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Posted inRegional

UC Davis Report: California’s 2020 Wildfire Season

Just over 9,900 wildfires burned about 4.3 million acres in 2020. That’s more than twice the previous record of acres burned in California. Yet it is about average compared to burn rates likely experienced before Euro-American settlement, according to a study from the University of California, Davis, that summarizes the 2020 fire season and examines […]

Posted inRegional

UC Davis: Empowering landowners to learn to burn

Smoke billows over the forest like a slow-moving fog. Dried oak leaves singe, crackle and curl into ash. Neighbors, scientists and agency staffers rake the embers, directing the flames with calm, careful control. Ted Odell’s grandson runs along his namesake trail, Henry’s Hill, to adjust a hose. This is Odell’s property in Placer County, where […]

Posted inSci/Tech

Older wildfire smoke plumes can affect climate

Aerosols carried in wildfire smoke plumes that are hundreds of hours old can still affect climate, according to a study out of the University of California, Davis. The research, published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, suggests that wildfire emissions even 10 days old can affect the properties of aerosols — suspended liquid or […]

Posted inEnviro

How politics, society, and tech shape the path of climate change

Politics and society largely dictate climate policy ambitions and therefore the trajectory of greenhouse gas emissions, yet climate change models and projections rarely include political and social drivers. A study from the University of California, Davis, simulated 100,000 possible future policy and emissions trajectories to identify relevant variables within the climate-social system that could impact […]

Posted inEnviro

A Possible COVID-19 Silver Lining for Great Ape Conservation

Respiratory illness outbreaks among wild mountain gorillas in Volcanoes National Park have declined since the start of COVID-19, according to a “Correspondence” report in the journal Nature from Gorilla Doctors and the Rwanda Development Board. Mountain gorillas are susceptible to human-transmitted respiratory pathogens. Respiratory illness is the second leading cause of death in wild, human-habituated […]

Posted inRegional

Amid Snow and Ice Declines, What Happens to Sierra Lakes in the Winter?

How small mountain lakes spend their winters is largely unknown to scientists, despite winter representing nearly half the year in such environments. A study by the University of California, Davis, helps demystify what happens above and below the ice.  The study, published in a special issue of the Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, is the first […]

Posted inSci/Tech

Denisovans or Homo Sapiens: Who Were the First to Settle (Permanently) on the Tibetan Plateau?

The Tibetan Plateau has long been considered one of the last places to be populated by people in their migration around the globe. A new paper by archaeologists at the University of California, Davis, highlights that our extinct cousins, the Denisovans, reached the “roof of the world” about 160,000 years ago — 120,000 years earlier […]

Posted inSci/Tech

Most Dog Breeds Highly Inbred

Dog breeds are often recognized for distinctive traits — the short legs of a dachshund, wrinkled face of a pug, spotted coat of a Dalmatian. Unfortunately, the genetics that give various breeds their particular attributes are often the result of inbreeding. In a recent study published in Canine Medicine and Genetics, an international team of […]

Posted inRegional

Annual ‘Roadkill’ Report Identifies Hot Spots and Paths Forward – including Hwy 49

November 10, 2021 – In the past five years, collisions between wildlife and vehicles cost California at least $1 billion and potentially up to $2 billion, according to estimates in an annual report by the Road Ecology Center at the University of California, Davis. The report presents an overview of collisions with large and small animals […]

Posted inSci/Tech

Facial Recognition, Cameras, Other Tools Police Use Raise Questions About Accountability

Facial recognition, body cameras and other digital technologies are increasingly used by police departments, municipalities and even gated communities, but these tools manufactured by private companies raise the specter of unchecked surveillance, a University of California, Davis, researcher, suggests. “These tools raise concerns about a lack of balance between police, who need tools to do […]