In Colorado’s Yamp River, 70 percent of all male bass now have female characteristics — a phenomenon called “intersex” — according to a new study released Monday by the U.S. Geologic Survey.
Intersex fish have been found in watershed across the country, including Boulder Creek.
The causes aren’t clear, scientists said in the report in Aquatic Toxicology. Nor could they say whether “intersex” fish could reproduce.
But the extent of the intersex fish was startling, said Jo Ellen Hinck, the USGS biologist who led the project.
“When we see 70 percent, we don’t think that’s normal,” Hinck said, referring to a sampling along the Yampa about 18 miles west of Craig.
Many scientists suspect that estrogen compounds — such as birth control and other pharmaceuticals — are to blame.
An international team of scientists — including researchers from the University of Colorado — broke a record this summer out on the frozen, unforgiving landscape in northern Greenland.
They drilled more than a mile deep into the ice sheet this year, breaking the single-season ice core-drilling record. (Seasons in the land of the midnight sun are short.) The scientists extracted 5,767 feet of fragile, layered ice columns that scientists can read like tree rings to determine what the climate was like on Earth thousands of years ago.
But even though they’ve drilled to record depths, scientists still need to make it through another 2,600 feet to reach bedrock and find the sweet stuff – ice made from snow that fell more than 120,000 years in the Eemian Period when the Earth was much, much warmer.
For Jim White, a researcher at CU’s Institute for Arctic and Alpine Research, getting a good chunk of ice from the Eemian Period would be the end of a long, cold quest.
“We’ve been on a long quest to get the Eemian ice,” he said. “We had hints of it back in the ’60s, even, and in the ’70s. … I feel a lot like Captain Ahab. This is my Moby Dick.”
Read more about why scientists like White are interested in the Eemian Period at DailyCamera.com, check out the Web site for the project — called North Greenland Eemian Ice Drilling — or watch a video about how scientists read the ice after the jump. Read more
About a hundred people showed up Wednesday to collect water samples from streams, rivers and lakes scattered throughout Rocky Mountain National Park for the second annual WaterBlitz.
When the samples are tested, scientists at the University of Colorado hope to learn how beetle-killed trees and global warming might be affecting the park.
Read more about the WaterBlitz at DailyCamera.com or check out the video above.
GM is saying that its new Chevy Volt — expected to hit showroom floors sometime late in 2010 — will get a gazillion miles per gallon. Well, not a gazillion… but far more than any other hybrid is claiming: 230 mpg.
This would make the Volt almost five times more fuel efficient than the Prius, which claims 48 mpg and is becoming more common in Boulder than even prairie dogs, Crocs and cruiser bikes. But there’s a catch. It’ll cost you nearly twice as much to buy a Volt than a Prius. Read more about the Volt here or after the jump.
In Boulder, residents — and increasingly the government — are looking to take the Priuses they already own to the next level, converting the cars to plug-ins that one day may be able to feed electricity back to the grid.
Boulder County, the city of Boulder and the University of Colorado are all collaborating with Xcel Energy on one of the first large-scale tests of vehicle-to-grid technology. Just recently, big yellow plugs have sprouted from the northwest end of the parking lot behind the county courthouse, and you can see a couple of converted Priuses plugged into the wall when they’re not being driven.
Read more about the local vehicle-to-grid tests on the Daily Camera’s Web site here and here. Or check out a story on Hybrids Plus, a Boulder-based company that converts standard hybrid cars to plug-ins, here.