Tag Archives: agriculture

Marge the cow

http://news.scotsman.com/scitech.cfm?id=825282007 in the Scotsman, Marge and her offspring are the result of a $110 million research program going on in New Zealand by the biotech company "ViaLactia":http://www.vialactia.com/. If they succeed at breeding bulls that can pass on Marge's skim milk trait we are well on our way to yet another species with a narrow gene pool. It's working well for the "cheetah":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cheetah#Genetics_and_classification. "Photo":http://flickr.com/photos/ramirezlook/288814587/ taken from "AnaC.Ramirez'":http://flickr.com/photos/ramirezlook/ Flickr stream.

The great bee caper

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disappearing_bees and it could be devastating. The biggest problem is that we can't even reach a conclusion as to why so many bees are deserting their hives, but since 1971 half the bees have disappeared in North America alone. A simple "Google search":http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=bee+disappearance yields 100's of causes and solutions. Some of the leading causes could be pesticides, genetically modified crops, or even "cell phone radiation":http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/05/03/healthscience/NA-SCI-US-Honeybees-Weird.php. The solutions being offered are not very impressive in that their scope is wide and various, but "this article":http://environment.guardian.co.uk/conservation/story/0,,2084842,00.html?gusrc=rss&feed=29 in The Guardian is the most recent. It suggests that bees should be kept by city dwellers to foster a greater "bee friendly" landscape. Of course at this rate we may have to find a whole new solution. Nanobots? "Image":http://flickr.com/photos/encinoman/515498886/ from EncinoMan's "Flickr! stream":http://flickr.com/photos/encinoman/.

Gophers come from waffles, but how to get rid of them?

French is a funny language with a very interesting history. Based on Latin and largely not spoken, even in France, before the French Revolution, the potential for French linguistic snobbery is unbounded. There is of course a lot to be proud of in the language, for example the English word "gopher" comes from the French word for waffles, "gaufres." The name makes sense for the way that they waffle farmer”s fields, but the question still remains as to how farmers deal with those waffling varmints. For one solution, check out this demo video of the Rodenator Pro. I especially like the fact that the demo ends with the James Bond theme music. rnrn