Contraception Goes Wild

The female contraceptive pill is often hailed as one of the greatest successes of modern medicine, by both women and men alike. However, contraceptives for conservation is another issue altogether. The vast array of hormonal mechanisms, methods of conceiving and durations of pregnancy that are present within mammals alone is enough to give any reproductive […]

Buzz Off: Are Bees the Answer to the Elephant Wars?

“I studied Zoology.” “Oh right, the study of zoos.” “Not exactly.” Zoology is the study of ANIMALS and it’s one of those science disciplines that rarely gets the reaction that chemistry or physics have come to expect. The response is normally one of confusion – why would anyone want to study something that has no […]

Do elephants mourn?

I know, I know, I used the word “mourn” in the title. I could almost feel the disapproving eyes boring into my head as I wrote it. But before anyone accuses me of anthropomorphism let me ask you a question, why would it have been more acceptable to say “Do elephants grieve”? or perhaps “A […]

Science Behind the Photo #8

African Elephants (Loxodonta africana) Recent research has described Elephants, the world’s largest land mammals as ‘ecological engineers’, as their natural activities include modifying habitats in ways that affect many other species. The way in which elephants modify the habitats range from digging with their front legs to actually knocking down trees! Although such behavior may […]

Are zoos happy places?

During my last visit to a zoo, I never really felt at ease. Beyond the collective gasps of awe and screams of excitement, an underlying sense of moral wrong constantly lingered as I went from cage to cage, enclosure to enclosure. As a biologist, sometimes I feel obliged to be enraptured by the first-hand experience […]