Resident parasites influence appearance, evolution of barn swallows

June 24, 2020

Barn swallows live almost everywhere on the planet, recognizable by their forked tail and agility in the air. Yet while they share these characteristics, these little birds often look slightly different in each place they live—with some so distinct they’re splitting off to become new species

Maureen McNamara

Nobel winner sparks senior’s love of space medicine

March 31, 2020

‘I fell in love with space that day. I didn’t even know I liked space,’ student Maureen McNamara notes

Carolina Chickadee

Understanding evolution, one chickadee at a time

March 25, 2020

A CU Boulder researcher has received a $1.75 million NSF grant to study chickadee hybrids

Soil and mountains

New grant crumbles mysteries of the soil

Feb. 27, 2020

Two CU Boulder projects are this year’s winners of the Signals in the Soil grants.

A stemless four-nerve daisy growing from a sandstone crevice

Stemless four-nerve daisies have remarkable variation for growth form

Jan. 21, 2020

From the caliche soils of southeastern Colorado to crevices in bare sandstone on the Colorado Plateau, stemless four-nerved daisies show remarkable variation in growth form

Smooth Sumac Berries

Smooth sumac has edible berries and poisonous but medicinal leaves

Jan. 7, 2020

Smooth sumac and fragrant sumac have been shown to be sources of food, medicines, weaving materials and dyes. A thicket of smooth sumac retained some of its berries in January, though most of them were gone. Smooth sumac is well known for its brilliant red fall foliage and its deep...

Full rose in bloom at Chataqua meadow

Wild roses are nutritional, medicinal and aesthetic

Dec. 10, 2019

The Chautauqua Meadow put on a memorable display of wildflowers in late June and early July of this year, so I walked there several times just to enjoy the flowers, as did many others. Lupines were the most prominent and could be seen from Baseline Road, but if you walked...

Mountain goat in the Rockies.

Introduced mountain goats have colonized much of the land above the trees

Dec. 6, 2019

Is that good or bad? Depends on your perspective, but there is a cost to native plant and animal communities.

Photograph of a barn swallow

Bird evolution in Asia shaped in part by giant plateau, study finds

Nov. 20, 2019

A new large-scale study from CU Boulder and colleagues provides first evidence that a gargantuan, inhospitable plateau in Asia maintains the species barriers of some birds

Sheep grazing at Crane Park Pond

Grazing on public lands alters plant communities

Nov. 14, 2019

Ranchers graze their sheep on public lands to make money—but at what expense to the land itself?