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I have begun an ambitious effort to inventory and assess the concepts I want my students to master. Check out my Conceptual Teaching Assessment Project!
Recent Major Posts
- Choosing a more sustainable web host
- Do humans form genetically similar social groups independent of kinship?
- My Evolution 2014 talk is on YouTube
- Evolution 2014: Overall Impressions
- Evolution 2014: Day 4
- Evolution 2014: Day 3
- Evolution 2014: Day 2
- Evolution 2014: Day 1
- Evolution 2014: Day 0
- Evolution 2014: Preview
Recent Minor Posts
- Do cancer cells play cooperate in the Prisoner’s Dilemma?
- The Wallace Darwin Project has a logo
- Recommendations for creating a more student-centered classroom
- Evolution 2014: Synthesis centers can serve as incubators if they buffer researchers from the risk of failure
- Evolution 2014: Want to teach both sides? Have your students deconstruct creationist propaganda!
- Evolution 2014: EvoGrader will take the grading out of assessing student learning outcomes
- Evolution 2014: A clever way to see if creationist students understand evolutionary concepts
- Evolution 2014: The Evolution Film Festival was on fire!
- Evolution 2014: Could the right symbionts provide protection from chytrid infection to amphibians?
- Evolution 2014: Are island mutualist communities more likely to be nested because they are inherently more unstable?
Category Archives: Coevolution
My first session of the day was spent entirely in a Symbiosis session. I am fascinated by symbiosis, particularly mutualistic symbiosis, so I am always looking for cool new stories to help illustrate the concept for my students. This session featured … Continue reading
Patrick McLaughlin showed work on Bioko Island suggesting that frogs there may be protected from the ill effects of chytrid infection by the presence of bacterial symbionts. These symbionts produce metabolites that lower rates of parasitic infection, suggesting that symbionts … Continue reading
Evolution 2014: Are island mutualist communities more likely to be nested because they are inherently more unstable?
The interactions in ecological communities can be structured in a variety of ways, and recently there has been a push to categorize these networks along the spectrum between modular (smaller clusters of more specialized interactions) and nested (unclustered networks with … Continue reading
Erin McKenney of Duke University talked about three lemur species with different diets: a frugivore (fruit-eater), a generalist, and a folivore (leaf-eater). Not surprisingly their gut morphologies and passing times vary with their diet, but McKenney showed that they also … Continue reading
Evolution 2014: Aphids protect themselves from parasitoids by harboring a bacteria whose viral parasite is toxic
Andrew Smith of Drexel University spoke about a four-species interaction that could best be described as “my symbiont’s enemy is my parasitoid’s toxic enemy” scenario. Aphids can avoid being parasitized by a parasitoid wasp if they harbor particular bacterial strains. What’s interesting … Continue reading
I started off this year’s Evolution meeting early. The conference is — at its core — a four-day affair. But the days leading into the “official” start on Friday evening feature larger workshops aimed at building skills. I chose to … Continue reading
The New York Times “On Separate Islands, Crickets Go Silent“
Once considered clear, the line between ecological and evolutionary time scales is becoming more blurry
The Chronicle of Higher Education “What Darwin Got Wrong” Great article on the importance of better understanding rapid and/or fluctuating evolution! The number of applications to applied human issues is fascinating.
Science “How Cooperation Defeats Cheats” Science “Brood Parasitism and the Evolution of Cooperative Breeding in Birds” Live Science “How Birds Cooperate to Defeat Cuckoos” It is fascinating that being a cooperative breeder is both attractive to parasites (because they can achieve better … Continue reading
Scientific American “Tiny Plants” article provides a primer on the inter-relationship between ecological and evolutionary change
I am always on the lookout for great popular science articles to assign to my students. What makes a popular science article great? Well, to start with it should address concepts that are core to my classes (admittedly, this definition … Continue reading
The Economist “Caterpillars that blow nicotine at their enemy” I love the combination of genetic manipulation and “arena of death” wolf-spider gauntlet that led to these findings.
Inhabitat “The Biomimicry Manual: What Can Sloths Teach Us About Energy Efficiency?“
NPR Shots “Gut Bacteria We Pick Up As Kids Stick With Us For Decades” NPR Shots “Staying Healthy May Mean Learning To Love Our Microbiomes” NPR Shots “Diverse Gut Microbes, A Trim Waistline And Health Go Together” NPR Shots “How … Continue reading
NPR Morning Edition “From Birth, Our Microbes Become As Personal As A Fingerprint” It’s a bit corny, but this is a great tour of our diverse microbiome. It is critical that people start to recognize how potentially-damaging overuse of antibiotics … Continue reading
The Scientist “A Twist in Evolutionary Game Theory: Biologists demonstrate the instability of employing a selfish strategy in the prisoner’s dilemma game” Nature Communications “Evolutionary instability of zero-determinant strategies demonstrates that winning is not everything” I am so glad to … Continue reading
WNYC “NYC’s Top Dogs: Mapping Names & Breeds in the City” WNYC “Dogs of NYC” Data sets like these, even flawed by their incompleteness (only 20% of dogs in New York City are registered) are fascinating. The human relationship with dogs has … Continue reading
This month’s National Geographic features a valuable article called “Escape Velocity” that chronicles how Emperor Penguins reach incredible velocities to launch through holes in the ice and out into safety. Mostly a pictorial featuring Paul Nicklen’s amazing underwater photography, the article shows … Continue reading