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From the College of Natural Sciences
You Probably Ate Fungus Today

You Probably Ate Fungus Today

That salad you had for lunch. Yeah, it had fungi in it.

That celery stick you barely nibbled that came with your basket of wings last night. It had fungi in it too.

Head Room: The UT Austin Greenhouses

Head Room: The UT Austin Greenhouses

Take a glimpse into two of UT's biggest and brightest (literally!) greenhouses. The BOT greenhouse holds a number of exotic plants for taxonomic study, while the Welch greenhouse hosts a variety of rich and important agricultural projects. As these horticulturalists make clear, no two greenhouses are ever the same!

How do you move 100,000 bees from Connecticut to Texas in August?

How do you move 100,000 bees from Connecticut to Texas in August?

Nancy Moran and her students moved 100,000 bees from Connecticut to Texas in a minivan ... in August. To keep the bees from overheating, they kept the AC cranked to the max during the day and left the windows down at night. "It seemed unlikely that anyone would try to steal something from a van full of bees," says Moran. As part of the Behind the ...
UT Austin Evolutionary Ecologist Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

UT Austin Evolutionary Ecologist Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences announced this week the election of 204 new members, including Eric Pianka, an evolutionary ecologist in The University of Texas at Austin's College of Natural Sciences.

Shade Grown Coffee Shrinking as a Proportion of Global Coffee Production

Shade Grown Coffee Shrinking as a Proportion of Global Coffee Production

Coffee Management Map

The proportion of land used to cultivate shade grown coffee, relative to the total land area of coffee cultivation, has fallen by nearly 20 percent globally since 1996, according to a new study by scientists from The University of Texas at Austin and five other institutions.

Crazy Ants Dominate Fire Ants by Neutralizing Their Venom

Crazy Ants Dominate Fire Ants by Neutralizing Their Venom

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Invasive “crazy ants” are rapidly displacing fire ants in areas across the southeastern U.S. by secreting a compound that neutralizes fire ant venom, according to a University of Texas at Austin study published this week in the journal Science Express. It’s the first known example of an insect with the ability to detoxify another insect’s venom.

You Are Your Microbiome

You Are Your Microbiome

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Have you ever felt not completely like yourself? You’re not alone. In fact, you’re never really alone. No matter how hard you may try, you’re always in the company of 100 trillion microbial friends.

Symbiotic Fungi Inhabiting Plant Roots Have Major Impact on Atmospheric Carbon

Symbiotic Fungi Inhabiting Plant Roots Have Major Impact on Atmospheric Carbon

Microscopic fungi that live in plants' roots play a major role in the storage and release of carbon from the soil into the atmosphere, according to a University of Texas at Austin researcher and his colleagues at Boston University and the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. The role of these fungi is currently unaccounted for in global climate models.

An Amanita mushroom from a field site in Harvard Forest. This particular mushroom is the fruiting body of an ectomycorrhizal fungus associated with the roots of a Hemlock tree. Photo by Colin Averill.

Ecuador Exposes Rain Forest and its Inhabitants to Oil Extraction Effort

The national park in Ecuador where neuroscientist Max Snodderly performs his research on monkeys is now being opened up for oil exploration. 

Texas Invasive Species Program Established at Brackenridge Field Lab

Texas Invasive Species Program Established at Brackenridge Field Lab

To combat and manage pesky invasive species such as fire ants, tawny crazy ants and Cactoblastis moths, the Texas Invasive Species Program has been established at The University of Texas at Austin with $2.7 million in support from the Lee and Ramona Bass Foundation. Professor Larry Gilbert collects phorid flies for his research on the invasive red...