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Archive for May, 2009

Feed on pet food

Feed on pet food

You’ve always been kind to your pet. You buy it food. Good food, that is, with a lot of proteins. Food you’d almost be eating yourself, if it wasn’t for your pet.

You’re not alone… If you were living in Brazil for example, you may be surprise to discover a very cute little pest pet inside your foody bag*. Look at this on your left. Fairly cute, don’t you think?

It’s apparently a  well known cosmopolitan pet pest. Scientifically speaking, you would call it no less than Necrobia rufipes, but I do like the vernacular Red-legged Ham Beetle. So when you buy a pet food bag, and bring it back home, one would say you’ve won some carry on insects!


* – R. Gredilha & A.F.  Lima (2007). First record of Necrobia rufipes (De Geer, 1775) (Coleoptera; Cleridae) associated with pet food in Brazil”.  Brazilian Journal of Biology 1 : 67.

Samy

Samy, with larva stage.

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By Alpha Blondy.

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Out, break!

Oops… Sorry. Interviews, paper writing, baby teething, family events, student exams, maybe fieldwork if I ever can. Don’t expect much in here for some time. Maybe I resume mid June, maybe later.

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Mellittophagous

No later than two weeks ago, I’ve met with a very nice insect. Trichodes apiarius, that’s for a name. I like this beetle, and the latest time I saw one was something like 11 years ago. Quite a long time. Well, I’ve been in & out and it is infeodated to Europe so I’ve lost touch for a good reason at least (although the Genus extend into North America, I didn’t encounter any). Nice to see you again, little beastie!

Just so that you see it, here it is: (more…)

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Calcareous slopes

Calcareous slopes

So…

This looks like time to go to the fields. Earth is warming up slowly, rains are awaking late spring plants and flowers eventually blossom.

Now you have to guess. These are pictures from a calcareous slope, fortunately exposed deeply in Southern sun. What are you going to expect there that makes Seeds Aside running all around like furious (but quite happy)? Do you see anything? You have a few days to make it…

Keep in the tracks...

Keep in the tracks...

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Before I share with you what’s probably my most unpleasant experience this year, let’s have some background setting info. This was during a (yearly) national application campaign to fill up full-time research positions. Basically you come up with your own research plan and a lab willing to defend your application. You have 10 minutes to convincingly present yourself  and argue* about your outstanding research project and (best) your 10-year (pun intended) perspective in science. Every applicant is interviewed (though this rule will probably change in the next future, because this results into a time-costly and administratively procedural application round). In the session I was applying to, we were 80 candidates to 4 opening positions. Not a bad ratio, quite the contrary. But statistics show that your odds ending up with a position only become slightly greater than zero when you’ve published over 10 papers (the unofficial minima required), if possible all in the top 5 journals of your field. My application was thus slightly borderline of course, therefore I wasn’t expecting much beyond a “see what happens“. A lot of people encourage you to do so (“scientific tourism“), so that at least you’ve already experienced the bitterness when your time comes up, and you can withstand the harshest criticisms. As a consequence, I was ready for a cold shower. I hadn’t prepared myself for the interview instant killer though… (more…)

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Interesting, don’t you think? More here (and follow the link to the pdf file).

(HT Uncommon Ground)

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