Thursday, October 31, 2013

The 5th OpenUp! Newsletter

We are pleased to inform you that the 5th OpenUp! Newsletter has been published! This issue is full of interesting articles and gives you a view into the second year of the OpenUp! project.

Traditionally, we bring you information on activities at our social networks in the article of "OpenUp! Just Became More Social", and about our "Meetings and Events". For our potential future partners we have prepared a great article "IPR Problems and Solutions for the Natural History Domain". "Opening up!, Reaching out!" gives you some examples from public relations field.

You can also find articles in the Newsletter that are focuse on our partners ("Building the European Biodiversity Observation Network" and "The Fauna Europaea Data Portal Now Linked to Europeana") or on our current content providers such as the Biology Center in Linz. For those of you who are technically oriented, there is the article of "The Graphical Query Tool".

We hope you enjoy the 5th OpenUp! newsletter. You can read the newsletter issue under this link. Stay tuned!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Content Highlights - Catnip (Nepeta cataria)

Do you have a Cat? If so, the greatest pleasure for it could be a gift that contains a plant called Catnip!

Nepeta cataria from Botanic Garden and Botanical Museum Berlin-Dahlem.

Catnip (Nepeta cataria) is up to 60 cm high perennial plant, blooming with white to pink flowers between July and September. The plant grows in highlands, along the watercourses or paths. The genus name “Nepeta” is derived from an old Roman city of Nepete (nowadays Italian city of Nepi) around which Catnip grew. The species name “cataria” means that it is attractive for cats.

Nepeta cataria from BHL.

This plant contains a substance called nepetalactone, which has similar effects for cats as cocaine has for people. If cats smell Catnip, they literally lost their mind, rubbing the plant or rolling in the plant. Some scientists think that it is actually a special strategy of seed dispersion. The seeds of Catnip get captured in the cat’s fur and then are bandied around. It is possible to buy cat’s toys filled by dried Catnip. Dry Catnip could also be hallucinogenic for people. Stay tuned!