Surprising Animals Old and New
June 19, 2015
Moving creatures, whether extant or extinct, never cease to hold fascination for human observers.
Bats Are Home-Run Flyers
May 23, 2015
You don't just put wings on a naked mole rat and make it fly. Bats are designed to be aero-bat-ic champions.
The Parts List for Hearing
May 12, 2015
Want to hear what goes on when you hear sounds? Hair cells wave in the fluid, responding to specific frequencies, and hundreds of proteins go into action.
"Convergent Evolution" Widespread at All Scales in Ocean
April 20, 2015
A study of marine tetrapods that "evolved" for ocean life shows "convergent evolution" rampant at all scales over "hundreds of millions of years."
Let's Get [Thankful for the] Physical
November 25, 2014
Wonders of the human body continue to pour forth from scientific research, providing more reasons to give thanks.
Animals Overcome Limitations of Physics
October 16, 2014
The limits of human engineering have been overcome by animals in surprising ways worth imitating.
Fossil Whale Already Had Echolocation
March 13, 2014
Once again, a complex trait appears fully formed and functional in the fossil record.
Genetic Convergent Evolution Strains Credibility
September 6, 2013
"Convergent evolution" is the term given to similar designs that shouldn't be related. Recent widespread examples threaten to make the term lose any coherence it might have had
Amazing Body Facts
May 22, 2013
There are more wonders in your body than you can possibly imagine. Here are half a dozen new findings for conversation starters.
Unique Mammal Senses
July 30, 2011
The ability to sense the environment is vital to all living things, and is a key characteristic that separates life from non-life. The senses are not limited to the five we learn as children – sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell. In the animal kingdom there are more. Some of them repurpose existing organs; some detect other information from the world not detectable with the normal sense organs. In mammals, two very different animals – bats and dolphins – have expanded our understanding of sensation.
Oldest Bat Fossil: Was It Evolving?
February 16, 2008
A bat fossil surpassing the previous record holder for the oldest by 2 million years made the cover of Nature this week.1 The news media immediately began saying that it provided insight into evolution. The BBC News announced “Bat fossil solves evolution poser.” National Geographic called it the icing on the cake, and said that […]