Mice are eating nesting seabirds in the Pacific alive

March 28, 2018 by  
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On the Midway Atoll in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, invasive mice are attacking nesting albatrosses , causing gruesome wounds that bleed profusely and can cause birds to abandon their nests or die. Why would mice do this? Scientists think it may be because they are drinking the birds’ blood. Non-native species cause a majority of seabird extinctions around the world, and mice have become a particularly bad problem on the island since 2015, attacking the birds from behind and causing open wounds on their heads and necks. The Midway Atoll is home to the world’s largest colonies of Black-footed and Laysan albatross. The common house mouse was introduced along with the black rat to the island about 75 years ago. While the rats have been eliminated on the island, mice have thrived without any competition. The mice have learned to sneak up behind the albatross while they nest, taking them by surprise. The mice may be causing these wounds to obtain hydration and sustenance from the birds’ blood. Related: New Zealand just eradicated 200,000 mice from a single island Nesting Albatross are particularly vulnerable because instead of leaving their nest, they refuse to abandon their eggs – so mice can easily attack them. The attacks began two years ago, and have since spread across the entire island. “Albatross did not evolve in contact with mice and they are defenseless against them. Albatrosses’ natural behavior – sitting on their egg for weeks at a time – leaves them particularly vulnerable to this emergent threat. In the first year, birds were killed (eaten alive) and nests abandoned in three areas on the island. The next year, the attacks, deaths, and nest abandonment spread across the entire island and increased exponentially,” said the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). USFWS wants to work to remove the mice – something that was just successfully accomplished in New Zealand – but debate continues on how to best do that. “The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to eradicate all mice from Midway Atoll using the rodenticide Brodifacoum 25D Conservation, a pelleted rodenticide bait intended for conservation purposes for the control or eradication of invasive rodents on islands or vessels.” Via IFLScience Images via USFWS

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Mice are eating nesting seabirds in the Pacific alive

60 Year Old Albatross Has 35th Baby

March 19, 2011 by  
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Photo: twittlebat We were saddened by the news that thousands of nesting albatross had been swept away by the tsunami . But there is some good news to come out of the albatross world this week

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60 Year Old Albatross Has 35th Baby

Paris Takes on an Ambitious Bid to Remake Its Center, Les Halles

March 19, 2011 by  
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The Jardin des Halles, in Paris. Photo: Conny Liegl under a Creative Commons License In terms of urban design and sustainability, Paris has been a real role model in the last few years

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Paris Takes on an Ambitious Bid to Remake Its Center, Les Halles

Hardwood Floors & Basketball Courts Recycled into Skateboards

March 19, 2011 by  
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Image Courtesy of Brian Lopez, Glide Skateboards Watching basketball, do you ever wonder what happens to the wood flooring when the court has to be replaced? Well, in the case of the court at Virginia State University, the maple planks once played on by the Trojans were recycled, and in an unusual way: they’ve been remade into skateboards…. Read the full story on TreeHugger

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Hardwood Floors & Basketball Courts Recycled into Skateboards

Sprouting Without Electricity – A Seed Gamble

March 19, 2011 by  
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Playing the hand.

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Sprouting Without Electricity – A Seed Gamble

Google Recruits Scientists to Use New Media to Tackle Climate Skeptics

March 19, 2011 by  
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Photo: dannysullivan , CC 2.0 In an effort to help improve communication regarding global warming issues and to counter the rampant ‘noise’ made by fossil fuel industry-funded climate skepticism, Google’s philanthropy arm has launched a new program focused on bringing together scientists, communications experts, and the world of social media.

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Google Recruits Scientists to Use New Media to Tackle Climate Skeptics

Maybe We Really do Need to Pick Either Nuclear or Renewables

March 18, 2011 by  
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Grist’s David Roberts tackles what’s sure to be an unpopular question: What if the conventional wisdom, the one currently guiding the national political conversation about our energy future, is wrong? What if it’s indeed not the case that we’re going to need a “mix” of natural gas, nuclear, and renewable energy sources going forward?

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Maybe We Really do Need to Pick Either Nuclear or Renewables

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