Letters to the Editor
Water woes06/14/2017 - 10:47 Climate, Genetics
A recent survey of lakes around the globe found that from 1985 to 2009, most warmed while only several cooled, Alexandra Witze reported in “In hot water” (SN: 5/13/17, p. 18). Rising temperatures have consequences for every part of a lake’s food web, from algae to walleye to freshwater seals.
“This article indicates that no pattern could be found to predict which lakes would...
Climate change might be great news for pests looking to munch on genetically modified crops, researchers propose.
In particular, researchers analyzed 21 years of data from Maryland cornfields and suggest that rising temperatures might help corn earworms (Helicoverpa zea) develop resistance faster to a widespread genetically built-in crop protection.
Some commercial varieties of...
The rift in Antarctica’s Larsen C ice shelf continues to rip. Researchers from Project MIDAS, which tracks the effects of a warming climate on the ice shelf, report that the crack grew 17 kilometers between May 25 and May 31.
The crack has now turned toward the water and is within 13 kilometers of the edge of the shelf. Within days, the crack could reach the edge. When that happens, one...
President Donald Trump announced on June 1 that the United States will pull out of the Paris climate accord.
In signing the 2015 Paris agreement, the United States, along with 194 other countries, pledged to curb greenhouse gas emissions to combat global warming. But Trump — who has called climate change a “hoax” despite scientific evidence to the contrary — promised during his campaign...
Letters to the Editor
Proton puzzler05/31/2017 - 15:45 Particle Physics, Climate, Planetary Science
Uncertainty over the proton’s size, spin and life span could have physicists rethinking standard notions about matter and the universe, Emily Conover reported in “The proton puzzle” (SN: 4/29/17, p. 22).
Readers wondered about the diameter (or size) of the proton, which has three fundamental particles called quarks rattling around inside. “Still scratching my head over how...
A warmer climate could put some damselflies in distress, as others get bigger and hungrier.
Because of differences in hatching time, nymphs — the immature form of the insects — vary in size. Sometimes when ponds are overcrowded, other food options are scarce or size differences are significant, bigger, older nymphs nosh on the little nymphs. While temperature doesn’t typically affect...
View the slideshow
The footprints of long-gone glaciers and icebergs are now frozen in time in a stunning new collection of images of Earth’s seafloor.
The Atlas of Submarine Glacial Landforms is a comprehensive, high-resolution atlas of underwater landscapes that have been shaped by glaciers, largely in polar and subpolar regions, and provides a comparative look at how glaciers,...
Ice-Lolly\AIS LOL-ee\ n.05/10/2017 - 07:00 Earth, Climate
A small ice particle made of a needle-shaped ice crystal and a single drizzle-sized water droplet
Right now, somewhere in the world, it could be raining lollies. A 2009 research flight through clouds above the British Isles gathered ice particles with an unusually sweet look. Each millimeter-sized particle consisted of a stick-shaped piece of ice with a single...
View the video
Never underestimate the value of a disposable mucus house.
Filmy, see-through envelopes of mucus, called “houses,” get discarded daily by the largest of the sea creatures that exude them. The old houses, often more than a meter across, sink toward the ocean bottom carrying with them plankton and other biological tidbits snagged in their goo.
The 180-kilometer-long crack threatening one of Antarctica’s largest ice shelves has branched out, new satellite observations reveal. The main rift in the Larsen C ice shelf hasn’t grown longer since February. But radar mapping shows that a second crack has split off from the main rupture like a snake’s forked tongue, members of the Antarctic research group Project MIDAS reported May 1. That...