Science & Environment

Science & Environment
12:23 pm
Mon March 2, 2015

Why Commodities Are More Than Economic Indicators

Cacao, as a commodity, reveals much about social and religious differences between Europe and Mesoamerica.

We track the prices of everything from crude oil to milk for clues about the state of the economy. But what could they tell us about the environment?

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Weekly Bird Report
7:34 am
Wed February 25, 2015

Ice and Arctic Weather Having Detrimental Impact on Local Birds

A Rough-legged hawk made an unusual appearance on Nantucket this week.
Credit Vern Laux

On February 19, Nantucket Sound and nearshore waters were mostly ice-free. After the stunning cold on the evening of the 19th and morning of the 20th there was a dramatic change and water, water everywhere had turned to ice. Buzzard’s Bay, Nantucket Sound, Hyannis Harbor, lots of Cape Cod Bay near the shorelines and even nearshore waters along the south side of Nantucket had changed dramatically. Looking out from almost any shoreline made one think of Ivory Gulls and Polar Bears. It was a typical Arctic scene.

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Science & Environment
11:06 pm
Mon February 23, 2015

Study Reveals Cape Cod's Surprisingly Stormy Past

Scientists collect a sediment core from Salt Pond in Falmouth, MA.
Credit Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Extinct species left fossils, ancient humans left cave paintings and tools. What did the storms of centuries past leave behind? Sand.

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Look Skyward
5:40 pm
Fri February 20, 2015

Snow on Your Telescope? Here's How Astronomers Cope with Lousy Weather

Resembling the puffs of smoke and sparks from a summer fireworks display in this image from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, these delicate filaments are actually sheets of debris from a stellar explosion in a neighboring galaxy.
Credit NASA and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)

If you are trying to peer up, past the earth’s atmosphere, all this bad weather of late poses a considerable challenge.  How do you study a distant galaxy when there’s snow falling on your telescope?

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Weekly Bird Report
5:39 pm
Wed February 18, 2015

Dovekies, Rarely Seen from Land, May Appear When Driven to Shore by Storm

Credit V. Laux

Dovekies are crazy cute, small black-and-white birds resembling nothing so much as a wind-up bathroom toy.  Once ashore Dovekies are in serious trouble as they cannot walk on land or take off unless on water. Helpless on land, they become victims of gulls and other predators. Humans, glad to take a little “penguin” under their protection, adopt others.

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Science & Environment
9:06 am
Mon February 16, 2015

Eavesdropping on the Private Lives of Cod

Cod fishing - for research - aboard the Barbara K. Peters of Scituate, MA.
Credit Heather Goldstone / WCAI

If you want to protect New England's most iconic fish and still allow fishermen to catch them, it’s critical to know when and where they reproduce. The trouble is, we don't.

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Science & Environment
2:53 pm
Tue February 10, 2015

Seven Books (About Scientists) to Get You Through Winter

Credit François Philipp / Flickr

There are books about cops, and books about doctors. John Grisham made his name writing about lawyers. So where are all the scientists?

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Look Skyward
5:23 pm
Tue February 3, 2015

More than a Glimmer in the Sky: How to Catch Sight of the International Space Station

The first components for the International Space Station were launched in 1998.
Credit wikimedia commons

The International Space Station orbits the earth more than 15 times a day. Want to see it? All you have to do  is look up at the right moment. You don't even need binoculars.

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Science & Environment
10:08 am
Tue February 3, 2015

Three Ways Humans are Driving Evolution

Credit Wikimedia Commons

Scientists have proposed calling this the Anthropocene - the man-made epoch. Now, add evolution to the list of things humans are reworking.

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Weekly Bird Report
1:37 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Bald Eagles Becoming More Common Across the Cape and Islands, But Still No Nesting Pair

Bald eagles sightings are becoming increasingly more common across the Cape and Islands, but the area has yet to see its first nest pair.
Credit Matt Zaske / flickr

The bird that was chosen as our national bird by the founding fathers gets people’s attention.  In fact, the sight of one of these large, powerful raptors does more than attract attention - it excites people, even those who claim to have no interest in birds. Bald is a derivation of balde, an Old English word meaning white. The eagle was named for its white feathers, instead of a lack of feathers.

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