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New Story, Same Big Old Bird New Story, Same Big Old Bird

Madagascar’s history contains some truly enormous animals, from giant lemurs to giant tortoises. The island was also home to 10-foot-tall flightless birds, which sadly disappeared hundreds of years ago. But how we humans classified those birds was, well, a mess.

Diseased Ocean Microbes Could Be Messing With the Weather Diseased Ocean Microbes Could Be Messing With the Weather

Our oceans are brimming with microscopic phytoplankton—plant-like organisms that contribute significantly to marine diversity. Tiny though they are, these sea critters, when infected with a particular virus, may influence atmospheric processes such as cloud formation, according to new research.

Here's How an Absurd Primate Ended Up With Squirrel Teeth Here's How an Absurd Primate Ended Up With Squirrel Teeth

The aye-aye is about as ridiculous looking as a primate can get: beady yellow eyes, bat-like ears, and hands like horrible spiders. But perhaps its most interesting feature is its teeth.

These Australian Birds Learn About Danger by Listening to Their Friends These Australian Birds Learn About Danger by Listening to Their Friends

If you heard a bear roar for the first time but didn’t see the snarling beast, what would you think? Would you be scared? Maybe, but maybe not—the forest is full of strange noises. But what if, at the same time, one of your friends said, “Holy shit, I know all about that clawed monster and we need to get in the car”?

A Warming Antarctica Could Be Primed For Invasive Species A Warming Antarctica Could Be Primed For Invasive Species

In 2017, marine biologist Erasmo Macaya was shocked to discover bits of kelp on the remote Antarctic island of King George, hundreds of miles from its natural habitat. He knew he’d found something strange, but he wasn’t aware he’d just uncovered evidence of a journey spanning over 10,000 miles—one that could portend a…

Scientist Loses Distinguished Award After Acceptance Presentation Full of Racy Photos Scientist Loses Distinguished Award After Acceptance Presentation Full of Racy Photos

The Herpetologists’ League rescinded its annual Distinguished Herpetologist award after winner Dick Vogt showed racy photos during his acceptance address.

The Arctic's Metabolism Is Speeding Up, and That's Bad The Arctic's Metabolism Is Speeding Up, and That's Bad

The Arctic tundra keeps an enormous amount of carbon in check in its soils, but as the region warms, that carbon could start leaking back into the atmosphere in a big way. A new study adds fuel to this concern by showing that at the longest-monitored site in the Arctic, our planet’s metabolism is speeding up.

Looks Like Rock 'N' Roll Is Noise Pollution, After All Looks Like Rock 'N' Roll Is Noise Pollution, After All

Humans and their constant barrage of noise cause all sorts of problems for wildlife. But new research suggests noise pollution may do more than impact individual animals—it can potentially modify whole ecosystems by messing with how predators interact with their prey.

Bogong Moths Are First Insect Known to Use Earth’s Magnetism to Navigate at Night Bogong Moths Are First Insect Known to Use Earth’s Magnetism to Navigate at Night

Every spring in Australia, millions of bogong moths emerge from their pupae and embark on a 600-mile trip to the Australian Alps, the highest mountain range in Australia. For weeks, the insects rest during the day and take to the skies at night to reach the Alps, where they cram into caves and rest for the hot summer.

Madagascar's Toxic Toad Invasion Is Worse Than We Realized Madagascar's Toxic Toad Invasion Is Worse Than We Realized

Madagascar has an invasive toad problem, and new research suggests that fears about its ecological consequences are well-deserved. Almost every predator native to the island is likely sensitive to the toads’ dangerous toxins.

Pilot Whale Dies in Thailand After Being Found With 17 Pounds of Plastic Bags in Its Stomach Pilot Whale Dies in Thailand After Being Found With 17 Pounds of Plastic Bags in Its Stomach

A male pilot whale struggled for five days to stay alive in Thailand near the Malaysian border after rescuers found it with 17 pounds of plastic bags in its stomach, the Washington Post reported on Sunday, but it ultimately succumbed to its illnesses.

In a Single Generation, Alaska's Landscapes Have Transformed In a Single Generation, Alaska's Landscapes Have Transformed

As we continue to burn fossil fuels like there’s no tomorrow, an insidious transformation is taking place under our noses. Remote ecosystems in our planet’s far north are changing at a scale that’s hard to imagine.

Stick Bugs Could Be Thriving by Getting Pooped Out of Birds Stick Bugs Could Be Thriving by Getting Pooped Out of Birds

If you wanna thrive on this planet, you have to figure out a way to be fruitful and multiply. If you’re a stick bug, that could mean getting pooped out of a bird.

Australia Finishes Building World's Largest Cat-Proof Fence, Cats Accept the Challenge Australia Finishes Building World's Largest Cat-Proof Fence, Cats Accept the Challenge

Australia has completed the world’s longest cat-proof fence, because cats, an introduced species on the island continent, can be a huge freaking problem.

Incredible New NASA Images Show Puerto Rico's Forests Still Scarred From Hurricane Maria Incredible New NASA Images Show Puerto Rico's Forests Still Scarred From Hurricane Maria

We’re 10 days out from the 2018 hurricane season, but if a new NASA-led aerial survey is any indicator, Puerto Rico’s forests and wetlands still have a long way to go before they’ve recovered from the last one.

Lawns Are an Ecological Disaster Lawns Are an Ecological Disaster

Neil Tyson often conjectures that maybe aliens have concluded humans aren’t intelligent enough to contact. He’s probably referring to our capacity for war, but lawns may display our talent for fruitless carnage even better.

Invasive, Cannibalistic Tree Frogs Are Spreading Across the Gulf Coast Invasive, Cannibalistic Tree Frogs Are Spreading Across the Gulf Coast

It is a cannibalistic, fist-sized frog covered in a noxious mucous secretion that burns your eyes. Its affinity for human structures leads it to clog drains and short-out the utility switches in which they lurk. They are spreading through the U.S. and we can’t stop them. Several message board commenters report that…

Severed Chicken Head Experiment Shows We're Underestimating How Many Animals Are Killed by Cars

The shocking experience of hitting a deer on the road is occasionally followed by something you might find even stranger—passing pickup truck drivers asking if they can keep the corpse. 

San Diego’s Beaches Are Glowing With Bioluminescent Algae San Diego’s Beaches Are Glowing With Bioluminescent Algae

Forget catching rays on the beach. If you’re near San Diego, do yourself a favor and go check out the surf at night.

Are Jupiter and Venus Messing With Earth’s Climate? Are Jupiter and Venus Messing With Earth’s Climate?

Our planet is in a remarkably circular orbit around the Sun, but as new research points out, Earth’s orbit sometimes experiences a slight jolt, thanks to the combined gravitational influence of Jupiter and Venus. Incredibly, this cycle has been going on for at least 215 million years—and one scientist suggests it…

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