Welcome to the 13th edition of Oekologie! We've had a great first year thanks to all of the outstanding submissions from such interesting bloggers! Let's start out our second year with some fantastic selections...
First, some "big-picture" posts:
Jeremy at Agriculture Biodiversity Weblog writes about Getting Ready for Changing Climates: four papers together give an insight into what global warming promises for agriculture and agriculturalists, and how to deal with it.
Ever wondered about the difference between a conservationist and a preservationist? Jeremy at the Voltage Gate explains with The Forester and the Romantic. He describes the different viewpoints of John Muir, who did not support any alteration of nature, and Gifford Pinochet, a land manager who wanted to protect the land while accommodating the growth of America.
Now let's move on to topics that are a bit earthier:
Wiggly Wigglers explains how to minimize food waste by making compost. She suggests that some may be a bit squeamish about worms!
Jamie McIntosh wonders if Florida gardeners replace one conventional gardening method with one organic gardening method, will it help protect and save Florida's delicate ecosystem?
Charles Green describes the tragedy of the commons at sea with a review and analysis of an article from the Economist (and he manages to work in a bit of information about sub-prime mortgages!). The article points to studies that find 81% of EU fish stocks to be dangerously over-exploited. The Economist's solution isn't one that most conservationists would come up with. Do you think it would work?
Now, on to some posts about animals...
The Nemesis Bird provides a great overview of gulls, while Jennifer describes some unusual cave creatures. Corey searches for Island Scrub-Jays on Santa Cruz Island (what gorgeous birds!). This bird is only found on one tiny island off the coast of California. GrrlScientist reviews an article that investigates whether or not blue tits are better mothers. Despite the fact that many female birds display drab colors, this species does in fact seem to benefit from showy females.
We can also delve into small details at Greg Laden's blog where we learn about The Flores Hominid and the Evolution of the Shoulder. The Flores humerus is more like a generalized ape humerus at the broad scale, but it is most like an early hominid, in particular, a Homo erectus humerus in details.
Finally, some book reviews. Of course, even though I am currently reading five different books (with more piled on my nightstand), I now want to read these. Hopefully you'll also be inspired to pick up a good book:
GrrlScientist reviews The Snoring Bird by Bernd Heinrich. The book tells the story of the author's father, a noted naturalist whose work was never really recognized by the scientific community. Despite never attending college or receiving any formal training, Gern Heinrich became the leading authority on parasitic wasps of the family Ichneumonidae (subfamily; Ichneumoninae). These wasps are small and easily overlooked, and thus, they were poorly known. Sounds like a great read!
Betsy Teutsch reviews The Earth Knows My Name: Food, Culture, and Sustainability in the Gardens of Ethnic Americans. The books takes the reader on a journey through eight different gardens, and evidently the journey is quite amazing.
GrrlScientist lets us know about a new book from the National Academies of Sciences Press, Science, Evolution, and Creationism -- The Free Download. The book includes chapters on the nature of science, the evidence for evolution, and creationist claims. It's really free!
That wraps up this Oekologie! Thanks for all the great posts!