Birdsongs Elicit “Emotional” Response From Birds

Credit: Brandon Keim/Wired

Scientists indicate that birds listening to birdsong may be experiencing an emotional response akin to when humans listen to music. The study tracked the neural activity in sparrows.

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Flying Squirrels Can Adjust Speed and Flight Dynamically

Flying Squirrels Can Adjust Speed and Flight Dynamically

Flying squirrels, a tribe of 44 species of the family Sciuridae, might look reckless as they fling themselves through the air, but scientists have reported that there is a certain measure of finesse involved. The squirrels are able to actively manipulate the furry membrane that stretches between their wrists and ankles to control the speed and direction of their flight.

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Comb Jellies Have Proteins to Generate & Sense Light

Comb Jelly Genome

Comb jellies, known as the phylum Ctenophora, live in marine waters worldwide. They have a distinctive feature in their groups of cilia, which they use to swim. They are the largest animals that use cilia as a means to swim. Adults range from a few millimeters in length to 1.5 meters.

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Area of Monkey Brain Keeps Tally of Altruistic Acts


Steve Chang and his colleagues from Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, have discovered that monkeys have a specific area in their brains to keep track of altruistic acts. This might help researchers understand the mechanisms underlying normal social behavior in primates and humans, and could even provide insight about autism spectrum disorder.

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Spider Building Spider Decoys Discovered in Panamanian Jungle


Discovered in the Panamanian jungle, a spider belonging to the genus Cyclosa is capable of producing elaborate, fake spider decoys. It hangs them in its own web and shakes the web, furthering the illusion.

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Barbed Porcupine Quills Could Help Enhance Various Biomedical Devices


A porcupine quill only needs half the force of a hypodermic needle in order to pierce skin. This new study also explains why the quills are hard to remove and this discovery could improve a variety of medical instruments.

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European Catfish Learn to Catch Pigeons


A group of European catfish in Southwestern France have learned to catch pigeons, as they get close to the River Tarn. European catfish (Silurus glanis) can grow up to 1 to 1.5 meters long and are the largest freshwater fish in Europe.

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Humans are a Greater Disturbance to Elk than Natural Predators


A new study has shown that elk become more fearful when people are around because they perceive humans as predators.

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Special Fishing Weights Could Help Save Hammerhead Sharks


The global population of hammerhead sharks, a group of sharks in the family Sphyrnidae, has plummeted by 89% in the last 20 years, largely due to illegal poaching and accidental fishing. Scientists have come up with a way to reduce the bycatch of hammerhead sharks.

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Lines on Crocodiles’ Crania Are Cracks in Skin, Not Scales


The “scales” on a crocodile’s cranium aren’t really scales, but simple physical cracks rather than developmentally programmed scales that cover the rest of a crocodile’s body. Researchers had previously assumed that the deep lines marked boundaries between scales.

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