Latest News

Flexible and omnipresent Baboons could be at risk

Despite being so commonplace in some regions of Sub-Saharan Africa that baboons can be considered pests to some communities, new research shows that half the six species of baboons present in the region could be at risk by mid-century.

A recent paper in the Journal of Biogeography reveals that baboons, most of which are in the ‘of Least Concern’ category on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, could struggle for survival under future climate conditions.

Publication date: 16 May 2019

Researching the kingfisher’s iconic hydrodynamic design

Renowned for their noiseless dive, the kingfisher’s iconic beak-shape has inspired the design of high speed bullet trains. Now scientists have tested beak-shape among some of the birds’ 114 species found world-wide, to assess which shape is the most hydrodynamic.

Avian biologist, Dr Kristen Crandell and third year undergraduate student, Rowan Howe, of Bangor University, created 3d printed models of the beak shapes of several of the diving kingfisher species, at the University’s Pontio Innovation Centre.

Publication date: 15 May 2019

Replanting oil palm may be driving a second wave of biodiversity loss

This article  by Simon Willcock, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Geography, Bangor University and Adham Ashton-Butt, Post-doctoral Research Associate, University of Hull is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

The environmental impact of palm oil production has been well publicised. Found in everything from food to cosmetics, the deforestation, ecosystem decline and biodiversity loss associated with its use is a serious cause for concern.

Publication date: 13 May 2019

Llew Rees Memorial Prize 2019

The University has awarded its annual award for sporting achievement, the Llew Rees Memorial Prize, to Theo Schoebel, for an exceptional year of domestic and international Karate successes.

Publication date: 7 May 2019

Not so sexy salmon

New research reveals that farmed salmon have smaller ‘jaw hooks’ or ‘kype’- a secondary sexual trait, likened to the antlers of a stag, making them less attractive to females than their wild salmon cousins.

This new finding published in the peer–reviewed science journal Royal Society Open Science, implies that farm-bred salmon are less sexually attractive than their wild brethren, and that despite only being bred in captivity since the 1970’s, within some 12 generations, that they are already diverging from wild salmon.

Publication date: 30 April 2019

The last chance for Madagascar’s biodiversity

Scientists from around the world have joined together to identify the most important actions needed by Madagascar’s new government to prevent species and habitats being lost for ever.

In January, Madagascar’s recently-elected president, Andry Rajoelina, began his five-year term of office. A group of scientists from Madagascar, the UK, Australia, the USA and Finland have published a paper recommending actions needed by the new government to turn around the precipitous decline of biodiversity and help put Madagascar on a trajectory towards sustainable growth.

Publication date: 29 April 2019

Safeguarding our natural resources – how do decision-makers decide?

Human activities are increasingly threatening the very elements that we need for our own survival, from clean water from forests, to ensuring the survival of crop-pollinating insects.

Scientists call these naturally occurring aspects on which we rely ‘ecosystem services’ and many governments are shifting their conservation policies to take these vital ‘ecosystem services’ into consideration.

Scientists are rushing to create ‘models’ which can predict both the availability of these services, sometimes as basic and intrinsic as water, grazing or land for crop growth and the demand for them.

There are now many such models- but they need validating- checking against reality, so that decision-makers know which model would be most suitable for their needs.

Publication date: 24 April 2019