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James Cook University was estabished in 1970 and is dedicated to creating a brighter future for life in the tropics world-wide, through graduates and discoveries that make a difference.

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A long-term monitoring project in Simpson Desert provides crucial information about the ecosystem. Mina Guli/Flickr

Australia among the world’s worst on biodiversity conservation

Australia is among seven countries contributing to more than half of the world's biodiversity loss. Yet next month, a crucial network of long-term research sites will lose funding.
Southpaws seem to be more common among cats and dogs than humans. Eric Isselee/Shutterstock.com

I’ve always wondered: can animals be left- and right-pawed?

The animal kingdom is full of lefties and righties, although rarely is the ratio skewed as much as it is in humans. If you're wondering about your own pet, you can find out with a simple experiment.
Water quality is one of the major issues that threatens the Great Barrier Reef’s health. AAP Image/Dan Peled

The new Great Barrier Reef pollution plan is better, but still not good enough

The updated plan for improving water quality on the Great Barrier Reef still doesn't address the need to curb intensively farmed crops such as sugar cane, and to enforce existing environmental laws.
There are considerable mental health and wellbeing benefits conferred upon those in the fortunate position of being able to legally marry. AAP/Lukas Coch

Evidence is clear on the benefits of legalising same-sex marriage

The majority of academic research is either non-committal or in favour of the benefits afforded by legalising same-sex marriage.
Mosquitoes are the main vectors for dengue and zika. Insecticides are our best weapon against them. Anja Jonsson/Flickr

Mozzies are evolving to beat insecticides – except in Australia

Australian mosquitoes, unlike their Asian and American counterparts, can still be controlled by insecticides like pyrethroids. What lessons are there for managing pesticide resistance in insects?
Dozens of reefs around the world have bleached in the past three years, of which the Great Barrier Reef was merely the most high-profile. AAP Image/WWF AUSTRALIA, BIOPIXEL

The UN is slowly warming to the task of protecting World Heritage sites from climate change

Amid fears for the world's coral reefs, the UN World Heritage Committee has issued its most wide-ranging statement so far on protecting heritage sites from climate. But the problem doesn't end there.
The none-structural storm damage: ceiling failure due to water ingress into roof cavity.

Building codes not enough to protect homes against water damage in severe storms

Water moves into Australian homes during severe tropical storms like Cyclone Debbie. But no definitive housing codes, standards or guidelines exist to stem the flow of unwanted storm water.
‘The Wedding Ring Effect’ is the idea that simply by wearing a wedding ring a man is somehow imbued with a host of desirable characteristics. shutterstock

Why we desire partners who have had relationship experience

Mate copying is the name given to the phenomenon whereby an individual is preferred as a future romantic partner simply because they have relationship experience.
The southern Great Barrier Reef escaped both of the recent mass bleaching events. But time is running out. AAP Image/ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, Tory Chase

The world’s coral reefs are in trouble, but don’t give up on them yet

Tropical coral reefs can be saved from climate change and other pressures, but the window of opportunity is closing. And reefs are guaranteed to be markedly different in the future.

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