Wildlife

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They might be eating your home, but termites play a vital role in ecosystems. Termite image from www.shutterstock.com

Hidden housemates: the termites that eat our homes

Termite damage costs Australian homes at least a billion dollars each year – but they are absolutely vital for ecosystems.
White storks on road near Chernobyl, Ukraine. Many parts of the Chernobyl region have low radioactivity levels and serve as refuges for plants and animals. Tim Mousseau

At Chernobyl and Fukushima, radioactivity has seriously harmed wildlife

How do we measure long-term impacts of nuclear accidents? Studies at Chernobyl and Fukushima show that radiation has harmed animals, birds and insects and reduced biodiversity at both sites.
A male African jacana bird mounts a female, but who takes the lead in caring for the young?. Shutterstock/Dave Montreuil

Wild sex: when sex roles get reversed, some females develop a ‘penis’

Sex roles in nature don't always follow the same script. In fact, some females have genitals that resemble a penis. How can this be? Evolution has the answers.
Land clearing rates in Queensland tripled since 2010. Martin Taylor

Queensland land clearing is undermining Australia’s environmental progress

Land clearing in Queensland has tripled in the past five years.
When elephants venture into human settlements, they cause significant damage to crops and property. Shutterstock

Why it might take more than the buzz of bees to ward off elephants

Elephant numbers are increasing in parts of sub-Saharan Africa. Their search for food is leading them into conflict with farmers living adjacent to game parks. Bees could prove to be the answer to the problem.
Near threatened: The Tasmanian Bettong (Bettongia gaimardi) is now part of a plan to save the species and restore a wider conservation area at Mulligans Flat. Wikimedia/JJ Harrison

Extinction means more than a loss of species to Australia’s delicate ecosystems

Most wildlife plays a key role in any ecosystem. So when one becomes extinct, it can impact their habitat. And we're now finding we may have lost more species in Australia than first thought.
The remote rivers of northern Australia could be home to untold numbers of new and threatened fish. Matthew Le Feuvre

We discovered 20 new fish in northern Australia – now we need to protect them

A score of new fish species discovered recently in northern Australia remind us how little we know about our country.
As a generalist predator, spiders, like this Western Rough Wolf Spider, help limit the number of insects in your garden. Jean and Fred/Flickr

Spiders are a treasure trove of scientific wonder

Only two Australian spiders can kill you, but the rest are a pretty fascinating bunch.

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