Environment and Ecology

Debating science - Open Parachute

Ken Perrott Apr 25, 2017

This last week has certainly raised the profile of the “science debate” in New Zealand. Most importantly we saw big turnouts for the Science March in several major cities – a demonstration that lots of scientists and supporters of science feel that science could be threatened – or at least that it is unappreciated by the politicians and other decision-makers. Maybe … Read More

Mapping the link between biodiversity and wellbeing – NatureBuzz - The Psychology Report

Sarb Johal Apr 24, 2017

In this week’s Psychology Report I talked with Laurie Parma from the Department of Psychology at the University of Cambridge in England, about Nature Buzz (iTunes / Android)- the new research application they have developed to explore the links between nature and well-being.     Have a read of this conversation to understand more … Read More

Superbug death may herald ‘start of the post-antibiotic era’ - News

John Kerr Apr 21, 2017

Infectious disease experts are “deeply alarmed” by the death of a US woman due to a bacterial infection resistant to all available antibiotics. Writing this week in a  Medical Journal of Australia editorial, researchers warn that the case may herald “the start of the post-antibiotic era.” Professor Cheryl Jones, President of the Australasian Society for Infectious Diseases (ASID), and … Read More

A distant look at Cyclone Cook - Chthonic Wildlife Ramblings

Brendan Moyle Apr 21, 2017

The Cyclone Last Thursday (13th April) Cyclone Cook arrived.  As a precaution, places in Auckland closed. Including Massey’s Albany campus at 11.00 am.  In the end the path of the Cyclone (for Auckland) was a little too easterly and we escaped most of the havoc.  Bad weather also can generate interesting seascapes, so I decided to try my luck at … Read More

Counting the calories of cannibalism - News

Jean Balchin Apr 16, 2017

Human cannibalism is a deliciously fascinating topic. Identifying the motivations for human cannibalism remains a contentious issue. A recently-constructed nutritional template for the human body suggests that prehistoric human cannibalism was most likely motivated by something other than nutritional needs. Human flesh may have been cooked for greater calorific value. James Cole, from the University of Brighton found that the … Read More

The search for Nessie showcases an exciting new conservation tool - Wild Science

Helen Taylor Apr 13, 2017

I was sceptical about my lab head joining the hunt for the Loch Ness monster, until I realised it was an excellent way to promote the amazing possibilities of environmental DNA. Making a splash Last week’s news was full of tales of how my boss, Professor Neil Gemmell, was going to take on the challenge of tracking down … Read More

Are deer sort of like moa? - So Shoot Me

Jamie Steer Apr 12, 2017

In this two-part series, Dr Jamie Steer ponders whether the ‘deer are like moa’ debate has passed its use-by date. Writing on the impacts of introduced deer in the Transactions of the New Zealand Institute in 1892, the Reverend P. Walsh argued that New Zealand’s native forests were poorly equipped to deal with grazing mammals. Taking the pre-human forest as … Read More

An evening at Maungauika - Chthonic Wildlife Ramblings

Brendan Moyle Apr 12, 2017

At the entrance to the Waitemata Harbour, at Devonport, is Maungauika or North Head. The reserve can be appealing to explore in evenings.  On the west side, you get views of Devonport and Auckland itself.  On the east side there is a view of Rangitoto Island and the channel separating it from the North Shore.  With a couple of … Read More