Sir Walter Wally in 2001.

Sir Walter Wally makes official weather prediction on Tuesday, February 2

January 26, 2016

Susan Kluttz, Secretary, N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources debuts as the “Groundhog Whisperer” RALEIGH, N.C. – Ask anyone around the Triangle and they’d say winter took its sweet time coming, but it has finally arrived. This past weekend is proof of that. The burning question is how long will it stick around? Well,… Read More >

Fat-tailed Dwarf Lemur

Chill out! Museum presenter to show how some animals (and lemurs) survive winter

RALEIGH — Animals that hibernate conserve energy by chilling out; their body temperature plummets to near-freezing levels, heart rate lowers to three to five breaths per minute, and some can go up to 15 minutes without taking a breath. Join Duke University’s Sheena Faherty to find out how these adaptations, which would be deadly to… Read More >

Asian Common Toad (Duttaphrynus melanostictus) in Laos by Brian L. Stuart.

New research looks at genetic variation in a human commensalist toad

January 15, 2016

Most species are negatively affected when humans transform natural habitats into urban areas and agricultural lands, but a few species actually benefit from these activities. These species — called human commensals — thrive in human-modified environments. One example, the Asian Common Toad (Duttaphrynus melanostictus), is extremely abundant in villages, towns, cities and agricultural areas across… Read More >

New research looks at primate skin microbiome

January 13, 2016

Skin microbes play a role in human body odor, health and disease. Compared to gut microbes, we know comparatively little about the changes in the composition of skin microbes in response to evolutionary changes in hosts, or more recent behavioral and cultural changes in humans. No studies have used sequence-based approaches to consider the skin… Read More >

This juvenile green sea turtle passed his swim test less than 24 hours after arriving at the Museum. Photo: Savannah Crockett

Museum staff assist with cold-stunned turtles

You may have heard of the hundreds of cold-stunned sea turtles that washed ashore or were found in waters off the North Carolina Coast in early January. While the North Carolina Aquarium at Roanoke Island has facilities to handle up to 40 sea turtles during a typical winter, this particular incident affected over 600. Based… Read More >