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Soil Fauna Can Support Both Litter Decomposition And Soil Organic Matter Accumulation

These findings are described in the article entitled Effects of soil macro- and mesofauna on litter decomposition and soil organic matter stabilization, recently published in the journal Geoderma (Geoderma 332 (2018) 161-172). This work was conducted by Jan Frouz from the Czech Academy of Sciences and the Charles University in Prague.

Published Jan 23, 2019

Popular Science: A trip in Baroque Bohemia

Bohuslav Balbín was a Baroque scholar, priest, writer and a very gifted natural historian. He concentrated his findings in a magnificent work entitled "Miscellanea of the Bohemian Kingdom". The first volume of the book has recently been published - for the first time in the Czech language (the original work was written in Latin). It is full of detailed and highly interesting information about many subjects. It opens a deep insight into the history of Czech science.

Published Jan 13, 2019

Popular Science: Towards innovations with knowledge bases

The latest research reveals that “knowledge bases” have a significant influence on the performance of companies and even regions. This stems from the theory that the process of innovation can have different forms in different sectors (or even in a single company). Now, we distinguish among three types of knowledge bases: analytical (exploring of scientific frontiers in subjects like nano/bio-technology), synthetic (applying of scientific knowledge in industry) and symbolic (creative industry – design, fashion, film). Viktor Květoň and Vojtěch Kadlec from the Department of Social Geography and Regional Development tried to shed a light on the development and spatial pattern of those three knowledge bases in EU regions and their influence on the innovation process.

Published Dec 24, 2018

Popular Science: I SENSE A FIREBUG NEARBY…

Animals are naturally trying to avoid becoming prey. Some depend on perfect camouflage, some prefer a hidden lifestyle, and some are equipped to defend themselves actively. However, even a wasp with a pointed stinger would rather fly away instead of fighting for its life. Could it somehow warn a potential predator ahead then? Aposematic signals have evolved for this exact reason. Aposematism is a easily-noticeable warning signal informing the recipient that the signaling animal is distasteful, venomous or otherwise dangerous. The striking yellow and black colors of wasps, newts or yellow-bellied toads are just that. Nevertheless, aposematic signals don’t end with coloration. Sometimes a smell is the best way to demonstrate how dangerous or distasteful one is. Whether a smell is truly a strong enough sign was investigated by a team of zoologists of the Faculty of Science, Charles University, led by Jan Raška.

Published Feb 18, 2019

Popular Science: Is there a danger from arctic mosquitoes?

Mosquitoes are known to be carriers of a wide spectrum of dangerous diseases. In this regard, tropical diseases, e.g. malaria, are the most well-known ones. However, we can also find some of them in the polar regions. A research team led by the Institute of Parasitology of Biology Centre CAS in České Budějovice focused on a survey of dangerous viruses in mosquitoes in the Arctic.

Published Feb 11, 2019

Popular Science: Support for innovative companies in Czechia – where and who

EU funds are a frequently mentioned topic even in mainstream media. They support regional development, but also represent clientele networks and corruption or they are considered with other EU policies, for example migration policy. David Hana and Lenka Hellebrandová from the Department of Social Geography and Regional Development focused on spatial and sectoral differences in support of innovative companies in Czechia from the EU funds.

Published Feb 04, 2019

Popular Science: Land cover changes in Central European Mountains: Case study of Šumava

Central European mountains are predominantly covered by forest. Norway spruce is the most prevalent species and the most affected one. Windstorms and subsequent insect outbreaks are two main disturbances that influence the structure, composition, species richness and land cover changes in general. Therefore, Tomáš Janík and Dušan Romportl from the Department of Physical Geography and Geocology investigated changes in the forest after the Kyrill windstorm in the Šumava National Park.

Published Jan 28, 2019

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