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  • Manure used by Europe's first farmers 8,000 years ago

    07/16/2013 1:24:39 PM PDT · by Renfield · 20 replies
    A new study says Europe's first farmers used far more sophisticated practices than was previously thought. A research team led by the University of Oxford has found that Neolithic farmers manured and watered their crops as early as 6,000 BC. It had always been assumed that manure wasn't used as a fertiliser until Iron Age and Roman times. However, this new research shows that enriched levels of nitrogen-15, a stable isotope abundant in manure, have been found in the charred cereal grains and pulse seeds taken from 13 Neolithic sites around Europe. The findings are published in the early edition...
  • Worm poo's window into past climate

    07/10/2013 2:10:41 PM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 7 replies
    BBC News ^ | 7/10/13 | Simon Redfern
    Earthworm poo can be used to measure past temperatures, providing a window into the ancient climate. A study shows that the chemistry of small balls of chalky crystals secreted into soil by the worms varies with temperature. A UK team said the granules could be compared with other climatic "proxies", such as ice cores and deep sea sediments. Details appear in the journal Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. Scientists from the universities of Reading and York, report that the calcium carbonate (calcite) nodules dug up from archaeological sites give a unique measure of the ancient local temperatures. Because the ratios of...
  • Strange Carvings Discovered In Amazon Jungle Using Google Earth

    06/16/2010 3:39:07 AM PDT · by Fred Nerks · 34 replies · 1,315+ views
    http://www.treasurehuntingnews.com/archaeology/strange-carvings-discovered-in-amazon-jungle-using-go | January 2, 2010 | in Archaeology, Research
    Signs of what could be a previously unknown ancient civilisation are emerging from beneath the felled trees of the Amazon. Some 260 giant avenues, ditches and enclosures have been spotted from the air in a region straddling Brazil’s border with Bolivia. The traditional view is that before the arrival of the Spanish and Portuguese in the 15th century there were no complex societies in the Amazon basin – in contrast to the Andes further west where the Incas built their cities. Now deforestation, increased air travel and google Earth are telling a different story. “It’s never-ending,” says Denise Schaan of...
  • Agriculture arose in many parts of the Fertile Crescent at once

    07/06/2013 10:25:24 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 12 replies
    L A Times ^ | July 5, 2013, 6:53 p.m. | Melissa Pandika
    For decades, archaeologists believed agriculture took root in a part of the Fertile Crescent called the Levant, which includes present-day Israel, Lebanon and Jordan, as well as parts of Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and other countries. From there, it was thought to have spread eastward to present-day Iran. “The eastern Fertile Crescent has been treated as backwater,” said Melinda Zeder, a senior scientist at the Smithsonian Institute’s Program in Human Ecology and Archaeobiology, who was not involved in the study. Now, the understanding that people in the Zagros grew and ground cereal grains as early as their counterparts in the...
  • Stone Age, Canaanite, Arrowheads and Blades Found in Judean Foothills

    07/04/2013 1:22:07 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 9 replies
    Jewish Press ^ | June 30th, 2013 | Staff
    Archaeological excavations of the Israel Antiquities Authority done prior to laying down a sewer line turned up evidence of human habitation 9,000 years ago... in the Judean foothills moshav (cooperative village) of Eshta'ol... According to Benjamin Storchen, the excavation director on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, "the ancient findings we unveiled at the site indicate that there was a flourishing agricultural settlement in this place, and it lasted for as long as 4,000 years." The archaeological artifacts discovered in the excavation site indicate that the first settlers arrived here about 9,000 years ago. This period is called by archaeologists...
  • First Farmers Were Also Inbred

    06/21/2013 7:02:40 AM PDT · by Renfield · 24 replies
    Science Magazine ^ | 6-19-2013 | Michael Balter
    Humans have been mating with their relatives for at least 10,000 years. That's the conclusion of a new study, which finds the earliest known evidence of deliberate inbreeding—including missing teeth—among farmers who lived in what is today southern Jordan. Although inbreeding over long periods can lead to a rise in genetic defects, the team concludes that it may have helped prehistoric peoples make the transition from hunting and gathering to village life. Researchers agree that the best evidence for family ties is DNA. For example, ancient DNA from a group of Neandertal skeletons found in a Spanish cave showed that...
  • A Book Review and Summary of John C. Sanfor's Genetic Entropy and the Mystery of the Genome

    06/10/2013 8:02:28 AM PDT · by kimtom · 7 replies
    www.apologeticspress.org ^ | june 1, 2013 | Joe Deweese, Ph.D.
    Dr. John Sanford is a plant geneticist and inventor who conducted research at Cornell University for more than 25 years. He is best known for significant contributions to the field of transgenic crops, including the invention of the biolistic process (“gene gun”). Like many in his profession, he was fully invested in what he terms the “Primary Axiom” of modern science, namely that “man is merely the product of random mutations plus natural selection” (Sanford, 2008, p. v, italics in orig.). He argues that this cornerstone of modern Darwinism is almost universally accepted and rarely, if ever, questioned. In Genetic...
  • Predecessor of Cows, The Aurochs, Were Still Living In The Netherlands Around AD 600

    12/21/2008 10:02:49 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 56 replies · 4,518+ views
    ScienceDaily ^ | Monday, December 15, 2008 | University of Groningen
    Archaeological researchers at the University of Groningen have discovered that the aurochs, the predecessor of our present-day cow, lived in the Netherlands for longer than originally assumed. Remains of bones recently retrieved from a horn core found in Holwerd (Friesland, Netherlands), show that the aurochs became extinct in around AD 600 and not in the fourth century. The last aurochs died in Poland in 1627... The aurochs was much larger than the common cows we know today, with aurochs bulls measuring between 160 and 180 cm at the withers, and aurochs cows between 140 and 150 cm. The cattle bred...
  • How Wild Asses Became Donkeys Of The Pharaohs

    03/10/2008 4:55:47 PM PDT · by blam · 24 replies · 737+ views
    New Scientist ^ | 3-10-2008 | Andy Coghlan
    How wild asses became donkeys of the pharaohs 21:00 10 March 2008 NewScientist.com news service Andy Coghlan The ancient Egyptian state was built on the backs of tamed wild asses. Ten skeletons excavated from burial sites of the first Egyptian kings are the best evidence yet that modern-day donkeys emerged through domestication of African wild asses. The 5000-year-old bones also provide the earliest indications that asses were used for transport. The skeletons suggest that the smaller frames of today's donkeys hadn't yet evolved. Instead, the bones resemble those of modern-day Nubian and Somali wild asses, which are much larger than...
  • Ancient Greek City Uncovered in Russia [Temple of Demeter]

    05/23/2011 9:09:16 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 24 replies · 1+ views
    EU Greek Reporter ^ | May 8, 2011 | Tania Mourtzila
    What is considered to be a unique discovery has been made in Taman, South Russia, at the Black Sea. The ruins of an ancient Greek city, dated around the 6th century BC, came to light. Archeologists are stunned both by the number of the findingsand the condition they were found in. The excavations are proceeding with extreme caution, in order to avoid damaging the city's ancient fortress. According to historians, it is assumed that the ruins are the temple of Dimitra, the ancient goddess of fertility and agriculture, while they were able to determine the very spot of the altar....
  • The Origins of Strawberries, in Cherokee Myth

    06/03/2013 3:50:17 PM PDT · by nickcarraway · 20 replies
    Star Tribune ^ | May 29, 2013 | Jo Marshall
    According to one legend, the berry has been a force of nature since the beginning of time.The Cherokees have a creation myth that connects human harmony and the configuration of heaven and Earth to the sight of a single strawberry. The cosmic details are murky. But the culinary message is clear. Abbreviated, it goes like this: First Man and First Woman (think Cherokee Adam and Eve) have a blowout argument, after which First Woman proclaims: “You are lazy and pay no attention to me. I am going to find another place to live.” With that, she harrumphs off with that...
  • Viking barley in Greenland

    02/11/2012 7:20:47 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 59 replies
    ScienceNordic via Past Horizons ^ | Monday, February 6, 2012 | Sybille Hildebrandt, tr by Michael de Laine
    The Vikings are both famous and notorious for their liking of beer and mead and archaeologists have discussed for years whether Eric the Red (ca 950-1010) and his followers had to make do without the golden drink when they settled in Greenland around the year 1,000: The climate was mild when they landed, but was it warm enough for growing barley? Researchers from the National Museum in Copenhagen say the answer to the question is 'yes'. In a unique find, they uncovered tiny fragments of charred barley grains in a Viking midden on Greenland. The find is final proof that...
  • World's oldest marijuana stash totally busted

    05/30/2013 10:47:41 AM PDT · by posterchild · 49 replies
    Discovery news via NBC ^ | Jennifer Viegas
    Nearly two pounds of still-green plant material found in a 2,700-year-old grave in the Gobi Desert has just been identified as the world's oldest marijuana stash, according to a paper in the latest issue of the Journal of Experimental Botany. A barrage of tests proves the marijuana possessed potent psychoactive properties and casts doubt on the theory that the ancients only grew the plant for hemp in order to make clothing, rope and other objects. They apparently were getting high too.
  • Long Live The Pig!

    05/29/2013 5:01:34 PM PDT · by Starman417 · 125 replies
    Flopping Aces ^ | 05-29-13 | Dave The Sage
    Domesticated swine and Western Civilization go back a long way together. The domestic pig was being raised in Europe by about 1500 BC. Rome improved pig breeding and spread them throughout their empire. The early Christians increasingly abandoned the Jewish ban on the eating of pork by about 50 AD and it’s been the celebrated ‘other white meat’ ever since. Pigs and the discovery of the New World went hand in hand. Christopher Columbus took eight pigs on his voyage to Cuba in 1493 at Queen Isabella’s insistence. Hernando de Soto brought America’s first thirteen pigs to Tampa Bay, Fla.,...
  • Prehistoric Dog Lovers Liked Seafood, Jewelry, Spirituality

    05/25/2013 6:39:45 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 5 replies
    Discovery News ^ | Wednesday, May 22, 2013 | Jennifer Viegas
    A pointer named “Major” was identified this week as the first known example of a modern dog. A description of the dog was found in a now-obscure 1865 edition of a Victorian journal called The Field. It marks the earliest reported dog breed based on physical form and pedigree. “The invention of ‘breed,’ physically and imaginatively, still shapes how we see and think about dogs today,” Michael Worboys, Director of the University of Manchester’s Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine, told Discovery News. Worboys and his team found the information concerning “Major” while preparing a new museum...
  • Researchers Have Finally Solved The Mystery Of The Irish Potato Famine

    05/24/2013 9:45:13 AM PDT · by blam · 31 replies
    http://www.livescience.com ^ | 5-24-2013 | Denise Chow
    Researchers Have Finally Solved The Mystery Of The Irish Potato Famine Denise Chow, LiveScience May 24, 2013, 12:03 PM The Irish potato famine that caused mass starvation and approximately 1 million deaths in the mid-19th century was triggered by a newly identified strain of potato blight that has been christened "HERB-1," according to a new study. An international team of molecular biologists studied the historical spread of Phytophthora infestans, a funguslike organism that devastated potato crops and led to the famine in Ireland. The precise strain of the pathogen that caused the devastating outbreak, which lasted from 1845 to 1852,...
  • Earliest Evidence of Human Hunting Found

    05/14/2013 10:55:11 AM PDT · by EveningStar · 38 replies
    LiveScience ^ | May 13, 2013 | Tia Ghose
    Archaeologists have unearthed what could be the earliest evidence of ancient human ancestors hunting and scavenging meat. Animal bones and thousands of stone tools used by ancient hominins suggest that early human ancestors were butchering and scavenging animals at least 2 million years ago.
  • Beer's taste triggers dopamine release in brain

    04/20/2013 5:34:09 PM PDT · by Jyotishi · 55 replies
    DNA ^ | Tuesday, Apri 16, 2013 | ANI
    The taste of beer, without any effect from alcohol itself, can trigger dopamine release in the brain that is associated with drinking and other drugs of abuse, researchers have claimed. Using positron emission tomography (PET), the researchers at Indiana University School of Medicine tested 49 men with two scans, one in which they tasted beer, and the second in which they tasted Gatorade. The researchers were looking for evidence of increased levels of dopamine, a brain neurotransmitter that has long been associated with alcohol and other drugs of abuse. The scans showed significantly more dopamine activity following the taste of...
  • Lost and found, the first find of an early human artwork

    03/21/2013 2:31:27 PM PDT · by Red Badger · 28 replies
    Phys.Org ^ | 03-21-2013 | Provided by Natural History Museum
    This reindeer antler from Neschers in France is engraved with a stylised horse. It was created by early humans and found between 1830 and 1848. A 14,000-year-old engraved reindeer antler is possibly the first piece of early human art ever found. The specimen was uncovered in the 1800s and has been in the vast collections of the Natural History Museum. Its scientific importance, and clues as to how it was made are only now being revealed, scientists report today. Natural History Museum scientists have pieced together the antler's history. It was found between 1830 and 1848 in Neschers, France, by...
  • Scientists discover genetic key to efficient crops

    01/27/2013 7:02:13 PM PST · by Sir Napsalot · 9 replies
    Cornell Univ Chronicles Online ^ | 1-23-2013 | Krishna Ramanujan
    With projections of 9.5 billion people by 2050, humankind faces the challenge of feeding modern diets to additional mouths while using the same amounts of water, fertilizer and arable land as today. Cornell researchers have taken a leap toward meeting those needs by discovering a gene that could lead to new varieties of staple crops with 50 percent higher yields. The gene, called Scarecrow, is the first discovered to control a special leaf structure, known as Kranz anatomy, which leads to more efficient photosynthesis. Plants photosynthesize using one of two methods: C3, a less efficient, ancient method found in most...