Archives for the month of: February, 2014

Researchers are developing a prosthetic hand that can be wired into the nerves and can sense shapes and degrees of stiffness of objects.

Dogs can suffer from OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder), with symptoms like repetitive shadow stalking or hours of paw chewing, and scientists have tracked down four genes behind this.

Elephants seem to show empathy, but they also get distressed when they see another elephant in trouble, and will reach out in consolation.

Hydra magnipapillata, a tiny freshwater polyp, could live for up to 1400 years

Human footprints found in the UK, just outside Norfolk, are the oldest found so far outside Africa. These are between 780,000 and one million years, and were made in estuary mud by a group of five adults and young people.

Talking to babies could mean they have a better career (when they grow up that is). It helps the development of their vocabulary and language skills, and also their memory and nonverbal cognitive abilities.

What looked (vaguely) like a squashed jam (jelly) doughnut on Mars turns out to be just a rock broken and flicked over by the Mars Rover’s wheels. So no Alien Dunkin’ Donuts after all…

According to a US cardiologist, love is good for the heart – in a study, married men and women had a significantly lower risk of both having heart attacks and dying from a heart attack. And of course the traditional red wine and dark chocolate contain flavonoids, which are good for the heart too. Not sure about the pharmaceutical effect of roses, but I’m sure they won’t do any harm.

Read more about the science of love on Valentine’s Day in the Huffington Post and GoodNet.

Male bumblebees can still fly at the kinds of atmospheric conditions found at over 9000 metres by changing how they flap their wings.

Mysterious sea circles that appear on the seabed near Denmark are created by eelgrass, and are a result of agricultural runoff. Hope you’re not too disappointed that it’s not fairies or aliens.

Eelgrass grows in clumps, with older plants in the middle and younger ones near the edge. The build-up of toxic sulphides from a combination of bacteria and agricultural runoff kills off the older and younger plants, leaving perfect circles of mid-aged grass.

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