Hunting Lions to Save Them, How Pikas Adapt to Climate Change & More

Pika, Mount Indefatigable, Kananaskis Country, Alberta. Image credit: madlyinlovewithlife/Flickr through a Creative Commons license.

Pika, Mount Indefatigable, Kananaskis Country, Alberta. Image credit: madlyinlovewithlife/Flickr through a Creative Commons license.

By Bob Lalasz, Matt Miller and Lisa Feldkamp of the TNC Science Communications team

We find tons of cool conservation and conservation science stuff every week on the Internets — now we’re sharing some of the best with you every week in The Cooler:

Nature News

The hula painted frog? The bone skipper fly? The passion flower? All part of the year in rediscovered species. (Science News)

Yes, those are all cool. But is this the greatest conservation success story of 2013? (Scientific American)

Fish — lots of them — are swimming past an electric barrier meant to prevent Asian carp from getting into the Great Lakes. (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel)

When connectivity is bad for conservation? Here are some stream barriers that actually save native fish. (Trout Unlimited)

Sage grouse star:  Conservancy volunteer (and devoted Cool Green Science fan) Ken Miracle is recognized for his tireless work on behalf of  grouse and sagebrush science with a “Heroes of Conservation” Award. (SGI News)

When an endangered species becomes invasive: the strange case of the golden-headed lion tamarin thriving in the suburbs of Rio. Should we celebrate? Lament? Does it matter? (Conservation)

Another example of crows using tools — this time for fun. (Focusing on Wildlife)

New Research

Could a new algorithm that tells you when to hunt a lion help build sustainable lion populations? (PNAS)

Philopatry: Why sharks love their country. (Molecular Ecology; HT Science) 

The percentage of people with sufficient daily caloric daily intake has more than doubled since 1965 — good news for people, maybe not so for the environment. (PLoS One via NPR)

Ants living in cacao trees and often thought of as pests are actually boosting the trees’ yields, says a new study in Proceedings of the Royal Society B (SciDev.Net)

Look up: There’s a lot of uncounted biodiversity in tree crowns (PLoS One; HT Conservation Magazine)

Climate Change

Is biodiversity the global blind spot in climate change? (The Conversation)

Should we tax meat eating to curtain methane emissions? A new paper in Nature Climate Change makes the case. (The Guardian)

Who ya gonna blame for summer extreme weather? Try changes in the cryosphere. (Nature Climate Change)

A Climate Counts study of corporate sustainability shows that businesses can increase revenues while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. But less than 10% of businesses analyzed are even setting science-based emissions targets. (Huffington Post) 

Incredibly cute pikas give us a glimpse of the unpalatable future of climate change adaptation (it involves eating lots and lots of moss) (Pacific Standard) 

Science Communications

Gavin Schmidt’s lecture to the recent American Geophysical Union meeting on when and how scientists should advocate for policy is kicking up a lot of dust. Video of the lecture and a forum for discussion is now open on Real Climate (Real Climate: HT DotEarth)

Lots of tweets for your paper doesn’t equal lots of citations later on. (Nature)

Ecologist Lisa Schulte Moore explains why she did a cafe scientifique and how it was a smashing success. Must reading for any scientist who wants to communicate their work more effectively. (Ecological Society of America) 

Why are there so many salamander species in the Great Smoky Mountains? Middle schoolers make an amazing music video to explain. (YouTube)

Journal impact factors — time to say goodbye? (Science Publishing Laboratory)

This & That

Are you sure your paper was rejected? (Small Pond Science)

Is Japan’s ratio of adult diaper sales to infant diaper sales a harbinger of global population trends to come? Andy Revkin on DotEarth says maybe, then adds doubting voices on, his Tumblr site. (DotEarth/

Have suggestions for next week’s Cooler? Send them to rlalasz[at] or m_miller[at]

Opinions expressed on Cool Green Science and in any corresponding comments are the personal opinions of the original authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Nature Conservancy.

Posted In: The Cooler

Bob Lalasz is the director of science communications at The Nature Conservancy and the editor of the new Cool Green Science. A long-time editor and writer, he was previously the Conservancy's associate director of digital marketing. He now blogs here about the Conservancy's scientific research and on-the-ground work as well as larger conservation science and science communications issues.

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