Department of
Animal Biology

Animal Biology News

Taking bird research to new heights

Mark Hauber broadens our understanding of the avian world

Team measures puncture performance of viper fangs

Like other vipers, puff adder skulls have hinged jaws that deploy the fangs when the animal opens its mouth to strike.

Study of Arctic fishes reveals the birth of a gene – from ‘junk’

Animal biology professor Christina Cheng and her colleagues determined how the gene for an antifreeze protein in Arctic fish evolved from noncoding DNA.

Dracula ants possess fastest known animal appendage: the snap-jaw

The mandibles of the Dracula ant, Mystrium camillae, are the fastest known moving animal appendages, snapping shut at speeds of up to 90 meters per second.

Scientists study puncture performance of cactus spines

The spines of Cylindropuntia fulgida, also known as jumping cholla, have a reproductive role. They latch on to passersby and carry small chunks of cactus flesh to new locations.

Prof. Mark Hauber receives grant for international collaboration on invasive birds

Professor Mark Hauber receives a $270,000 grant to collaborate with Tel Aviv University researchers on how invasive birds succeed in new habitats.

Playing a parasite for science

Postdoctoral researcher Mikus Abolins-Abols peers into the nest of an American robin.

In darters, male competition drives evolution of flashy fins and bodies

A new study of orangethroat darters reveals that the males’ ability to recognize their own and other species drives the evolution of their bright display colors.

Pointy eggs more likely to stay put in birds’ cliffside nests

Pointiness pays off for the eggs of cliff-dwelling birds, a new study reveals.