Coconuts can give nesting terns the edge

When it comes to the breeding success of common white terns, “artificial” seems to be better than “natural”. This is the results from a study conducted by researchers from the University of KwaZulu-Natal and colleagues in the Seychelles. Their findings about how well hollowed out coconut husks work as nests are published in African Journal…

Shisa Sayensi: Isayensi yeviki 07 July 2016

Kusukela kwababhema ama-habli kuze kufikwe kunonzungezilanga omkhulukazi, nansi isayensi yeviki; Shisa Sayensi! Baningi abafundi ababhema ipayipi lamanzi Ukubhenywa kwepayipi lamanzi (hubbly) sekubonakala kwanda emiphakathini wezikhungo zemfundo ephakeme kwisifundazwe se-Western Cape. Lokhu kutholakale kucwaningo obelenziwa eNyuvesi yeKapa. Abacwaningi bathole ukuthi lokhu kubhema kwande ngenxa yokuthi lelipayipi libhenywa uma abantu behlangene njengabangani uma bexheketha. Bayaxwayisa kodwa abacwaningi…

@Scibraai Monday Menu: of tennis players’ BMT and frogs

This week’s @Scibraai Monday Menu features two research papers – one from the University of KwaZulu-Natal (featuring mental toughness in tennis players) and another from North-West University and the Endangered Wildlife Trust staffers (on what South Africans think about frogs). Being a mentally tough tennis player Psychologists of the University of KwaZulu-Natal have delved into…

Spider flies to catch an elusive wave

Cynthia Chiang, an astrophysicist from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, is part of a team seeking to drag ancient cosmic secrets out of the polar skies. Sarah Wild of the Mail & Guardian tells the story. A giant white balloon with a precious cargo earlier this month crash-landed in a remote corner of snow-covered Antarctica – at 76°21.91…

Climate change, farming and profits: It all depends

How will climate change affect the profit margins of farming endeavours throughout South Africa? It all depends on how rainfall, temperature and the subsequent need for irrigation will change the yield and quality of produce being farmed, region by region. So says agricultural economists Dr Hamman Oosthuizen, who used farms in Hoedspruit, Carolina, Moorreesburg and…

#ScibraaiSides: Herpes virus linked to why breastfeeding mothers on ARVs still sometimes transmit HIV to their babes

It’s a question that has baffled many an AIDS researcher: why do antiretroviral therapies (ARVs) not in all cases stop breastfeeding HIV positive mothers from transmitting the virus via their breast milk to their offspring? A new study by researchers of the University of KwaZulu-Natal and the University of Montpellier has now confirmed that a…