Nature

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An international team of marine scientists have discovered 30 new species of invertebrates in deep water surrounding the Galapagos, the Ecuadoran archipelago’s national park authorities announced Monday. The deep-sea experts discovered fragile coral and sponge communities including 10 bamboo corals, four octocorals, one brittle star and 11 sponges – as well as four new species
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We think of sharks as solitary creatures. Lurking silently beneath the waves, each single toothy predator operating alone, coming together only temporarily as feasting or mating dictates. We may, however, be totally wrong. According to new research, sharks could be forming large social groups from which smaller numbers break off to forage, and then return
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Earthquakes come and go, often leaving a trail of devastation in their wake. What they don’t usually do, thankfully, is turn around immediately and come back for another pass. Except… it looks like they can, in exceedingly rare circumstances. In a new study, scientists have found evidence of an unusual and virtually unprecedented ‘boomerang’ earthquake
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A long-extinct lineage of insect, known fondly as the ‘hell ant’, has been discovered frozen in 99-million-year-old amber, with its scythe-like jaw still pinning its prey. According to scientists, this fierce predator is a newly identified species of prehistoric ant, known as Ceratomyrmex ellenbergeri, and it’s the first time we’ve ever seen a hell ant actively
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As if spiderwebs weren’t already icky enough, some spiders have gone and made them poisonous as well, a new study reveals. The unique properties of spiderwebs have long fascinated materials scientists. They’re constructed from one of the toughest known natural materials: lighter, yet five times stronger than steel, and bacteria resistant to boot. Spider silk is also
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Hundreds of elephants that died mysteriously in Botswana’s famed Okavango Delta probably succumbed to natural toxins, the wildlife department said Friday. ​The landlocked southern African country has the world’s largest elephant population, estimated to be around 130,000. Around 300 of them have been found dying since March. ​Authorities have so far ruled out anthrax, as
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Not all volcanoes are suddenly explosive. Some spew steady rivers of gloppy, slow-moving lava for millennia on end, like those in the Hawaiian or Galápagos islands. These are what volcanologist Michael Stock from Trinity College Dublin in Ireland calls the ‘boring’ volcanoes – yet underneath their monotonous exterior, lurks a bombshell that Stock and his colleagues
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Similar to orcas and pilot whales, the enigmatic beluga whale has long been assumed to live out their lives in pods based around close maternal ties. But new research shows their social structures go far beyond sibling quid-pro-quo. By combining DNA profiling with mathematical network analysis, researchers have found belugas (Delphinapterus leucas) across the Arctic hang
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When microbiologist Jared Leadbeater returned to his office for the first time in months after a work trip, he found something strange. A cream-coloured manganese carbonate (MnCO3) compound, coating glassware he’d left soaking in his sink, had turned dark. Something had stolen some of its electrons. “I thought, ‘What is that?'” said Leadbeater, a researcher at the