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The growing global battle against blood-sucking ticks

Diseases spread by ticks are on the rise around the world, spurred by a combination of factors, including shifting climates and population sprawl into rural areas. Reported cases of Lyme, the most common US tick-borne illness, have nearly tripled in the country since 1992.

Ecologists embrace their urban side

Urban ecologists attribute the swell of interest in their discipline to multiple factors, including the realization that human actions are warming the planet, that people are migrating to cities in increasing numbers and evidence that the study of urban ecosystems provides important and practical insights.

What Wikipedia edits can tell us about the politicization of science

Long before our current politicized battles over the science of climate change, vaccines and evolution, there was an older generation of political science fights — over the health effects of smoking and the environmental costs of acid rain and the depletion of the Earth's ozone layer, to name a few.

On Wikipedia, politically controversial science topics are vulnerable to information sabotage

Wikipedia reigns. It’s the world’s most popular online encyclopedia, the sixth most visited website in America, and a research source most U.S. students rely on. But, according to a paper published today in the journal PLOS One, Wikipedia entries on politically controversial scientific topics can be unreliable due to information sabotage.

Hudson Valley Youth make ink out of rocks at Cary Eco-science Camp

For the last two weeks of July, young people from around the Hudson Valley were able to make their own inks and tints and paint with them in an eco-science camp at the Cary Institute. 

Hudson River’s underwater vegetation still recovering from hurricanes

Water celery has been noticeably absent for the past several years. In summer 2012, it became apparent that something was amiss. The plant was not found in spots where it previously had been prolific.

Two numbers: Humans have burned up half the world’s biomass

By now the lesson is clear: Burning coal and petroleum produces carbon dioxide, the heat-trapping gas that contributes to the warming of our globe. That alone is enough reason to believe fossil fuels are not a sustainable basis for society long-term.

How one local man's immunity to ticks could save us all

Rick Ostfeld is a disease ecologist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook. For decades, he has studied ticks and tick-borne diseases, primarily in the forests and fields of the mid-Hudson Valley.

Invasive species add to monarch butterfly’s woes

Most readers are familiar with monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus). The striking orange and black species has historically been widespread throughout North America.

CDC report: Lyme disease is spreading to new territories

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that Lyme disease has substantially expanded over the past few decades, with 17 states in the Northeast and upper Midwest now considered at high risk.

19 Teachers + Forest Ecosystem Functions = 100s of student engagement opportunities

What happens when nineteen teachers have the opportunity to study how forest ecosystems function? You get the potential to engage hundreds of students in thinking about forests as dynamic, exciting systems that shape the quality of the world we live in, from cleaning water and cooling the environment to preserving biodiversity.

This New Map Shows Your Risk of Catching Lyme Disease

If you don't live in the northeastern United States, you may not think much about diseases transmitted by ticks. If you do live there, or spend part of the summer along the coastal arc that stretches from Virginia and Maryland up through southern Maine, consciousness of these sneaky, potentially disabling illnesses—Lyme disease and its lesser-known brethren, including erlichiosis, anaplasmosis, babesiosis and the rest—is hard to escape.

A species’ worth depends on our resourcefulness

What good are clams? I work with a lot of obscure animals, such as bivalve mollusks (clams and their relatives), and one of the most common questions I get is, "What good are they?"

Lyme disease is spreading faster than ever and humans are partly to blame

Avril Lavigne is the latest celebrity to reveal being felled by Lyme disease. After months of withering fatigue, the Canadian singer-songwriter was finally diagnosed with the tick-borne illness.

Saving wildlife might be good for your health

Preserving habitats and encouraging biodiversity does wonders for plant and animal life, giving them room to thrive without human interference. In recent years some scientists have wondered if biodiversity might also help humans, protecting us from infectious diseases that spread from nonhuman animals to people

Q&A with Kathleen Weathers

Cary's Kathie Weathers is interviewed by the Environmental Monitor and answers questions about the Global Lakes Ecological Observatory Network.

GLEON: Ten years of linking lakes and people

In October 2005, five scientists were marooned on a mountain near Yuan Yang Lake in Taiwan. Dead-set on installing a new batch of water quality sensors, the group had ignored an incoming typhoon that washed out the only road behind them, knocking chunks of pavement the size of a garage down the cypress-covered slopes.

Use wild opossums to rid your property of ticks

Opossums are North America's only native marsupials. An opossum vaguely resembles a cross between a housecat and a giant rat, and while they're tolerated as a relative newcomer to Maine's wilderness — migrating into the state within the last half century or so — they're not especially cherished.

‘Messy’ woods serve critical purpose in forest management

Visitors to the Cary Institute's Millbrook campus will admire our diverse woodlands, but may wonder why there are so many standing and fallen dead trees left scattered, sometimes in prominent places. Some might even say that our forests are messy.

Hudson Data Jam Awards Showcase features creative work by regional students

The public is invited to attend the Hudson Data Jam Awards Showcase. Support regional students while learning about the Hudson River in this unique event that combines river science and data interpretation with creative communication.

Researchers unraveling secrets of Ebola talk at UGA

Ecologists shared ideas and research about the Ebola virus at a meeting in Athens, Georgia. Cary's Barbara Han talked about methods scientists are developing that would identify likely wildlife carriers of filoviruses, a kind of virus related to rabies virus which includes Ebola, Marburg virus and some other deadly species.

Hudson River scientist receives top honor for wetlands work

The Environmental Law Institute has announced that Dr. Stuart E.G. Findlay, received the 2015 National Wetlands Award for Science Research. Stuart and six other award recipients were honored at a ceremony at the U.S. Botanic Garden in Washington, D.C., on May 21, 2015.

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Could a computer predict the next pandemic?

Using a computer to predict an infectious disease outbreak before it starts may sound like a bit of Philip K. Dick sci-fi, but scientists are coming close. In a new study, researchers have used machine learning—teaching computers to recognize patterns in large data sets—to make accurate forecasts about which animals might harbor dangerous viruses, bacteria, and fungi. 

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Of mice and mouse clicks

Between 1346 and 1353 the Black Death killed over a third of Europe's population. It took 150 years for the continent to recover. The disease was so devastating that it changed the social order, as a scarcity of labour led to higher wages for the survivors, hastening the demise of feudalism.

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Forecasting future infectious disease outbreaks

Machine learning can pinpoint rodent species that harbor diseases and geographic hotspots vulnerable to new parasites and pathogens. So reports a new study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences led by Barbara A. Han, a disease ecologist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies.

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