All hail the founding father

Charles Darwin was a great thinker, philosopher and naturalist who spent 20 years observing, tracking and analyzing the natural world. His collected data resulted in what is probably the most influential book in all of biology: his abstract about organismal evolution, “On The Origin Of Species”.* Today the theory of evolution by natural selection is the cornerstone of biology. The ideas in this volume were controversial at...

Read More

Reflections on light pollution

In a paper published online this month in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, ESA member Bruce Robertson and his colleagues in biology and biophysics explore the concept of polarized light pollution. They synthesize work that shows how light reflected off of human-made surfaces can confuse animals and alter their behavior, leading to injury or even death. The American Museum of Natural History is featuring this research in an...

Read More

Policy News Update

There’s been a lot of buzz in Washington these past few weeks, and a good deal of it is about science. Here are highlights from today’s issue of the ESA Policy News Update, written by ESA’s Policy Analyst, Piper Corp. Science in the Economic Stimulus Bill. An $825 billion economic stimulus package, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Bill of 2009, is set to go to vote in the U.S. House of Representatives next week. House...

Read More

The 109th annual Christmas bird count

One of last week’s Nature editorials extols the 109th annual Christmas bird count, a tradition started by the National Audubon Society as an alternative to the former competitive sport of shooting birds to mark the holidays.  The survey, which takes place during a three-week interval that overlaps Christmas and New Year’s Day each year, involves birders of all ages and backgrounds from around the globe traipsing through the...

Read More

Get ‘em outside

ESA is a member of the No Child Left Inside coalition, a group of American societies, institutions and other coalitions trying to reverse the trend that today’s youth are spending less and less time outside, to the detriment of themselves and society. At the core of this problem, says the Coalition, is the lack of dedicated environmental education in our K-12 schools. This video points out some startling statistics, like the fact that...

Read More

If you do science you should read this

Brian Greene, a professor of physics at Columbia, writes in the Sunday New York Times (June 1, 2008), “. . . Science is a way of life. Science is a perspective…..To be able to think through and grasp explanations — for everything from why the sky is blue to how life formed on earth — not because they are declared dogma but rather because they reveal patterns confirmed by experiment and observation, is one of...

Read More