Jake Leo Evancho

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New Species of Giant Air-Breathing Fish: Freshwater Species of the Week

Wildlife & Wild Places<p>These three fish in an aquarium in the Ukraine actually belong to a newly identified species of arapaima, a giant, air-breathing dweller of the Amazon. Photo: George Chernilevsky, Wikimedia Commons<p>Water Currents previously reported on Donald Stewart‘s ongoing efforts to …

Zoology

5 Sky Events This Week: Partial Lunar Eclipse, Halley’s Shooting Stars

<b>Mars and Regulus.</b> Looking high east at dawn on Wednesday, October 16, check out Mars as it pairs up with Regulus, the lead star of the constellation Leo the lion. The contrast in color between the orange-hued planet and the sparkling white, 79-light-year distant star is particularly striking with …

Astronomy

Why Leaves Change Color

Charles Rennie Mackintosh observed that, “Art is the flower, Life is the Green Leaf,” but I would very humbly add that after the green leaf dies, all those red, orange, and yellow leaves become nature’s most magnificent work of art.<p>For the past two weeks I’ve enjoyed autumn’s splendor, from the …

Mount Erebus, Antarctica

<b>The scene:</b> a tent on Mount Erebus, an active volcano on Ross Island, Antarctica. The tent is a four-cornered tepee modeled after those that Captain Robert Falcon Scott brought with him on his Antarctic expeditions more than a century ago. It is high enough at the center for someone five feet five …

Biology

Epic Storms

<b>“Some things you learn best in calm,”</b> wrote author Willa Cather, scribe of the Great Plains, “and some in storm.” She wasn’t referring to the local weather, but she might as well have been. Each year the American heartland offers a graduate course in natural tumult. From March to October these …

Weather

Tibet's Golden "Worm"

<b>The thing Silang</b> is searching for, on hands and knees, 15,000 feet above sea level on the Tibetan plateau, is extraordinarily strange. The part that’s above ground is a tiny, capless fungus—just a brown stalk, thin as a matchstick, poking an inch or two out of the muddy soil. Eleven hours a day, …

Tibet

Easter Island

If They Could Only Talk<p>“The statues walked,” Easter Islanders say. Archaeologists are still trying to figure out how—and whether their story is a cautionary tale of environmental disaster or a celebration of human ingenuity.<p>By Hannah Bloch<p>Video Animation by Hans Weise, Spencer Millsap, Fernando G. …

South America

Exploring Fisheating Creek

Earlier in October, I had a chance to be part of the first group to stand-up paddle the length of Fisheating Creek – a remote and wild tributary to Lake Okeechobee and the Everglades. It was a joint effort between the Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition and Justin Riney’s Expedition Florida 500, …