Here are your April fishbits: How to be a modern ecologist, getting addicted to stats and new coral reefs!
Ever wondered what happens to a whale carcass when it falls to the seafloor? Well in a barren, food deprived environment a whale carcass can act like an oasis, providing resources for a range of species. Check it out in this video.
Studying and practicing ecology and conservation you do need a diversity of skills. Take a look at these 10 essential skills that a modern conservationist/ecologist need. From my experiences so far I definitely do agree with the author.
Lac and I went to a debate on animal rights last night in Sydney. The question was whether animal rights should trump human interest, so it should be a thought provoking evening! Check out how the event went down here.
Mini book review:
Wild Life: Adventures of an Evolutionary Biologist by Robert Trivers
“unlike other renowned scientists, Trivers has spent time behind bars, drove a getaway car for Huey P. Newton, and founded an armed group in Jamaica to protect gay men from mob violence.”
A rather unusual book about an evolutionary biologist unlike many you are likely to read about. Forthright and brash in that stereotypical American way, but an interesting and downright bizarre story throughout nevertheless. How many people could call the likes of Richard Dawkins and black panther founder Huey P .Newton friends, let alone match them in attitude? Not to mention happily write of drugs, visiting prostitutes and various other questionable practises all whilst studying and chasing various lizards around the place. “Wild” sums it up very very nicely.
Worth a read! 4/5 drugged addled lizards.
The 8-bit game that makes statistics addictive- guess the correlation
“Developed by Omar Wagih, a PhD student studying bioinformatics at the University of Cambridge and the European Bioinformatics Institute, this web-based game presents randomly-generated scatter plots and asks the player to guess the value of the positive correlation between two depicted variables, X and Y: that is, the extent to which there is a relationship between them, such that if one increases so does, on average, the other.” –Brian Tarren
This thing is free, fun, addictive and you learn something without even knowing you are.
Heard about the huge coral reef that has been discovered at the mouth of the Amazon River? The report is open access in Science Advances. The find was surprising for a few reasons, especially because of the lack of clear water conditions that coral reefs usually thrive in. In our current environmental situation it’s great to learn more about reefs surviving in sub-optimal conditions! Unfortunately however, just like the Great Barrier Reef, this one is most likely effected by environmental changes already.
The Australian Centre for the Moving Image is currently working with the Victorian Government on a project called Games Net over the next three years to get primary and high school students to create video games that teach kids about all different areas of science. They’re learning how to develop great software, but with a real focus on how computer technology can make science interesting for kids. Who knows maybe they’ll come up with some programs that would be useful for scientists to visualise their work as well!