Nature Today


Slower recovery forewarns tipping points in salt marsh ecosystems

NIOZ Koninklijk Nederlands Instituut voor Onderzoek der Zee
Ecosystems can suddenly collapse when the pressure becomes too high. For this reason, predicting such tipping points is very important. An international team of researchers now shows that when the recovery of salt marshes slows down, a tipping point of this ecosystem is imminent.

Southern California mountain lions’ genetic connectivity dangerously low

UC Davis
If a dangerously inbred puma population in Southern California is to survive in the future, an urgent need for genetic connectivity must be met, according to two scientific papers from a team of researchers coordinated by the University of California, Davis, and involving scientists at the University of Wyoming and the University of Massachusetts–Amherst.

The Arctic: a hotspot for marine litter

Wageningen University & Research
From 31 May to 7 June, Wageningen Economic Research investigated the litter that had washed up on remote beaches in the Arctic. The most commonly found items were pieces of plastic, fishing nets and rope.

Forests worldwide threatened by drought

University of Stirling
Forests around the world are at risk of death due to widespread drought, University of Stirling researchers have found. An analysis suggests that forests are at risk globally from the increased frequency and severity of droughts.

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Genetics show that Hoopoes have overcome risk of extinction by exchange of populations throughout Europe

Heidelberg University
Hoopoes throughout Europe appear to be genetically identical, a new study reveals. This means the birds exchange readily between populations. In addition, genetic analyses show that although recently increased populations in Austria and Switzerland have overcome the risk of extinction, the breeding population from the Canary Islands may still face extinction.

Wild heart: urban wild boars prefer natural food resources

Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research
Different than expected, wild boars do not come to Berlin in order to use garbage or other anthropogenic food resources. In fact, also in the city they predominantly consume natural resources. The researchers analysed the stomachs of 247 wild boars from Berlin and the surrounding countryside. 

Wind blows young migrant birds to all corners of Africa

Universiteit van Amsterdam
Migrant birds that breed in the same area in Europe spread out across all of Africa during the northern winter. A new satellite-tracking study shows that the destination of individual birds is largely determined by the wind conditions they encounter during their first migration.

Red light has no effect on bat activity

Artificial light at night can have a disruptive effect on bats, but not if the light is red. Switching to red light may therefore limit or prevent habitat loss for rare, light-shy bat species. The latest issue of Proceedings of the Royal Society B publishes results from five years of pioneering research led by the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW).


A brave new world for coral reefs

Wageningen University & Research
The future of the world’s coral reefs hangs in the balance, but it is not too late to save them, according to a major study published in the prestigious journal, Nature.

Same genes, same environment, different personality: Is individuality unavoidable?

IGB Berlin
Genetically identical Amazon mollies raised individually and under identical environmental conditions, nevertheless develop different personality types. Additionally, increasing the opportunity for social interactions early in life appears to have no influence on the magnitude of personality variation.


How biodiversity protects the weak



Fish step up to lead when predators are near

University of Bristol


Hunting accounts for massive declines in tropical animal populations

Radboud Universiteit


Extreme weather has greater impact on nature than expected