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Monthly Archives: June 2008

Why trees fix nitrogen and what it means for carbon and climate change

A paper just published online by Nature resolves a major puzzle about nitrogen fixation by forest trees. The nitrogen cycle affects how fast trees can grow and absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, so it’s important for understanding what role …
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California’s carpet of flowers, gone

California was once carpeted in wildflower pastures that have been destroyed by introduced plants, says a UC Riverside ecologist in a new book. “We need to recognize that California was not at all grasslands in the past,” said Richard Minnich, …
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Zoo Vets and Jane Goodall on KVIE tonight

Tonight’s “Viewfinder” on KVIE-6 follows UC Davis veterinarians making house calls at the Sacramento Zoo, and also includes an exclusive interview with Jane Goodall. The documentary, by our in-house broadcast specialist Paul Pfotenhauer, airs at 7 p.m. tonight.

Reef Fish Fly

Some fish on the Great Barrier Reef use their front fins in a novel way to “fly” through the water, researchers at the Australian National University have found. UC Davis fish anatomist Peter Wainwright was involved in the research project. …
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Fizzy Vodka Inventor Credits UC Davis

A British company has launched a line of sparkling vodka, apparently inspired by research by UC Davis neurobiologist Earl Carstens. Some years ago Carstens and colleagues showed that a number of taste sensations, including hot peppers and carbonated drinks, are …
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Slurp

How do fish get food into their mouths without it swimming or floating away? In many cases they use suction. Peter Wainwright’s lab at UC Davis studies how fish such as the bluegill do that. The researchers use high-speed cameras …
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Tomatoes take a turn in the food poisoning spotlight

Of all the things that might be unhealthful in a fast-food restaurant, tomatoes would come pretty far down the list. But not this week as the FDA issues a warning against eating raw round and roma tomatoes from certain states …
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Chevy’s Volt Plug-in Hybrid Powers Ahead

General Motors Vice-President Bob Lutz blogs about driving a “test mule” for the Chevrolet Volt, GM’s attempt at a new generation of fuel-efficient vehicle. The car Lutz was driving was rigged up to test the lithium ion batteries that will …
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Young voters see Obama’s race as an asset

Barack Obama’s support is strongest among young voters and declines in older age groups, according to this AP story. It’s not just that race is not an issue for younger voters who have grown up with black celebrities and politicians: …
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Popular as a Pomegranate

The first off-season pomegranates have been flying off the shelves on the East Coast, the Associated Press reports, their popularity boosted by the supposed health benefits from antioxidants in the fruit. “I’ve seen fads for all kinds of fruit, like …
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