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Earth & Environment

Cities can break up passing storms, plus wild boar contamination, altered spider sense and more in this week’s news

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12:33pm, May 28, 2011
Side of fungal compounds with wild boar
The industrial age has exposed people to numerous chemical contaminants, but the ancient tradition of feasting on wild boar did as well. When carrying out routine food-inspection tests on wild boar meat, German researchers detected unusually high levels of a previously unknown substance from a class of halogenated compounds that typically persists in the environment and the food chain. Further investigation revealed the suspicious compound is made by a mushroom that boars delight in, the researchers report in an upcoming Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. The team concludes that humans have likely been exposed to this contaminant for as long as they’ve been eating wild boar, an ancient practice that continues today. —Rachel Ehrenberg


Warming shifts forest’s carbon stores
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