John Pickrell

John Pickrell is a freelance writer based in Sydney. He was a science writing intern at Science News in 2002.

All Stories by John Pickrell

  1. Plants

    Mirror Image: Flowers with opposite styles have a fling

    Scientists have discovered a gene that controls whether flowers lean to the left or the right.

  2. Anthropology

    Searching for the Tree of Babel

    Researchers are using new methods of comparing languages to reveal information about the ancestry of different cultural groups and answer questions about human history.

  3. Earth

    Shelter from Space Storms: Energy rebounds from Earth

    NASA satellite observations show that Earth's outer atmosphere interacts dramatically with the solar wind and shields the planet from it.

  4. Animals

    Dogged Dieting: Low-cal canines enjoy longer life

    The first completed diet-restriction study in a large animal shows that labrador retrievers fed 25 percent less food than those allowed to eat as much as they desired tend to live longer and suffer fewer age-related diseases.

  5. Animals

    Rebranding the Hyena

    Zoologists are hoping that long-term ecological studies of the spotted hyena will assist in dispelling the animal's undeservedly bad reputation.

  6. Animals

    Big-Eyed Birds Sing Early Songs: Dawn chorus explained

    Researchers report a strong relationship between eye size and the light intensity at which birds start to sing in the morning.

  7. Globin Family Grows: Blood-protein relative is in all tissues

    Researchers discovered a relative of the blood protein hemoglobin in all the body's tissues.

  8. Health & Medicine

    Scrambled Drugs: Transgenic chickens could lay golden eggs

    Scientists have created transgenic chickens able to produce foreign proteins—and, potentially, pharmaceuticals—in their eggs.

  9. Health & Medicine

    Aerial War against Disease

    Researchers around the world are catching on to the idea of using satellites to predict where diseases may strike.

  10. Anthropology

    Unified Erectus: Fossil suggests single human ancestor

    A newly found fossil skull may clear up an ongoing debate about whether the human ancestor Homo erectus was a single or several species.

  11. Paleontology

    Early hunters are guilty as charged

    Scientists find that hunting is the likely cause of New Zealand's prehistoric bird extinctions rather than habitat destruction or pest introduction.

  12. Astronomy

    Telescope Tuned Up: Back to work for orbiting observatory

    A rejuvenated Hubble Space Telescope floated away from the space shuttle Columbia on March 9 after astronauts spent a week renovating the observatory.