Blogs & Videos

Every day at The Field Museum we're exploring something new, whether it's hidden deep in our collections or being investigated out in the field. Tune in to our blogs and videos to learn about breakthrough discoveries firsthand from our Field Museum scientists, discover curiosities in our vaults with Emily Graslie, or see how our science is making an impact in the world around you.

Recent Blog Posts

Collecting Deep-Sea Fishes and Invertebrates

An Issacs-Kidd Midwater Trawl being brought on board the Research Vessel Robert Gordon Sproul off the coast of California. This trawl was made by a team of ichthyologists and invertebrate zoologists from The Field Museum that were sampling from the midwater (open ocean) at a depth range of 3,500 feet to the surface. The movie is sped up as the trawl is coming in, and then slows down to the real time as the cod end (the end of the net) is opened up to show what was collected. The trawl is full of a diversity of red and brown crustaceans (mysid shrimp, krill, etc.) and silver hatchetfishes and smoothtongues and black lanternfishes and bigscales.

A special issue of Phytotaxa dedicated to Bryophytes: The closest living relatives of early land plants

The compilation of the volume can be attributed to a community effort and the high quality of papers is the product of all those who participated as reviewers, contributors and editorial support. In preparing for the volume, it became evident that the study of liverworts, hornworts, and mosses remains strong and has a healthy future as evidenced by contributions from senior scientists, post-doctoral researchers and doctoral students. We include 13 scientific papers from 35 authors. 

Plant of the Week: a new tree species (ANNONACEAE Guatteria sancti-crucis) for Peru and Bolivia

An important tree species in Madre de Dios department of Peru has finally been described as a new species:  Guatteria sanctae-crucis.  This tree in the family Annonaceae  (which includes the pawpaw of Eastern North America, and the Custard Apple, Guanabana or Soursop of the American tropics) was first collected in 1974 in the Manu Park of Southeastern Peru by Robin Foster (Ecologist, ECCo and Adjunct Curator, Botany).

Man-eating lions ate fewer people than believed

Legendary "man-eating" lions of Tsavo likely ate about 35 peoplenot 135in notorious attacks SANTA CRUZ, CA--The legendary "man-eating lions of Tsavo" that terrorized a railroad camp in Kenya more than a century ago likely consumed about 35 people--far fewer than popular estimates of 135 victims, according to a new analysis by researchers at the University of California, Santa Cruz. The study also yields surprises about the predatory behavior of lions.

Scientists discover striking new species of cloud-forest rodent in Peru

A strikingly unusual animal was recently described from the cloud-forests of Peru. The large rodent is about the size of a squirrel and looks a bit like one, except its closest relatives are spiny rats.  The nocturnal, climbing rodent is beautiful yet strange looking, with long dense fur, a broad blocky head, and thickly furred tail. A blackish crest of fur on the crown, nape and shoulders add to its distinctive appearance.

Sitting lion with a large mane.

Lion mane linked to climate

If you were a male lion and could read the latest scientific research, you would want to move to a warmer climate, where your mane would be more impressive. That is, until it started getting smaller, to fit you to your new warmer climate! It's long been known that lions with long, full manes get the girls. Now, an innovative study based on zoo animals all across America shows for the first time that cold temperatures help the king of the beast grow his mane long and thick, and more appealing to potential mates.

Brood Parasitism -- Host Lists

Brood parasitism is an awkward term to describe an interaction between two species in which, as in predator-prey relationships, one species gains at the expense of the other. Brood parasites "prey" upon parental care, and the victimized species usually have reduced breeding success, partly because of the additional cost of caring for alien eggs and young, and partly because of the behavior of both adult and young brood parasites which may directly and adversely affect the survival of the victim's own eggs or young.