Restoring Nebraska’s Forests

Adam Smith

Nebraska’s forests are in trouble. Undesirable species are moving in, crowding out the oaks, elms and cottonwoods that signify a healthy Nebraska hardwood forest. In the past, fires and floods scoured the forest floor, allowing for natural tree regeneration and removed uninvited cedars, basswoods and hackberries. Now it’s up to humans. To better manage the… Continue reading Restoring Nebraska’s Forests

Advancing High-Tech Plant Phenotyping

Yufeng Ge

Historically, plant breeders have chosen varieties to propagate by manually measuring and observing differences between plants. Today, technology can identify minute variations better and faster. These advances allow scientists to trace desirable traits back to specific genes, opening new avenues to improving plant health and increasing yields. But high-tech phenotyping, as it’s known, is so… Continue reading Advancing High-Tech Plant Phenotyping

Penguin Hemoglobin Evolved to Meet Oxygen Demands

Penguins at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo

Penguins are deep divers that can hold their breath for up to 30 minutes, giving them time to hunt for dinner. This ability is thanks, in part, to their distinctive hemoglobin, the body’s oxygen courier that travels via the bloodstream. Nebraska biologists uncovered hemoglobin’s evolutionary trick that turned penguins into underwater specialists. Jay Storz, Willa… Continue reading Penguin Hemoglobin Evolved to Meet Oxygen Demands