Biology

Biology focuses on a single living organism at a time, examining the life stages, reproduction, morphology and range. In the case of fauna, there is considerable attention to the motor and social behavior of each species. For both animals and plants, biologists examine carefully the relationship of organisms to nutrient sources. Subject species may be microscopic as small as bacteria, or include the largest creatures ever known, such as present day cetaceans or extinct dinosaurs. Some biology studies focus on the reconstruction of events deep back into prehistory, while other research is preoccupied with events that are happening today and forward into the future.

  • Urushiol Featured Article Urushiol Urushiol

    Introduction Urushiol is an oily toxin produced by plants in the cashew family (anacardiaceae).  These plants include poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac, and... More »

  • Flora of Napa County, California Featured Article Flora of Napa County, California Flora of Napa County, California

    Napa County is a rural county in northern California encompassing nearly 500,000 acres (200,000 hectares), about 0.5 % of the landmass of the state. It is located 25 miles (40... More »

  • Geophony, Biophony, and Anthrophony Featured Article Geophony, Biophony, and Anthrophony Geophony, Biophony, and Anthrophony

    What do these words mean? Biophony is the melodic sound created by such organisms as frogs and birds; geophony, the composition of non-biological sounds like wind, rain and... More »

  • Invasive Plant Abundance Featured Article Invasive Plant Abundance Invasive Plant Abundance

    Home and Away: Are Invasive Plant Species Really That Special? Invasive plants are a major environmental problem--but how abundant are they? Invasive plant species... More »

  • Benthos Featured Article Benthos Benthos

    Benthos is one of three major ecological groups into which marine organisms are divided, the other two being the nekton and the plankton. The benthos are organisms and... More »

  • Virus Featured Article Virus Virus

    A virus is a microscopic organism that can replicate only inside the cells of a host organism. Most viruses are so tiny they are only observable with at least a conventional... More »

  • Algae Featured Article Algae Algae

    Algae comprise a diverse group of typically autotrophic organisms, ranging from unicellular to multicellular forms. The largest and most complex marine forms are generally... More »

  • Mutation Featured Article Mutation Mutation

    A mutation is an alteration of the genomic sequence of DNA molecules. Mutations may cause altered function in the affected organism, or may cause alteration of inherited traits of... More »

  • Wind turbine bird mortality Featured Article Wind turbine bird mortality Wind turbine bird mortality

    Wind turbine bird mortality is a by-product of large scale wind farms, which are increasingly promoted as an alternative to fossil fuel derived energy production. To adequately... More »

Recently Updated
Brassicaceae: An agri-horticulturally important family Last Updated on 2014-07-22 17:19:27 Brassicaceae (Cruciferae) is an important dicotyledonous, angiospermic (true flowering) plant family with a global distribution. Species belonging to the Brassicaceae are well suited to a wide range of intensive and low input agri-techniques. They are primarily adapted to temperate and sub-tropical climates depending on the species. Brassica species play an important role in global agriculture and horticulture. The genus Brassica was described by Linneus in 1750 based on B. oleracea.  Brassica contains a number of important species and wide genetic diversity. The species are characterized by a wide range of adaptations that have been domesticated into crops including oilseed rape/canola and swede (Brassica napus L.); cabbage, cauliflower; broccoli, brussels sprout (B. oleracea L.); turnip, Chinese cabbage and pak choi (B. rapa L.) and mustards (B. nigra (L.) W.D.J. Koch, B. alba... More »
Malaysia Collection- Ecology and Biodiversity Last Updated on 2014-07-01 17:27:52 The Malaysia Collection: Ecology and Biodiversity includes a variety of scientific articles on the ecoregions of Malaysia, as well as specific species articles. The following outline is a guide to the articles of this collection:  Borneo lowland rainforests Borneo montane rainforests Borneo peat swamp Fforests Kinabalu montane alpine meadows Myanmar coast mangroves Peninsular Malaysian montane rainforests Peninsular Malaysian peat swamp forests Peninsular Malaysian rainforests South China Sea Islands Sunda Shelf mangroves Tenasserim-South Thailand semi-evergreen rainforests Biological diversity in Indo-Burma Biological diversity in Sundaland Malaysia - Forests, Grasslands, and Drylands Factsheet (WRI) Forests of Borneo Terrestrial mammals of Malaysia Asian elephant Clouded leopard Orangutan Marine mammals of... More »
Cells Last Updated on 2014-06-30 14:15:10 Cells are the smallest component of the body that can perform all of the basic life functions. Each cell performs specialized functions and plays a role in the maintenance of homeostasis. While each cell is an independent entity, it is highly affected by damage to neighboring cells. These various cell types combine to form tissues, which are basically collections of specialized cells that perform a relatively limited number of functions specific to that type of tissue. The human body is made up of several trillion cells; these cells are of various types, which can differ greatly in size, appearance and function.   While there are approximately 200 types of cells, they all have similar features: cell membrane, cytoplasm, organelles, and nucleus. The only exception is that the mature red blood cell does not contain a nucleus. In general, toxins can injure any of the components of... More »
Burrowing Owl Last Updated on 2014-06-29 17:15:07 Wikipedia Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia) are a curious and expressive species of owl. They are related to other species of small owl in the genus Athene (Little Owl, Spotted Owlet, and Forest Owlet) due to genetic and physical similarities, but are sometimes put in a genus of their own, Speotyto, due to their unique behavior. Burrowing Owls are largely terrestrial and are the only owls known for being diurnal and ground-loving. They can often be seen foraging around their burrows during the day, but they typically avoid midday heat and do their hunting at night.   The Burrowing Owl is also known for its various personalities, as depicted in photography of the bird. Athene cunicularia goes by various other colloquial names as well including: Billy Owl, Ground Owl, Long-Legged Owl, Prairie Owl, and Prairie Dog Owl.  Burrowing Owls in the... More »
Orchidaceae: The Largest Family of Flowering Plants Last Updated on 2014-06-26 09:07:57 Orchidaceae, a family of monocotyledonous, angiospermic flowering plants,  is the most species-rich family in the world with approximately 19,000-24,000 species. The family is divided into six subfamilies: Orchidoideae, Epidendroideae, Cypripediodeae, Vanilloideae, and Apostasiodeae. Its varied vegetative and floral morphology confers a high taxonomic and ornamental importance, capturing the interest of scientists and horticulturists. In addition, the wide diversity of habitats they occupy and the epiphytic growth of most species make orchids a group of ecological importance.  Orchids are widely distributed in the tropics and sub-tropics of Asia (Fig. 1), Africa, Oceania, North, Central (Fig. 2) and South Americas, (Fig. 3) and temperate regions of Asia and Europe. Fig. 1: Orchid species in... More »