New species of frog from the Neotropics carries its heart on its skin

  • May 29, 2017
  • blog

    In the Neotropics, there is a whole group of so-called glassfrogs that amaze with their transparent skin covering their bellies and showing their organs underneath. A recently discovered new species from Amazonian Ecuador, however, goes a step further to fully expose its heart thanks to the transparent skin stretching all over its chest as well […]

    Three new mini thorn snails described from Georgia (USA), Belize and Panama

  • May 23, 2017
  • Fig. 10 Ecology C. hardiei

    Although computer tomography (CT) is widely used in medicine, its application in micro snail identification is still at the pioneering stage. However, Dr Adrienne Jochum from the Naturhistorisches Museum der Burgergemeinde Bern (NMBE), Switzerland and her interdisciplinary team of German and Swiss scientists (Dr. Alexander M. Weigand, University of Duisburg-Essen, Estee Bochud and Thomas Inäbnit, […]

    Conservation and nameless earthworms: Assessors in the dark?

  • May 22, 2017
  • Giant Green Earthworm Microchaetus papillatus

    Species that live exclusively in a single region are at a particular risk of extinction. However, for them to be protected, thorough assessments of the environmental impacts need to be performed. There are more than 100 earthworm species living in the soil and dead wood of KwaZulu-Natal Province, South Africa. Most of them live exclusively […]

    Herpetologists describe an elf frog from the elfin forests in southern Vietnam

  • May 19, 2017
  • Ophryophryne elfina

    Deep in the foggy, moss-covered forests of Southern Vietnam, herpetologists uncovered one of the smallest species of horned mountain toads. The name of the new amphibian (Ophryophryne elfina) derives from European mythology and translates to “elfish eyebrow toad”. Despite being recently discovered, the new species is already considered to be endangered. Having remained hidden in […]

    What could be the importance of marine and coastal cultural ecosystem services

  • May 15, 2017
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    A detailed scientific literature review published in the open access journal One Ecosystem confirmed that research on marine and coastal cultural ecosystem services is scarce compared to other ecosystem service categories, revealing curious insights and identifying major knowledge gaps. Available knowledge is not only primarily focused on local and regional sociocultural or economic assessments, but […]

    New butterfly species discovered in Israel for the first time in 109 years

  • May 9, 2017
  • Hermon fritillary BLOG

    Vladimir Lukhtanov, entomologist and evolutionary biologist at the Zoological Institute in St. Petersburg, Russia, made a startling discovery: what people had thought was a population of a common species, turned out to be a whole new organism and, moreover – one with an interesting evolutionary history. This new species is named Acentria’s fritillary (Melitaea acentria) […]

    Feeding strategies in competing hummingbird species observed in a small area in Brazil

  • May 2, 2017
  • BLOG Clytolaema rubricauda macho

    Being the vertebrates with the highest metabolic rate thanks to their rapid wing flaps, the hummingbirds have evolved various types of feeding behaviour. While the nectar-feeders tend to go for food high in energy, strong competition affects greatly their preferences and behaviour towards either dominance, subordination, a strategy known as trapline and a fourth one […]

    The Radiohead ant: A new species of ‘silky’ ant grows fungus gardens for food

  • April 24, 2017
  • Image blog

    The ants of the genus Sericomyrmex – literally translated as ‘silky ants’ – belong to the fungus-farming ants, a group of ants that have figured out how to farm their own food. The silky ants are the less well-known relatives of the famous leaf-cutter ants – well-studied, photogenic model organisms that you simply cannot avoid […]