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Hundreds of elephants that died mysteriously in Botswana’s famed Okavango Delta succumbed to cyanobacteria poisoning, the wildlife department revealed on Monday. The landlocked southern African country boasts the world’s largest elephant population, estimated at around 130,000. More than 300 of the pachyderms have mysteriously died since March, with their intact tusks ruling out the hypothesis
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The fall equinox comes this Tuesday at 9:30 am ET (1:30 pm UTC). Although not the best time to balance an egg (that’s an old wives’ tale), the equinox heralds the coming of autumn, cooler temperatures, and shorter days for the Northern Hemisphere, which houses about 90 percent of Earth’s population. For the Southern Hemisphere, it signifies the opposite: warmer
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As a species, humans have populated almost every corner of the earth. We have developed technologies and cultures which shape the world we live in. The idea of ‘natural selection’ or ‘survival of the fittest’ seems to make sense in Stone Age times when we were fighting over scraps of meat, but does it still
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Scientists in Japan have developed a paper-based sensor equipped with an array of extremely tiny microneedles, which they say can painlessly penetrate human skin for a quick and easy method of conducting diagnostic tests for conditions like pre-diabetes. Microneedles are super tiny-spikes so small they’re measured in micrometres (one thousandth of a millimetre), designed to
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The world’s most advanced telescopes were not made for today’s temperatures, and it’s messing with our observations of the night sky.  Three decades-worth of data from the Paranal Observatory in northern Chile – home of the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) – has revealed several ways in which climate change is already impacting
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Magnetism and electricity are linked together in many weird and wonderful ways throughout science, including the fascinating magnetoelectric effect noticeable in some crystals – where the electrical properties of a crystal can be influenced by a magnetic field, and vice versa. Now things have gotten even weirder, because scientists have discovered a brand new magnetoelectric
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Astronomers have painstakingly built models of the asteroid population, and those models predict that there will be ~1 km sized asteroids that orbit closer to the Sun than Venus does. The problem is, nobody’s been able to find one. Until now. Astronomers working with the Zwicky Transient Facility say they’ve finally found one. But this one’s bigger,
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Majestic Jupiter, our Solar System’s belligerent big brother, is putting its best side forward*. A sharp new image from the Hubble Space Telescope shows the giant planet’s wild, ever-evolving weather – revealing both short- and long-term changes. In the northern hemisphere, turbulent clouds could indicate the formation of a new swirling storm, while down south,
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High above the Arctic Circle lies a group of remote Siberian islands where ivory traders and scientists brave sub-zero temperatures to search for extinct creatures preserved in the melting permafrost. Those Lyakhovsky Islands just yielded an unprecedented find: a perfectly preserved adult cave bear - with its nose, teeth, and internal organs still intact. Scientists think the
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A massive chunk of ice – larger than the city of Paris – has broken off from the Arctic’s largest ice shelf because of warmer temperatures in Greenland, scientists said Monday. The 113-square-kilometre (43-square-mile) block broke off the Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden glacier in Northeast Greenland, which the scientists said had been expected given the rising average temperatures.
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From bird feathers to fruit skins, the natural world has two main ways of displaying colour: through pigment substances that provide selective colour absorption, or through structural colour – the use of microscopic structures to control light reflection. Now scientists have devised a computer model that explains why the brightest matte structural colours in nature