School of Biological Sciences

News

First count your species- Scientists urge better information before further conservation decisions are made in Australia

Arguments have raged about whether or not dingoes should be culled and how far they are useful in safeguarding threatened smaller fauna, as they prey on the larger cats and foxes.   While the Australian wildlife services are spending thousands on other means of controlling non-native species, without achieving great results, there is evidence that maintaining dingo numbers benefits the smaller mammals.

A paper in the Journal of Applied Ecology (doi: 10.1111/1365-2664.12250 published Friday 10 April) urges all the participants in what has been, at times, a heated debate, to lay down their differences and get back into the field to collate the robust data necessary to provide certainty for management action.

Publication Date: 09/04/2014

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Running geese give insight into low oxygen tolerance

An international team of scientists, led by Bangor University and funded by the BBSRC, recently tracked the world’s highest flying bird, the bar-headed goose, while it migrated across the Himalayas. Now they have shown how these birds are able to tolerate running at top speed while breathing only 7% oxygen.

Publication Date: 08/04/2014

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Celebrating triumph against the odds at House of Lords

A Bangor University student who has received a helping hand from the Helena Kennedy Foundation took part in a special celebration at the House of Lords recently.

Publication Date: 03/04/2014

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When heat casts a healing spell over cancer

Thomas Turner, a recent Cancer Biology graduate from Bangor University, and Dr Thomas Caspari, a researcher based in the School of Biological Sciences at Bangor University published one of the first comprehensive reviews of  using heat in cancer treatment in Open Biology, the Royal Society's fast, open access journal.

Publication Date: 19/03/2014

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A renowned north Wales' Professor has highlighted the importance of Wales’ wetlands as part of World Wetlands Day

Professor Chris Freeman from Bangor University has thrown his support behind the event aimed and at raising the awareness of wetlands across the globe.

Publication Date: 01/02/2014

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Extinct Elephant Seal population reveals an evolutionary ‘time-machine’

Genetic diversity within isolated populations can occur quite rapidly in evolutionary terms, according to findings of a paper published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B (available online 29.1.14 http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2013.3078).

Publication Date: 30/01/2014

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Fourth Bangor Science Festival is on the horizon

Planning for the fourth annual Bangor Science Festival is well under way and the 2014 Festival is certainly shaping up.  The Science Festival will be held during National Science and Engineering Week from Friday 14th March and Sunday23rd March 2014.

Publication Date: 29/01/2014

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Postgraduate Fair Kindle Winner

When George Yates attended the Postgraduate Courses Fair at the end of November, he wasn’t aware that he was about to have to rethink his Christmas list. George’s registration card was randomly picked from over 350 entries on the day of the Fair, and he became the lucky winner of a brand new Amazon Kindle, which coincidently was at the top of his Christmas wish-list when we met up with him in December.

Publication Date: 15/01/2014

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Envision Doctoral Training Programme Launched

‘Envision’ is a new Doctoral Training Partnership, funded by NERC and led by a highly successful group of UK research institutions, will recruit 60 PhD students (12 per year for the next five years commencing January 2014).

Publication Date: 15/01/2014

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Venom development revealed by first genome sequencing of King Cobra

Scientists studying snake venom have for the first time sequenced the entire genome of a venomous snake, the King Cobra, and confirmed a previously proposed but poorly documented hypothesis explaining how snake venom is produced and what led to the great complexity of venoms consisting of dozens of individual toxins.

Publication Date: 05/12/2013

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Bangor University graduate presents for the BBC Natural History Unit

Dr Ross Piper, 37, who studied Zoology and Animal Ecology at Bangor University, recently returned from a six week expedition in Burma, during which he was working as a presenter for the BBC Natural History Unit. The three-part series will be broadcast on Friday November 29th on BBC2 at 9pm.

Publication Date: 15/11/2013

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£4.9 million pounds to train new generation of environmental scientists

Bangor University is poised to train a new generation of environmental scientists equipped to tackle the challenges of a planet under pressure, under a £4.9 million initiative which has been funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).

Publication Date: 07/11/2013

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Second body clock discovered in the speckled sea louse

Separate timing mechanism presents an exciting new perspective on how organisms define biological time

The diminutive speckled sea louse (Eurydice pulchra) boasts two body clocks, one for night and day and another for the ebb and flow of the tide, according to research published today, Thursday 26 September.

Writing in the journal Current Biology, researchers from Aberystwyth, Bangor, Cambridge and Leicester Universities have confirmed the existence for the first time of a distinct and independent circatidal body clock that follows the 12.4 hour cycle of the tide.

Publication Date: 27/09/2013

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Cancer Exhibition at the National Eisteddfod Science & Technology Exhibition

As one of the main sponsors of the Eisteddfod Science & Technology Pavilion, Bangor University is taking a lead in getting children and adults involved in the show. The University  has a range of activities at the Exhibition through the week- covering everything from science for the youngest children, with the very popular Fflach Bangor show- to health themes,  including cancer research,  the food we eat and how to check for our ‘vital signs’ as well as revealing a little about how our brains work.

Publication Date: 02/08/2013

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Bangor Graduates Take On The Fringe

This summer four Bangor University graduates are taking an original sketch show to the Edinburgh Fringe Comedy Festival!

Publication Date: 31/07/2013

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Bangor's Biomedical Science Degree Amongst The Best In the UK

The renowned Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS) has for the third time in succession announced the award of a further five-year accreditation to Bangor University’s BSc program in Biomedical Science at the University’s School of Biological Sciences.

Publication Date: 26/07/2013

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Bangor University seals reputation for wetland science excellence

International award and groundbreaking new course confirms Bangor University as world leader in wetland science.

One of Bangor University's top academics has scooped a major scientific prize the same week as he launches a UK-first course.

Publication Date: 16/07/2013

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Britta gains First in Cancer Biology

A hard working student has graduated with a First Class Honours degree after a memorable three years at Bangor University.

Publication Date: 12/07/2013

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Prize Winning Student Graduates

A Bangor University prize-winning student will be celebrating her success during graduation week this week.

Publication Date: 12/07/2013

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'Life changing' experience for mum

Young mother who left school at 16 says studying at Bangor University has been ‘life changing.’

Publication Date: 12/07/2013

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The wettest drought on record - the weather of 2012

Come along to Bangor University’s Main Arts Lecture Theatre, on Monday 24th June 2013, at 6.30pm and learn about “the wettest drought on record – the weather of 2012”.

This is a timely Lecture, considering the recent meeting of the UK’s leading meteorologists to discuss recent unusual weather patterns in the UK.

Publication Date: 21/06/2013

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Madagascar Evening

Students and staff in the School of Environment, Natural Resources and Geography are organising a fund-raising evening to support the conservation work of the Malagasy NGO Madagasikara Voakajy (http://www.madagasikara-voakajy.org/) with which the School has a really close relationship.

Publication Date: 12/04/2013

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Bang Goes the Theory comes to Bangor!

Following the recent furore over horse meat contamination in other meats, BBC’s popular science show, Bang Goes the Theory (on BBC 2 Wales at 18.30on Tuesday 9 April 2013/ Monday 8 April 19..30 BBC One not in regions) looks at how new DNA techniques can be used to identify the fish on your plate.

Publication Date: 04/04/2013

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Urgent action required to stop irreversible genetic changes to fish stocks

If we are to sustain fish as a global food source, then fisheries and conservation managers need to take account of new evidence showing how overfishing of the larger fish in a population actually changes the gene pool in favour of smaller less fertile fish.

A paper in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment (available online from 18.3.13) led by fish geneticists at Bangor University, with contributions from the University of East Anglia, the University of the West Indies and the Max-Planck-Institute for Developmental Biology, has proved for the first time that the change towards smaller fish takes place at the DNA level, and within a relatively short time period of a few generations.

Publication Date: 19/03/2013

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Bangor Student Finalists in Climate Week Awards 2013

Andy O’Callaghan, a second year Marine Science/ Zoology student at Bangor University has been names a finalist in the upcoming Climate Week Awards 2013.

Publication Date: 05/03/2013

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Expert contributes to UN World Consultation on Aquatic genetic Resources

Professor Gary Carvalho of the University’s School of Biological Sciences was one of 13 world-renowned experts attending a Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations State World Consultation on Aquatic Genetic Resources, at the UN Regional Pacific and Asian FAO Office in Bangkok (28 January-1 February 2013).

Publication Date: 06/02/2013

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Growing oil palm for biofuels can’t save our climate

Growing oil palm to make ‘green’ biofuels in the tropics could be accelerating the effects of climate change, say scientists.

Publication Date: 01/02/2013

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One of Nature's Weirdest Events explained

One of the most spectacular migrations on earth; that of the Christmas Island Red Crab is among those included in the January 2 episode of Nature's Weirdest Events on BBC2 Wales at 20.00. Prof Simon Webster of the School of Biological Sciences explains the dramatic mass-migration of Christmas Island Red Crab on the programme. Prof Webster has identified the hormone responsible for this amazing migration. (See related research story here http://www.bangor.ac.uk/news/full-ori.php.en?Id=1381)

Publication Date: 03/01/2013

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Lab experiments for Ysgol Bodedern pupils participating in Antarctica, Climate Change and Icefish project

Pupils from Ysgol Uwchradd Bodedern working on an innovative and exciting climate change project, visited Bangor University to work in the laboratories there as part of their project Antarctica, Climate Change and Icefish.

Scientists from the University’s School of Biological Sciences have been leading the project under a Partnership Grant from The Royal Society, the UK’s national academy of science, and have been working with the pupils since September. The project is introducing pupils to the effects of climate change on marine animals in a part of the world where biodiversity and habitats are especially vulnerable to environmental change. 

Publication Date: 11/12/2012

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Bangor University hosts its first Polar Symposium

A ‘Polar Symposium’ being held this week-end (Saturday 8 December) is the first of its kind to be held at Bangor University.

The 'Bangor Polar Symposium' at the School of Ocean Sciences has been jointly organized by the UK Polar Network and the Endeavour Society, a Bangor University student society focussing on ocean sciences.

Publication Date: 08/12/2012

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Bangor University students to take part in community tree plant for BBC’s The One Show

Bangor University students will be rolling up their sleeves in front of BBC’s The One Show cameras to help the Maes y Pant community group in Gresford (near Wrexham) to help transform a former quarry into a biodiverse community resource.

Publication Date: 17/11/2012

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High-Flying Geese take low profile over Himalayas

A study published this week (31 October 2012) in Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences has tackled the long-standing problem  of assessing the actual altitude and migration path of Bar-headed geese crossingthe Himalayas using state of the art satellite tracking technology. Scientists from Bangor University and an international team of collaborators recorded highly accurate GPS (Global Positioning System) locations from 42 individual geese as they migrated.

Publication Date: 01/11/2012

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Massive fish fondly followed Kate

A 70 pound grouper, fondly named Darth Vader, took a shine to a Bangor University student over the summer. Kate Cooper, 18, from Pembroke, Bermuda, volunteered at the Bermuda Aquarium during her summer vacation. The massive fish seemed to be very fond of Kate, following her around like a puppy as she cleaned the inside of the glass in the fish tanks

Publication Date: 31/10/2012

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How penguins use bubbles to 'take to the air'

A  suggestion by Bangor University Professor Roger Hughes of the School of Biological Sciences, that bubble trails seen in footage of emperor penguins swimming to the sea surface are produced to reduce drag is published in the November 2012 edition of National Geographic. Roger Hughes's intriguing idea while watching penguins on TV originally led to a research paper revealing just how the penguins could manage this. Collaborators at University College Cork and the Technical University of Denmark showed that ‘lubrication’ provided by tiny air bubbles released from under the feathers could allow penguins to gain enough speed to leap out of the water and onto the ice shelf.

Publication Date: 22/10/2012

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Rare Conifer first to seed in Wales

A rare Australian conifer, growing in Treborth Botanic Garden, at Bangor University, has set seed for possibly the first time in Wales and only the second time in the UK.

There are only around 100 trees of the Wollemi pine (Wollemia nobilis) growing in its native location in a canyon in Australia. The conifer was only identified in 1994.

Publication Date: 20/09/2012

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Bangor University academic invited to international panel on animal by-products disposal

Dr Prysor Williams from the School of Environment, Natural Resources & Geography has just returned from an international symposium in Detroit, USA, focussed on discussing all aspects of animal by-product disposal. During the conference, he presented two papers on the research work being undertaken at Bangor University on a novel system of storing livestock carcasses prior to disposal, called Bioreduction.

Publication Date: 31/05/2012

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New means of safeguarding world fish stocks proven

Powerful and versatile new genetic tools that will assist in safeguarding both European fish stocks and European consumers is reported in Nature Communications (DOI 10.1038/ncomms1845 22/05/12). The paper reports on the first system proven to identify populations of fish species to a forensic level of validation.

Publication Date: 22/05/2012

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NERC PhD studentship in Zoology

The School of Biological Sciences has a PhD studentship funded by NERC to start in October 2012.

Publication Date: 15/03/2012

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PhD Studentship in Biomedical Sciences

A Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol PhD Studentship in the Biomedical Sciences is available tenable from October 1st 2012. An aim of the scheme is
to enable academics at the start of their career to qualify as credible applicants for Welsh medium academic posts. The emphasis is on researching
for a PhD qualification, but training in learning and teaching is also an essential part of the scheme.

Publication Date: 11/03/2012

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Bangor’s expertise in ‘world-changing’ technology

An area of  research in which Bangor University is a world leader, is described by this month’s (December) issue of Scientific American as one of ten ‘world-changing ideas’.

Publication Date: 17/12/2011

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Climate change effect on release of CO2 from peat far greater than assumed

Drought causes peat to release far more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than has previously been realised.

Publication Date: 22/11/2011

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Birthday Honours reward Bangor academics

Four individuals connected with Bangor University featured in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

Publication Date: 13/06/2011

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New species of viper identified

A group of Bangor University scientists have featured in the National Geographic this weekfollowing their discovery of two new species of snake in Southeast Asia.

Publication Date: 29/03/2011

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Measuring success of peatland restoration

Bangor University are assisting the National Trust in an ambitious project to restore Wales’s second largest peat upland and a European-designated special conservation area.

A 400 mile network of ditches on the Migneint between Ffestiniog and Llanrwst will over time be filled in to restore the area to its natural state. Cut over centuries to improve drainage and provide more land for farming and grouse shooting, the ditches are possibly contributing to the release of carbon.

Publication Date: 08/02/2011

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Catfish study reveals importance of being ‘similar but different’

A group of armoured catfishes abundant in small rivers and streams across South America are not all they appear- in fact communities are far more diverse and complex than previously suspected.

A new multidisciplinary study, reported in Nature (6.1.11), has enabled evolutionary biologists at Bangor University to establish for the first time that many Corydoras catfish that live together in the same rivers actually mimic each other’s colour patterns.

Publication Date: 07/01/2011

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Bangor led project covered by Science

A Bangor- Unversity led European Union funded research project developing techniques to assist in the fight against illegal fishing and to preserve fish stocks is covered in the Magazine Science.

Publication Date: 18/12/2010

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Autumnwatch viewers to learn about the Sea Trout

Autumnwatch viewers across the UK will learn about a project that’s hoping to improve  the situation for the sewin or sea trout, on the programme to be broadcast on Thursday 18 November (BBC 2 21.30pm 18.11.10).

Publication Date: 18/11/2010

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Bangor graduates make a difference on World Challenge project

Two Bangor graduates are working on an environmental project in Madagascar, shortlisted for the World Challenge, a global competition aimed at finding projects or small businesses from around the world that have shown enterprise and innovation at a grassroots level.

Publication Date: 10/11/2010

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New DNA Sequencing reveals hidden communities

Half a bucket full of sand from an unassuming beach in Scotland has revealed a far richer and more complex web of microscopic animals living within the tiny ‘ecosystem’ than have previously been identified.

Publication Date: 19/10/2010

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Major marine science boost for North Wales

A major £23.6m investment to grow Wales’ growing marine sector by increasing collaborative research projects between business and universities has been announced today (Weds 8th Sept) by Deputy First Minister Ieuan Wyn Jones.

Bangor University’s SEACAMS (Sustainable Expansion of the Applied Coastal and Marine Sectors) project has been given the go-ahead following EU backing of £12.6m from the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Assembly Government. 

Publication Date: 08/09/2010

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