Ostrich farm in the desert

Ostrich Bubbles

The birds aren’t the only ones with their heads in the sand.
Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin and His Correspondents: A Lifetime of Letters

An epistolary network was critical for Darwin’s work, allowing him to obtain new information while sparking fresh ideas in his correspondents’ minds.
Extinction Rebellion (XR) protesters glue themselves to barrels outside the Treasury on April 07, 2022 in London, England.

Who Can Just Stop Oil?

Groups such as Just Stop Oil are calling for change, but their aims need to be considered with respect to more than a reductionist slogan.
Hesperornis on the shoreline.

A Brief Guide to Birdwatching in the Age of Dinosaurs

Archaeopteryx and Hesperornis should be on the lists of any dino bird watcher.
Three female animals posing for photograph on an alpaca farm in Central Oregon

The Alpaca Racket

Why are alpacas everywhere, and why are they so expensive?
A photograph from the Mars Perseverance rover, 2021

NASA’s Search for Life on Mars

It’s a rocky road for its rovers, a long slog for scientists—and back on Earth, a battle of the budget.
Mount Okmok, Alaska

Beware the Volcanoes of Alaska (and Elsewhere)

The 43 BCE eruption of Alaska’s Okmok volcano created the (cold) climate context for the fall of the Roman Republic and the birth of the Roman Empire.
Crocus sativus

Saffron: The Story of the World’s Most Expensive Spice

Appearing in the written record as early as 2300 BCE, saffron can be traced in foodways around the globe, despite the finicky nature of its harvest.
An illustration of Spaghettification from NASA's Imagine the Universe!

“Spaghettification”: How Black Holes Stretch Objects into Oblivion

Want to avoid getting “spaghettified” by a black hole? Steer clear of the smaller ones.
Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell, ca. 1860

Why Not Just Be a Nurse?

To be taken seriously as physicians, women doctors in nineteenth-century Britain felt the need to distinguish themselves from others of their gender.