Nikk Ogasa

Nikk Ogasa

Science Writing Intern, Summer 2021

Nikk Ogasa is a summer 2021 science writer intern based in Santa Cruz, Calif. He graduated with a master's degree in geology from McGill University, where he studied how ancient earthquakes helped form large gold deposits. He earned another master's degree in science communication from the University of California, Santa Cruz. His stories have been published in ScienceScientific American, Mongabay and the Mercury News.

All Stories by Nikk Ogasa

  1. Venus's-flower-basket sea sponge
    Animals

    How intricate Venus’s-flower-baskets manipulate the flow of seawater

    Simulations show that a deep-sea glass sponge’s intricate skeleton creates particle-trapping vortices and reduces the stress of rushing water.

  2. Romanesco cauliflower
    Plants

    How Romanesco cauliflower forms its spiraling fractals

    By tweaking just three genes in a common lab plant, scientists have discovered the mechanism responsible for one of nature’s most impressive fractals.

  3. harvesting equipment in a cornfield
    Agriculture

    A tweaked yeast can make ethanol from cornstalks and a harvest’s other leftovers

    By genetically modifying baker’s yeast, scientists figured out how to get almost as much ethanol from cornstalks as kernels.

  4. illustration of the head of an ancient insect-eating reptile
    Paleontology

    Fossilized dung from a dinosaur ancestor yields a new beetle species

    Whole beetles preserved in fossilized poo suggest that ancient droppings may deserve a closer look.

  5. family of tyrannosaurs
    Paleontology

    For some dinosaurs, the Arctic may have been a great place to raise a family

    Fossils of baby dinosaur remains found in northern Alaska challenge the idea that some dinosaurs spent only summers in the Arctic.

  6. image of smoke above Whakaari volcano
    Earth

    A satellite’s view of a deadly 2019 eruption could improve volcano monitoring

    Monitoring volcanoes from space could enhance scientists’ understanding of, and ability to predict, even small eruptions.

  7. stream in Idaho
    Ecosystems

    As ‘phantom rivers’ roar, birds and bats change their hunting habits

    A massive experiment in the Idaho wilderness shows it’s not just human-made noises that impact ecosystems. Natural noises can too.