Sea Grant North Carolina: New Mapping Tool Identifies Sites for Re-establishing Oyster Reefs

Sea Grant North Carolina: New Mapping Tool Identifies Sites for Re-establishing Oyster Reefs. “Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a mapping tool that identifies sites for re-establishing oyster reefs that maximize their ecological benefits — such as water filtration. This Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-based tool could inform restoration of other vital, sensitive coastal habitats.”

EOS: Launching an Accessible Archive of Environmental Data

EOS: Launching an Accessible Archive of Environmental Data. “… emerging community repositories are enabling scientists to easily archive and publish data with essential metadata as part of the scientific workflow. These repositories increasingly serve a critical role in enhancing data sharing and use. A new data archive seeks to play this role for the U.S Department of Energy’s (DOE) environmental science community. The new archive, called Environmental Systems Science Data Infrastructure for a Virtual Ecosystem (ESS-DIVE), preserves, expands access to, and improves usability of data from the DOE’s research in terrestrial and subsurface environments.”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: New Carnegie Museum app shows threat to wildflower diversity in the woods

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: New Carnegie Museum app shows threat to wildflower diversity in the woods. “Hikers and hunters have already seen changes in the woodlands of Appalachia in recent years, as deer overpopulation literally nibbles away at the many plant species that live under the trees. A collaboration of science and new media experts has introduced a new tool for the Carnegie Museum of Natural History to educate people about the state of nature and inspire them as well. The tool is an app for smartphones and tablets, called AR Perpetual Garden, that gives even armchair nature lovers a way to compare two scenarios: the woodlands blooming with native wildflowers and the same scene stripped of botanical diversity because of too many deer.”

Japan Times: Battling ‘biopiracy’, scientists catalog the Amazon’s genetic wealth

Japan Times: Battling ‘biopiracy’, scientists catalog the Amazon’s genetic wealth. “Spread across nine countries, including Brazil, Colombia and Peru, the Amazon is home to 1 in 10 known species on Earth, according to the World Wildlife Fund, a conservation group. That makes the region vulnerable to biopiracy: the unlawful appropriation or commercial use of biological materials native to a particular country without providing fair financial compensation to its people or government.”

EOS: Coral Reef Video Game Will Help Create Global Database

EOS: Coral Reef Video Game Will Help Create Global Database. “Players dive off a research boat, identify and classify coral reefs using satellite and drone images, and bring marine life back to reefs. In doing so, they help scientists teach a machine to learn.”

Geospatial World: NASA and FAO jointly develop a new forest and landscape monitoring tool

Geospatial World: NASA and FAO jointly develop a new forest and landscape monitoring tool. “A new way of looking at the dense forests and tall trees has been devised as NASA and FAO( UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization) joined hands to create a new open-access tool. The initiative, which is backed by Google Earth Engine Team and the US governments SilverCarbon Program, permits any user to monitor change in landscape patterns across the globe.”

Ars Technica: What’s eating this 400-year-old painting? A whole ecosystem of microbes

Ars Technica: What’s eating this 400-year-old painting? A whole ecosystem of microbes. “If you could zoom in for a microscopic look at an oil painting on canvas, you would see many thin, overlapping layers of pigments—powdered bits of insects, plants, or minerals—held together with oils or glue made from animal collagens. Many of those pigments and binding materials are surprisingly edible to bacteria and fungi. Each patch of color and each layer of paint and varnish in an oil painting offers a different microbial habitat. So when you look at a painting, you’re not just looking at a work of art; you’re looking at a whole ecosystem.”