American Bushtit at the Carpinteria salt marsh, one of the three salt marshes studied (Channel City Camera Club/Flickr).

Extinction cascading through ecosystems could spell trouble for humans

March 19, 2021

Ecosystem services might be more vulnerable to extinction than previously thought, a new study finds.

Researchers on a lake

Arctic was once lush and green, could be again, new research shows

March 17, 2021

Recent analysis of ancient DNA gathered from lake beds in the Arctic may not only be a glimpse of the past but a snapshot of our potential future.

A white wolf walks through trees

Will bringing wolves back change Colorado?

Feb. 24, 2021

In November 2020, Colorado citizens narrowly passed a ballot initiative to reintroduce gray wolves to the state by the end of 2023. What could Proposition 114 could mean in the next few years for the state? We spoke with our own ecological expert to find out.

A marmot standing on a rock pile

Small mammals climb higher to flee warming temperatures in the Rockies

Feb. 11, 2021

Since the 1980s, Colorado's small mammals have made an ominous trek—climbing, on average, 400 feet uphill in elevation to escape from climate change.

Forest in San Juan mountains

Combined bark beetle outbreaks and wildfire spell uncertain future for forests

Feb. 8, 2021

Bark beetle outbreaks and wildfire alone are not a death sentence for Colorado’s beloved forests—but when combined, their toll may become more permanent, new CU Boulder research shows.

Researchers walking on sea ice at sunset

CU Boulder a host to new national Arctic research initiative

Feb. 4, 2021

CU Boulder, Alaska Pacific University and the University of Alaska Fairbanks are hosting the National Science Foundation's Navigating the New Arctic Community Office. Over the next five years this partnership will provide leadership and support to researchers and Arctic communities.

Bleached coral reefs

Marine heatwaves becoming more intense, more frequent

Feb. 3, 2021

When thick, the surface layer of an ocean acts as a buffer to extreme marine heating—but a new study from CU Boulder shows this “mixed layer” is becoming shallower each year.

Image of a riverbed during drought

New website a 1-stop resource for all things drought

Jan. 22, 2021

NOAA’s National Integrated Drought Information System has launched a redesigned drought portal to better serve stakeholders, decision makers, journalists and the public. Several CU Boulder researchers contributed to the project.

Hand holding a corn cob

Soil degradation costs U.S. corn farmers a half-billion dollars every year

Jan. 12, 2021

Researchers have found that a whopping one-third of the fertilizer applied to grow corn in the U.S. each year simply compensates for the ongoing loss of soil fertility, costing farmers a half-billion dollars.

Two pairs of cyanobacteria cells dividing under the microscope.

Modern microbes provide window into ancient ocean

Jan. 6, 2021

Roughly two billion years ago, microorganisms called cyanobacteria fundamentally transformed the globe. Researchers are now stepping back to that pivotal moment in Earth's history.