Beluga whale genome sequenced for the first time

BC Cancer’s Michael Smith Genome Sciences Centre (GSC) worked with genetic material from the mother and daughter beluga whales who were cared for at Vancouver Aquarium for almost three decades. The Genome BC funded research was published in the scientific journal Genes. Dr. Steven Jones, head of Bioinformatics at the GSC, led the research with colleagues from the University of British Columbia and Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO). “Beluga whales Qila and Aurora have contributed…

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How to Make the World Better for Cats

Cat experts – including Mikel Delgado, Pam Johnson-Bennett, Sandra McCune, Kersti Seksel and Nicky Trevorrow – weigh in on the one thing that would make the world better for cats.Photo: JRJfinWe love our feline friends, but at the same time there’s a lot that we, as a society, could do to make cats happier. So I asked several experts on cats to answer the question, “What’s the one thing that would make the world better…

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More authors, more joy?

It seems that ecologists have been complaining that no one writes single author manuscripts anymore since at least the 1960s. de Solla Price predicted in 1963:"…the proportion of multi-author papers has accelerated steadily and powerfully, and it is now so large that if it continues at the present rate, by 1980 the single-author paper will be extinct”Fortunately, an interesting new editorial in the Journal of Applied Ecology has the data (from their archives of published…

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How the Wolves Changed a River…

Three years ago I watched a short movie by Chris and Dawn Agnos about the reintroduction of the gray wolf (Canis lupus) to Yellowstone National Park. It was as amazing as it was revealing.1 When forty-one wolves from Canada and northwest Montana were reintroduced to the park in 1995—after wolves had been absent for seventy years—something incredible happened. The wolf helped provide balance, complexity and stability to an ecosystem that had been mismanaged and lacked…

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What Trees Talk About features the excellent research of Canadian ecologists

I'm always thrilled when one of my colleagues contacts me, to alert me to their research hitting the mainstream media. On November 26th, 2017, CBC's Nature of Things, which is  introduced by Dr. David Suzuki, broadcast an absolutely fabulous documentary on the ecology of Canada's boreal forest: What Trees Talk About. I loved the programme […]

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A Capella Science : les délires géniaux de Tim Blais

Ça y est, le temps des Fêtes arrive et avec lui tous les airs de Noël qu’on connait bien et qu’on entend partout. Loin de moi l’idée d’assombrir votre cœur d’enfant qui « tressaille d’espérance » en imaginant le petit renne au nez rouge conduisant dans le ciel le chariot du père Noël, mais avouons que d’un point de vue scientifique, ça ne fait pas très sérieux… « Ben quoi, c’est la « magie de…

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