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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
An animal rights group known as the Nonhuman Rights Project filed lawsuits in three New York courts this week in an...
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
Thousands of scientists in the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) are about to lose their jobs as a result of the...
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
- About Us
Field Guide to Species
2 July 1998 7:00 pm
Ernst Mayr, a German-born biologist known for his insights into evolution, will celebrate his 94th birthday on Sunday, 5 July. In the early part of his career, Mayr studied birds in New Guinea. His 1941 book, List of New Guinea Birds, describes how to distinguish between closely related species and describes how variations arise within species.
A year later, Mayr published a work that is still considered a bible for evolutionary biologists: Systematics and the Origin of Species. In the book, Mayr details the process behind speciation, arguing that new species arise when a few organisms become geographically isolated and, after many generations, change so much that they can no longer breed with the original group. In recent years, Mayr, a professor emeritus at Harvard University, has criticized a cottage industry of what he calls "armchair taxonomists"--scientists who attempt to classify species without studying them in the field.