News in Brief

  1. right whales
    Animals

    Southern right whale moms and calves may whisper to evade orcas

    Mother-calf whale pairs call to each other quietly to stay in touch while avoiding attracting the attention of predators, a study suggests.

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  2. Elektorornis chenguangi
    Paleontology

    An ancient bird found encased in amber had a bizarrely long toe

    A 99-million-year-old fossil holds a bird with an oddly long toe, which might have helped the critter hook hard-to-reach dinners.

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  3. Philistine child
    Anthropology

    Ancient DNA reveals the origins of the Philistines

    A mysterious Biblical-era population may have fled Bronze Age calamities.

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  4. T cells
    Health & Medicine

    Rogue immune cells can infiltrate old brains

    Killer T cells get into older brains where they may make mischief, a study in mice and postmortem human brain tissue finds.

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  5. Paris
    Climate

    Europe’s latest heat wave has been linked to climate change

    Global warming made the June heat wave at least five times more likely to happen.

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  6. colored blocks
    Health & Medicine

    Vision cells can pull double duty in the brain, detecting both color and shape

    Neurons in a brain area that handles vision fire in response to more than one aspect of an object, countering earlier ideas, a study in monkeys finds.

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  7. illustration of Dragonfly mission to Titan
    Planetary Science

    With Dragonfly, NASA is heading back to Saturn’s moon Titan

    NASA’s next robotic mission to explore the solar system is headed to Saturn’s largest moon, Titan.

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  8. Nazca lines
    Archaeology

    Peru’s famous Nazca Lines may include drawings of exotic birds

    Pre-Inca people depicted winged fliers from far away in landscape art.

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  9. Massospora cicadina
    Life

    These fungi drug cicadas with psilocybin or amphetamine to make them mate nonstop

    Massospora fungi use a compound found in magic mushrooms or an amphetamine to drive infected cicadas to mate and mate and mate.

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  10. 51 Pegasi
    Astronomy

    A new algorithm finds nearby stars that could host hidden worlds

    An algorithm dubbed “Netflix for exoplanets” identified more than 350 stars that, based on their chemistry, might have planets orbiting out of sight.

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  11. Washington state’s Hot Lake
    Life

    Dried Earth microbes could grow on Mars with just a little humidity

    Showing that salt-loving bacteria can double their numbers after absorbing damp air has implications for life on other planets.

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  12. honeybees
    Animals

    U.S. honeybees had the worst winter die-off in more than a decade

    Colonies suffered from parasitic, disease-spreading Varroa mites. Floods and fire didn’t help.

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