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Barbara J King

Barbara J King appears in the following:

Declaring The Discovery Of A New Species Can Get Tricky

Friday, June 05, 2015

May was an exciting month for new discoveries that add to our knowledge of human evolution during the period around 3 million years ago. This is before the origin of the genus Homo, 2.8 million years ago, and during the time when Australopithecus afarensis (the famous "Lucy") lived in East ...

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Viewing Octopus Choreography In Captivity

Thursday, May 28, 2015

The Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness, crafted in 2012 by a group of international scientists, states that octopuses — the only invertebrate animals mentioned — are conscious animals capable of intentional behavior. Books, articles and blog posts tout octopus intelligence.

Recently, I spent the morning behind the ...

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Is The War On Fat Harming Our Children?

Thursday, May 21, 2015

America's ongoing war on fat, which aims to save this country — and especially its young people — from a costly and damaging epidemic of obesity, turns out to be dangerous all on its own: It exacts a severe psychological and physical toll on the very individuals it purports to ...

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The Role Of Science In A Push For Animal Liberation

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Last Friday in the Washington Post, Charles Krauthammer asked which contemporary practices will be deemed "abominable" in the future, in the way that we today think of human enslavement.

He then offered his own opinion:

"I've long thought it will be our treatment of animals. I'm convinced that ...

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France's 'New' Prehistoric Cave Art: The Real Thing?

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Starting around 35,000 years ago, our ancestors painted — with accurate lines and glorious colors — images of lions, bison, mammoth, rhinoceroses, horses and even an owl on the walls of what is now called Chauvet Cave in south-central France.

If you have seen Werner Herzog's Cave of Forgotten ...

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Is It Sexist To Say That Women Are Superior To Men?

Thursday, April 16, 2015

"Women are not equal to men; they are superior in many ways, and in most ways that will count in the future. It is not just a matter of culture or upbringing. It is a matter of chromosomes, genes, hormones, and nerve circuits. It is not mainly because of ...

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Ready To Try Some Free-Range Parenting?

Sunday, April 12, 2015

In a radio interview with WBUR's Tom Ashbrook on March 26 , dinosaur paleontologist Scott Sampson, who's also the author of How to Raise a Wild Child, said that the average child in the U.S. today spends between 4 and 7 minutes outdoors daily — a 90 ...

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Male Dolphins Form Complex Alliances When Aiming To Control Females

Thursday, April 02, 2015

"Outside of humans, the most complex alliances known are found in a population of bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops cf. aduncus, in Shark Bay, Western Australia."

This arresting sentence adorns the first paragraph of a paper — titled "Male dolphin alliances in Shark Bay: changing perspectives in a 30-year study" — ...

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This Gibbon Knows Life's A Balancing Act

Sunday, March 29, 2015

At the Monkeyland Sanctuary in South Africa, an 8-year-old white-handed gibbon walks the tightrope of a suspension bridge with admirable nerve and skill:

The gibbon, a female named Siam, was filmed in 2013 (though I first saw the clip this week) at the outdoor sanctuary that rescued her from ...

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What Drove Neanderthals To Extinction? Maybe Us.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Imagine that in a discussion with friends, the talk turns to invasive species and the cascading changes they cause in the ecosystems they colonize.

People begin calling out names and places: pythons in the Everglades; cane toads in Australia; lionfish in a wide swath of U.S. and ...

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We May Have Snakes To Thank For Our Acute Vision

Thursday, March 19, 2015

In a new paper published in the journal Primates, author William C. McGrew, a former professor of evolutionary primatology at the University of Cambridge, reports a high rate of venomous snake encounters by his team of primatologists seeking to observe unhabituated wild chimpanzees in Mount Assirik, Senegal, West Africa.

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Does Being Vegan Really Help Animals?

Thursday, March 12, 2015

More people are moving toward a plant-based diet, owing in part to evidence about human health and environmental sustainability, and in part to the emerging scientific consensus on the breadth and depth of animal consciousness and sentience.

Full disclosure: I am a pesco-vegetarian — I eat an ...

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Winter Zen: Taking A Cue From Snow Monkeys

Thursday, March 05, 2015

We are about 15 days away now from the spring equinox — but winter is not yet done with us.

By measures of temperature and precipitation, winter 2015 has brought ongoing hardship to many in the U.S., perhaps especially in and around Boston, where epic blizzards continue ...

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A Toxic Stew: Risks To Women Of Public Feminism

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Writer Michelle Goldberg published an op-ed piece last week in the Washington Post with a headline that conveys, in microcosm, an arresting story: "Feminist writers are so besieged by online abuse that some have begun to retire."

In the piece, Goldberg recounts case after case in which a woman ...

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Can You Hear Nature's Sounds?

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Last week, South Florida's nature came alive for me as much through sound as through sight: the flapping of wings as a great blue heron soared up over a river; the plashing of water when an alligator slipped off the riverbank to swim away; the huffing of a manatee taking ...

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A Valentine For People Living With Dementia

Thursday, February 12, 2015

This past weekend, when I visited my mother in her assisted living home as I do once or twice a week, I brought along a present. That's not unusual: She and I share a craving for chocolate, and I often bring her new varieties of dark chocolate, her favorite, and ...

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Fossil Provides Evidence Of Early Human Migration To Europe

Thursday, February 05, 2015

Some 55,000 years ago, a person — female or male, we don't know-- lived in Manot Cave in the western Galilee area of what is now Israel. Judging from the partial skull recovered from the cave and described in Nature last week by Israel Hershkovitz of Tel Aviv ...

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Plight Of Baby Lab Monkeys Reaches Congress

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Earlier this week, three scientists, a famous actor-activist and a congresswoman spoke on Capitol Hill about why maternal-deprivation experiments conducted on infant rhesus monkeys at an NIH lab in Maryland do not represent ethical or effective science in the 21st century.

I was one of those scientists.

Although I've ...

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Mind Your Moods, Cat Owners

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Babies "social reference" by checking out their parents' facial expressions and voice tones when they encounter a new or strange object or event in their environment — then base their own reactions on mom's or dad's. They look to their parents as they wonder: Is it OK to stay calm, ...

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What's Right About A 6-Year-Old Who Breast-Feeds

Thursday, January 15, 2015

When the British newspaper The Mirror reported in late December that a UK mother named Denise Sumpter was still breast-feeding her daughter Belle, who is 6 and a half years old, two experts were invited to weigh in on the practice.

One expert — a registered nurse, midwife and ...

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