Animals

Fungal infection threatens European salamanders: Study

A fungal infection threatens European salamanders: experts warn

A fungal infection that hit northern European countries many years ago behaves as a “perfect storm” and may end up wiping out almost all vulnerable species, experts have warned.

The lethal fungus, dubbed B. salamandrivorans (Bsal), left almost all fire salamanders dead in an outbreak occurred in The Netherlands in the year of 2014. Wild salamanders and newts in Germany and Belgium have also suffered outbreaks since then.

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Paleontologists discover remains of an earliest relative of dinosaurs

Paleontologists discover remains of an earliest relative of dinosaurs

The discovery of 245-million-year-old fossilized remains of one of the earliest relatives of dinosaurs from a basin in southern Tanzania may help fill in the gaps in scientists’ understanding of how those massive creatures evolved as well as provide a deeper insight into what their earliest relatives might have looked like.

Paleontologists reported that the remains belonged to an extinct carnivorous creature called Teleocrater rhadinus, which wasn’t a direct forerunner to dinosaurs. Instead, this creature was more of a close cousin.

Octopus can ignore own DNA information: Research

Octopuses can ignore their own DNA information: researchers find

A new study has suggested that octopuses along with their squid and cuttlefish cousins are much more intelligent than marine biologists give them credit for.

Octopuses have long been known for making remarkable escapes by squeezing into really small areas or unscrewing glass jars from the inside, but the study is really astonishing as it suggest that these creatures are able to ignore their DNA information and that they can readily modify the way they use their DNA.

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Cephalopods can readily change the way they use DNA: study

Cephalopods can readily change the way they use DNA: study

Cephalopods like octopuses, cuttlefish and nautiluses can readily change the way they use their DNA, a new study by an international team of researchers revealed.

Researchers from Israel’s Tel Aviv University and Woods Hole, Massachusetts-based Marine Biological Laboratory studied cephalopods and found that their stunning abilities might originate at the molecular level. Rather than making use of their genetic code as a blueprint to create the proteins they require to survive, they use it more like guidelines.

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Badger caught burying a cow in Utah

Badger caught burying a cow in Utah

Cameras set up in the Great Basin Desert of Utah captured a badger burying an entire cow by itself, and he buried carcass was able to sustain the short-legged omnivore for months. A team of biologists from the University of Utah had scattered the carcasses of seven calves in the area to study the behavior of scavengers. Around a week later, when researcher Evan Buechley revisited the area to check the carcasses, he was disappointed to find that one of the carcasses was missing.

Manatees removed from list of endangered species

Manatees removed from list of endangered species

Manatees, the giant marine mammal also known as sea cow, will no longer get special protections as they have been taken off the U.S. Interior Department’s list of endangered species.

Federal wildlife authorities announced on Thursday that they reclassified manatees as threatened species. Conservationists were quick to condemn the decision saying it would weaken protections for the marine mammal.

Online users eagerly waiting for ‘April the giraffe’ to go into labor

Animal lovers eagerly waiting for ‘April the giraffe’ to go into labor

Thousands of animal lovers continue to watch live giraffe cam from the Animal Adventure Park as they are eagerly waiting for “April the giraffe” to go into labor.

In a recently-held question & answer session, park owner Jordan Patch said that when the giraffe will be seen stretching out and raising her tail, it will be a sign of pressure, indicating a contraction.

Thus, viewers around the world watch with bated breath every time the female giraffe lift’s her tail.

Researchers discover tardigrades’ superpowers identified in their DNA

Researchers discover tardigrades’ superpowers identified in their DNA

Microscopic tardigrades, which are also known as “water bears,” have intrigued scientists for centuries due to their ability to survive in really extreme conditions. Now, a team of researchers claimed to have the discovered the special proteins in their DNA that give the microscopic creatures their superpowers.

Tardigrades are merely 0.002 to 0.05 inches or 0.05 to 1.2 millimeters in length. Thus, these creatures can’t be seen with the naked eye. But, they have rotund heads and four pairs of chubby legs tipped with grasping claws.

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Researchers discover never-seen-before patterns in humpbacks’ behavior

Researchers discover never-seen-before patterns in humpbacks’ behavior

After observing the behavior of humpback whales for years, a team of marine biologists has discovered some never-seen-before patterns in their activities.

The research team studied humpback whales in a creek system on B.C.’s North Coast from 2005 to 2014, and found a “wave” pattern in their behavior. They discovered that humpback whales in the Kitimat creek system move in the wave pattern from the outer channels into the creeks in the fall.

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Researchers discover mysterious ‘wave pattern’ among humpback whales

Researchers discover mysterious ‘wave pattern’ among humpback whales

A years-long study on humpback whales in a creek on B.C.'s North Coast has revealed previously unknown pattern of movement among massive marine creatures.

A team of researchers surveyed the whales in the Kitimat creek system from 2005 to 2014 and found that the marine creatures move in a “wave pattern” from the outer channels in the spring inward into the creeks in the fall.

Lead researcher Janie Wray, of the North Coast Cetacean Society, said that the wave pattern was never recorded in other humpback whales in similar habitats.

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