NICE anatomy lessons: About crop pests’ crops

cover photo from Shoot for Science by Deepak Kakara , Dinesh Yadav Sukanya Olkar, and Parijat Si By Sebastian Sturm – Here in the NICE lab, we work on Rhagoletis pomonella – the apple maggot. The apple maggot is the larva of a fly which is specialized to a particular food source. Surprise: It’s the hawthorn berry. To us, hawthorn berries…

“Plastic-ene”

By Gauri Gharpure On a recent family vacation, I happened to visit a quaint little coastal village called Diveagar in the Kokan region of western Maharashtra, popular among tourists for its beaches and homestays. I was looking forward to going to the beach and walking on the sandy shore with sea spray on my face and the wind in my hair.…

Zen and the art of being an ant

by Aditi Mishra  –  Are you competitive? I know I am. People like us don’t live in absolutes – we were born to compare and compete. When we feel petty we compare ourselves to our peers. When we are in an enlightened mood we compete with our previous self. Being satisfied is not for us. Life is a journey from…

Lights, camera, action! The giants of coffee agroforests!

by Santosh Rajus – Coffee agroforests are home to diverse animals and working along with them is a mystery. You see their trails, marking and scat, but rarely the animals themselves. Following animal tracks is always fun as it always tells a story. Once while following an elephant trail, I could see how the baby elephant had playfully run all over…

Shannon featured by Sci-Illustrate’s Spotlight!

This week Shannon was featured by Sci-Illustrate’s “In the Spotlight” Series by Dr. Radhika Patnala. They note: An inspired scientist, a mother and a wonderful human being, it is our privilege to host Shannon Olsson and her Naturalist Inspired Chemical Ecology (NICE) lab Odor Objects at @National Centre for Biological Sciences – NCBS, India. As our first profile on our new series Sci-Illustrate Spotlight, hear…

Wonderful animals keep other creatures as pets (BILINGUAL KANNADA/ENGLISH)

by Geetha GT- Potter wasps use mites as watch dogs ಕುಂಬಾರ ಕಣಜ ಹಾಗು ಅದರ ಮುದ್ದಿನ ನುಸಿ ಹುಳ Protecting your young ones in the wild is never easy, especially when you have many predators. Potter wasps (Allodynerus delphinalis) have several natural enemies (parasitoid Melittobia acasta), including other wasps. The potter wasp builds a nest and lays eggs in cavities containing food,…

Paradise Lost: Climate change and microplastics, two faces of the same coin

by Anshika Singh – Climate change and environmental pollution (especially due to plastic) are the worst outcomes of rapid development and spread of humans on this planet. There have been reports of finding plastic pollution in regions  largely free of humans or with limited accessibility (such as polar waters and the Mariana Trench). Another striking instance of marine pollution is…

An Avenue Alley Airshow

by Pavan Kaushik –  Fixed. Immobile. Stationary. The first thing that occurs to one when she looks at a plant. But plants are not passive entities merely subject to environmental forces, nor are they ‘automata’-like organisms based only on reflexes and optimized solely for accumulation of photosynthate. Plants respond sensitively to environmental stimuli by movement and changes in morphology.  Plants communicate…

Something fishy? Better hope that it is

by Jagath – This weekend me and a few friends decided to get something fancy for dinner. We decided to dine at a well-known sushi restaurant in the city. My experience with sushi has been very limited. Actually, my experience with seafood in general has been very limited because I grew up vegetarian (which I still identify as, shhh…). So…