Animals, Biology, News

Biologists discover two new marsupial species that have sex until they die. Ironically, they’re endangered

Antechinus swainsonii (formerly known as Antechinus swainsoni). Reproduction Photo by Marnie Rawlinson, Cathy Accurso and Ken Walker © Museum Victoria

A team of biologists from Queensland discovered two new species belonging to a marsupial genus known for mating until it literally dies. The antechinus marsupials look like pouched mice or shrews, but as cute as they may look, they’re real beasts in the sack. Typically, once the breeding season starts, males embark in vicious sexual orgies 14 hours at a time, and it doesn’t stop for two or so weeks. At the very end, the males suffers from diseases, internal bleeding, their fur falls off and some get ulcer. Ultimately, all that whole lotta love kills them, and rather painful too. Though they’ve just been discovered, the new antechinus species are considered endangered by the researchers.

Climate, News

French Minister: US Congress Won’t Approve Climate Deal

Laurent Fabius' statement was spot on - with the volatile situation in Congress, it seems highly unlikely that a climate deal would pass US Congress - alternative solutions need to be found. Image via Telegraph.

The entire world is expecting the results of the Paris Climate Conference – will a global treaty finally be reach, or will it be another round of discussions and promises with no pro-active solutions? The French Foreign minister believes that if we are to reach a climate deal, it has to be phrased in such a way that it doesn’t require approval from the US Congress. Laurent Fabius said:

Environment, Feature Post

Longest floating structure might clean the oceans

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Boyan Slat, 20-year old founder and CEO of The Ocean Cleanup announced the world’s first passive system that will clean-up plastic pollution. The 2,000 floating array will be launched in 2016. We tend to think of oceans as infinite systems, and it might seem that any pollution we dump into them will just get diluted to neglectable levels, but we’re

Animals, Biology, News

Giant sawfish exhibit virgin birth, reproducing without sex

Image via Dutch Shark Society.

A routine DNA test came up with some extremely surprising results – female sawfish in Florida reproduce without mating with males. This is among the very few times this process was observed in vertebrates.

Climate, Feature Post

How would the world look like without ice?

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There are more than five million cubic miles of ice on Earth, and throughout our planet’s history, there have been periods with both more, and less ice. We tend to think of ice as an immovable reality but in truth, planetary ice is quite volatile. With continuously rising temperatures, melting ice and rising sea levels become a reality we have

Art, Environment, Feature Post

Artist Transforms Junk Into Beautiful Street Art to Remind us of Pollution

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Portuguese artist Artur Bordalo’s (aka Bordalo II) creates artwork from junk, but that doesn’t make it any less cute! He uses only junk to bring these animals to life, each of them a larger-than-life version of their biological versions. Each statue carries with it a powerful message, because each animal is built from materials responsible for its decline. Bordalo II wants to

Climate, News

The 2C global warming goal may be buried in Paris

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The plan for the United Nations Climate Change Conference, or COP21, was to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, from all the nations of the world. But tackling global warming simply doesn’t seem to be a priority for the governments of most countries, and the goal of limiting global warming to 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) seems less and less likely.

Animals, Biology

Invasive species still hitch a ride on 2011 Japanese tsunami

Just one of the boats that the 2011 tsunami sent to the Washington coast. Image via Komonews.

The 2011 Japan tsunami was so massive that even today, debris from it keeps washing up in Washington – and that might be a problem. Scientists report that along with the debris, invasive species are also make their way to the USA.

Animals, News, World Problems

Third of endangered saiga antelope population killed by unidentified disease

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Some 120,000 critically endangered saiga antelopes were killed by a mysterious disease since mid-May in Kazakhstan, where 90% of the population lives. A third of the endangered saigas died in this sudden lapse that is still leaving veterinarians and researchers in the area scratching their heads. In the past two decades, the long-nosed antelopes went through a number of similar tragedies, both at the hand of disease and over-hunting.

Climate, News

New simulation lab will help researchers better understand hurricanes

Hurricane Isabel, as seen from the International Space Station in September 2003. Image via Wikipedia.

A lab from the University of Miami will be able to reproduce hurricane conditions on demand, empowering researchers to study hurricanes in a novel way.