Nature

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How do you study the evolution of brains, without any ancient brains to study? It’s not a simple proposition, so it’s no surprise that scientists are excited to have scanned the very well-preserved skull of a 20-million-year-old monkey species, Chilecebus carrascoensis. “Human beings have exceptionally enlarged brains, but we know very little about how far back
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When scientists ran DNA analysis on a sediment core taken from the floor of the Arctic ocean back in 2010, they found something surprising. A previously unknown organism belonging to the strange domain of microbes called Archaea appeared to have genomic characteristics associated with a totally different domain – Eukaryota. They named their discovery Lokiarchaeota,
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Indian tiger numbers are up, according to one of the most detailed wildlife surveys ever conducted. Tiger populations have risen by 6 percent, to roughly 3,000 animals. The massive survey may set a new world standard in counting large carnivores. The encouraging results validate India’s impressive investments in tiger conservation. A mammoth effort Large, solitary
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When you think of loud sounds you probably imagine earsplitting screams or whole-body-vibrating booms. Not necessarily the abrupt pop that belongs to a tiny 29-millimetre marine worm (Leocratides kimuraorum). But when marine biologist Ryutaro Goto from Kyoto University and colleagues measured the sounds made by these polychaete worms they came in at a whopping 157
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They’re one of the weirdest, most incongruous-looking natural phenomena you could ever see on Earth’s surface: massive dagger-shaped blades of vertically aligned ice, assembled in mysterious flocks in the middle of the desert. These strange ice spire formations – called ‘penitentes‘ due to their resemblance to penitent, praying folk – take shape at high altitudes