As spring begins to melt into summer and everyone begins spending more time outside, don’t fall behind on the latest science news! Here are six recently published findings, that all have a summer-themed twist, making them perfect for reading in the park, at the beach, or by the pool!
1.Dietary seaweed used to change gut bacteria in mice
Sure, seaweed can be annoying when you are swimming in the ocean and a slimy strand curls around your foot, but researchers at Stanford Medicine recently put the plant to good use. Gut bacteria is directly tied to health and being able to control the levels and types of bacteria are useful in medical treatment. By changing the diet of mice using seaweed, scientists were able to control how much bacteria grew in the small intestine.
2.Ever wondered why fish live in schools?
If you’ve ever gone snorkeling and seen a school of fish swim by, you may have wondered why they move together in formations. It has previously been thought that this collective behavior is beneficial to fish because it eliminates the need for a leader. However, new research found that swimming this way actually allows fish to expend less energy because of the suction created by surrounding fish.
3.Killer whales living in rivers?
As humans have begun to protect large predatory species that were once threatened with extinction, these animals have begun to move into unexpected habitats as their population rebounds. For example, killer whales are beginning to call rivers home. Other species moving into new habitats include gray wolves, mountain lions, orangutans, and bald eagles. The study suggests that these predators are not moving into these spaces for the first time, but are simply repopulating the habitats where they once lived when their species were abundant.
4.Sea turtle nests threatened by pollution
The beach is a fun place to visit on vacation, but for sea turtles, it is much more important because it is where they lay their eggs. A recent study conducted by Florida State University found that the accumulation of microplastic along beaches threatens sea turtles’ incubation environments. Next time you are at the beach, be careful not to leave any trash behind and aim to avoid using plastic waste in your everyday life.
5.The secret to that “perfect” bathing suit body?
Researchers at the University of Copenhagen Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences recently published a study in which they were able to block the development of obesity in mice. The team deleted an enzyme making it impossible for the mice to develop fatty tissue, even as they were fed a diet of burgers which has a very high-fat content. The hope is that this finding can lead to new developments in the treatment of obesity.
6.Reef fish inherit tolerance to ocean warming
As the world’s climate continues to change rapidly, the decline of animal species is a big concern. However, some promising news was published in a recent study from the ARC Centre of Excellence in Coral Reef Studies. They have found that some species of fish are adapting genetically to warmer waters and are passing this adaptation along to their children. This may help reef fish to survive even as coral reefs rapidly decline.
Do you have a recent science article that you really enjoyed? Share it with us on social media, @conserisapp! If you’ll be doing your own exploration this summer, make data collection easier with Conseris and never worry about losing your work again. Learn more on our website.