1. Animals

    Bad Breath: Insects zip air holes to cut oxygen risks

    The need to avoid overdosing on oxygen may drive certain insects to shut down their breathing holes periodically.

  2. Animals

    Crow Tools: Hatched to putter

    The New Caledonian crow is the first vertebrate to be shown definitively to have an innate tendency to make and use tools, according to researchers who doubled as bird nannies.

  3. Animals

    Sparrows learn song from pieces

    Young white-crowned sparrows don't have to hear a song straight through in order to learn it; playing the song in mixed-up paired phrases will do.

  4. Animals

    Mixing Genes: Bird immigrants make unexpected differences

    A pair of decades-long studies of birds moving into other birds' neighborhoods show that immigration can have a quirkier effect than predicted by the usual textbook view.

  5. Animals

    Paper wasps object to dishonest face spots

    Female wasps with dishonest faces, created by researchers who altered the wasps' natural status spots, have to cope with extra aggression.

  6. Animals

    Song Fights

    Birds settle many of their disputes by some rough-and-tough singing bouts, and recording equipment now lets researchers pick a song fight, too.

  7. Animals

    Grow-Slow Potion: Pheromone keeps bee youngsters youthful

    Researchers have identified a compound made by the senior workers in a honeybee colony that prolongs the time that teenage bees stay home babysitting.

  8. Animals

    Color at Night: Geckos can distinguish hues by dim moonlight

    The first vertebrate to ace tests of color vision at low light levels—tests that people flunk—is an African gecko.

  9. Animals

    Birds may inherit their taste for the town

    Tests switching cliff swallow nestlings to colonies of different sizes suggest the birds inherit their preference for group size.

  10. Animals

    Elephant Voices

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  11. Animals

    Poison Source: Toxic birds may get chemical from beetle

    When some poisonous New Guinea birds eat certain tiny beetles, they may be stocking up on the toxic substance they use to defend themselves.

  12. Animals

    Hide and See

    A new look at fish on coral reefs considers the possibility that all that riotous color has its inconspicuous side.