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Women in Science: Brightening the conservation conversation

As the much anticipated Conservation Optimism Summit begins, Scienceblog talks to Professor EJ Milner-Gulland, Tasso Laventis Professor of Biodiversity in Oxford’s Department of Zoology. Co-creator of this landmark movement, she shares how she is working to protect some of wildlife’s most endangered species, what we can all do to be more environmentally conscious and why she has had enough of the doom and gloom around nature.

Read the article : http://www.ox.ac.uk/news/science-blog/women-science-brightening-conserva...

Learn to love maths: The mathematics of why our grandmothers love us

Based on the strong reactions that it provokes from people, it would be fair to say that mathematics has an image problem.

Maths is one of the few skillsets, unlike reading for example, that people are not embarrassed to admit they do not possess. Class room memories of daunting equations and fractions with no immediate resonance to the real world, scare people into declaring they are frankly, “rubbish at maths”.

Should I take a selfie with a wild animal?

Travel companies around the world profit from some of the cruellest types of wildlife tourist attractions on earth.

Whether it is riding elephants, taking selfies with tigers, or performing dolphin shows, these activities can cause lifelong suffering for wild animals.

In the latest edition of the Oxford Sparks Big Questions podcast, we visit Conservation Ecologist Dr Tom Moorhouse to ask: should I take a selfie with a wild animal?

Listen to the podcast: http://www.oxfordsparks.ox.ac.uk/content/should-i-take-selfie-wild-animal

Homing pigeons share our human ability to build knowledge across generations

Homing pigeons may share the human capacity to build on the knowledge of others, improving their navigational efficiency over time, a new Oxford University study has found.

Read the article: http://www.ox.ac.uk/news/2017-04-18-homing-pigeons-share-our-human-abili...

Smart wing rotation and trailing-edge vortices enable high frequency mosquito flight

Mosquitoes exhibit unusual wing kinematics; their long, slender wings flap at remarkably high frequencies for their size (>800 Hz)and with lower stroke amplitudes than any other insect group1. This shifts weight support away from the translation-dominated, aerodynamic mechanisms used by most insects2, as well as by helicopters and aeroplanes, towards poorly understood rotational mechanisms that occur when pitching at the end of each half-stroke.

Read the article: https://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v544/n7648/full/nature21727.html