Skip to main content

Stories by Jennifer Frazer

Fountains of Life Found at the Bottom of the Dead Sea

For years, ripples at the surface of the Dead Sea hinted there was something mysterious going on beneath its salt-laden waters. But in a lake where accidentally swallowing the water while diving could lead to near-instant asphyxiation, no one was in a hurry to find out what it might be.This year, some intrepid divers changed that, stumbling onto a geological and biological treasure and capturing it on video...

October 9, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

Amoebas for a Better Science Tomorrow

The Artful Amoeba is proud to participate in this year's Science Bloggers for Students science classroom fund drive (read more about this year's project at Janet Stemwedel's Doing Good Science blog)...

October 3, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

800,000 Manmade Plant Fossils (and counting)

When I took botany and taxonomy of vascular plants in college, we spent many an hour poring over specimens under dissecting microscopes pulled with tweezers from smelly jars of preserving liquid...

October 1, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

The Mystery Rust of Kivalina, Alaska

A scanning electron micrograph of an unidentified rust spore from Alaska. Note the gorgeous projections that look like they've been turned on a lathe.

September 27, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

The Fungal Apocalypse, Permo-Triassic Edition

There is something curious about the sedimentary rocks laid down around the world 250 million years ago, at the height of Earth's greatest extinction: they are often riddled with filaments, and no one is sure what they are...

September 15, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

Meet Your Blogger, and See Her Mug in the New York Times!

Today my Q and A was posted in the continuing series of new blogger profiles here at Sci Am. Go check it out!As well, I was captured on film (although my last name was not quite captured in writing) in this story about mushroom hunting in Colorado in the New York Times ...

September 13, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

Lucky Mycologist Finds Lost Smut

A broken primrose fruit showing the remains of a fuzzy black parasitic fungus called smut (upper left). Intact fruit surrounds the broken pod. Photo by Dr.

September 6, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

Alpine Toads and the Chytrids that Love Them

When you read a story, you may occasionally wonder what the reporter went through to get it. About a month ago I arose at 5 a.m. to accompany two wildlife biologists and three fisheries volunteers into the high country of Colorado in order to report a story that came out in High Country News this past week.Over the course of a 12-hour day, we covered about 10 miles, climbed several thousand feet, slogged through bogs in which I sank to my calves, swatted clouds of mosquitoes, and were drenched by rain in order to get to the high ponds and puddles where boreal toads breed...

August 23, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

Just What is the Brain-Eating "Amoeba" Naegleria fowleri?

Cyst, trophozoite ("amoeba"), and flagellate forms of the protist Naegleria fowleri. Photos by CDC. In the press this week were reports (see here and here and here) that the brain-eating amoeba Naegleria fowleri has killed three people this summer, as it does in a typical year...

August 17, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

A Peek at More Ice-Age Finds from Snowmastodon Village

Woolly mammoth, resplendent. Model from the Royal BC Museum, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Creative Commons Tracy O. Click image for link. As I write, the Snowmass Water and Sanitation Department District is busy digging, damming, and filling the Ziegler Reservoir on top of one of the world's only known high-altitude Ice Age fossil sites -- and "without question" the world's finest mastodon site, according to Denver Museum of Nature and Science VP Kirk Johnson -- near Snowmass Village, CO, a ski resort.Fortunately for us, the DMNS had 70 days spread over two seasons to get in, dig like hell, and get out...

August 9, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

White Worms and Pixie Cups in Colorado

A few weeks ago local lichen expert Ann Henson and I scouted out lichens on the flanks of Gray's Peak in central Colorado. Since my last post was on the awesome power of lichens, I thought I'd share a few photos of some of our amazing locals.Our very first lichen was probably the most spectacular: Thamnolia vermicularis , the whiteworm lichen...

July 31, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

Lichens vs. the Almighty Prion

And in this corner . . . the challenger, Lobaria pulmonaria. Given the common name "lungwort" thanks to its lung-like appearance, medieval herbalists invoked the Doctrine of Signatures to deduce it must be good for treating lung complaints...

July 25, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

Circus of the Spineless #63.5

One of our fascinating subjects for CotS #63.5 -- a By-the-Wind Sailor, Velella velella. Creative Commons Notafly. Click image for license and original.

July 17, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer
The Odd Allure of Rock Snot

The Odd Allure of Rock Snot

UPDATE: After being accidentally closed all launch day, comments are now open! Please feel free to introduce yourself, suggest an organism or topic for a post, or say hi below.

July 5, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer

When Cells Discovered Architecture

In early 1997, while still a freshman in college pondering whether to study biology or archaeology, I opened up my copy of Discover Magazine to find an article that startled and captivated me...

June 13, 2011 — Jennifer Frazer
Scroll To Top