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  1. Caterpillars retrieve 'voicemail' by eating soil

    Press release
    Leaf-feeding caterpillars greatly enrich their intestinal flora by eating soil. It's even possible to trace the legacy effects of plants that previously grew in that soil through bacteria and fungi in the caterpillars.
    Kooluil op boerenkool
  2. Soil Animal Days 2018: Woodlice back on top, slugs deterred by drought

    Press release
    The 4th edition of the Dutch Soil Animal Days saw 856 'citizen scientists' comb through more than 200 gardens and parks to find some 7500 soil creatures.
    Naaktslak op een weg
  3. "Rewilding landscapes can help to solve more than one problem"

    Press release
    Urbanisation, biodiversity loss, climate change: just some of the worldwide problems 'rewilding' - i.e. restoring food chains by returning 'missing' species to the landscape - can help tackle
    Een kudde wisenten in de Kennemerduinen
  4. Root chemistry of range-expanding plants may predict invasiveness risk

    Press release
    Most plants that expand their range within their own continent - e.g. under pressure from climate change - won't end up dominating other species. According to NIOO-researcher Rutger Wilschut, possible invasiveness may be predicted by root chemistry not found in native plants.
  5. Triple 'excellent' score for Dutch ecology

    Press release
    An independent committee of international researchers has given the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) top marks in all three categories of its assessment.
    Groep mensen loopt rond bij NIOO-KNAW gebouw
  6. Backswimmer most counted water animal during Dutch Ditch Days

    Press release
    This past weekend, thousands of people took part in the first nationwide 'citizen science' ditch survey in the Netherlands. The most counted water animals was the backswimmer (a.k.a. water boatsmen).
  7. Kees van Oers appointed professor of Animal Personality

    Press release
    Wageningen University & Research has appointed Kees van Oers as professor by special appointment of Animal Personality.
    Prof. dr. Kees van Oers
  8. Nuisance growth of aquatic plants: to mow or not to mow?

    Press release
    Massive growth of submerged aquatic plants can be a nuisance, especially in summer. It's up to water managers to limit the inconvenience for swimmers, boats and fishermen in a way that is both responsible and cost-effective. Michiel Verhofstad defended his PhD thesis this week on the 'root' causes of the problem, and how best to tackle it.
  9. Polarised debate: polar bear blogs reveal dangerous gap between climate-change facts and opinions

    Press release
    Climate-change discussions on social media are very influential. A new study in BioScience shows that when it comes to iconic topics such as polar bears and retreating sea ice, climate blogs fall into two distinct camps. With little or no overlap between deniers and the available scientific facts. The study’s first author, NIOO-KNAW researcher Jeff Harvey says: “It’s time for scientists to counter the misinformation and engage directly with the public far more.”
    polarised-debate_large male looking
  10. What makes soil, soil? Researchers find hidden clues in DNA

    Press release
    Ever wonder what makes soil, soil? And could soil from the Amazon rainforest really be the same as soil from your garden? Researchers from the University of Manchester and the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) are using DNA sequencing to unlock the secrets of the world’s soils, and analyse ecological patterns and microbial communities on a global scale.
    Botswana soil crust Elliott
  11. Importance of biological clock can only be seen in the wild

    Press release
    The impact of biological clocks on nature and our lives is enormous. Jet lag, mating, bird migration: so much depends on the keeping of time in our bodies and those of other organisms. The latest issue of the world's oldest scientific journal is dedicated entirely to the topic. Featuring researchers from the Netherlands.
  12. Spiders and earthworms overtake woodlice in Dutch gardens

    Press release
    Woodlice have for the first time been dethroned as the most spotted soil animals in Dutch gardens. The third edition of the nationwide Soil Animal Days saw arachnoids seize the top spot, with earthworms a close second. A probable explanation for the shift is the extremely wet weather at the onset of autumn. Fortunately, that didn't stop some 600 enthousiasts from counting the soil animals in their gardens.