In the press

From time to time I or my research end up in the media (in print and, occasionally, on screen). Here are a list of links to my various appearances/mentions:

Carleton researcher probes the (indefatigable) sex lives of damselflies
Ottawa Citizen, 17th July 2015
More on the reproductive senescence paper.

Age doesn’t dull damselfly sex
Red Orbit, 16th July 2015
More on the reproductive senescence paper.

Secret sex life of damselflies revealed: Age is no barrier to love-making
Daily Express, 16th July 2015
The Daily Express picked up on our recent piece on damselfly reproductive senescence (or the lack thereof). The author had some fun with it: “GOOD news: the older you get, the better the sex. Bad news: it only applies if you’re an azure damselfly.”

Who would win in a fight between a rhino and a tiger?
BBC Radio Leeds, 22nd August 2014
A fluffy little piece in the lead-up to the Challenge Cup Final at Wembley between the Leeds Rhinos and the Castleford Tigers. Apparently I’m getting a reputation for taking these things on, and it was a good opportunity to talk about nature and science on local radio.  Here’s the audio:

Invisible: The high-vis trick that blinds the eye
New Scientist, 24th March 2014
Ed Yong at New Scientist covered Richard Webster’s Biology Letters paper, calling it “the first real insights into just how [disruptive colouration] works…”.

How Edge Camouflage Fools the Eye
Live Science, 25th October 2013
Live Science covered our Biology Letters paper on disruptive colouration, with some quotes from yours truly.

Digital revolution could lead to creation of thousands of jobs
Yorkshire Evening Post, 26th April 2013
I was tangential to the main piece – talking about how Big Data can help wildlife conservation – but I still got my ugly mug and a bit about my work in the YEP.

Mimikry im Tierreich: Kleine nehmen’s ungenau
Die Zeit, 25th March 2012
More coverage of the Nature paper.  You’ll have to try Google Translate for the English version!

Researchers solve Darwin’s evolution of mimicry puzzle
BBC News, 21st March 2012
More coverage of the Nature paper.

As hoverflies grow, so do their acting skills
New York Times, 21st March 2012

More coverage of the Nature paper.

A fly’s imperfect disguise
Science NOW, 21st March 2012

Coverage of my paper with Heather Penney, Tom Sherratt, Kevin Abbott and Jeff Skevington in Nature. See my blog post where I explain the paper and the findings.

Citizens’ groups trying to purrrge feral-cat problem
Ottawa Citizen and Time Colonist, 15th January 2012
Some time ago I was featured on a Skeptic North blog post about the control of feral cats using a technique called “trap-neuter-release”. It was an off-the-cuff review of some claims made about TNR by a group of conservation biologists, published in a highly respected journal, in response to an inquiry from a member of the public concerning TNR. I had forgotten about it until I was contacted by a reporter from PostMedia, who told me that he was writing a story about the use of TNR to control Canadian feral cat populations nationwide. I went back and took another look at the literature and gave my opinion. The journalist did a reasonable good job in balancing what is a fairly undecided issue.

Healthy, parasite-free people are smarter, researchers say
Toronto 24h, 26th September 2011

24h also published a piece on the IQ paper. Again, the researchers picked up on the correlation for the title, but the content of the piece was pretty well balanced. The author detailed the range of hypotheses, the reasons for an association between IQ and race, and finally a closing remark about the importance of health care in cognitive development.

Healthy people are smarter: study
ttawa Sun, 22nd September 2011
The Ottawa Sun picked up on Tom Sherratt and my paper on the relationship between IQ and parasites. This online story was a slightly expanded version of the print story. The title isn’t quite accurate, but it conveys at least part of the message of the paper. Also, this title is better than the title that appeared in print: “Nasty bugs eat away at IQ”…

Why is average IQ higher in Massachusetts than Louisiana?
Washington Post, 16th September 2011
Eppig and colleagues (who published the original paper on the link between IQ and parasites) published a second paper using a similar dataset of IQ scores and health data, this time limiting their analysis to the US states. They found approximately the same patterns, which is surprising given the smaller variation in IQ scores and parasite

Why is average IQ higher in some places?
Scientific American, 6th September 2011

This was a piece written in SciAm by Christopher Eppig – the lead author of the original study that showed a link between IQ and parasites. Eppig cited our study in his piece as being supportive of his previous findings (which it certainly is).

Coverage of the 10:23 Campaign in Ottawa
CTV Ottawa, 5th February 2011

In February 2011 I organised the Ottawa chapter of the 10:23 Campaign, designed to highlight the lack of evidence for the efficacy of homeopathic medicine. CTV camera crews were there to record our “homeopathic overdose” (rendered safe by the complete absence of anything apart from sugar in the pills that we were popping) and the resulting 100% survival rate. Here’s the video – I’m the one yacking away to the crowd 30s in…

“Climate denial in the classroom”

In February 2012, some colleagues and I at the Committee for the Advancement of Scientific Skepticism (CASS) published a report on a climate change course being taught at a Canadian university. We felt strongly that the course was not representative of the scientific literature and we spent a great deal of effort pointing out the mistakes that were made during the course. The result was that a number of articles appeared in the mainstream media and all across the blogosphere…

Source Article
Official press release Media Advisory: Climate Change Denial in Carleton University Course Exposed by National Science Team
Guardian Environment Online Heartland associate taught ‘biased’ climate course at Ottawa university
Ottawa Citizen Climate skeptic laughs off criticism of university lectures
Montreal Gazette Climate skeptic laughs off criticism of university lectures
Ottawa Citizen Climate scientist ‘troubled’ by skeptic’s teachings at Carleton University
Vancouver Climate scientist ‘troubled’ by skeptic’s teachings at Carleton University
The Province Climate scientist ‘troubled’ by skeptic’s teachings at Carleton University
The Calgary Herald Climate scientist ‘troubled’ by skeptic’s teachings at Carleton University
CBC Climate change skeptic’s university course criticized
CBC Ottawa Morning Bad Science, or Pushing the Intellectual Boundaries?
Ottawa Citizen Climate change skeptic fires back over criticism of course at Carleton
Macleans Professor criticized for course denying climate change
SunTV Harris Interview
DeSmog Blog Fake Heartland “Scientist” Infiltrates Canadian University
SierraActivist Fake Heartland “Scientist” Infiltrates Canadian University
EcoWatch Fake Heartland “Scientist” Infiltrates Canadian University
Inside Climate News Heartland associate taught ‘biased’ climate course at Ottawa university
News on Green Heartland associate taught ‘biased’ climate course at Ottawa university
OpenFile Ottawa Carleton course denying climate change
Greg Laden’s blog Climate Science Denial at Carleton University: A Detailed Take-Down
Skeptic North Climate Change Denial in Canada’s Capital
Carbon Fixated Climate Science Denial at Carleton University
Rabett Run It Comes in Threes
ClimateSight Denial in the Classroom
Skeptical Cube Farm Climate Change Denial being taught at Carleton University
Think Progress Fakegate: Heartland-Backed ‘Scientist’ Misinforms Students, Is Utterly Debunked
Grist Heartland ‘expert’ taught climate denialism at a Canadian university
The Disaffected Lib Heartland Institute Associate Got Inside Carleton University
Oil Change International Climate Denial in Canada’s Classrooms
BigCityLib Strikes Back Denialists In The Canadian Classroom
The Galloping Beaver Heartland Agent at Carleton University
Ottawa Skeptics Climate Science Denial at Carleton University
Planet 3.0 Climate denial at a Canadian university
Global Warming: Man or Myth? Tom Harris Teaches Heartland Institute Fake Science to Students
Watts Up With That Fake moral outrage translated to smear: media upset that students can choose to take an elective course on climate change at Carleton
Dagelijkse Standaard Rel over klimaatsceptische cursus Carleton Universiteit (Ottawa)
PHI Planet Climate Change and Education: Are Schools the Next Battlefield?
Climate lessons (blogspot) Church of CO2 Alarm tenets challenged in a university – junior priests and a missionary are startled by this
The News Cruncher Global warming liars/lefties want to end academic freedom and free speech
Friends of Gin and Tonic Repost of Postmedia “Climate scientist `troubled’ by skeptic’s teachings at Carleton University”
Mr. Worthing The Hearth and the Salamander
Larvatus Provadeo Climate Clippings Climate Clippings (See point 6) El progretariado y su campaña de censura en ciencia
Crommunist CASS: Skepticism FTW
Canadian Atheist Against science
Agence Science Presse La guerre du climat entre à l’université [French]
Charlatan ‘No right answers when it comes to climate change,’ says former Carleton prof Climate change denial course puts the K in quality at Carleton Ottawa, ricercatori contro il prof che nega i cambiamenti climatici [Italian] Climate change denial isn’t about science, or even skepticism
Care2 Climate Denier Teaches University “Climate Science” Course
Skeptical Science Tom Harris’ Carleton University Climate Misinformation Class
Open Mind In the Classroom