Roosters Have Special Ears So They Don’t Crow Themselves To Deaf

If you've spent any time around roosters, you know that their "morning" crowing can be... loud. That distinctive cock-a-doodle-doo is piercing: if you happen to be standing near a rooster sounding off, you're hit with a sound wave that's about 100 decibels. That's unpleasantly loud, like the whir of chainsaw. If one cock-a-doodled right in your ear, the sound is even louder—over 140 decibels. Sounds that loud can cause damage in less than a second, and are just shy of shattering your eardrum

Curiously aligned cloud formations stream across the Atlantic as Arctic air blows across warm ocean waters

Baby, it's cold outside! If you live pretty much anywhere in Canada, or in the United States east of the Rockies, that wonderful song from the 1940s pretty much sums up the conditions as 2017 draws to a close. And when revelers watch the ball drop in New York City's Times Square on New Years Eve, they will have to endure forecast temperatures of 10°F – with a wind chill of -5°F. The brisk northwesterly winds that have carried the bitterly cold Arctic air have given rise to beautiful cl

‘Predator’ Vision Drones Get AI to Spot Poachers

Poachers illegally hunting elephants and rhinoceroses under the supposed cover of darkness may soon find themselves being tracked by "Predator" vision drones armed with artificial intelligence. The new AI system that enables surveillance drones to automatically detect both humans and animals could help conservation experts and rangers protect endangered wildlife starting in 2018. A wildlife conservation group called Air Shepherd has already tested the AI system in a field demonstration an

Your Weekly Attenborough: Attenborosaurus conybeari

We're teetering on the brink of a new year, and in the spirit of fresh beginnings I'd like to introduce you to Attenborosaurus conybeari. It's an Attenborosaurus (yes, you can call it that) but we once called it a plesiosaur because it looked so similar to the ancient marine reptiles. A long neck, sharp teeth, four big flippers and a round body were all that it took to get into the plesiosaur club back in the day, apparently.  But today, the rules have tightened considerably. Paleontol

Twelve Months, Eight Arms, Three Butts

It's the end of the year and we're still swimming! So Inkfish is taking a moment to reflect on 2017 and enumerate some noteworthy posts. Don't worry—it won't take long, since octopuses can only count to eight. Most unexpectedly popular post: Agar Art Contest Winners Grow Masterpieces with Microbes. People like microbial art? Noted. Does anyone want to come scrub my shower? Most popular post: Beluga Living with Dolphins Swaps Her Call for Theirs. Relatedly, the ACTUAL most-popular

Could a Lunar Fuel Depot Jump-Start Human Exploration of Deep Space?

In my previous post I started a conversation with spaceflight entrepreneur Charles Miller, who shared his insights about how NASA's human spaceflight program got been stuck in low-Earth orbit and how we could enter a new era of deep-space adventure. Part one of the interview focused on the role of private industry in radically lowering the cost of getting back to the Moon. But it left many topics unexplored. In particular, I wanted to hear more about the economics of what some people are

The top 10 best-clicked posts of 2017: from pornography to lime disease, and 12 seconds of pooping in between!

2017 is (finally) ending, and that can only mean one thing: the Seriously, Science? Top 10 of 2017, as voted on by you, our dear readers (and by “voted,” we mean “clicked”). Here are your top 10 favorite posts from 2017: apparently, y’all love sex, cute animals, and disgusting things… as do we! (Yes, these are exactly the same topics as 2015 and 2016–some things never change.) Happy New Year! 11. As the weather warms up, watch out for lime disease. "If you dare, check out the image of t

Hominin Trackways in Greece? The Game Is Afoot

Fossilized footprints may change our family tree.

Harvey Redesigns Rainfall Maps

The deluge that swamped Houston changes how we measure downpours.

7 Whole New Worlds

A record-breaking number of Earth-sized planets orbit a faint star in a nearby galaxy.

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