News

Aquatic organisms inspire the development of ingenious sunscreen

Erica Mather Jul 31, 2015

A newly designed sunscreen has harnessed the biological strategies that aquatic organisms evolved to prevent the negative effect of UV radiations.  Despite being made from fish mucus, crustacean shells and fungi, the sunscreen is more effective than current products and can be applied to skin as well as your backyard furniture. There is an urgent need to create new sunscreens … Read More

Climate change action could be thwarted by ambivalence

Erica Mather Jul 30, 2015

A new multi-national study has analysed a number of contributing factors for their impact on the way climate change is interpreted across the globe.  Public awareness and risk perception of climate change were found to be influenced by a combination of nation-specific aspects.  These findings highlight the need to develop better communication strategies that are tailored to individual nations. Read More

Osteoporosis supplements: A bone of contention

Erica Mather Jul 23, 2015

Calcium and vitamin D continue to be hailed as effective supplements to treat and prevent osteoporosis, despite mounting evidence to the contrary, warn two New Zealand doctors.   They contend that blind enthusiasm for supplementation is being perpetuated by the vested interests of an insidious network of groups including industry, advocacy organisations and academia. Many older adults are … Read More

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Humpback whales spotted in record numbers

Erica Mather Jul 17, 2015

Delighted researchers and volunteers counted a record 137 whales during the Cook Strait Whale Survey completed this week.  This is the highest tally since the survey began in 2004 and suggests that their numbers are increasing in New Zealand waters. The annual four-week survey, run by DOC research in partnership with oil and gas company OMV New Zealand, is timed … Read More

The ‘mini Ice Age’ media sensation – and the reality

Erica Mather Jul 15, 2015

“Earth heading for ‘Little Ice Age’ in 15 years”, “The Little Ice Age cometh”, and the obligatory “Winter is coming”. They are just some of the headlines that have run around the world following a new analysis of sunspot cycles presented by Northumbria University’s Professor Valentina Zharkova at a conference organised by the Royal Astronomical Society. But as the Washington Post … Read More

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Benefits of blackcurrants revealed

Erica Mather Jul 14, 2015

Convinced that smoothies really are a superfood?  You may not be imagining it if they contain blackcurrants. The berry, examined extensively by scientists at Plant & Food Research (NZ) and Northumbria University (UK), has been found to positively affect mental performance. The impressive results show, for the first time, an improvement in accuracy, attention and mood after independent consumption of … Read More

Collaborative Archaeology and Restoration on Marae DIY

Brigid Gallagher Jul 06, 2011

One of the missions I originally set for myself on Digging the Dirt was to show that New Zealand was archaeologically exciting and dynamic.  Tonight’s instalment of Marae DIY on Maori TV has to be a great example of this.  As part 2 of a double feature the Marae DIY team are undertaking the restoration of an archaeological site, … Read More

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Environmental negotiations ??!!??

Rebecca McLeod Oct 05, 2009

Well here we go again – the stage is being set for another battle of “the environmentalists” versus “the developers”. This time, the battle grounds are numerous, and share one thing in common – conservation land status. As the Government prepares to conduct a stock take of the mineral deposits in conservation land around the country, mining companies and … Read More

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