Nature
Orthographic Processing Discovered in Pigeons
 
According to a new study by University of Otago researchers, pigeons (Columbidae) can learn to distinguish real words from non-words by visually processing their letter combinations.
 
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Nature
Domestic Cats Understand Cause-Effect Principle
 
According to a new study led by Kyoto University researcher Saho Takagi, domestic cats (Felis catus) really have a certain understanding for elements of physics and the cause-and-effect principle.
 
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Nature
Bird Brains Have More Neurons Than Mammal Brains
 
Birds have significantly more neurons packed into their brains than are stuffed into mammalian and even primate brains of the same mass, a new study finds.
 
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Nature
Macaques Use Stone Tools to Process Shellfish and Nuts
 
Long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis aurea) on Piak Nam Yai, one of Thailand's islands, are using stone tools to process and eat shellfish and nuts, a new study led by Dr. Michael Haslam from the University of Oxford shows.
 
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Nature
Archerfish Recognize Human Faces
 
According to a new study published in the journal Scientific Reports, fish can discriminate between human faces.
 
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Nature
Rosetta Detects Glycine And Phosphorus on Comet 67P
 
Rosetta - the ESA spacecraft that successfully landed a probe on a comet back in 2014 - detected two essential ingredients for life on 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko: glycine and phosphorus.
 
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Nature
Indochinese Tiger to be Reintroduced to Cambodia
 
Good news for the indochinese tiger (Panthera tigris corbetti): the highly threatened tiger species - which has been declared extinct in Cambodia a while back - is going to be reintroduced to the Mondulkiri protected forest in the far east of the country.
 
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Prairie Dogs Kill Interspecific Competitors
 
It looks like a plant-based diet of an animal no longer means it wouldn't be killing for food: researchers have observed for the first time that a herbivorous mammal is willingly killing interspecific competitors. To be more precise, the fierce, bloodthirsty creature we're talking about isn't a crocodile, raptor, cat or wolf... it's the innocent looking prairie dog (Cynomys leucurus)!
 
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Nature
Die Evolution steuern - dürfen wir das?
 
Mittels "Gene Drive" wollen Biochemiker das Erbgut ganzer Spezies verändern. Krankheiten wie Malaria oder Dengue sollen so ausgerottet werden. Aber dürfen wir das?
 
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Waterfall Climbing Cave Fish Walk Like Tetrapods
 
The waterfall climbing cave fish (Cryptotora thamicola) - a blind hillstream loach (Balitoridae) that can walk up rocks in fast-flowing water or on wet surfaces - walks and climbs waterfalls in a manner comparable to terrestrial vertebrates, a new study led by Dr. Brooke Flammang from New Jersey Institute of Technology finds.
 
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Ideonella sakaiensis: New Bacterium Metabolizes PET
 
Japanese biologists described a newfound species of bacterium (Ideonella sakaiensis 201-F6) that breaks down plastic by using two enzymes to hydrolyze poly[ethylene terephthalate] (PET).
 
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Nature
Tits Speak in Phrases, New Study Finds
 
Japanese tits (Parus minor) use syntax to communicate important compound messages, a new study led by Toshitaka Suzuki from Rikkyo University finds.
 
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Nature
Horses Can Read Human Facial Expressions
 
Domestic horses (Equus caballus) are able to distinguish between positive and negative human facial expressions, a new study done by researchers from the University of Sussex finds.
 
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Nature
Ravens Can Really Theorize About Minds of Others
 
In a new study on common ravens (Corvus corax) led by University of Vienna's Dr. Thomas Bugnyar, researchers show that ravens really take into account the visual access of others, even when they cannot see a conspecific.
 
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Nature
Venus Flytraps Can Count, New Study Finds
 
Venus flytraps (Dionaea muscipula) - carnivorous plants that sense the arrival of insects with trigger hairs - can count, a new study led by Dr. Rainer Hedrich of the Universität Würzburg finds.
 
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Nature
Dogs Recognize Human Emotions, new Study Finds
 
Researchers from the University of São Paulo and the University of Lincoln (UK) found that dogs (Canis familiaris) can recognize emotions in both dogs and humans by combining information from different senses.
 
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poly(GBL): Scientists Develop Completely Recyclable Polymer
 
Chemists at Colorado State University have developed a completely recyclable, biodegradable polymer, called poly(GBL).
 
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Nature
Tool Use Observed in Vasa Parrots
 
Scientists from the United Kingdom observed tool use by greater vasa parrots (Coracopsis vasa), birds from Madagascar and the Comoros.
 
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Mammalogists Describe New Genus And Species of Shrew Rat
 
Mammalogists from the USA, Indonesia and Australia have discovered a new genus and species of shrew rat in the north peninsula of Sulawesi Island, Indonesia: Hyorhinomys stuempkei.
 
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Nature
Why Animal Eyes Have Different Pupil Shapes
 
A new study led by Prof. Martin Banks from the University of California (Berkeley) sheds light on the question why animal eyes have different pupil shapes.
 
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Nature
African Golden Jackal = African Golden Wolf
 
A new genetic study led by Dr. Klaus-Peter Koepfli and Dr. Robert Wayne confirms what's been suggested for a while now: the African golden jackal is a distinct lineage from the Eurasian golden jackal (Canis aureus).
 
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Nature
Babblers Rearrange Sounds For New Meanings
 
A new study led by Dr. Sabrina Engesser from the University of Zurich reveals that the chestnut-crowned babbler from Australia is capable of creating new meaning in their language by rearranging combinations of meaningless sounds in its calls.
 
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Nature
Earth is Entering 6th Major Extinction
 
According to a new study led by Dr. Gerardo Ceballos from the Universidad Autónoma de México, Earth is currently entering its sixth major mass extinction event.
 
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Nature
Aluminium Causes 'Alzheimers' in Bumblebees
 
A new study led by Prof. Chris Exley of Keele University (UK) and his colleagues suggests that aluminium could be a critical factor in pollinator decline.
 
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Nature
Brown Thornbill Mimics Alarm Calls of Other Birds
 
A small passerine bird from Australia, called the brown thornbill (Acanthiza pusilla), has been observed to mimic hawk warning calls of neighboring bird species to protect its nest from predators such as the pied currawong (Strepera graculina).
 
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Nature
Nicotine Could Help Bees to Fight Parasites
 
According to a new study released in Proceedings B of Royal Society, honey bees and bumblebees could profit from growing plants like tobacco in terms of beating parasites.
 
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Nature
Crocodilians Love to Play and Have Fun
 
According to new research led by Prof. Vladimir Dinets from the University of Tennessee, who already discovered that crocodilians can use lures to hunt, these reptiles can be very playful characters too.
 
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Nature
Penguins Lack Three of Five Basic Tastes
 
According to genetic scientists led by Prof. Jianzhi Zhang from the University of Michigan, penguins (members of Spheniscidae) lack three out of five basic vertebrate tastes: sweet, umami and bitter.
 
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Nature
Chimpanzees use Learned Referential Food Calls
 
It appears that human language isn't as unique as many believe it to be: according to a new study led by Dr. Simon Townsend from the University of Zurich, chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) use learned referential food calls that are independent from those of other clans than their own.
 
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Nature
A Ray of Hope For The Bengal Tiger
 
According to the WWF, a new estimation report on bengal tigers offers a ray of hope for these highly threatened cats. While in 2010 the indian tigers numbered around 1'700, the most recent estimation reveals that the population has recovered to 2'226 animals.
 
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Nature
Pitcher Plants Deactivate Their Traps to Lure Prey
 
According to a new study led by Dr. Ulrike Bauer from the University of Bristol, carnivorous pitcher plants temporarily deactivate their trap surfaces in order to lure more ants to the trap.
 
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Nature
Songbirds Can 'Predict' Tornados Days Ahead
 
A team of ornithologists led by Dr. Henry Streby from the University of California, Berkeley observed golden-winged warblers (Vermivora chrysoptera) that left their regular breeding grounds days ahead of the arrival of several severe, tornado-producing storms.
 
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Marine Biologists Capture Video Footage of Deepsea Fish in Mariana Trench
 
Marine biologists from the University of Hawaii, Schmidt Ocean Institute and the University of Aberdeen have captured video footage of several deepsea fish in the Mariana Trench, including a new type of snailfish at depths of 8'145 meters – the greatest depth a fish has ever been observed.
 
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Nature
Electric Eels Manipulate Prey so it Can't Hide
 
A new study on electric eels (Electrophorus electricus) reveals that these fish don't just send electro shocks to paralyse their prey: they actually even 'remote control' prey that tries to hide from them.
 
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Nature
Common European Birds Are Declining Rapidly
 
According to a new study led by Dr. Richard Inger from the University of Exeter’s Environment and Sustainability Institute, Europe has lost 421 million birds compared to three decades ago.
 
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Hood Island Giant Tortoises Return to Self-Sustaining Population
 
News like these are rare in todays world, where mankind continuously destroys natural habitats of wildlife: the population of the Hood Island Giant Tortoise (Chelonoidis hoodensis) on the Galapagos island of Española has recovered from once 15 to now 1000 individuals. The population is self-sustaining, a new study says.
 
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Nature
The Origin of Tetrapods
 
A new study led by Dr. Hans Larsson of McGill University in Montreal shows what might have happened when the first marine vertebrates tried to walk out of the water.
 
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Nature
Red Kangaroos Use Tail as Fifth Leg
 
A new study on the red kangaroo (Macropus rufus) shows that the kangaroo tail propels and powers pentapedal locomotion.
 
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Nature
The Spotted Wren-Babbler Belongs to an Own Genus
 
Ornithologists led by Dr. Trevor Price of the University of Chicago have described a new family and genus of passerine birds: Elachura formosa (Elachuridae).
 
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Nature
Koalas Hug Trees For Thermoregulation
 
A new study led by Dr. Michael Kearney from the University of Melbourne finds that koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) rest in a tree-hugging position for thermoregulation purposes when heat waves occur.
 
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Nature
Eurasian Jays Are Capable of Desire-State-Attribution
 
According to a new study led by Prof. Nicola Clayton from the University of Cambridge, male eurasian jays (Garrulus glandarius) are able to disengage from their own current desires in order to feed their female partner the food that she wants.
 
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Nature
The Dingo is a Unique Species
 
According to a new study, the australian dingo (Canis dingo / Canis lupus dingo) must be seen as a distinct member of the dog family, not a kind of wild dog as previously believed.
 
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Nature
Study Links Zebra-Stripes to Flies
 
A new study led by Prof. Tim Caro from the University of California at Davis definitely nails zebra-striping down to the biting flies.
 
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Vogelflugsimulator Neeracherried
 
Das Birdlife-Naturzentrum Neeracherried beherbergt seit neuestem den ersten Vogelflugsimulator der Welt.
 
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Researchers Resurrect 30'000-Year-Old Virus
 
French scientists have discovered and resurrected a new genus of giant virus that was captured in 30'000-year-old ice from north-eastern Siberia, Russia: Pithovirus sibericum.
 
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Obesity is an Inflammatory Disease
 
Obesity is an inflammatory disease, a new rat study shows...
 
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Nature
Dogs Have Dedicated Voice Areas in Their Brains
 
Scientists from Hungary led by Dr. Attila Andics of MTA-ELTE’s Comparative Ethology Research Group find that dogs have dedicated voice areas in their brains, just as people do.
 
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Counting Whales by Satellite Imagery
 
Marine scientists from the UK propose a new method of identifying and counting whales: high resolution satellite imagery.
 
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Nature
Chinese Slaughterhouse Processes 600 Big Sharks a Year
 
According to a video-documented report by WildLifeRisk, there's a Chinese slaughterhouse processing at least 600 big sharks a year, including highly vulnerable species like the whale shark, basking shark and the great white.
 
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Nature
Anthrax-Bacteriophage Discovered
 
A newly discovered bacteriophage kills anthrax (Bacillus anthracis) and could open new ways to treat infections of the anthrax bacterium and its relatives.
 
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Nature
Dogs & Wolves Evolved From a Common Ancestor
 
A new genetic analysis of dog (Canis lupus familiaris), wolf (Canis lupus) and golden jackal (Canis aureus) suggests that dogs and wolves evolved (unlike what is generally believed) from a common ancestor between 11'000 and 16'000 years ago.
 
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Nature
Crocodilians Use Lures to Hunt Their Prey
 
A new study observed tool use by American alligator and mugger crocodiles, reporting the first known case of predators timing the use of lures to a seasonal behavior of prey.
 
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Nature
Reindeer Change Eye-Color With Seasons
 
According to a new study, the eye-color of reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) changes with the seasons from gold to blue, enhancing night vision capabilities.
 
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Nature
Convergent Molecular Evolution
 
A new study suggests that many genes in animals that developed the same abilities in fact mutated for the same sequences... for example in Bats and dolphins, of which each developed the remarkable ability to echolocate.
 
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Nature
Mysterious Dolphin-Dying in The USA
 
The rise of dolphin deaths puzzles U.S. scientists. Nearly 300 of the animals have died along the East Coast as of August 20.
 
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Nature
And They Can Swim
 
Biologists Renato Bender and Nicole Bender have now proven that apes can swim, disagreeing with the strong belief that missing swimming behavior marks one of the essential differences between humans and apes.
 
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Nature
Plants Sense Their Attackers, Defend Themselves
 
New research shows that even plants benefit from eavesdropping on chemical cues from their attackers: they "listen" to the environment and prepare for a response.
 
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Nature
Bottlenose Dolphin Memory Lasts Longer Than 20 Years
 
Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) have the longest lasting memory among non-humans, a new study by Dr. Jason Bruck of Chicago's Institute for Mind and Biology says.
 
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Nature
Lama & Alpaka: der bessere 'Herdenschutzhund'
 
Ein neuer Trend und Studien geben nun einen Lichtblick, was den Herdenschutz (und damit auch den Schutz der Wölfe) angeht: Lamas und Alpakas als Schutztiere.
 
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Nature
Bottlenose Dolphins Call Each Other by Names
 
Bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) use names to call each other, new research reveals.
 
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Nature
Thresher Sharks Use Tail-Slaps For Hunting
 
Scientists led by Dr. Simon Oliver from the Thresher Shark Research and Conservation Project have observed that pelagic thresher sharks hunt schooling sardines by rapidly slapping their tails hard enough to stun or kill several of the smaller fish at once.
 
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Nature
Tanimbar Corellas Solve Complex Problems
 
A new study led by Dr. Alice Auersperg from the Vienna University shows now that the Tanimbar Corella can solve complex mechanical problems that involve undoing a series of locks one after another.
 
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Nature
Komodo Dragon's Lethal Saliva is a Myth
 
According to a new study led by Dr. Bryan Fry from the University of Queensland, the oral flora of Komodo dragons does not differ from any other carnivore.
 
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New Bird Species from Cambodia
 
Ornithologists have discovered a new bird species in Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia: Orthotomus chaktomuk - the cambodian tailorbird.
 
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Nature
Genome of 700'000 Year Old Horse Sequenced
 
Scientists lead by Dr. Ludovic Orlando from the University of Copenhagen have sequenced and analyzed short pieces of DNA preserved in bones from an early middle Pleistocene horse that had been kept frozen for the last 700'000 years in permafrost in Canada.
 
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Nature
Alcohol and Sleep Linked to Cognitive Performance
 
A new study reveals that users who enjoy one or two alcoholic drinks a day tend to perform better on cognitive tasks than teetotallers and heavier drinkers, same as that the optimal sleep time seems to be seven hours, with performance worsening for every hour of sleep lost or added.
 
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Nature
Cheetahs Hunt at Moderate Speeds
 
A new study on cheetahs in the wild reveals that these predators actually only run at moderate speeds when hunting.
 
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Nature
Superb Lyrebirds Coordinate Song With Dance
 
Biologists lead by Anastasia Dalziell of the Australian National University have found that male Superb Lyrebirds (Menura novaehollandiae) coordinate song with dance as part of an elaborate mating ritual.
 
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Nature
How Most Birds Lost Their Phallus
 
About 97% of birds sport little or nothing in the way of a phallus, despite reproduction by internal fertilization. A new study published in Current Biology shows now that the development of chicken penises is cut short by signals that promote cell death.
 
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Nature
Rodrigues Solitaire's Musket Ball Was a Weapon
 
Dr. Julian Hume and Dr. Lorna Steel from the Natural History Museum (UK) studied the 'musket balls' of Solitaires, and they found that they were indeed a weapon which was not found in any other bird species.
 
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Nature
Liquid Mammoth Blood Found in Russia
 
Russian scientists claim to have found liquid mammoth blood and 'intact' muscle tissue in eastern siberia. The discovery was made inside a carcass of a female mammoth that has died between 10'000 and 15'000 years ago.
 
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Nature
The Genetic Basis of White Tigers
 
A new study, done by a team of genetic scientists from Peking University in Beijing, reveals what is responsible for the unusual coloration of white tigers: the pigment gene SLC45A2, which fails to produce the red color, but leaves the black pigments intact.
 
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Nature
Modern Coelacanth-Genome Decoded
 
An international team of scientists led by Chris Amemiya has decoded the genome of the African coelacanth.
 
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Nature
Global Warming is Expanding Antarctic Sea Ice
 
While the north pole's sea ice shrunk substantially over the past three decades, the antarctic sea ice expanded considerably over the same period of time. Richard Bintanja and his colleagues published a new study now, explaining this polar paradox.
 
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Nature
Borneo's Sumatra Rhino not Extinct yet
 
WWF's Indonesia monitoring team found fresh rhino-like trails on Borneo, with a follow-up survey confirming these findings.
 
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Nature
Giant Squid is One Species
 
A new DNA study on the 'elusive' giant squid (Architeuthis) reveals that it's the same species which is distributed world-wide.
 
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Nature
Amur Leopard Population Rises by 50% in Five Years
 
According to a WWF-report, the critically endangered amur leopard (Panthera pardus orientalis) is recovering fast, thanks to efforts made through WWF and the Kremlin.
 
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Nature
3 Billion Year Old Antibiotic-Resistance Proteins Discovered
 
Scientists have resurrected up to 3 billion year old proteins that are ancestors of the enzymes (beta-lactamases) that enable today’s antibiotic-resistant bacteria of defending themselves against huge doses of penicillins, cephalosporins and other drugs.
 
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Nature
Dung Beetles Navigate by The Stars
 
Biologists - led by Dr Marie Dacke of Lund University in Sweden - have discovered that African dung beetles use the Sun, the Moon, and the starry sky for orientation.
 
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Nature
Rapid Retreat of Sundarbans Mangrove Forests
 
One of the most important remaining habitats for endangered species (especially the bengal tiger) seems to retreat massively, year by year: the Sundarbans mangrove forests.
 
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Überfischung legalisiert durch EU-Fischereiminister
 
Gemäss dem aktuellsten WWF-Bericht wird die Überfischung im gesamten EU-Raum durch die Fischereiminister legalisiert.
 
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Nature
Sunda Clouded Leopard Captured on Video
 
It's one of the rarest and shyest cats cats in the world, and it hasn't even been classified before 2006: the sunda clouded leopard (Neofelis diardi). Now, a biologist and wildlife videographer managed to capture the first closeup video of this rare cat.
 
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Nature
The Vanishing Tiger of Bandhavgarh
 
A tiger was electrocuted on Monday after poachers laid live wires between the Majhgavan nursery and the famous Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve. And that just shortly after a tigress has been trapped and killed in the same state... a tigress that followed on the electrocution of another tiger back in June.
 
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Nature
Why Lonesome George Remains 'Lonesome George'
 
For those who don't know Lonesome George: he was a galapagos tortoise, actually the last one of its kind (Chelonoidis nigra abingdoni), which died the 24th of June this year. But ...
 
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Nature
Wren-Chicks Chirp Password to be Fed
 
Fairy-wrens teach their eggs a secret password that later allows the nestlings to be fed by the parents. If the chicks don't chirp the 'password', they won't be fed.
 
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Nature
Spalax Cure Cancer Themselves
 
Blind mole rats are cancer-proof. Scientists at the University of Rochester have now examined how spalax fight the disease.
 
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