Nature

Jawless fish brains more similar to humans than thought

Jawless fish brains more similar to humans than thought

The brain structures of jawless fish may not be as different from jawed vertebrates - including humans - as earlier thought, Japanese researchers have discovered.

While jawed vertebrates share many developmental characteristics that have remained unchanged for millennia, the findings suggest that complex divisions in the vertebrate brain first appeared before the evolution of jaws, more than 500 million years ago.

Organic ag could help offset climate-related food insecurity

Organic ag could help offset climate-related food insecurity

With global warming taking a toll on agriculture, organic farming could be the key to feeding the world sustainably, according to a new study.

Washington State University researchers have concluded that feeding a growing global population with sustainability goals in mind is possible. Their review of hundreds of published studies provides evidence that organic farming can produce sufficient yields, be profitable for farmers, protect and improve the environment and be safer for farm workers.

Horses can read human emotions: Study

Horses can read human emotions: Study

Horses can read human facial expressions and distinguish between happy and angry faces, scientists have found for the first time.

Psychologists studied how 28 horses reacted to seeing photographs of positive versus negative human facial expressions.

When viewing angry faces, horses looked more with their left eye, a behaviour associated with perceiving negative stimuli.

Venus flytrap can ‘count’ and track prey: study

Venus flytrap can ‘count’ and track prey: study

Venus flytraps, plants best known for hunting tiny creatures like bugs, actually “count” the number of times a bug brushes against sensory hairs on its leaves, a fresh study published in the journal Current Biology revealed.

The carnivorous plants, known to scientists as Dionaea muscipula, allure insects with sweet nectar, but as the bugs approach the plants open their traps. To avoid false alarms, the plants count how many times a bug brush up against the sensitive hairs or filaments on their leaves.

Newly-discovered species of shark appropriately given common name ‘Ninja Lanternshark’

Newly-discovered species of shark appropriately given common name ‘Ninja Lanternshark’

A newly-found species of shark has jet black skin and a dim glow, and it is a master of stealth. It has been given a common appropriate name ‘Ninja Lanternshark’. It lives in waters from 2,742 feet to 4,734 feet, or 836 to 1443 meters, deep, in the Pacific Ocean, off the coast of Central America.

A team of scientists have detailed the new found shark in a study carried by the Journal of the Ocean Science Foundation. One of the scientists in the team said that the animal owes its different name to Vicky Vásquez’s young cousins.

Mother Nature Celebrated Christmas This Year with Full Moon after 40 Years

Mother Nature Celebrated Christmas This Year with Full Moon after 40 Years

On the eve of Christmas season, when the whole world was busy in welcoming the God father, our mother nature too was busy in making the day even more special. Santa’s sleigh was not the only object seen in the sky on Christmas Day instead the Friday’s lunar show was the first full moon on Christmas in past 38 years. The full moon illuminated Christmas this week gained attraction from people all over the world. The full moon was covered by clouds with in a big chunk of the United States, but in places with clear skies it was quite the holiday treat.

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Rapid ohia death hits hundreds of thousands of ohia lehua trees on Hawaii

Rapid ohia death hits hundreds of thousands of ohia lehua trees on Hawaii

A tree that’s critical to Hawaii’s water supply, endangered native birds and Hawaiian cultural traditions such as hula, has been getting increasingly killed by a newly found fungus. Rapid ohia death named disease has hit the Big Island’s hundreds of thousands of ohia lehua trees.

It has reportedly affected 50% of the ohia trees throughout 6,000 acres of forest as of last year, but since then it’s believed to have spread more. So far, it’s been discovered mainly in Puna, but also in Kona and Kau. It hasn’t been found anywhere else worldwide.

Mysteriously disappeared Australian short nosed sea snake spotted off coast of Western Australia

Mysteriously disappeared Australian short nosed sea snake spotted off coast of Western Australia

Two critically endangered species of sea snakes earlier thought to have become extinct have been discovered off the coast of Western Australia. Scientists from James Cook University have found the Australian short nosed sea snake after more than 15 years when they disappeared from their only known habitat on Ashmore Reef in the Timor Sea.

El Nino may be behind washing up of venomous yellow-bellied sea snake on Californian beach

El Nino may be behind washing up of venomous yellow-bellied sea snake on Californian beach

For the third time, a venomous yellow-bellied snake has washed up ashore in California. The dead poisonous snake was found dead in Bolsa Chica State Beach on December 12. Members of the Surfrider Foundation have found the dead snake while cleaning up the beach.

In the cleaning process, 275 members were involved and while doing it, a volunteer picked it up and put into zip lock bag and took it home. He along with his son researched on the internet about the species of the snake.

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