haoleSan

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Very creepy crawlies: 'proto-spiders' with long tails discovered in amber

In what can safely be assumed to be horrifying news for arachnophobes around the world, scientists have discovered the beautifully-preserved remains of prehistoric “proto-spiders” that sported tails longer than their bodies.<p>Fossil hunters found the extraordinary creatures suspended in lumps of …

Dinosaurs

Tasmania: new find of extremely rare red handfish doubles population to 80

Divers in Tasmania have discovered a new population of red handfish, doubling the known population of the elusive and extremely rare fish and raising hopes that more may be found.<p>Until last week the remaining population of red handfish, <i>Thymichthys politus</i>, was believed to be confined to one long …

Fish

A new superpower is discovered in the wondrous cuttlefish

Cuttlefish evolved 21 million years ago, which is plenty of time to develop special skills, like a natural camouflage that instantly transforms their colors and patterns. Humans are still discovering new powers held by these sea chameleons.<p>A study published in the Journal of Experimental Biology …

Portuguese trawler nets 'prehistoric shark'

<b>Portuguese scientists have captured a "shark from the age of the dinosaurs" off the Algarve coast.</b><p>Researchers caught the rare frilled shark aboard a trawler, where they were working on a European Union project to "minimise unwanted catches in commercial fishing", Sic Noticias TV reports.<p>The …

New great ape discovered... and immediately listed as world's most endangered

A brand new species of great ape has been discovered, and immediately listed as the most endangered in the world.<p>Conservationists had known for several decades that a curious population of orangutan lived in the Batang Toru forests of North Sumatra, Indonesia, but until recently had been unable to …

The secrets of gecko tails could help heal human spine injuries

They can sprout new tails in the span of a month.<p>Humans tend to think of themselves as the superior species. But the way we heal our bodies is extremely basic: We can (usually) mend our bones pretty well, but if we lose a limb or damage our spinal cords we are pretty much stuck. Geckos are far …

Cell Biology

Yes, That Is a Giant Centipede Eating a Whole Snake Because Why Not

How delightful.<p>From the seedy underbelly of the natural world where invertebrates prey on anything they can get their fangs on, we have brand new …

Scientists discovered a "kill switch" that destroys any cancer cell

Suicide Molecules<p>A new study has established that RNA molecules, originally developed as a means of studying genes, can trigger a hidden mechanism …

Is The Platypus An Evolutionary Anomaly?

<i>Is the platypus in evolutionary transition, or is it an anomaly in evolution? originally appeared on Quora:</i> <i>the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world</i>.<p><b>Answer by Ben Waggoner, PhD in Integrative Biology, on Quora:</b><p><b>Is the platypus in</b> …

Biology

1961 Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet Series II

From 1958 to 1964, the Ferrari 250 GT was the best-selling model the Italian marque produced. Powered by the race-proven Colombo V12, the 250 GT was …

Komodo dragon blood might save human lives. Getting it isn’t easy.

For thousands of years, Komodo dragons have thrived on an isolated chain of rocky Indonesian islands despite competing with other venomous reptiles, hunting deer and buffalo capable of crushing bone with a single kick and dealing with annual monsoons, tsunamis and drought.<p>The reason for their …

Microbiology

Scientists just discovered organisms that are distinct from any life forms known to science

New Life<p>On the tree of life, humans share a branch with a diverse array of creatures, all with one thing in common: a backbone. This single shared …

Want to save the bees? Here's what you should know.

Plus some bee-utiful photography.<p>Most bees are solitary. This may come as a surprise, especially if your bee knowledge comes from reading about colony collapse disorder and that one time you saw <i>The Bee Movie</i> once on a plane. To most people, bees are fat, buzzing, social insects that live in hives …

Insects

The terrifying way fire ants take advantage of hurricane floods

The islands of stinging insects are just the beginning.<p>In addition to debris (and alligators), Texans escaping Hurricane Harvey’s floodwaters must watch out for floating balls of fire ants. And the problem won’t go away after the waters subside.<p>The red imported fire ant evolved in South American …

How species originate

DESPITE its name, Darwin’s masterful explanation of the mechanism of evolution did not truly tackle the question of how species originate. It showed …

Photographer Captures Incredibly Rare Sight Of Sperm Whales Sleeping

Do sperm whales sleep? It’s not a question that gets asked frequently, but when it does, none is the wiser to answer it. That’s until now, of course, …

Scientists say 'prelude' to the sixth mass extinction is happening right now

When plant and animal species go extinct, it's usually a clear sign that humans have messed up. We've over-hunted, destroyed habitats, polluted …

Star-nosed moles are nature’s speed-eating champions

How else are they weird? Let us count the ways<p>It looks like a fuzzy alien with tentacles coming out of its face. But as strange as the star-nosed mole appears, it’s actually a pretty standard Earth-dweller, appearing in wetlands and swamps along the east coast of North America.<p>“They can be hard to …

Evolutionary biologists have been misinterpreting a key point in Darwin’s theory for years

<i>However, Darwin himself proposed an alternative theory. And it's one that I'm very interested in trying to bring back into the sciences.</i><p><i>Darwin proposed that mate choice is really about the aesthetic quality of the experience of the chooser. It's about what the animals themselves think of as</i> …

Space travel leads to two-headed worm

<i>The Two Headed Worm From Space!</i> It certainly sounds like a good pulpy science fiction story from the 1950s, but in fact, when researchers from Tufts …

Under Pressure, Does Evolution Evolve?

Some organisms respond to stress by driving up their mutation rate. Are they evolving specific mechanisms to enhance evolution in times of crisis?<p>In …

Biology

Humanity is possibly 100,000 years older than we thought

Scientists have analysed some ancient Homo sapiens remains and dated them back much longer than previous findings.<p>The tiny proportion of the Earth's existence that has included humanity has just expanded a little, if geochronologist Rainer Grün's new findings are correct. Using a new …

Ravens Remember People Who Have Wronged Them, Study Says

Ravens remember people who have wronged them, a new study has found.<p>The black birds, which have been depicted in Hollywood and literature as bad …

Scientists are spelunking for cave gunk to fight superbugs

Deep in caverns around the world, bacteria are laboring to make antibiotics we can discover and use for ourselves.<p>Caves are dark, dank, isolated, and home to very few plants or animals. At first glance they might seem devoid of life. But caves are full of microscopic creatures, bacteria and fungi …

Cognitive scientist explains why perceiving a false reality is beneficial

There are many wrong ways to sense the world around you, and one of them is the best way to ensure your survival. Amanda Gefter of <i>Quanta Magazine</i> …

Drone footage reveals use for mysterious narwhal tusk

Once said to possess magic powers, narwhal tusks were sold as unicorn horns centuries ago, and still today some mystique surrounds the overgrown …

38 million pieces of plastic waste found on uninhabited South Pacific island

One of the world’s most remote places, an uninhabited coral atoll, is also one of its most polluted.<p>Henderson Island, a tiny landmass in the eastern South Pacific, has been found by marine scientists to have the highest density of anthropogenic debris recorded anywhere in the world, with 99.8% of …

Pollution

Killer Whales Eat Enormous Great White Shark in South Africa

If you’re afraid of sharks, well, this blog should convince you it’s actually orcas you should avoid. Orcas are among the most savage killers in the …