Animals

  1. Atlantic puffin
    Life

    Stick-toting puffins offer the first evidence of tool use in seabirds

    Puffins join the ranks of tool-using birds after researchers document two birds using sticks to groom, a first for seabirds.

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  2. puffadder shyshark
    Life

    Ocean acidification could degrade sharks’ tough skin

    Nine weeks of exposure to acidic seawater corroded the toothlike denticles that make up a puffadder shyshark’s skin, a small experiment found.

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  3. koalas
    Life

    Koalas aren’t primates, but they move like monkeys in trees

    With double thumbs and a monkey-sized body, an iconic marsupial climbs like a primate.

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  4. Amazon fires
    Animals

    A year of big numbers startled the world into talking about nature

    One million species are at risk. Three billion birds have been lost. Plus surges in Amazon burning.

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  5. rodeo ant
    Animals

    Texas has its own rodeo ant queens

    New species of rodeo ants, riding on the backs of bigger ants, turned up in Austin, Texas.

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  6. honeybee
    Animals

    A biochemist’s extraction of data from honey honors her beekeeper father

    Tests of proteins in honey could one day be used to figure out what bees are pollinating and which pathogens they carry.

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  7. whale
    Animals

    Why some whales are giants and others are just big

    Being big helps whales access more food. But how big a whale can get is influenced by whether it hunts for individual prey or filter-feeds.

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  8. Mesophithirus engeli
    Paleontology

    Licelike insects munched on dinosaur feathers around 100 million years ago

    Fossils in amber push the origin of feather-feeding insects back over 50 million years, a study finds.

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  9. ocean glider
    Oceans

    Stealthy robots with microphones could improve maps of ocean noise

    Recordings from underwater microphones on stealthy robotic gliders could create a better “soundscape” of noises throughout the ocean, researchers say.

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  10. penguins
    Science & Society

    ‘A Polar Affair’ delves into a centurylong cover-up of penguin sex

    In a new book, Lloyd Spencer Davis seeks to understand why an Antarctic explorer kept some of his penguin observations a secret.

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  11. Origolestes lii
    Life

    An ancient critter may shed light on when mammals’ middle ear evolved

    Rare skeletons are helping to pin down the evolution of mammals’ three middle ear bones, known popularly as the hammer, anvil and stirrup.

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  12. devil worm
    Animals

    Devil worm genes hold clues for how some animals survive extreme heat

    Devil worms have many extra copies of genes tied to heat stress and cell death, which may help the critters survive deep underground, a study finds.

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