Conservation in action: videos and teaching resources

I’m a fan of celebrating conservation success stories and sharing conservation optimism. In fact I’ve written about this before. Today, I want to share some wonderful teaching resources, that also highlight some reasons for hope in wildlife conservation. A little while back, I asked twitter to recommend short videos about mammal conservation in Australia, to…

What We’re Reading- Feb 9, 2018

A Lion Roars Back Lions have not been observed in Gabon for 20 years, until a camera trap project set up to investigate chimps captured a photo in 2015!  The Gabonese government expressed interest in translocating lions into the country to establish a breeding population.  One consideration for translocation projects is to move genetically similar…

Marsupial misconceptions: weird mammals, placentas and pouches

I’ve now been living in Australia for almost 18 years, and I’m an unashamed convert to #TeamMarsupial. Marsupials are fascinating animals in both evolutionary and ecological terms, but at times I am surprised by how poorly-understood they are. I’ve been thinking of writing a post to address some recurring marsupial misconceptions for a while. When I saw…

What We’re Reading: May 13, 2016

Citizen Science Can Instill Conservation Attitudes This paper (sub) investigates the attitudes of people participating in COASST, Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team, a citizen science program focusing on beached birds. Even without specific educational goals, participants increased their conservation stewardship and developed a strong sense of place for the beaches that they patrolled. For…

What We’re Reading: Jan 15, 2016

Paternal sex allocation: how variable is the sperm sex ratio? Think back to the classes you took on cell division. You might recall that in male mammals, meiosis is an important part of spermatogenesis. Chromosomes in diploid cells separate as the cell splits in two: one half gets the X chromosome the other the Y. So this means…

Year in Review: What We Wrote 2015

Anna Two of my 2015 papers tackle aspects of the same question: how reliable are genetic tests to detect wildlife from trace DNA samples? It’s great to be able to use DNA to work out which species of mammal has been pooping in the woods, or to confirm the identification of a museum sample or roadkill of uncertain origin. But…

What we’re reading: Nov 14, 2014

Keeping mtDNA in Shape between Generations Mitochondrial DNA markers are important tools for many genetic studies, including much evolutionary and conservation genetics. This paper (open) reviews what we know about how mitochondrial DNA is transmitted in animals, with a focus on the implications for human health. However, the points raised are also interesting to consider…