The wild California condor population dropped to 22 before rescue and captive breeding allowed reintroduction into the wild. A new assembly of the complete genome of the bird reveals some inbreeding as a result, but overall high genomic diversity attesting to large populations of condors in the past, likely in the tens of thousands. Comparison to Andean condor and turkey vulture genomes reveals declines in their populations also, and lower genomic diversity than California condor.
Scientists help protect sharks by developing aquarium breeding programs that pair up individuals in ways that increase genetic diversity. In a new study in Scientific Reports, scientists undertook the largest-ever effort to artificially inseminate sharks.Their work resulted in 97 new baby sharks, including ones whose parents live on opposite sides of the country and a few that don't have fathers at all.
The once-abundant California condor briefly went extinct in the wild, with only 22 individuals living in captivity by 1982. Today, 300 condors live freely in the wild and another 200 are in captivity. But, despite the condor's struggles, a new study of the California condor genome reported in the journal Current Biology on May 13 has found a surprising amount of genetic diversity.
Meradeth Snow, a University of Montana researcher and co-chair of UM's Department of Anthropology, was part of an international team that used human "paleofeces" to discover that ancient people had far different microorganisms living in their guts than we do in modern times.
Brown bears that are more inclined to grate and rub against trees have more offspring and more mates, according to a University of Alberta study. The results suggest there might be a fitness component to the poorly understood behaviour.
Joslin Diabetes Center scientists have found dramatic differences between gut microbiomes from ancient North American peoples and modern microbiomes, offering new evidence on how these microbes may evolve with different diets.
A study published in the journal Scientific Reports reveals the genetic structure of the land snail Xerocrassa montserratensis and it provides new scientific tools for the improvement of the conservation of this endemic and threatened species in Catalonia.
Two Concordia researchers and their colleagues study the 2020 influenza figures from Canada, the United States, Australia and Brazil and show there is a clear relationship between COVID-mitigation measures such as hand-washing, masking and social distancing and the spread of the annual flu. They write that these preventive measures all but eliminated the flu in countries where it can kill tens of thousands of people a year, even as cases of COVID-19 soared.
Coal combustion by power plants and industry pollutes the air, causing many governments to implement mitigation actions and encourage cleaner forms of energy. Now, a new study in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology indicates that in China, indoor air pollution from residential coal burning causes a disproportionate number of premature deaths from exposure to tiny, inhalable pollutants known as PM2.5.
A new study sets out guidelines to maximize the benefits of reef restoration, not only for the coral ecosystem, but also to protect local communities from coastal flooding. Researchers simulated waves travelling over different reef profiles at various stages of restoration and found that to reduce the risk of flooding, the upper fore reef and middle reef flat, typically characterized by physically-robust coral species, should be targeted for restoration.