Sunday, August 12, 2007

Ferrets bounce back

I have to disclose before this post that I'm a huge ferret fan. As you probably know it is illegal to keep ferrets as pets in California. I just checked and Hawaii is the only other state to ban ferrets but several cities also ban them, and Rhode Island will make you buy a 'Ferret permit'. Thanks to Wikipedia I now know that Delta airlines are the only airline to allow ferrets in the cabin during a flight. As I said, I'm a ferret fan but even to me that seems like an accident waiting to happen....

Anyway, the reason for this ferret post is the news this week that the often criticized endangered species act may actually have scored a hit with North America's most endangered mammal, the black footed ferret. This news has numerous links to our ecology lectures, from the way that scientists are estimating the ferret population, to the conservation of endangered species, and the genetic consequences of passing through such a genetic bottleneck.

You can read reports on the research at the LA Times, National Geographic, and many others or read the actual report in the journal Science.

This time last year: Life in a seed

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