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. monarch butterfly on tropical milkweed

    Bloodflowers’ risk to monarchs could multiply as climate changes

    High atmospheric carbon dioxide levels can weaken the medicinal value of a milkweed that caterpillars eat, and high temperatures may make the plant toxic.

  2. a giant clam

    How a squishy clam conquers a rock

    Old boring clam research is upended after 82 years.

  3. a baobab tree

    The most ancient African baobabs are dying and no one knows why

    Scientists aren’t sure what’s killing the oldest African baobabs, nine of which have lost big chunks or died in the last 13 years.

  4. honeybee experiment

    Bees join an exclusive crew of animals that get the concept of zero

    Honeybees can pass a test of ranking ‘nothing’ as less than one.

  5. food shopping

    A big analysis of environmental data strengthens the case for plant-based diets

    A new study calculates the bonus for the planet of choosing more foods from plants.

  6. lizard-snake fossil

    Oldest known lizard fossil pushes group’s origins back 75 million years

    CT scan reveals hidden identity of an unusual lizard fossil found years ago in the Italian Alps.

  7. illustration of bird

    How birds may have escaped the dino-killing asteroid impact

    A tree-loving lifestyle became a risk for ancient birds in a world-changing catastrophe.

  8. rice paddy

    As CO2 increases, rice loses B vitamins and other nutrients

    Field experiments add vitamins to list of nutrients at risk from a changing atmosphere.

  9. wasp and leafworm

    A caterpillar outwits corn defenses by gorging on fattening ‘junk’ food

    The crop plants defend themselves with zombie-maker wasps, but one pest has a desperate work-around.

  10. green blooded lizard

    Green blood in lizards probably evolved four times

    Pigment buildups that would cause jaundice in people are normal for some New Guinea skinks.

  11. Oak processionary caterpillar

    These caterpillars march. They fluff. They scare London.

    Oak processionary moths have invaded England and threatened the pleasure of spring breezes.

  12. Animals

    A deadly frog-killing fungus probably originated in East Asia

    The disastrous form of Bd chytrid fungus could have popped up just 50 to 120 years ago.