Biology


- A 193-million-year old nesting ground with more than 100 dinosaur eggs offers evidence they lived in herds Paleontologists found 100 eggs and 80 skeletons from a dinosaur called Mussaurus at a nesting ground in Patagonia. The fossils were grouped into clusters of adults and juveniles, suggesting Mussaurus lived in herds. The nesting ground is 193 million years old, making it the earliest evidence of dinosaur herds. A 193-million-year-old nesting ground containing more than 100 dinosaurs eggs is ... [Read More]


- Western monarch butterflies have been vanishing. This week, a sanctuary saw thousands return. Before the sun was up Thursday, a team from the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History arrived at its monarch sanctuary, with binoculars and data sheets in hand. Last year, no butterfly clusters were observed at this site in Northern California, so Natalie Johnston, a community science coordinator at the museum, said she wasn’t sure what to expect. Two weeks ago, the team observed a single butterfly ... [Read More]


- In the 6 million years since our ancestors first branched off from our ancient primate relatives, the volume of the human brain has nearly quadrupled. What many people don't realize, however, is that sometime after the last ice age, that very brain actually began to shrink. The result is that today, our brains are slightly smaller than those of early humans living 100,000 years ago, and yet no one really knows when or why this happened. Now, a biological anthropologist, a behavioral ecologist, ... [Read More]


- Global heating affects fertility, immunity and behaviour – often with lethal results – and the problems are getting worse About this content Last modified on Fri 22 Oct 2021 07.57 EDT S weating, headaches, fatigue, dehydration – the ways heat exhaustion affects the human body are well documented. As temperatures inch up year by year we need to change the way we live, creating cooler places that provide refuge from heat. But what about wildlife? We know mass die-offs are becoming more ... [Read More]


- The Cretaceous-era fossil suggests that crabs left the sea some 50 million years earlier than scientists previously thought A team of scientists has discovered the oldest aquatic animal preserved in amber. The tiny crab encased in tree resin is over 100 million years old, dating back to the Cretaceous era , according to the study published this week in Science Advances . The find—the most complete fossilized crab ever seen—is helping researchers piece together when the crustaceans began to ... [Read More]


- Researchers say years of civil war and poaching in Mozambique have led to a greater proportion of elephants that will never develop tusks. Christina Larson WASHINGTON (AP) — A hefty set of tusks is usually an advantage for elephants, allowing them to dig for water, strip bark for food and joust with other elephants. But during episodes of intense ivory poaching, those big incisors become a liability. Now researchers have pinpointed how years of civil war and poaching in Mozambique have led to ... [Read More]

Source: huffpost.com

- Scientists attempting to bring back the near-extinct northern white rhinoceros announced Thursday they would stop harvesting eggs from one of two remaining live specimens involved in an unprecedented breeding programme. Citing risk and safety reasons , scientific consortium Biorescue said it had decided to retire the older of the two females, 32-year-old Najin, as a donor of egg cells for the ambitious project. This leaves Najin's daughter Fatu—the only other northern white rhino on ... [Read More]

Source: phys.org

- A northern white rhino is retiring from an international breeding program — and it’s not good news for her species. Najin, 32, is one of the world’s last two northern white rhinos . She lives under guard in a Kenya nature preserve with her daughter Fatu, who is now the only one left in a desperate global effort to save the species from extinction. “Weighing up risks and opportunities for the individuals and the entire species rendered this decision without an alternative,” BioRescue, ... [Read More]


- Conservation Ivory Poaching Blamed for Rise of Tuskless African Elephants Elephants without tusks are far less likely to be killed by poachers, in what is becoming a distinct—but possibly temporary—evolutionary advantage. An investigation into the effects of ivory poaching has led to the discovery of an increasing number of tuskless female African elephants —the consequences of which aren’t entirely clear. “The selective killing of species that bear anatomical features such as tusks ... [Read More]

Source: gizmodo.com

- Evolution in action The Mozambique civil war created tuskless elephants The genetics of how this happened have just been unravelled E VOLUTION ENSURES that animals are well-adapted to their circumstances. Sometimes, as with predators and prey, those circumstances include the behaviour of other creatures. And, as a paper just published in Science describes, that includes the behaviour of human beings, which can force drastic changes on a species in an evolutionary eyeblink. Shane ... [Read More]


- Scientists thought they found footprints of the Triassic period's "largest meat-eating dinosaur." Nope. The steps belonged to a tender vegetarian. In the 1960s, a crew of Australian coal miners stumbled on an alarming underground sight: dinosaur tracks. The fossilized footprints' general shape eventually led experts to paint the creature responsible for them as a vicious, predatory, "raptor-like" monster. But a new in-depth analysis, published Thursday in the journal Historical Biology , ... [Read More]

Source: cnet.com

- 5 remarkable reptile facts herpetologists want you to know Scientists share their wackiest, weirdest and most interesting reptile facts. The prehensile tailed skink (Prasinohaema prehensicauda) from the highlands of Papua New Guinea. Credit: Christopher Austin More on: reptile Today is Reptile Awareness Day ! We reached out to our lizard-loving scientist friends to learn their favourite reptile facts to bring them to you to celebrate the day. 1. Big and venomous The Komodo dragon is venomous! ... [Read More]


- The dinosaur is a chimera. Some parts of this complex assemblage are the result of biological evolution. But others are products of…By Lukas Rieppel T he dinosaur is a chimera. Some parts of this complex assemblage are the result of biological evolution. But others are products of human ingenuity, constructed by artists, scientists, and technicians in a laborious process that stretches from the dig site to the naturalist’s study and the museum’s preparation lab. The mounted skeletons that ... [Read More]

Source: nautil.us

- Researchers in China have found the fossilized remains of a fearsome sea scorpion. The creature grew to over 3 feet in length and had an enlarged back limb covered with an arrangement of spines used for ensnaring prey. The new creature is part of the mixopterid family of the eurypterids, a group of species known for their specialized front arms or "pedipalps." This family of sea scorpions more closely reflects what we think of as the traditional image of a scorpion, with a large tail and ... [Read More]

Source: newsweek.com

- Excavations at a site in northern Israel are at the heart of a debate about the species’ migrations On a searing hot summer day at ‘Ubeidiya, an ancient site in northern Israel, an undulating expanse of dry grasses and thistles stretches into the distance. Far on the horizon, the mountains of Jordan shimmer through the haze; nearby stand cultivated olive groves and a date palm plantation. Just south of the Sea of Galilee, and up a rocky dirt road, ‘Ubeidiya seems like a secret, with no ... [Read More]


- Grotesque little creatures with armor-like horns, misshapen torsos and some with spikes protruding from their sides are lurking in the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. They appear in an array of oranges and blues, though several are see-through. Some appear part alien and part Hunchback of Notre Dame. They are the visions of which nightmares are made. But to marine scientist Heather Bracken-Grissom, they are mostly shrimp. Some are lobsters. She says they're all larvae. There have been some ... [Read More]

Source: phys.org