Nature

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A subterranean ‘conveyor belt’ of magma, pushing up to Earth’s surface for millions of years, was responsible for the longest stretch of erupting supervolcanoes ever seen on the planet, according to new research. Shifts in the seabed caused channels to form, through which the magma could flow freely, researchers say. This resulted in an extensive
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The successful eradication of the first nest of Asian giant hornets ever discovered in the US made headlines last week, and now scientists have shared new details on the technology and techniques they’re using to counter the encroaching menace of this invasive pest. The Asian giant hornet (Vespa mandarinia), often nicknamed the ‘murder’ hornet, is
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Scientists have examined the relationship between forest fungi and mature trees in greater detail than ever before. Turns out the more fungal colonies they’re connected to, the better the trees grow – an important discovery for forest management and climate change response. Previous research has shown how fungal organisms can support trees at the seedling
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Earth’s past has served up some super-sized beasties – from mega sharks to giant wombats. Birds are no exception. Palaeontologists have re-discovered a fossil of one of the largest flying avians ever found, tucked away safely in an old museum collection. “I love going to collections and just finding treasures there,” University of California palaeontologist
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Ram’s horn shells are small, delicate spiral structures beachcombers can commonly find throughout the world. Yet despite their ubiquity, the original owners of these shells are extremely elusive. Until now, we’ve never had footage of a single one in the wild. In the twilight zone of our oceans, at the tips of sunlight’s fingers, a remotely operated vehicle
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Monkeys, much like humans, could be engaged in the process of self-domesticating themselves, altering the course of their own evolution and physiology through the way they behave with one another, new research suggests. It’s long been recognised that domestication in animals promotes certain physical features that aren’t observed in their wild counterparts. This phenomenon –
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Matthew Kasson usually studies fungi that sicken trees and wipe out crops. But lately, he’s gotten into moldy desserts. A plant pathologist and mycologist at West Virginia University, Kasson tested how various types of fungi grow on marshmallow Peeps last year. So when he saw photos of strange-looking Twinkies on the Twitter account of former biology professor
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An international traveler just broke the world’s record for longest nonstop flight. Among birds that is. A bar-tailed godwit (Limosa lapponica) just flew for 11 days straight from Alaska to New Zealand, traversing a distance of 7,500 miles (12,000 kilometers) without stopping, breaking the longest nonstop flight among birds known to scientists, The Guardian reported.  Bar-tailed
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At first glance the apparently barren expanses of the Sahel and Sahara deserts feature little greenery, but detailed satellite imagery combined with computer deep learning has revealed a different picture. In fact, some 1.8 billion trees dot parts of the West African Sahara and Sahel deserts and so-called sub-humid zone, a previously uncounted bounty that
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The world’s most indestructible critter just got even more indestructible. Not content with its existing abilities to survive extreme temperatures, pressures, and the airless vacuum of space, the humble yet seemingly unkillable tardigrade looks to have unlocked another amazing superpower: the ability to withstand lethal doses of ultraviolet (UV) radiation. While we have observed tardigrades
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An international team of scientists has helped to unravel a longstanding mystery about how rare earth element deposits form underground – and sometimes seem to disappear without a trace. Rare earth elements (REEs) are a set of 17 valuable chemical elements that are incredibly important in manufacturing technological devices, being used as critical raw materials