Freda Kreier

Science writing intern, Fall 2021

Freda Kreier was an intern at Science News in the fall of 2021. She holds a bachelor’s degree in molecular biology from Colorado College and a master’s in science communication from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

All Stories by Freda Kreier

  1. A close up photo of several red flour beetles sitting on a pile of white flour with specks of flour stuck to some of the beetles.

    How some beetles ‘drink’ water using their butts

    Red flour beetles, a major agricultural pest, suck water out of the air using special cells in their rear ends, a new study suggests.

  2. image of a circular lock of Beethoven's hair attached to an old piece of paper with something written in cursive script

    DNA from Beethoven’s hair hints at what killed the composer

    Many historians suspect Beethoven died from liver failure. A new analysis shows he had a heightened genetic risk for liver disease, researchers say.

  3. photo of a mouse standing on its hind legs in a glass bowl and peering over the edge
    Health & Medicine

    A hormone shot helped drunk mice sober up quickly

    Drunk mice injected with the hormone FGF21 woke up and regained their balance faster than inebriated mice that did not receive the shot.

  4. fungi growing on wood

    Chemical signals from fungi tell bark beetles which trees to infest

    As fungi break down defensive chemicals in trees, some byproducts act as signals to bark beetle pests, telling them which trees are most vulnerable.

  5. An orange and gray Australian painted lady sitting atop a bright magenta flower.

    76 percent of well-known insects fall outside protected areas

    Protected areas can provide safe havens for insects, but many existing ones fall short, a new study finds.

  6. A wide photo of a valley on Ellesmere Island in Canada with mountains in the background.

    Fossils suggest early primates lived in a once-swampy Arctic

    Teeth and jawbones found on Ellesmere Island, Canada, suggest that two early primate species migrated there 52 million years ago.

  7. An Amazonian woman walks away from the camera while holding a large basket on her head.

    Indigenous people may have created the Amazon’s ‘dark earth’ on purpose

    Modern Amazonians make nutrient-rich soil from ash, food scraps and burns. The soil strongly resembles ancient dark soils found in the region.

  8. A woman wearing a face mask stands inside a home, looking out through a window
    Health & Medicine

    Brain scans suggest the pandemic prematurely aged teens’ brains

    A small study suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic may have aged teen brains beyond their years.

  9. A photo of spider monkey bones found buried alongside eagle bones to the left and other animal bones

    A spider monkey’s remains tell a story of ancient diplomacy in the Americas

    A 1,700-year-old spider monkey skeleton unearthed at Teotihuacan in Mexico was likely a diplomatic gift from the Maya.

  10. A photo of a large boab tree in the center with several smaller trees spread out around it

    Carvings on Australia’s boab trees reveal a generation’s lost history

    Archaeologists and an Aboriginal family are working together to rediscover a First Nations group’s lost connections to the land.

  11. One of Ecuador’s endangered species, the Jambato harlequin frog, lays hidden in grass. The frog was thought to have gone extinct in the late 1980s.

    Some harlequin frogs — presumed extinct — have been rediscovered

    Colorful harlequin frogs were among the hardest hit amphibians during a fungal pandemic. Some species are now making a comeback.

  12. An ancient ivory comb with a row of teeth faint signs of engraving

    This ancient Canaanite comb is engraved with a plea against lice

    The Canaanite comb bears the earliest known instance of a complete sentence written in a phonetic alphabet, researchers say.