nature

Flashy and fiercely armored, new dinosaur shakes up old theories

Flashy and fiercely armored, new dinosaur shakes up old theories

When your fellow dinosaurs have big teeth and even bigger appetites, what's a herbivore to do but develop some seriously impressive natural armor. That's the case with Akainacephalus johnsoni, a freshly-identified dinosaur the remains of which were extracted from a cache of ancient bones in Utah.

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World’s oldest rain forest frogs stuck in amber

World’s oldest rain forest frogs stuck in amber

This week a report showed off the newest "world's oldest" rain forest frogs. "It was exhilarating to hold these small fossils up to the light to reveal the frogs within," said David C. Blackburn, one of several paleontologists that authored the study published this week. "We have few small and intact fossil frogs, and the primary specimen of Electrorana is a rare find."

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Antifungal drug resistance is a ticking global time-bomb

Antifungal drug resistance is a ticking global time-bomb

There's a whole lot of fungus amongst us coming with resistance to the drugs with which we resist them. The rate at which pathogenic fungi are resisting commonly used antifungal agents is, as researchers suggest this week, "unprecedented." One of the causes for this situation is the massive use of drug elements like azoles, currently used for "not only human and animal health care and crop protection but also in antifouling coatings and timber preservation."

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See Kilauea from above: Hawaii’s volcano situation

See Kilauea from above: Hawaii’s volcano situation

There's a volcano by the name of Kilauea leaking lava in Hawaii right now - did you know? Let's have a chat about what's going down. This week interest in the volcano's become especially important because of the very active nature of Kilauea's contents - and therefore the surrounding area. Thanks to the the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) onboard NASA's Terra satellite, Hawaii's been given warning of the hotspots in the area surrounding the volcano. Today we get to see what the satellite's seen.

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Avoid these sunscreens (they kill coral)

Avoid these sunscreens (they kill coral)

Two types of sunscreen were banned from sale in Hawaii in a State Senate action this week. Those sunscreens and sunblocks (whatever you'd like to call them) with oxybenzone and octinoxate were banned after enactment by the legislature of the state of Hawaii. According to the bill for the act, these chemicals kill coral - and you know what happens when all the coral dies, right?

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This bird had the first beak, with teeth

This bird had the first beak, with teeth

If you wanted to know what the first bird beak looked like, today's your lucky day. The Ichthyornis dispar was the subject of a paper published this week. Ichthyornis dispar is the name of a creature with the now-oldest bird beak in the world. "The first beak was a horn-covered pincer tip at the end of the jaw," said researcher and Yale paleontologist Bhart-Anjan Bhullar. "The remainder of the jaw was filled with teeth."

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This is the newest exploding ant: Yellow Goo!

This is the newest exploding ant: Yellow Goo!

A new group of exploding ant called Colobopsis explodens was identified in a research paper this week. The "explodens" name isn't just for show - these ants actually explode with toxic yellow goo - that was its name before it received its scientific name too - Yellow Goo! The explosion isn't like a bomb - it's more like a flex, a tear, and an oozing out. It's really disgusting if you're on the attack's receiving end.

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Study finds global warming is killing the Great Barrier Reef

Study finds global warming is killing the Great Barrier Reef

One of the most iconic underwater reefs in the world is the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia. A new study has looked at the effects of global warming on the reef and specifically looked at the record-setting heatwave in 2016 and its effects on the Great Barrier Reef. The results of the study have been published in Nature.

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This hummingbird “sings” with its tail to trick potential mates

This hummingbird “sings” with its tail to trick potential mates

You might think being able to hover in place and dip your long, stealthy beak into the sweetest nectar would be enough as a male hummingbird to attract a mate, but it turns out female Costa's hummingbirds are a little more demanding. Scientists researching the birds have observed unusual flying patterns, in which the male birds produce an unexpected type of song: from their tails.

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New tardigrade creature found in Japanese parking lot

New tardigrade creature found in Japanese parking lot

A brand new kind of tardigrade was discovered in an apartment parking lot in Japan. A tardigrade is a little weirdo of a life form that's been found to be unusually hearty under many conditions. This newest version of a tardigrade is even stranger than the ones known before it - even stranger, indeed.

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Every monkey cloned so far, plus two more from China

Every monkey cloned so far, plus two more from China

Cloned monkeys appeared in a report from China this week to add to the small list of similar creatures cloned throughout history. Humans continued to play god in a report that showed how Chinese researchers cloned two new primates, both created with the same process that created the most famous clone of all: Dolly the sheep. Today we've constructed a list - not a long list, but a list nonetheless - of all the monkeys cloned throughout history.

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There’s a new giant octopus in town

There’s a new giant octopus in town

You might have thought 2017 was all out of surprises, but here's one more: what we thought was just one giant octopus is actually two distinct species. The Giant Pacific Octopus, or GPO, had already set records as being the largest known example of octopus kind on the planet. Now, scientists have discovered that there's not one type, but two.

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