The article published by the researchers of the Biodiversity Unit at the University of Turku, Finland, highlights how amateur venom-extraction business is threatening scorpion species. Sustainably produced scorpion venoms are important, for example, in the pharmacological industry. However, in the recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of people involved in the trade and vast numbers of scorpions are harvested from nature. This development is endangering the future of several scorpion species in a number of areas.
Ecologists at the University of Turku, Finland, have discovered that the food hoards pygmy owls collect in nest-boxes ("freezers") for winter rot due to high precipitation caused by heavy autumn rains and if the hoarding has been initiated early in the autumn. The results of the study show that climate change may impair predators’ foraging and thus decrease local overwinter survival . The study has been published in the internationally esteemed Global Change Biology journal.
The researchers at the Biodiversity Unit of the University of Turku are specialised in studying poorly known species habiting some of the most remote places on earth. As a result of their scientific expeditions, the researchers constantly discover species that are unknown to science. One of the most recent discoveries is a spider which was named after actor Joaquin Phoenix and his famous portrayal of the Joker character.
Elephant Welfare Can Be Assessed Using Two Indicators – And Non-experts Can Help Evaluate Animal Stress
In two new studies, scientists from the University of Turku, Finland, have investigated how to measure stress in semi-captive working elephants. The studies suggest that both physiological and behavioural approaches can be used to reliably assess the wellbeing of semi-captive Asian elephants.
A study led by the University of Turku has found that small, fiercely predatory damselflies catch and eat hundreds of thousands of insects during a single summer – in an area surrounding just a single pond. In terms of weight, this equates to a total prey mass of just under a kilo. Dragonflies mostly catch different kinds of midges, but also large numbers of other insects.
Scientists from the University of Turku, Finland, have found that male and female Asian elephants differ in their personality. Previous work on a timber elephant population from Myanmar has shown that Asian elephants have three personality factors: Attentiveness, Sociability and Aggressiveness. The new study demonstrates that male elephants score higher on the Aggressiveness trait than females, whereas female elephants score higher on the Sociability trait than males.
Traditional elephant handling worldwide is rapidly changing. Researchers from the University of Turku in Finland and Myanma Timber Enterprise (MTE) veterinarians found mahouts in Myanmar are only 22 years old on average, with an average experience of three years working with elephants, and they are changing elephants yearly preventing the development of long-term bonds between elephants and mahouts. These shifts contrast the traditional elephant-keeping system of skills being accumulated over a lifetime of working with the same elephant before being taught to the younger generation.