Biology

A 14-year-old girl invented a cheap water purifying system that could help millions

Deepika Kurup, a 14 year-old girl who was awarded the  $25,000 prize in The Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge, is living proof of how nurturing talent can help young, bright people go very far. While still in the 8th grade, Kurup viable solution for the global water crisis and invented a water purification system that […]

Friends are family: study shows we share more genes with friends than strangers

We often cherish our closest friends as if they were family. Well, this isn’t actually too far from the truth, considering a new study from the University of California, San Diego, and Yale University found friends who aren’t biologically related resemble each other genetically. In fact, on average friends are as “related” as fourth cousins […]

An animal that was thought extinct for the past 4 million years has resurfaced

Talk about a comeback! An international group of scientists report they’ve encountered evidence that suggests a long lost marine animal whose lineage can be traced back hundreds of millions of years ago and which was thought extinct for the past 4 million years is actually alive and well. The findings were made in Picton, New […]

Hundreds of amphibian species all over the world killed by fungus infection, but there may yet be hope

Since the 1990s, biologists have witnessed a sudden demise of amphibian species. So far, hundreds of species have become extinct after becoming plagued by a wretched fungus. From mountain lakes to meadow puddles, no matter the continent, frogs are dying everywhere – a demise that might spell an ecological meltdown. There may still be hope yet, according […]

Biggest flying bird discovered: twice the size of the royal albatross

Scientists have identified the fossilized remains of what they believe to be the the largest flying bird. The species, now long extinct, had an estimated wingspan of 7-8 meters (20-24 feet) – twice as big as the royal albatross, today’s largest flying bird. Interestingly enough, the bird was initially unearthed in 1983 near Charleston, South […]

Gambling Monkeys believe in “winning streaks”

Humans tend to “see” patterns in winning and losing streaks in situations which are actually random. A new study has shown that this “hot hand bias”also occurs in non-human monkeys. “Human decision-makers often exhibit the hot-hand phenomenon, a tendency to perceive positive serial autocorrelations in independent sequential events. The term is named after the observation […]

How cockroaches make democratic groupd decisions

For cockroaches, it seems, collaboration comes naturally: when 50 cockroaches are presented with 3 shelters which can only host 40 (each), they’ll split into two groups, leaving the third shelter empty. Basically, they find a way to split themselves equally, in a democratic fashion. In cockroach groups, there are no members higher than others – […]

Kangaroos use their tail as an extra leg when walking

Professor Terry Dawson of the University of New South Wales and colleagues found that kangaroos use their tail as an extra leg when walking, actively participating with energy in the process, instead of using it like a strut as some literature would had us believe. The findings might prove to be important for robotics applications. Hoppity hop […]

Muscle-driven tiny biobots can walk on command

Rashid Bashir, the head of bioengineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is one of the pioneers leading a new field of robotics which deals with bio-bots. These tiny robots, less than a centimeter in size, combine biological and mechanical components to meet a certain purpose. Recently, Bashir and his team demonstrated a bio-bot […]

Chimp fashion? For the first time, scientists observe a fad in the animal world

It’s a trend that has taken a chimp group by storm: a blade of grass dangling from an ear. All the cool chimps are doing it and, well, you’re not cool if you don’t do it! It’s the first time when chimps have created a tradition with no practical and discernible purpose – in other words, […]

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