Breaking Waves: Ocean News

06/16/2018 - 10:31
Team of researchers changes microbes in koalas’ guts in order to improve type of food they consume Scientists believe they have found a new weapon in the battle to save endangered species: faecal transplants. They say that by transferring faeces from the gut of one animal to another they could boost the health and viability of endangered creatures. In particular, they believe the prospects of saving the koala could be boosted this way. The idea of using faecal transplants as conservation weapons was highlighted this month at the American Society for Microbiology meeting in Atlanta, where scientists outlined experiments in which they used the technique to change microbes in the guts of koalas. Continue reading...
06/16/2018 - 01:30
A new report argues we’d all benefit if the government started taking the cycle industry seriously If a country wants to make things, it needs a domestic steel industry. Our government considers this industry to be one of national strategic importance. But you would think it was also important to keep people moving, to make sure the air they breathe is clean and to look after their health. It just so happens that cycling is one of the ways to unsnarl traffic congestion, reduce pollution and make folks hale and hearty. People who cycle to work even have fewer days off sick. Continue reading...
06/16/2018 - 01:00
EuropaCity development on capital’s outskirts would feature ski slopes, waterpark, hotels and shops Tending her rows of courgettes, leeks and potatoes, Cécile Coquel, a telecoms worker and guerilla gardener, stood firm despite local authorities’ recent warning that everything must be ripped up and the field vacated. “These are the vegetables of the resistance!” she proclaimed. “We’ll fight to save this land.” Continue reading...
06/15/2018 - 23:30
Stamford, Lincolnshire: A dead starling chick appears on the ground outside, almost fledged. I’m upset to see it Scratchings rattle above an upstairs lintel in early April and I think little of it. That nest that’s been occupied for four consecutive years is being renovated, that’s all. The shadows of birds firing from gable to gable over the street, air alive with busy chatter. “But the nest has gone,” my wife says. “Those builders, last year.” I stand over the street and watch with binoculars. A sharp-edged bird swoops in, then disappears beneath my roofline through what I see now is a hole. Starlings. Brash, boisterous, bully-birds – and colonising our loft. I keep watch. I see them coming and going. Sometimes they watch me watching them, from an aerial perch, silhouetted against the sky with a wariness I can feel. The starling is a striking bird. With a sharp yellow bullet for a beak and plumage of dark iridescence, they are exotic-looking, and shimmer in petrol-peacock blues and greens and purples when caught in light. Yet we see them as hooligans. Even the Latin name of the European starling, Sturnus vulgaris, suggests so. Starlings absorb the sounds of their surroundings into their song – car alarms, speech, infant cries. And now, moving in. The human-bird.I hear them dig in their roost, then nothing for a while, then suddenly the thin mewling of chicks, at the same time loud and delicate in a way that makes you fearfully parental. The days pass and the cries strengthen; I hear scuttlings, then nothing. A dead chick appears on the ground outside, almost fledged, already oiled with that mercury look. I’m upset to see it. Continue reading...
06/15/2018 - 14:44
Large parts of the massive East Antarctic Ice Sheet did not retreat significantly during a time when atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations were similar to today's levels.
06/15/2018 - 11:18
Government faces criticism from its own advisors over failure to mention emissions targets as campaigners enter second week of hunger strike The government is coming under growing pressure from environmentalists and its own advisers over its support for a new runway at Heathrow. The Committee on Climate Change [CCC] has expressed its “surprise” that there was no mention of the government’s legal obligations to reduce greenhouse gases when it announced it was backing Heathrow expansion plans earlier this month. Continue reading...
06/15/2018 - 10:58
The week’s top environment news stories and green events. If you are not already receiving this roundup, sign up here to get the briefing delivered to your inbox Continue reading...
06/15/2018 - 10:52
The secretive mammals are fast disappearing from the Highlands but last-ditch efforts to save them are fraught with challenges Set deep in mixed woodland of Scots pine and birch, near the banks of the river Beauly in Inverness-shire, several huge, concealed pens contain two breeding pairs of Scottish wildcat. Wildcats mate from January to March, and their high, anguished breeding calls through the dark winter nights are thought to have inspired tales of the Cat Sith, a spectral feline of Celtic legend that was believed to haunt the Highlands. Continue reading...
06/15/2018 - 09:58
Rachel Saunders went missing with her husband in February while looking for rare seeds Police in South Africa have identified the body of a British botanist who disappeared earlier this year while searching for rare seeds in a remote nature reserve. Rachel and Rodney Saunders are thought to have been looking for rare plant seeds near the oNgoye Forest in KwaZulu-Natal province when they were last confirmed alive in mid-February. Continue reading...
06/15/2018 - 08:48
The Pine Island Glacier in Western Antarctica is not only one of the fastest-flowing ice streams in the Southern Hemisphere; over the past 11 years, four major icebergs have calved from its floating tongue.