Male orangutan in Sumatra's wild
Picture: Ellen Meulmann, Anthropological Institute and Museum, University of Zurich
When large areas of rainforest were cleared in Sumatra to make way for palm-oil plantations, once vast forestlands were reduced to a fraction of their former size and areas of forest that used to be conjoined became isolated from each other. Today, only a few dozen orangutans live in many of these forest areas – and they could be critically endangered for the longer term: After all, geographic isolation can lead to genetic depletion and inbreeding, both of which increase the risk of these small local populations dying out.The study conducted by the anthropologists from the University of Zurich, which is to be published in the Journal of Heredity, affords the first insights into the genetic structure that are useful for the protection of the species and optimistic in this respect. The orangutan population in Sumatra is divided into several subpopulations that are not the result of industrial deforestation, but rather of a natural origin. The population structure was created and preserved over millennia through natural obstacles such as rivers and mountain ranges.
The distinct dominance structure of male Sumatran orangutans thus constitutes a natural mechanism that guarantees the genetic exchange between the various regions of the island over long distances. As Sumatra’s interior is forested up to high altitudes, the young male orangutans can negotiate mountain ranges and bypass large rivers in the source region. Thanks to their marked wanderlust, they also considerably reduce possible negative consequences of the habitat fragmentation caused by industrial deforestation. And this ultimately offers a glimmer of hope for the survival of this critically endangered ape species.Genetic diversity points to large population
Beat Müller | Universität Zürich
Joint research project on wastewater for reuse examines pond system in Namibia
19.12.2016 | Technische Universität Darmstadt
Scientists produce a new roadmap for guiding development & conservation in the Amazon
09.12.2016 | Wildlife Conservation Society
Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...
At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).
Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...
Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.
The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...
UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration
"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...
Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.
Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
05.01.2017 | Event News
16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering
16.01.2017 | Information Technology
16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering