Science & Environment

Science news

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For birds and birders, this has been an extraordinary couple of months on the Cape and Islands, featuring really bad weather. Doesn’t get any colder or snowier - or at least it never had! 

Andreas Cellarius, illustration of the Copernican system, from the "Harmonia Macrocosmica" (1660).
Wikimedia Commons

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The more we know, the harder it is to be groundbreaking. The burden of knowledge is changing the way we work, and who drives innovation.

Tom Kleindinst / Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution


The past fifty years have seen enormous advances for women in science-related careers, but equity in the top ranks of academia remains elusive.

Jason Padgett's representation of Pi.
Courtesy of Jason Padgett

Each year, on March 14th, math afficianados everywhere celebrate Pi Day. For Jason Padgett, though, every day is Pi Day.

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?

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.

Scientists collect a sediment core from Salt Pond in Falmouth, MA.
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.

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?

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.

Cod fishing - for research - aboard the Barbara K. Peters of Scituate, MA.
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.