Beaty Blog

The Biodiversity of Beer

Posted: February 18, 2015

Written by Saskia Wolsak, Ethnobotanical Educator, UBC.

Beer is, perhaps, the oldest fermented beverage known to humankind; and after water and tea, it is the third most popular beverage in the world. These days beer is made from a few key ingredients: water, barley, yeast, and hops. Yet it wasn’t always so.

A tiny speck of an island packed with biodiversity!

Posted: February 6, 2015

Written by Rick Taylor, Professor of Zoology, UBC.

A few weeks ago, I took a trip to Lady Elliot Island at the extreme southern end of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) about 80 km off the Queensland, Australia, coast. Lady Elliot Island is a coral “cay island”; a small, low elevation, sand island on top of a coral reef.

Putting together the biodiversity puzzle

Posted: February 3, 2015

Written by Jenny McCune, former PhD student in the Biodiversity Research Centre, UBC.

I became an ecologist for the love of being out in leafy forests and wide mountain vistas. I was never thrilled by the idea of staring into a microscope for hours on end. But it’s amazing what a scientist will do to fill in just one little piece of the biodiversity puzzle.

New Year, New Ideas and New Technologies

Posted: January 29, 2015

Written by Adriana Suarez, PhD Candidate, Botany, UBC.

I spent a week in San Diego, not for fun but to give a talk in a science conference; a great experience! During grad school we usually attend 1 or 2 conferences per year. These are great venues to meet peers working in similar issues, gather new ideas, get updates on our field and even get inspired.

A trip to the home of the “Queensland lungfish”

Posted: January 14, 2015

Written by Rick Taylor, Professor of Zoology, UBC.

Even though all living lungfishes now exist only on continents in the Southern Hemisphere, they used to be found (millions of years ago) on all continents and proliferated during the Devonian Period or the so-called “Age of Fishes” (~400 million years ago).

Seeing the Forest for the Trees

Posted: January 7, 2015

Written by Ian Schultz, Communications Assistant, UBCevents.

While many of us spend a lot of time walking around campus on our way to class, work or otherwise, how many of us truly stop and appreciate the rich natural history which populates our campus?

Happy Holidays from the Beaty Biodiversity Museum!

Posted: December 16, 2014

Written by Darren Irwin, Acting Director of the Beaty Biodiversity Museum, and Professor of Zoology, UBC.

As we enter this winter holiday season, it is a good time to reflect on the role of biodiversity in our lives, and specifically the role that biodiversity plays in the holiday traditions we all cherish.

Pecha Kucha

Posted: December 5, 2014

Written by Wayne Maddison, Director of the Spencer Entomological Collection at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum, UBC.

Last week I gave a talk at PechaKucha Night Vancouver, a public mini-symposium of fast-paced talks which happens every few months. The talks are usually about art, design, and social projects, in which case why was I, a biologist, talking there? Well, watch to find out

The Story of String

Posted: December 2, 2014

Written by Saskia Wolsak, Ethnobotanical Educator, UBC.

String, rope, twine, cordage – what’s the big deal? String is one of the most important, yet under-acknowledged, of all of human technology – and for the vast majority of our history, it was made from plant and animal fibres.

Adaptation, genes and poplar trees

Posted: November 27, 2014

Written by Adriana Suarez, PhD Candidate, Botany, UBC.

Why do I care about genes, adaptation and poplar trees? What makes me excited about this research topic? Read on my friend and find out (and maybe you will care too).


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