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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
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,...
Since arriving on the island of Guam in the 1940s, the brown tree snake ( Boiga irregularis ) has extirpated native...
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...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
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ScienceShot: Lice Reveal Clandestine Lemur Get-Togethers
6 January 2012 1:52 pm
CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA—Figuring out how brown mouse lemurs spend their time has almost been impossible, even with weekly trapping and releasing of more than 300 animals carrying an identifying microchip. Enter lice. Graduate student Sarah Zohdy of the University of Helsinki marked lice living on lemurs with dots of different colored nail polish and then recorded when and where the insects turned up on other individuals. She was surprised to learn that the supposedly solitary lemurs often stray from their home tree, interacting quite a bit with distant neighbors, particularly during the breeding season. The lice spread only with contact between lemurs and in this study were transmitted only among males, Zohdy reported here yesterday at the annual meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. The downside? The distribution of the insects over time, she said, indicates that "just a few lemurs could be responsible for a population-wide louse-borne epidemic."
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