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. honeybees
    Life

    Engineered honeybee gut bacteria trick attackers into self-destructing

    Tailored microbes defend bees with a gene-silencing process called RNA interference that takes on viruses or mites.

  2. Panda climbing
    Life

    How pandas use their heads as a kind of extra limb for climbing

    Short legs on a stout bear body means pandas use a rare technique to climb up a tree.

  3. koalas
    Life

    Koalas aren’t primates, but they move like monkeys in trees

    With double thumbs and a monkey-sized body, an iconic marsupial climbs like a primate.

  4. Amazon fires
    Animals

    A year of big numbers startled the world into talking about nature

    One million species are at risk. Three billion birds have been lost. Plus surges in Amazon burning.

  5. rodeo ant
    Animals

    Texas has its own rodeo ant queens

    New species of rodeo ants, riding on the backs of bigger ants, turned up in Austin, Texas.

  6. kids holding trees to plant
    Climate

    5 things to know about fighting climate change by planting trees

    One group’s idea of planting vast swaths of trees to curb climate change exaggerates the proposal’s power to trap carbon, some argue.

  7. Saharan silver ant
    Life

    Saharan silver ants are the world’s fastest despite relatively short legs

    Saharan silver ants can hit speeds of 108 times their body length per second.

  8. Abigail Swann
    Climate

    Abigail Swann’s alternate Earths show how plants shape climate

    Abigail Swann's studies reveal that water vapor from forests can affect drought patterns a hemisphere away.

  9. tumbleweeds
    Plants

    Why tumbleweeds may be more science fiction than Old West

    A tumbleweed is just a maternal plant corpse giving her living seeds a chance at a good life somewhere new.

  10. coral reef environment
    Life

    Climate change may be throwing coral sex out of sync

    Several widespread corals in the Red Sea are flubbing cues to spawn en masse.

  11. crane fly fossil
    Life

    Fly fossils might challenge the idea of ancient trilobites’ crystal eyes

    Fossilized crane flies from 54 million years ago probably got their crystal lenses after death.

  12. spiders in a tree
    Animals

    Why one biologist chases hurricanes to study spider evolution

    For more rigorous spider data, Jonathan Pruitt rushes into the paths of hurricanes.