Animals

  1. male greater double-collared sunbird
    Animals

    Sunbirds’ dazzling feathers are hot, in both senses of the word

    Iridescent feathers reflect vivid colors. But they also become scorching hot in the sunlight, a study finds.

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  2. titmouse bird plucking fur from a fox
    Life

    Scientists have a new word for birds stealing animal hair

    Dozens of YouTube videos show birds stealing hair from dogs, cats, humans, raccoons and even a porcupine — a behavior rarely documented by scientists.

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  3. a fox squirrel in a tree
    Animals

    Squirrels use parkour tricks when leaping from branch to branch

    Squirrels navigate through trees by making rapid calculations to balance trade-offs between branch flexibility and the distance between tree limbs.

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  4. A brown widow spider crawling along a garter snake trapped in its web against a white wall
    Animals

    Snake-eating spiders are surprisingly common

    Spiders from at least 11 families feed on serpents many times their size, employing a host of tactics to turn even venomous snakes into soup.

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  5. researcher releasing a great hammerhead shark into the ocean
    Animals

    A hammerhead shark baby boom near Florida hints at a historic nursery

    Finding an endangered shark nursery in a vast ocean is like finding a needle in a haystack. But that’s just what scientists did near Miami.

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  6. picture of a green caterpillar-like creature walking across a leaf
    Animals

    Viruses can kill wasp larvae that grow inside infected caterpillars

    Proteins found in viruses and some moths can protect caterpillars from parasitoid wasps seeking a living nursery for their eggs.

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  7. illustration of a polar bear standing on a cliff as a rock falls toward a walrus standing on a rock below
    Animals

    Polar bears sometimes bludgeon walruses to death with stones or ice

    Inuit reports of polar bears using tools to kill walruses were historically dismissed as stories, but new research suggests the behavior does occur.

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  8. close-up of a tardigrade from above
    Life

    Near-invincible tardigrades may see only in black and white

    A genetic analysis suggests that water bears don’t have light-sensing proteins to detect ultraviolet light or color.

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  9. an anole lizard
    Animals

    How some lizards breathe underwater

    Researchers have figured out how some anole lizards can stay underwater for as long as 18 minutes.

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  10. polar bear
    Life

    ‘Wild Souls’ explores what we owe animals in a human-dominated world

    The new book Wild Souls explores the ethical dilemmas of saving Earth’s endangered animals.

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  11. Venus's-flower-basket sea sponge
    Animals

    How intricate Venus’s-flower-baskets manipulate the flow of seawater

    Simulations show that a deep-sea glass sponge’s intricate skeleton creates particle-trapping vortices and reduces the stress of rushing water.

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  12. a Xerces blue butterfly against a black background
    Animals

    This butterfly is the first U.S. insect known to go extinct because of people

    A 93-year-old Xerces blue specimen’s DNA shows that the butterfly is a distinct species, making it the first U.S. insect humans drove to extinction.

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