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Evolution & Behaviour

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The puzzling history of South American mammals

When the Isthmus of Panama formed, it connected North and South America, allowing the interchange of the previously separated faunas from two continents. A puzzling aspect of this interchange is that North American mammals seem to be more successful. The fossil record shows more mammals... click to read more

  • Juan D. Carrillo | Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, CNRS, Sorbonne Université, Paris, France; Gothenburg Global Biodiversity Centre, Gothenburg, Sweden
Views 290
Reading time 3.5 min
published on Nov 17, 2021
How does the bat find the tree? With a “cognitive” map!

As soon as the sun sets, hundreds of Egyptian fruit bats leave their cave and fly out, one-by-one, into the night. Their goal: trees bearing ripe fleshy fruits. They must consume more than twice their own body weight of this relatively uncommon and patchily-distributed resource... click to read more

  • David Shohami | PhD graduate at Movement Ecology Lab, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel
Views 383
Reading time 3.5 min
published on Nov 8, 2021
Apes and monkeys understand syntax-like structures

Across the globe, humanity flourishes by sharing thoughts, culture, information, and technology through language – an incredibly complex method of communication used by no other species. Therefore, finding out why and when language evolved is crucial to understanding what it means to be human. However,... click to read more

  • Stuart K. Watson | Postdoctoral Research Fellow at University of Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland
Views 763
Reading time 3.5 min
published on Oct 6, 2021
Equalizing strength among sexes: generalized intersexuality in female moles

Female moles develop as intersexual individuals, a rather exceptional feature among mammals. But why did evolution shape the female mole body into an intersex one? Most likely, this is related to the rough environmental conditions where moles live. Moles spend their entire lives digging tunnels, fighting... click to read more

  • Francisca M. Real | Postdoctoral Research Fellow at RG Development & Disease, Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics; Institute for Medical and Human Genetics, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany
  • Stefan Mundlos | Professor at RG Development & Disease, Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics; Institute for Medical and Human Genetics, Berlin-Brandenburg Center for Regenerative Therapies (BCRT), Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany
  • Darío G. Lupiáñez | Research Group Leader at Max‐Delbrück‐Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association (MDC), Berlin Institute for Medical Systems Biology (BIMSB), Berlin, Germany
Views 728
Reading time 3.5 min
published on Oct 4, 2021
Exceptional hearing ability in a hummingbird

Many birds communicate using songs. Among them, the Ecuadorian Hillstar hummingbird produces a song with the highest pitch. Our previous research suggests that these hummingbirds produce high-pitch sounds to stand out from ambient noise. For vocal communication to be effective, the listener needs to hear the... click to read more

  • Fernanda G. Duque | Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Biology Department, Hofstra University, Hempstead, N.Y., USA
Views 532
Reading time 3 min
published on Sep 28, 2021