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Plant pathologist Carolee Bull works in her home garden in State College, Pennsylvania. Carolee Bull, CC BY-ND

By Matt Kasson, Brian Lovett and Carolee Bull

Home gardening is having a boom year across the U.S. Whether they're growing their own food in response to pandemic shortages or just looking for a diversion, numerous aspiring gardeners have constructed their first raised beds, and seeds are flying off suppliers' shelves. Now that gardens are largely planted, much of the work for the next several months revolves around keeping them healthy.

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Pexels

By Brian J. Love and Julie Rieland

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the U.S. recycling industry. Waste sources, quantities and destinations are all in flux, and shutdowns have devastated an industry that was already struggling.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

To better understand how people influence the overall health of dolphins, Oklahoma State University's Unmanned Systems Research Institute is developing a drone to collect samples from the spray that comes from their blowholes. Ken Y. / CC by 2.0

By Jason Bruck

Human actions have taken a steep toll on whales and dolphins. Some studies estimate that small whale abundance, which includes dolphins, has fallen 87% since 1980 and thousands of whales die from rope entanglement annually. But humans also cause less obvious harm. Researchers have found changes in the stress levels, reproductive health and respiratory health of these animals, but this valuable data is extremely hard to collect.

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Daily fireworks in many U.S. cities in recent weeks have no doubt been interfering with the sleep and peace of mind of thousands of veterans and others who suffer from PTSD. Flickr / CC by 2.0

By Arash Javanbakht

For some combat veterans, the Fourth of July is not a time to celebrate the independence of the country they love. Instead, the holiday is a terrifying ordeal. That's because the noise of fireworks – loud, sudden, and reminiscent of war – rocks their nervous system. Daily fireworks in many U.S. cities in recent weeks have no doubt been interfering with the sleep and peace of mind of thousands of veterans.

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A crowd of people congregate along Ocean Drive in Miami Beach, Florida on June 26, 2020, amid a surge in coronavirus cases. CHANDAN KHANNA / AFP / Getty Images

By Melissa Hawkins

After sustained declines in the number of COVID-19 cases over recent months, restrictions are starting to ease across the United States. Numbers of new cases are falling or stable at low numbers in some states, but they are surging in many others. Overall, the U.S. is experiencing a sharp increase in the number of new cases a day, and by late June, had surpassed the peak rate of spread in early April.

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Many of us have been spending more time at home than ever before, and chances are unless you live by yourself in the middle of nowhere, at some point unwanted noise will have infiltrated your lockdown. Oliver Rossi / Getty Images

By Greg Watts

Many of us have been spending more time at home than ever before, and chances are unless you live by yourself in the middle of nowhere, at some point unwanted noise will have infiltrated your lockdown.

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A woman wears a face mask as she waits at a bus stop with an information sign asking people to keep social distance due to the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic on June 26, 2020 in Stockholm, Sweden. STINA STJERNKVIST / TT News Agency / AFP / Getty Images

By Jeyaraj Vadiveloo

With the advent of an infectious disease outbreak, epidemiologists and public health officials quickly try to forecast deaths and infections using complex computer models. But with a brand new virus like the one that causes COVID-19, these estimates are complicated by a dearth of credible information on symptoms, contagion and those who are most at risk.

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Together, the world's natural history collections are estimated to contain more than three billion specimens, including preserved specimens of possible hosts of the coronaviruses that have led to SARS, MERS and COVID-19. Kieran Guckian, CC BY 2.0

By Pamela Soltis, Joseph Cook and Richard Yanagihara

In less than 20 years, communities around the globe have been hit by a string of major disease outbreaks: SARS, MERS, Ebola, Zika and now, COVID-19. Nearly all emerging infectious diseases in humans originate from microorganisms that are harbored by wildlife and subsequently "jump," either directly or indirectly – for example, through mosquitoes or ticks – to humans.

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Wildflowers blooming in box gum grassy woodland. Jacqui Stol, Author provided

By Jacqui Stol, Annie Kelly and Suzanne Prober

In box gum grassy woodlands, widely spaced eucalypts tower over carpets of wildflowers, lush native grasses and groves of flowering wattles. It's no wonder some early landscape paintings depicting Australian farm life are inspired by this ecosystem.

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Troy Sutton works with potentially deadly pathogens, but the right precautions greatly reduce the risks. Penn State, CC BY-ND

By Troy Sutton

It's quiet in the laboratory, almost peaceful. But I'm holding live SARS-CoV-2 in my hands and this virus is not to be taken lightly.

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Breathing in through the nose actually provides a powerful medical benefit that can help the body fight viral infections.
Kris Ubach and Quim Roser / Getty Images

By Louis J. Ignarro

Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth. It's not just something you do in yoga class – breathing this way actually provides a powerful medical benefit that can help the body fight viral infections.

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