Crushed Clams, Roaming Rays: Acoustic Tags Reveal Predator Interactions

Inspired by clam fishermen reports, researchers used passive acoustic telemetry to gauge the interactions between two highly mobile rays. They monitored the tagged rays in the wild over two years to see how often and when they visited clam leases. Results provide both good news and bad news for clammers. Rays spent even more time in these clam lease sites than clammers reported or suspected, but it’s not necessarily where they prefer hanging out.

U.S. birds’ Eastern, Western behavior patterns are polar opposites

Avian functional diversity patterns in the Western U.S., where species and functional richness are both highest during the breeding season, are the polar opposite of what is seen in the East, where functional diversity is lowest when species richness is high, according to new research.

Mapping Cavefish Brains Leads to Neural Origin of Behavioral Evolution

While studied for nearly a century, little is known about how cavefish brains differ. A study is the first to look inside their brains with millimeter resolution to start to understand how the individual neurons and brain regions that drive complex behaviors, including sleep and feeding have evolved. This work has broad implications for the understanding of how brains evolve in many different animal models and is hoped to be widely used by the scientific community.

Hots Dogs, Chicken Wings and City Living Helped Wetland Wood Storks Thrive

Using the Wood Stork, researchers compared city storks with natural wetland storks to gauge their success in urban environments based on their diet and food opportunities. Results provide evidence of how a wetland species persists and even thrives in an urban environment by switching to human foods like chicken wings and hots dogs when natural marshes are in bad shape. These findings indicate that urban areas can buffer a species from the unpredictability of natural food sources.