Life sciences writer Susan Milius has been writing about botany, zoology and ecology for Science News since the last millennium. She worked at diverse publications before breaking into science writing and editing. After stints on the staffs of The Scientist, Science, International Wildlife and United Press International, she joined Science News. Three of Susan's articles have been selected to appear in editions of The Best American Science Writing.

All Stories by Susan Milius

  1. male wrinkle-faced bat
    Animals

    A face mask may turn up a male wrinkle-faced bat’s sex appeal

    The first-ever scientific observations of a wrinkle-faced bat’s courtship shows that, when flirting, the males raise their white furry face coverings.

  2. a photo of the transplant process of the giant shrub
    Plants

    How passion, luck and sweat saved some of North America’s rarest plants

    As the list of plants no longer found in the wild grows, botanists and conservationists search for signs of hope — and sometimes get lucky.

  3. illustration on an ancient Lystrosaurus
    Paleontology

    Ancient Lystrosaurus tusks may show the oldest signs of a hibernation-like state

    Oddball ancestors of mammals called Lystrosaurus might have slowed way down during polar winters.

  4. Aedes aegypti
    Animals

    Genetically modified mosquitoes have been OK’d for a first U.S. test flight

    After a decade of heated debate, free-flying swarms aimed at shrinking dengue-carrying mosquito populations gets a nod for 2021 in the Florida Keys.

  5. fungi named after COVID-19
    Life

    How two new fungus species got named after the COVID-19 pandemic

    Tiny fuzz on a beetle and fake leopard spots on palms now have Latin names that will forever nod to the new coronavirus.

  6. bumblebee
    Life

    Wild bees add about $1.5 billion to yields for just six U.S. crops

    Native bees help pollinate blueberries, cherries and other crops on commercial farms.

  7. Langsdorffia hypogaea male and female
    Plants

    This parasitic plant consists of just flashy flowers and creepy suckers

    With only four known species, Langsdorffia are thieves stripped down to their essentials.

  8. Wolf in Yellowstone National Park
    Animals

    How Yellowstone wolves got their own Ancestry.com page

    Since the wolves’ reintroduction to the park, 25 years of devoted watching has chronicled bold moves, big fights and lots of puppies.

  9. Bathochordaeus mcnutti
    Animals

    Larvaceans’ underwater ‘snot palaces’ boast elaborate plumbing

    Mucus houses have valves and ducts galore that help giant larvaceans extract food from seawater.

  10. Asian giant hornet
    Life

    More ‘murder hornets’ are turning up. Here’s what you need to know

    Two more specimens of the world’s largest hornet have just been found in North America.

  11. bumblebee
    Life

    Pollen-deprived bumblebees may speed up plant blooming by biting leaves

    In a pollen shortage, some bees nick holes in tomato leaves that accelerate flowering, and pollen production, by weeks.

  12. Asian small-clawed otter
    Life

    Why otters ‘juggle’ rocks is still a mystery

    Shuffling pebbles really fast looks as if it should boost otters’ dexterity, but a new study didn’t find a link.