoset -- the first sequence of a New World Monkey -- providing new information about the marmoset's unique rapid reproductive system, physiology and growth shedding new light on primate biology and evolution. The team published the work in the journal Nature Genetics.

Contact: Susanna Kautschitsch
University of Veterinary Medicine -- Vienna

Public Release: 21-Jul-2014
Current Biology
Seals forage at offshore wind farms
By using sophisticated GPS tracking to monitor seals' every movement, researchers have shown for the first time that some individuals are repeatedly drawn to offshore wind farms and pipelines. Those man-made structures probably serve as artificial reefs and attractive hunting grounds, according to a study published in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on July 21.

Contact: Mary Beth O'Leary
Cell Press

Public Release: 20-Jul-2014
Nature Geoscience
Mixing it up: Study provides new insight into Southern Ocean behavior
A new study has found that turbulent mixing in the deep waters of the Southern Ocean, which has a profound effect on global ocean circulation and climate, varies with the strength of surface eddies -- the ocean equivalent of storms in the atmosphere -- and possibly also wind speeds.

Contact: Glenn Harris
University of Southampton