The trillions of bacteria that live on us and in us—otherwise known as our microbiomes—are vital to our health in ways we’re just beginning to understand. Now scientists have discovered the most diverse collection of bodily bacteria ever, in a remote Amazonian tribe of southern Venezuela. »
It may not have been the largest terror bird on the block, but still, an encounter with Llallawavis scagliai was no laughing matter. To add to the fearsome sight of its bone crushing beak, scientists now suspect this terror bird let out exceptionally low-pitched cries when it encountered prey. »
Four hundred and fifty five light years away sits a newborn star that bears striking resemblance to our Sun. It’s awash in a sea of complex organic molecules which could, one day, coalesce to form proteins, nucleic acids, even life itself.
When it comes to birds, males—with their bright feathers, extra accessories, and impressive mating displays—tend to get all the attention. But for many birds, such as the Choco Toucan pictured above, brilliant plumage has nothing to do with sex, and everything to do with survival. »
Over fifty years ago, physicist Freeman Dyson proposed an awesome, if slightly insane, idea: That an advanced alien civilization might construct a massive, energy-harvesting sphere around its star, and bunk up inside. »
More than 250 million years before the first dinosaur, the most fearsome killers on Earth may have been lobsters. Yawunik kootenayi, a common ancestor to spiders, shrimp and butterflies, was a predatory "lobster-like" creature that ruled the seas half a billion years ago. »
Do you want to read The Works of the Earls of Rochester and Roscommon, a volume of eighteenth century poetry? No? Well, other people did. They read it so repeatedly, and recommended it to their friends so assiduously, that it was reprinted over twenty times throughout the eighteenth century. In later years, it was… »
Orbiting a nearby red dwarf star called Gliese 581 are 6 planets. One of them is a rocky ball, bigger than Earth, in the "habitable zone" where water is liquid and temperatures are human-friendly. It's possible we could live there. »