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Articles on Ecology

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Tools for a prescribed burn conducted in the Sierra Nevada in November 2019. Susan Kocher

Moving beyond America’s war on wildfire: 4 ways to avoid future megafires

Two forest researchers whose own communities were threatened by fires in 2021 explain how historic policies left forests at high risk of megafires.
Southerly species like the giant owl limpet, seen here, started appearing on northern California shores. Jerry Kirkhart/Flickr

Five years after largest marine heatwave on record hit northern California coast, many warm–water species have stuck around

The Blob, a long-lasting mass of warm water, sat off the Pacific coast of North America for years, bringing new species to formerly cold waters. What allows some to survive while others fade away?
Environmental DNA is a promising tool for tracking species in freshwater ecosystems like Oregon’s Elkhorn Creek. Greg Shine, BLM/Flickr

Scientists at work: We use environmental DNA to monitor how human activities affect life in rivers and streams

Rivers are among the most embattled ecosystems on Earth. Researchers are testing a new, inexpensive way to study river health by using eDNA to count the species that rivers harbor.
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Some animals have excellent tricks to evade bushfire. But flames might be reaching more animals naive to the dangers

Studies show some animals can recognise the threat of fire, and behave in a way that increase their chance of survival. But what about wildlife who have evolved in areas where fire was once rare?
Researchers crack the conundrum about why African Baobab trees in southern Africa differ in terms of fruit production. Sarah Venter

The sex organs of baobab flowers may solve the puzzle of trees that bear more fruit

Baobab flowers have male and female parts but individual trees appear to be favouring one rather than the other. To keep tree populations healthy and fruitful, both types are needed.

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