A study of the West Nile virus risk associated with “dry” water-detention basins in Central Illinois took an unexpected turn when land managers started mowing the basins. The mowing of wetland plants in basins that failed to drain properly led to a boom in populations of Culex pipiens mosquitoes, which can carry and transmit the deadly virus, researchers report.
A microbe found in caves produces a compound that inhibits Pseudogymnoascus destructans, the fungus that causes white-nose syndrome in bats, researchers report in the journal Mycopathologia. The finding could lead to treatments that kill the fungus while minimizing disruption to cave ecosystems, the researchers say.
University of Illinois psychology professor Brent Roberts and postdoctoral researcher Rodica Damian conducted the largest study yet of birth order and personality. They found no meaningful relationship between birth order and personality or IQ.
Fathers who read to their infants with autism and take active roles in caregiving activities not only promote healthy development in their children, they boost moms’ mental health too, new research suggests.
Think of a scientist at work, and you might picture someone at a lab bench, doing a physical experiment involving beakers or petri dishes and recording his or her findings, which will eventually form the basis for a scientific paper.
During development, children must learn both broad facts about the world (that dogs have four legs, for example) and information that is more specific (that the family dog is scared of snow). While research in developmental psychology suggests that young children should have an easier time learning specific, concrete facts, a new study reveals that they learn general facts so effortlessly that they often can’t tell that they learned anything new at all.