May
18

Working to save the Bay (and the rest of the planet) for 50 years

Working to save the Bay (and the rest of the planet) for 50 years

The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center set up its first lab in an old dairy barn on the banks of the Rhode River. Five decades later, SERC is at the forefront of research on the effects of climate change, pollution and invasive species on our coasts and waterways. Continue reading Working to save the Bay (and the rest of the planet) for 50 years

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Feb
23

Getting down and dirty in the fight against invasive species

Getting down and dirty in the fight against invasive species

The list of invasive species that threaten our waterways ranges from Asian oysters to zebra mussels, with hundreds of other animal and plant species in between. In this post marking National Invasive Species Awareness Week, Smithsonian photographer and diving officer Laurie Penland describes the exhausting, dangerous and oddly beautiful work of scraping invasive species off the hull of a giant cargo ship. Continue reading Getting down and dirty in the fight against invasive species

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Jul
23

These slimy invaders need to escargot back where they came from

These slimy invaders need to escargot back where they came from

U.S. Customs agents recently seized 35 pounds of live African giant snails being shipped to California. With few predators (other than humans) the slow-moving snails are fast becoming one of the world’s most destructive invasive species. Ellen Strong of the Natural History Museum tells you everything you need to know. Plus recipes! Continue reading These slimy invaders need to escargot back where they came from

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Jun
20

Animal CSI: Inside the Smithsonian’s Feather Forensics Lab

Animal CSI: Inside the Smithsonian’s Feather Forensics Lab

Giant Burmese pythons are eating the Everglades alive–devouring rabbits, foxes and even alligators. It’s harder to know the impact the snakes are having on native birds. Ornithologist Carla Dove is one of the few with the guts to investigate, uh, python guts. Continue reading Animal CSI: Inside the Smithsonian’s Feather Forensics Lab

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