Letters to the Editor

  1. 18943

    “Salmon hatcheries can deplete wild stocks” ignores a basic fact. Hatchery stocks came from wild stocks. Their DNA is the same. There is an abundance of underused habitat in our northwest rivers. Some hatchery salmon would use these habitats if they were left alone. Instead, hatchery fish are clubbed to death to prevent their mixing […]

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  2. 18942

    As an insect taxonomist, I was amused by your article about whimsical scientific names but disappointed that one of my favorites was not mentioned: the wasp Iaha ha. Sandra Shanks San Francisco, Calif. Three observations on your article: 1) Linnaean names, at their best, tell you something about the creature that is named. Thus while […]

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  3. 18941

    I read the article “Look on the bright side and survive longer” with interest but was given pause by the fact that the nuns knew their autobiographies were “to be read by the congregation’s Mother Superior.” I think this may seriously undermine the conclusions drawn. Even without this problem, I think a basic distinction should […]

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  4. 18933

    In “Many refugees can’t flee mental ailments,” Bhutan is greatly maligned. Equating Bhutan’s story with the Cambodian genocide, as the article does, is like equating a Fourth of July firecracker with the atomic bomb. Tiny, Tibetan, Buddhist Bhutan, with a population of only 650,000, is struggling to survive between giants China and India and among […]

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  5. 18932

    Please explain a curious statement in “A more perfect union.” The article paraphrases Jonas Sandstrom of Uppsala University in Sweden as suggesting that an “endosymbiont’s isolation may be a one-way ticket to extinction. Once the bacterium loses genes . . . it has no way of getting them back. It can’t, therefore, evolve away from […]

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  6. 18931

    Your article on marine no-take zones overly simplifies a much more complicated problem. The idea that at least some kinds of fish might be more plentiful and larger if they are not harvested over a period of years doesn’t really need much scientific study. However, this benefit is probably limited to specific species. For many […]

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  7. 18930

    According to “Vitaminlike compound eases rare disorder,” coenzyme Q10 is an “expensive, unregulated supplement.” Unregulated, yes, but expensive? That will come as a surprise to the tens of thousands of consumers who buy it regularly in nutrition stores, discount drug stores, and over the Internet. It may not be as cheap as a vitamin, but […]

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  8. 18929

    Your article on the importance to an elephant family of having as its leader a matriarch of considerable age reminded me of the postulation that one of the reasons menopause evolved in humans was to allow some women to survive to old age. In preliterate societies, old people were the libraries. Some of the knowledge […]

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  9. 18928

    I’ve often wondered about packing circles and have always assumed that it would get into messy numbers very quickly. Your article is a charming revelation. It says that if a, b, and c are integers, d will be one, too. I think this is true only if a, b, and c bear some relationship to […]

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  10. 18927

    I just read “Biomedicine, defense to sidestep budget ax.” Now, I know that George Bush owes his rich cronies a ton of money and favors, but a 10-year program to develop clean energy from coal? Why spend 20 years developing energy from coal, which will run out just like oil will and the mining of […]

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  11. 18926

    In reference to “Boosting boron could be healthful,” it’s important to note that there’s no risk in aiming for a high-boron diet. Eighty percent of Americans fall short when it comes to dietary recommendations for fruit, nut, and legume intake. Eating four servings of fruit and a handful of nuts per day could bring boron […]

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  12. 18925

    “Oceans of electricity” was a fine article, but one line should have been added about the engineers of the ’30s who had plans to build wave-power electricity for the eastern United States. World War II interrupted the plans for cheap power without oil, however. Douglas O. Deshazer Omaha, Neb. The article mentions the lack of […]

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