60-Second Science

By Scientific American

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Subscribers: 2387
Reviews: 7

 Nov 28, 2020
new intern sasshays & lolly gags his way through the reads. he's gagging me with "his" effimenate tone

 Jun 17, 2020
Always good information

Stuart Mantel
 Mar 17, 2020
Quick, concise reporting on one recent scientific paper. All in plain language.

 Apr 16, 2019

 Jan 17, 2019
Digestible, informative, often fun science facts.


Leading science journalists cover some of the most interesting developments in the world of science. For a deeper audio dive you can subscribe to Science Talk. To view all of our archived podcasts please go to www.scientificamerican.com/podcast

Episode Date
The Secret behind Songbirds' Magnetic Migratory Sense
A molecule found in the retinas of European robins seems to be able to sense weak magnetic fields, such as that of Earth, after it is exposed to light.
Aug 04, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 12: Masking Up Again and Why People Refuse Shots
Today we bring you a new episode in our podcast series COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks, Scientific American ’s senior health editors Tanya Lewis and Josh Fischman catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between. You can listen to all past episodes here .
Jul 30, 2021
The Kavli Prize Presents: Understanding Touch [Sponsored]
Ardem Patapoutian shared the Kavli Prize in Neuroscience in 2020 for answering a basic question: How does touch actually work?
Jul 22, 2021
Moths Have an Acoustic Invisibility Cloak to Stay under Bats' Radar
New research finds they fly around on noise-cancelling wings
Jul 21, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 11: Vaccine Booster Shots, and Reopening Offices Safely
Today we bring you a new episode in our podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between. You can listen to all past episodes here .
Jul 16, 2021
Your Brain Does Something Amazing between Bouts of Intense Learning
New research shows that lightning-quick neural rehearsal can supercharge learning and memory.
Jul 07, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 10: Long Haulers, Delta Woes and Barbershop Shots
Today we bring you a new episode in our podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between.
Jul 01, 2021
This Newly Discovered Species of Tree Hyrax Goes Bark in the Night
A study makes the case for the new species based on its looks, genes and sounds
Jun 23, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 9: Delta Variant, Global Vaccine Shortfalls, Beers for Shots
Today we bring you a new episode in our podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between. You can listen to all past episodes here .
Jun 18, 2021
Animal Kids Listen to Their Parents Even before Birth
Human children: please take note of the behavior of prebirth zebra finches
Jun 16, 2021
For African Elephants, Pee Could Be a Potent Trail Marker
Scientists found that elephants often sniff pathways—and seem especially attuned to urine.
Jun 11, 2021
A 'Universal' Coronavirus Vaccine to Prevent the Next Pandemic
A pan-coronavirus vaccine could be “one vaccine to rule them all,” and so far it has shown strong results in mice, hamsters, monkeys, horses and even sharks.
Jun 09, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 8: The Pandemic's True Death Toll and the Big Lab-Leak Debate
Today we bring you a new episode in our podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between.
Jun 04, 2021
Puppies Understand You Even at a Young Age, Most Adorable Study of the Year Confirms
Researchers in the happiest lab in the world tested 375 pups and found they connected with people by eight weeks
Jun 03, 2021
New 3-D-Printed Material Is Tough, Flexible--and Alive
Made from microalgae and bacteria, the new substance can survive for three days without feeding. It could one day be used to build living garments, self-powered kitchen appliances or even window coverings that sequester carbon.
Jun 02, 2021
Bats on Helium Reveal an Innate Sense of the Speed of Sound
A new experiment shows that bats are born with a fixed reference for the speed of sound—and living in lighter air can throw it off.
May 28, 2021
The Dirty Secret behind Some of the World's Earliest Microscopes
Dutch scientist Antonie van Leeuwenhoek made extraordinary observations of blood cells, sperm cells and bacteria with his microscopes. But it turns out the lens technology he used was quite ordinary.
May 26, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 7: The Coming Pandemic Grief Wave, and Mask Whiplash
Today we bring you a new episode in our podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between.
May 21, 2021
Math and Sleuthing Help to Explain Epidemics of the Past
One mathematician has spend decades uncovering the deadly calculations of pestilence and plague, sometimes finding data that were hiding in plain sight.
May 20, 2021
Who Laps Whom on the Walking Track--Tyrannosaurus rex or You? Science Has a New Answer
An analysis of the animal’s walking speed suggests that T. rex ’s walking pace was close to that of a human. It’s too bad the king of the dinosaurs didn’t just walk when hungry.
May 14, 2021
Artificial Light Keeps Mosquitoes Biting Late into the Night
It is like when your cell phone keeps you awake in bed—except mosquitoes do not doom scroll when they stay up, they feast on your blood.
May 11, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 6: The Real Reason for India's Surge and Mask Liftoff
Today we bring you a new episode in our podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between.
May 07, 2021
Male Lyrebirds Lie to Get Sex
It seems like the males will do anything, even fake nearby danger, to get females to stick around to mate.
May 04, 2021
Lovebirds Adore Our Inefficient Air-Conditioning
The rosy-faced lovebirds that live in Phoenix appear to be free riding on our urban climate control.
Apr 27, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 5: Vaccine Safety in Pregnancy, Blood Clots and Long-Haul Realities
Today we bring you the fifth episode in our podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between.
Apr 23, 2021
Beehives Are Held Together by Their Mutual Gut Microbes
New research shows that members of a bee colony all have the same gut microbiome, which controls their smell—and thus their ability to separate family from foe.
Apr 20, 2021
These Endangered Birds Are Forgetting Their Songs
Australia’s critically endangered regent honeyeaters are losing what amounts to their culture—and that could jeopardize their success at landing a mate.
Apr 16, 2021
To Fight Climate Change: Grow a Floating Forest, Then Sink It
A fast-growing front in the battle against climate change is focused on developing green technologies aimed at reducing humankind’s carbon footprint, but many scientists say simply reducing emissions is no longer enough. We have to find new ways to suck carbon out of the atmosphere. A Maine start-up is looking to raise a sinkable carbon-capturing forest in the open ocean.
Apr 12, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 4: The Virtual Vaccine Line and Shots for Kids
Today we bring you the fourth episode in a new podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between.
Apr 09, 2021
Big Physics News: The Muon g-2 Experiment Explained
Particles called muons are behaving weirdly, and that could mean a huge discovery.
Apr 07, 2021
Boston's Pigeons Coo, 'Wicked'; New York's Birds Coo, 'Fuhgeddaboudit'
The two cities’ rock doves are genetically distinct, research shows.
Apr 05, 2021
Imperiled Freshwater Turtles Are Eating Plastics--Science Is Just Revealing the Threat
We know a lot about how sea turtles are threatened by our trash, but new research has just uncovered an underreported threat hiding inside lakes and rivers.
Mar 31, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 3: Vaccine Inequality--plus Your Body the Variant Fighter
Today we bring you the third episode in a new podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between.
Mar 26, 2021
Using Dragonflies as Contamination Detectors
By collecting the larvae of the fast flyers, researchers have turned the insects into “biosentinels” that can track mercury pollution across the country. Berly McCoy reports. 
Mar 24, 2021
Smartphones Can Hear the Shape of Your Door Keys
Can you pick a lock with just a smartphone? New research shows that doing so is possible.
Mar 18, 2021
Chimpanzees Show Altruism while Gathering around the Juice Fountain
New research tries to tease out whether our closest animal relatives can be selfless
Mar 16, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 2: Lessons from a Pandemic Year
Today we bring you the second episode in a new podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks,  Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis  and  Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between.
Mar 11, 2021
That Mouse in Your House--It's Smarter, Thanks to You
Scientists studied three varieties of house mice and found that those who had lived alongside humans the longest were also the craftiest at solving food puzzles. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Mar 09, 2021
Kangaroos with Puppy Dog Eyes
New research shows that when faced with an impossible task, the marsupials look to humans for help.
Mar 04, 2021
COVID, Quickly, Episode 1: Vaccines, Variants and Diabetes
Today we begin a new podcast series: COVID, Quickly. Every two weeks, Scientific American ’s senior health editors  Tanya Lewis and Josh Fischman  catch you up on the essential developments in the pandemic: from vaccines to new variants and everything in between.
Feb 26, 2021
Machine Learning Pwns Old-School Atari Games
You can call it the “revenge of the computer scientist.” An algorithm that made headlines for mastering the notoriously difficult Atari 2600 game Montezuma’s Revenge can now beat more games, achieving near perfect scores, and help robots explore real-world environments. Pakinam Amer reports.
Feb 25, 2021
E-Eggs Track Turtle Traffickers
Decoy sea turtle eggs containing tracking tech are new weapons against beach poachers and traffickers.
Feb 23, 2021
Bromances Could Lead to More Romances for Male Hyenas
Spotted hyena males do not fight for mates, so how are certain males shut out of the mating game?
Feb 10, 2021
A Heroic Effort to Measure Helium
After an intense game of cat and mouse with different particles, atomic physicists have measured the radius of the helium nucleus five times more precisely than before. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 05, 2021
Science News Briefs from around the World
Here are some brief reports about science and technology from around the world, including one from Costa Rica about decoy sea turtle eggs with the potential to catch poachers.
Feb 02, 2021
Scientists Take a Cattle Head Count in India
The research team determined that the city of Raipur in central India has at least one street cow for every 54 human residents. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 28, 2021
Ancient Dogs Had Complex Genetic Histories
Some dog population genetics show similarities to ours, such as in the ability to digest grains. But other lineages differ.  
Jan 22, 2021
Bees Use 'Bullshit' Defense to Keep Giant Hornets at Bay
The prospect of death by giant hornet has pushed some Asian honeybees to resort to a poop-based defense system
Jan 11, 2021
Humans May Have Befriended Wolves with Meat
Unlike humans, wolves can subsist on protein alone for months—so scientists say we may have lobbed leaner leftovers their way. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 08, 2021
How to Avoid Becoming a Meal for a Cheetah
Researchers help farmers in Namibia avoid costly cattle losses by tracking big cat hangouts
Jan 06, 2021
How the Coronavirus Pandemic Shaped Our Language in 2020
Linguist Ben Zimmer says the pandemic has turned us all into amateur epidemiologists utilizing terms such as “superspreader” and “asymptomatic.” Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 01, 2021
Science News Briefs from around the Planet
Here are some brief reports about science and technology from around the world, including one from Panama about the toll lightning takes on tropical trees.
Dec 29, 2020
Ravens Measure Up to Great Apes on Intelligence
Juvenile ravens performed just as well as chimps and orangutans in a battery of intelligence tests—except for assays of spatial skills. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Dec 22, 2020
Baby Bees Deprive Caregivers of Sleep
Bee larvae and pupae appear to secrete a chemical that does the work of a late-night cup of coffee for their nurses.
Dec 22, 2020
How the Wolves Change the Forest
New research tracked the canines in northern Minnesota for years to see just how they reshape their ecosystems. Audio of wolves inside Voyageurs National Park, courtesy of Jacob Job . 
Dec 17, 2020
Brain Sides Are Both Busy in New Language Learning
A study of adults learning a new language found that speaking primarily activated regions in the left side of the brain, but reading and listening comprehension were much more variable
Dec 17, 2020
Eye Treatment Stretches Mouse Sight Beyond Visible Spectrum
Nanoparticles that attach to photoreceptors allowed mice to see infrared and near-infrared light for up to two months.
Dec 12, 2020
This Bat Wears a Face Mask
The wrinkle-faced bat covers its face with a flap of skin, seemingly as part of its courtship rituals.
Dec 12, 2020
The Denisovans Expand Their Range into China
Evidence of the ancient humans was limited to a cave in Siberia. But now scientists have found genetic remains of the Denisovans in China. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Dec 03, 2020
Undersea Earthquakes Reveal Sound Warming Info
Travel time differences for sound waves produced by undersea earthquakes in the same place at different times can provide details about ocean warming.
Nov 30, 2020
Duckbill Dino Odyssey Ended in Africa
A duckbill dinosaur jawbone found in Morocco means that dinosaurs crossed a large body of water to reach Africa.  
Nov 24, 2020
Early Mammals Had Social Lives, Too
Chipmunklike animals that lived among the dinosaurs appear to have been social creatures, which suggests that sociality arose in mammals earlier than scientists thought. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Nov 19, 2020
Science News Briefs from All Over
Here are some brief reports about science and technology from around the world, including one, from the dormant volcano Llullaillaco in Chile, about a mouse that is the highest-dwelling mammal ever documented.
Nov 18, 2020
Divide and Conquer Could Be Good COVID Strategy
COVID might be fought efficiently with fewer shutdowns by restricting activities only in a particular area with a population up to 200,000 when its case rate rises above a chosen threshold.  
Nov 13, 2020
Zebra Coloration Messes With Fly Eyes
Horseflies misjudge landings on zebra patterns, compared with solid gray or black surfaces, which provides evidence for why evolution came up with the black-and-white pattern.
Nov 10, 2020
Science Sound(E)scapes: Head Banging and Howling in the Amazon
Need a break from politics and the pandemic? You’re probably not in the Amazon rain forest right now, but we can take you there in audio. Today, in part three of our three-part audio sound escape, we ascend into the trees where howler monkeys and crimson-crested woodpeckers rule the airwaves.
Nov 06, 2020
Science Sound(E)scapes: Amazon Frog Choruses at Night
Need a break from politics and the pandemic? You’re probably not in the Amazon rain forest right now, but we can take you there in audio. Today, in part two of our three-part audio sound escape, we descend into a nighttime flood of frog music.
Nov 05, 2020
Science Sound(E)scapes: Amazon Pink River Dolphins
Need a break from politics and the pandemic? You’re probably not in the Amazon rain forest right now, but we can take you there in audio. Today, in part one of our three-part audio sound escape, we listen to dolphins hunting among the trees.
Nov 04, 2020
Frog Vocals Lead to Small Preference
The concave-eared torrent frog's unusual ear anatomy lets it hear high-frequency calls, which gives a mating advantage to the littler males that sing soprano.
Nov 03, 2020
Science News Briefs from around the Globe
Here are some brief reports about science and technology from all over, including one from the United Arab Emirates about the the first interplanetary mission by an Arab country.
Nov 03, 2020
Election Science Stakes: Technology
We wrap up our preelection series with Scientific American senior editor Jen Schwartz, who talks about the possible effects of the election results on technology development and use. 
Nov 01, 2020
Election Science Stakes: Energy
Scientific American senior editor Mark Fischetti and associate editor Andrea Thompson talk about this election and the future of U.S. energy research and policy.
Oct 30, 2020
Election Science Stakes: Environment
Scientific American senior editor Mark Fischetti talks about how this election will affect environmental science and policy.
Oct 30, 2020
Election Science Stakes: Climate
Scientific American ’s associate editor for sustainability Andrea Thompson talks about how climate science and policy will be affected by this election.
Oct 29, 2020
Election Science Stakes: Medicine and Public Health
Scientific American ’s senior medicine editor Josh Fischman talks about issues in medicine and public health that will be affected by this election.
Oct 28, 2020
Election 2020: The Stakes for Science
Scientific American ’s editor in chief sets up this week’s series of podcasts about how this election could affect science, technology and medicine.
Oct 27, 2020
Why Some Easter Island Statues Are Where They Are
Many of the statues not along the coast are in places that featured a resource vital to the communities that lived and worked there.
Oct 26, 2020
Acorn Woodpeckers Fight Long, Bloody Territorial Wars
More than 40 of the birds, in coalitions of three or four, may fight for days over oak trees in which to store their acorns.
Oct 24, 2020
Funky Cheese Rinds Release an Influential Stench
The volatile compounds released by microbial communities on cheese rinds shape and shift a cheese’s microbiome. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Oct 23, 2020
Dinosaur Asteroid Hit Worst-Case Place
The mass-extinction asteroid happened to strike an area where the rock contained a lot of organic matter and sent soot into the stratosphere, where it could block sunlight for years.
Oct 22, 2020
River Ecosystem Restoration Can Mean Just Add Water
Planners returned water to the dry bed of Arizona’s Santa Cruz River in 2019, and various species began showing up on the same day.
Oct 20, 2020
3,000-Year-Old Orbs Provide a Glimpse of Ancient Sport
Researchers say three ancient leather balls, dug up from the tombs of horsemen in northwestern China, are the oldest such specimens from Europe or Asia. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Oct 18, 2020
Humans Make Wild Animals Less Wary
From mammals to mollusks, animals living among humans lose their antipredator behaviors.
Oct 16, 2020
Play Helped Dogs Be Our Best Friends
The ancestors of today’s dogs already exhibited some playfulness, which became a key trait during domestication.
Oct 13, 2020
Neandertal DNA May Be COVID Risk
A stretch of Neandertal DNA has been associated with some cases of severe COVID-19, but it’s unclear how much of a risk it poses. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Oct 11, 2020
Nobelist Talks CRISPR Uses
New Nobel laureate in chemistry Jennifer Doudna talks about various applications of the gene-editing tool CRISPR.
Oct 08, 2020
Blue Whale Song Timing Reveals Time to Go
Blue whales off California’s coast sing at night—until it’s time to start migrating, and they switch to daytime song.
Oct 07, 2020
New Nobel Laureate Talks Today's Virology
Charles Rice, who today shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for the discovery of the hepatitis C virus, talked about how rapidly research now occurs, compared with his early work.
Oct 06, 2020
Greenland Is Melting Faster Than Any Time in Past 12,000 Years
Researchers determined that Greenland is on track to lose more ice this century than during any of the previous 120 centuries. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Oct 04, 2020
Sloths Slowly Cavort by Day Now
The disappearance of their predators in a disturbed ecosystem has turned Atlantic forest sloths from night creatures to day adventurers.
Oct 03, 2020
Dinosaurs Got Cancer, Too
Researchers seeking evidence for cancer in dinosaurs found it in a collection of bones at a paleontology museum in Alberta.
Sep 29, 2020
Fluttering Feathers Could Spawn New Species
Fork-tailed flycatchers make a fluttering sound with their wings—but separate subspecies have different “dialects” of fluttering. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Sep 25, 2020
Science News from around the World
Here are some brief reports about science and technology from all over, including one from Israel about what DNA reveals about the Dead Sea Scrolls’ parchment. 
Sep 22, 2020
These Small Mammals Snort to a Different Tune
Hyraxes, which live in Africa and the Middle East, punctuate their songs with snorts. And the snorts appear to reflect the animals’ emotional state. Jason G. Goldman reports.
Sep 18, 2020
Ice Age Temperatures Help Predict Future Warming
Scientists determined that temperatures were 11 degrees cooler during the last ice age—and that finding has implications for modern-day warming. Julia Rosen reports. 
Sep 17, 2020
High-Elevation Hummingbirds Evolved a Temperature Trick
Hummingbirds in the Peruvian Andes enter a state of torpor at night to conserve energy, dipping their body temperature to as low as 38 degrees Fahrenheit. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Sep 15, 2020
Why Pet Pigs Are More like Wolves Than Dogs
Given an impossible task, a dog will ask a human for help, but a wolf will not seek help—and neither will a pet pig.
Sep 14, 2020
Bricks Can Be Turned into Batteries
Pumping cheap iron-oxide-rich red bricks with specific vapors that form polymers enables the bricks to become electrical-charge-storage devices.
Sep 10, 2020
Leftovers Are a Food-Waste Problem
Researchers found that leftovers are likely to end up in the trash, so they advise cooking smaller meals in the first place to avoid food waste. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Sep 10, 2020
Some Dinosaurs Probably Nested in Arctic
The finding of a baby dinosaur fossil in the Arctic implies that some dinos nested in the region, which was milder than today but not toasty.
Sep 09, 2020
Star Systems Can Be Born Topsy-Turvy
Astronomers observed an odd triple-star system that offers clues about misaligned planetary orbits. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Sep 04, 2020
Death by Lightning Is Common for Tropical Trees
A study estimates that 200 million trees in the tropics are mowed down by lightning annually.
Sep 02, 2020
Science Briefs from around the World
Here are some brief reports about science and technology from all over, including one from Antarctica about how there’s something funny about penguin poop.
Sep 01, 2020
Alaska's Salmon Are Shrinking
Every year, Alaska’s big salmon runs feature smaller salmon. Climate change and competition with hatchery-raised salmon may be to blame. Julia Rosen reports.
Aug 29, 2020
End of 'Green Sahara' May Have Spurred a Megadrought in Southeast Asia
That drought may have brought about societal shifts in the region 5,000 years ago. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Aug 28, 2020
White Rhinos Eavesdrop to Know Who's Who
The finding could potentially help wildlife managers keep better tabs on their herds. Jason G. Goldman reports. 
Aug 26, 2020
Prehistoric Marine Reptile Died after a Giant Meal
Researchers found extra bones within a 240-million-year-old ichthyosaur fossil—which they determined to be the ichthyosaur’s last, possibly fatal meal. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Aug 22, 2020
Cows with Eye Images Keep Predators in Arrears
Butterflies, fish and frogs sport rear-end eyespots that reduce predation. Painting eye markings on cows similarly seems to ward off predators.
Aug 19, 2020
Warbler Species Fires Up Song Diversity
Hermit warblers in California have developed 35 different song dialects, apparently as a result of wildfires temporarily driving them out of certain areas.
Aug 18, 2020
Why Lava Worlds Shine Brightly (It's Not the Lava)
Scientists determined that “lava world” exoplanets do not derive their brightness from molten rock but possibly get it from reflective metallic clouds. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Aug 13, 2020
Aardvarks Are Ailing amid Heat and Drought
Climate change is expected to bring more frequent droughts and heat waves to Africa’s Kalahari Desert. And aardvarks might not be able to cope. Jason G. Goldman reports.
Aug 12, 2020
The World's Highest-Dwelling Mammal Lives atop a Volcano
Scientists spotted a mouse at the summit of Llullaillaco, a 22,000-foot-tall volcano on the border of Chile and Argentina. Julia Rosen reports.
Aug 07, 2020
Dampening of the Senses Is Linked to Dementia Risk
A decline in smell was the sense loss most strongly associated with such risk in a recent study. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Aug 05, 2020
Translucent Frog Optics Create Camo Color
Rather than undergoing active chameleonlike color changes, glass frogs’ translucency allows light to bounce from their background and go through them—making their apparent color close to their setting.  
Aug 04, 2020
Paired Comparisons Could Mean Better Witness Identifications
Compared with traditional lineup techniques, a series of two-faces-at-a-time choices led to more accurate identification by study witnesses.
Aug 03, 2020
Foxes Have Dined on Our Leftovers for 30,000 Years
An analysis of fox fossils found evidence that they scavenged from wolf and bear kills until Homo sapiens supplied plenty of horse and reindeer remains.
Aug 02, 2020
Mexico Caves Reveal Ancient Ocher Mining
Now submerged caves in the Yucatán Peninsula contain remains of ocher-mining operations that date back at least 10,000 years.
Jul 31, 2020
In Bee Shortage, Bubbles Could Help Pollinate
Soap bubbles are sticky enough to carry a pollen payload and delicate enough to land on flowers without harm.
Jul 28, 2020
Science News Briefs from around the Planet
Here are some brief reports about science and technology from all over, including one about how a lizard population responded to hurricanes by developing larger and stickier toe pads on average.
Jul 27, 2020
Seismologists Find the World Quieted Down during Pandemic Lockdowns
COVID-19-related lockdowns dampened human activity around the globe—giving seismologists a rare glimpse of the earth’s quietest rumblings. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jul 26, 2020
Old Art Offers Agriculture Info
Art museums are filled with centuries-old paintings with details of plants that today give us clues about evolution and breeding practices.
Jul 24, 2020
How COVID-19 Decreases Weather Forecast Accuracy
Meteorologists take advantage of weather data collected by commercial jetliners at different altitudes and locations. Fewer flights mean less data.
Jul 23, 2020
Cricket Avoids Being Bat Food by Doing Nothing
The sword-tailed cricket can discern bats’ echolocation signals by only responding to calls of a certain volume—at which point it plummets out of their approach.
Jul 23, 2020
Speaker System Blocks City Noise
The system works like noise-cancelling headphones but fits over an open window. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jul 22, 2020
Civil War Vaccine May Have Lessons for COVID-19
Vaccination used against smallpox during the Civil War reveals the identity of the distantly related virus used to keep troops disease-free.
Jul 20, 2020
Can People ID Infectious Disease by Cough and Sneeze Sounds?
Individuals aren’t very good at judging whether someone coughing or sneezing has an infectious condition or is simply reacting to something benign.
Jul 17, 2020
Why Some Birds Are Likely To Hit Buildings
Those that eat insects, migrate or usually live in the woods are most likely to fly into buildings that feature a lot of glass.
Jul 14, 2020
Sparrow Song Undergoes Key Change
White-throated sparrows made a change to their familiar call that quickly spread across Canada.
Jul 11, 2020
Polynesians and Native South Americans Made 12th-Century Contact
Scientists have found snippets of Native South American DNA in the genomes of present-day Polynesians, and they trace the contact to the year 1150. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jul 10, 2020
Animals Appreciate Recent Traffic Lull
Researchers saw a third fewer vehicle collisions with deer, elk, moose and other large mammals in the four weeks following COVID-19 shutdowns in three states they tracked.
Jul 09, 2020
Bat Says Hi as It Hunts
Velvety free-tailed bats produce sounds that help them locate insect prey but simultaneously identify them to their companions.
Jul 07, 2020
Forests Getting Younger and Shorter
Old, big trees are dying faster than in the past, leaving younger, less biodiverse forests that store less carbon worldwide.
Jul 07, 2020
Young Great White Sharks Eat off the Floor
The stomach contents of young great white sharks show that they spend a lot of time patrolling the seafloor for meals.
Jul 03, 2020
Tweets Reveal Politics of COVID-19 
Political scientists analyzed congressional tweets and observed how Republicans and Democrats responded differently to the virus. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jul 01, 2020
Nature's Goods and Services Get Priced
The gross ecosystem product, or GEP, tries to take into account the contribution of nature to the economy.
Jul 01, 2020
Animal Migrations Track Climate Change
Many species are known to have changed their migration routes in response to the changing climate. They now include mule deer and Bewick’s swans.
Jun 30, 2020
Science Briefs from around the World
Here are some brief reports about science and technology from around the planet, including one about a 70-million-year-old mollusk fossil that reveals years back then had a few more days than we have now.
Jun 25, 2020
Stiffer Roads Could Drive Down Carbon Emissions
By hardening the nation’s streets and highways, trucks would use less fuel and spare the planet carbon emissions. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jun 20, 2020
Unicorns of the Sea Reveal Sound Activities
Narwhals, recognizable by their large single tusk, make distinct sounds that are now being analyzed in depth by researchers.
Jun 19, 2020
Human Speech Evolution Gets Lip-Smacking Evidence
A study of our closest evolutionary relatives finds that the chimp behavior known as lip smacking occurs in the same timing range as human mouths during speech.
Jun 17, 2020
Printed Coral Could Provide Reef Relief
Three-dimensional printed coral-like structures were able to support the algae that live in real corals, which could help restore reefs and grow algae for bioenergy production.
Jun 16, 2020
'Snot Palaces' Reveal Undersea Creature Secrets
Scientists are studying the delicate mucus houses built by creatures called larvaceans to better understand how they live. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jun 12, 2020
Helping Kids Cope with COVID-19 Worries
The psychological state of children may need special attention during COVID-19 impacts and isolation.
Jun 10, 2020
Ancient DNA Rewrites Dead Sea Scroll History
By sequencing DNA from the dust of dead sea scrolls, scientists were able to glean new clues about the ancient manuscripts. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jun 09, 2020
Whale Protections Need Not Cause Lobstering Losses
Right whales, other whales and turtles get caught in lobster trap lines, but fewer lines can maintain the same lobster catch levels.
Jun 08, 2020
How to Keep COVID-19 Conspiracies Contained
An expert on climate denial offers tips for inoculating people against coronavirus conspiracy notions.
Jun 07, 2020
Bioluminescence Helps Prey Avoid Hungry Seals
Prey animals flash biochemically produced light to confuse elephant seals hunting in the dark. But at least one seal turned the tables.
Jun 03, 2020
3 Words Mislead Online Regional Mood Analysis
Analyzing keywords on Twitter can offer a loose measure of the subjective well-being of a community, as long as you don’t count three words: good, love and LOL.
Jun 02, 2020
COVID Has Changed Soundscapes Worldwide
The Silent Cities project is collecting sound from cities around the planet during the coronavirus pandemic to give researchers a database of natural sound in areas usually filled with human-generated noise.
Jun 01, 2020
Science News Briefs from All Over
Here are some brief reports about science and technology from around the planet, including one about an incredibly well-preserved horned lark ( Eremophila alpestris ), like the one pictured, that lived 46,000 years ago.
May 28, 2020
Colorful Corals Beat Bleaching
Exposed to mildly warmer waters, some corals turn neon instead of bleaching white. The dramatic colors may help coax symbiotic algae back. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
May 28, 2020
Skinny Genes Tell Fat to Burn
A gene whose mutated form is associated with cancer in humans turns out to have a role in burning calories over a long evolutionary history.
May 23, 2020
Malaria Mosquitoes Are Biting before Bed-Net Time
Mosquitoes that like to bite at night are being thwarted by bed nets, leading to the rise of populations that prefer to bite when the nets are not up yet.
May 22, 2020
We're Being Tested
President Trump pointed out yesterday that if we didn't do any testing for the virus we would have very few cases, which forces us to confront the issues posed by testing in general.
May 15, 2020
Barn Owl Babies Can Be Helpful Hatch Mates
Food sharing is mainly found in adult animals as a part of social bonding. But in a rarely observed behavior in birds, older barn owl chicks will share food with younger ones.
May 15, 2020
Donut Sugar Could Help Stored Blood Last
Dehydrated blood that could be kept at room temperature for years may be possible thanks to a sugar used to preserve donuts—and made by tardigrades and brine shrimp so they can dry out and spring back with water.
May 13, 2020
Lemur Flirting Uses Common Scents
To entice female ring-tailed lemurs, males rub wrist secretions, which include compounds we use in perfumes, onto their tail and then wave it near the gals.
May 11, 2020
Flamingos Can Be Picky about Company
They don’t stand on one leg around just anybody but often prefer certain members of the flock.
May 08, 2020
Horses Recognize Pics of Their Keepers
Horses picked out photographs of their current keepers, and even of former keepers whom they had not seen in months, at a rate much better than chance.
May 06, 2020
Tapirs Help Reforestation via Defecation
The large herbivores appear to prefer disturbed areas over more intact ones and spread many more seeds in those places through their droppings.
May 02, 2020
Virus-Infected Bees Practice Social Distancing
Bees infected with a virus cut back on interactions within their hive but find it easier to get past sentries at neighboring hives.
May 01, 2020
New Data on Killer House Cats
Wild cats kill more animals than domestic ones do. But pet cats kill many more of them in a small area than similarly sized wild predators.
Apr 30, 2020
Science News Briefs from around the World
Here are a few brief reports about science and technology from around the planet, including one about what the eruption of Mount Vesuvius might have done to one ill-fated resident of Herculaneum.
Apr 29, 2020
Birds on Rhinos' Back Help Them Avoid Poachers
Oxpeckers riding on rhinoceroses feast on ticks, and their calls warn the nearsighted herbivores about approaching humans.
Apr 22, 2020
Jane Goodall: We Can Learn from This Pandemic
In a teleconference promoting her participation in Earth Day events on the National Geographic Channel, Goodall talked about what gives her hope during the pandemic and what she hopes we all learn from it.
Apr 22, 2020
Our 3,000th Episode
Here are some “highlights” from the past 13.5 years of this podcast.
Apr 20, 2020
How Herbivore Herds Might Help Permafrost
Introducing herds of large herbivores in the Arctic would disturb surface snow, allowing cold air to reach the ground and keep the permafrost frosty.
Apr 17, 2020
Lung Cancer Screen Could Be Easy Pee-sy
In mice, a test for lung cancer involves nanoprobes that recognize tumors and send reporter molecules into the urine for simple analysis.
Apr 16, 2020
Obama Talks Some Science Policy
As he endorsed Joe Biden today, former president Barack Obama touched on some environmental, economic and science matters.
Apr 15, 2020
Red-Winged Blackbirds Understand Yellow Warbler Alarms
Researchers studying yellow warbler responses to the parasitic cowbird realized that red-winged blackbirds were eavesdropping on the calls and reacting to them, too.
Apr 14, 2020
Waiter, What's This Worm Doing in My Sushi?
Well, it’s probably there because the odds on its presence have gone way up in the past 40 years. But such parasites are still much more of a health problem for whales and dolphins than they are for us.
Apr 10, 2020
What's a Narwhal's Tusk For?
Although the tusk can be a weapon, the variation in tusk length among animals of similar body size points to it being primarily a mating status signal.
Apr 09, 2020
Coronavirus Misinformation Is Its Own Deadly Condition
Pulitzer-winning Laurie Garrett, author of The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance, talks about the dangers of politicians offering coronavirus misinformation.
Apr 08, 2020
Coronavirus Can Infect Cats
Tigers and lions at the Bronx Zoo have tested positive for the virus, and studies show that house cats—but apparently not dogs—can become infected.
Apr 07, 2020
Squid's Glowing Skin Patterns May Be Code
Humboldt squid can rapidly change the pigmentation and luminescence patterns on their skin by contracting and relaxing their muscles, possibly to communicate.
Apr 03, 2020
Bird Fossil Shared Earth with T. rex
Dating back 67 million years, this representative of the group of modern birds has been dubbed the Wonderchicken (which is not an April Fools’ Day joke).
Apr 02, 2020
City Birds: Big-Brained with Few Offspring or Small-Brained with a Lot
To make it in urban areas, birds tend to be either large-brained and able to produce few offspring or small-brained and extremely fertile. In natural habitats, most birds brains are of average size.
Apr 01, 2020
Coyotes Eat Everything from Fruits to Cats
The diets of coyotes vary widely, depending on whether they live in rural, suburban or urban environments—but pretty much anything is fair game.
Mar 31, 2020
Tiny Wormlike Creature May Be Our Oldest Known Ancestor
The bilateral organism crawled on the seafloor, taking in organic matter at one end and dumping the remains out the other some 555 million years ago.
Mar 30, 2020
Science News Briefs from around the Planet
Here are a few brief reports about science and technology from around the planet, including one about the discovery of an intact chicken egg dating to Roman Britain.
Mar 29, 2020
Help Researchers Track COVID-19
By entering your health status, even if you’re feeling fine, at the Web site COVID Near You, you can help researchers develop a nationwide look at where hotspots of coronavirus are occurring.
Mar 27, 2020
Sick Vampire Bats Restrict Grooming to Close Family
When vampire bats feel sick, they still engage in prosocial acts such as sharing food with nonrelatives. But they cut back on grooming anyone other than their closest kin.
Mar 26, 2020
Exponential Infection Increases Are Deadly Serious
Listen in as I use two calculators to track the difference in numbers of infections over a short period of time, depending on how many people each infected individual infects on average.
Mar 25, 2020
Swamp Wallaby Reproduction Give Tribbles a Run
They’re not born pregnant like tribbles, but swamp wallabies routinely get pregnant while pregnant.
Mar 22, 2020
Ocean Plastic Smells Great to Sea Turtles
Ocean plastic gets covered with algae and other marine organisms, making it smell delicious to sea turtles—with potentially deadly results.
Mar 20, 2020
Ancient Clam Shell Reveals Shorter Day Length
The growth layers in a 70-million-year-old clam shell indicate that a year back then had more than 370 days, with each day being only about 23.5 hours.
Mar 17, 2020
Snapping Shrimp Make More Noise in Warmer Oceans
As oceans heat up, the ubiquitous noise of snapping shrimp should increase, posing issues for other species and human seagoing ventures.
Mar 12, 2020
Stress from Undersea Noise Interferes with Crab Camouflage
In an example of how sea noise can harm species, exposed shore crabs changed camouflaging color sluggishly and were slower to flee from simulated predators.
Mar 11, 2020
Indigenous Amazonians Managed Valuable Plant Life
Studies on very old vegetation in the Amazon basin show active management hundreds of years ago on species such as Brazil nut and cocoa trees.
Mar 04, 2020
Computers Confirm Beethoven's Influence
By breaking 900 classical piano compositions into musical chunks, researchers could track Ludwig van Beethoven’s influence on the composers who followed him. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Mar 03, 2020
Science News Briefs from around the World
Here are a few brief reports about science and technology from around the world, including one from off the California coast about the first heart rate measurement done on a blue whale.
Mar 02, 2020
Jet Altitude Changes Cut Climate-Changing Contrails
Increasing or decreasing the altitude of aircraft by a few thousand feet to avoid thin layers of humidity could make a major reduction to contrails’ contribution to climate change.
Feb 26, 2020
Thoroughbred Horses Are Increasingly Inbred
Inbreeding in Thoroughbreds has increased significantly in the past 45 years, with the greatest rise occurring in the past 15 or so of them.
Feb 25, 2020
Pablo Escobar's Hippos Could Endanger Colombian Ecology
Hippos that escaped from drug kingpin Pablo Escobar’s private zoo are reproducing in the wild. And with increasing numbers, they could threaten ecosystems.
Feb 20, 2020
Wasp Nests Help Date Aboriginal Art
Art created by Australian Aboriginal people used organic carbon-free pigments, but wasp nests above or below the art can be used for radiocarbon dating that supplies boundaries for the age of artworks.
Feb 20, 2020
Industrial Revolution Pollution Found in Himalayan Glacier
Ice cores from a Tibetan glacier reveal the first deposits of industrial revolution pollution, starting in layers dated to about 1780.
Feb 18, 2020
Fight-or-Flight Nerves Make Mice Go Gray
A new study in mice concludes stress can cause gray hair—and credits overactive nerves with the change in hue. Karen Hopkin reports. 
Feb 15, 2020
Espresso May Be Better when Ground Coarser
A very fine grind can actually hamper espresso brewing, because particles may clump more than larger particles will.
Feb 14, 2020
Feral Dogs Respond to Human Hand Cues
Most feral dogs that did not run away from humans were able to respond to hand cues about the location of food—even without training.
Feb 11, 2020
Neandertals Tooled Around with Clams
Neandertals ate clams and then modified the hard shells into tools for cutting and scraping.
Feb 08, 2020
Fingering Fake Whiskeys with Isotopes
Whiskeys claimed to be from the 19th century are revealed to be made with much more recently grown barley, thanks to the unique isotopic fingerprint of the nuclear-testing era.  
Feb 07, 2020
Having an Albatross around Your Boat
By outfitting 169 albatrosses with GPS data loggers, scientists were able to track fishing boats apparently trying to hide their location. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 06, 2020
Science News Briefs from All Over
Here are a few brief reports about international science and technology from around the world, including one from the Democratic Republic of the Congo about a toad that has evolved coloring that makes it look like a deadly snake’s head.
Feb 04, 2020
Facts about Groundhogs Other Than Their Poor Meteorology
Groundhogs are less accurate at weather forecasting than are coin flips, but they are nonetheless pretty interesting critters.
Feb 02, 2020
Did Animal Calls Start in the Dark?
One hypothesis says the ability to vocalize arose in nocturnal animals—and a new evolutionary analysis suggests there may be some truth to it. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Feb 01, 2020
Sign Languages Display Distinct Ancestries
Well more than 100 distinct sign languages exist worldwide, with each having features that made it possible for researchers to create an evolutionary tree of their lineages.
Jan 31, 2020
Docs Given Updated Opioid Prescribing Habit
Researchers dialed down the default number of opioids in two hospitals’ prescription systems—and doctors ended up prescribing fewer pills. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 27, 2020
Some Wolf Pups Show Innate Fetching Talent
Some wolf pups will play fetch with a stranger, suggesting that an ability to playfully interact with people could have come before, and played a role in, dog domestication.
Jan 26, 2020
Barred Owls Invade the Sierra Nevada
By listening to the sounds of the forest, biologists were able to identify an invasion of barred owls in spotted owl habitat. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 25, 2020
Curiosity Killed the ... Mouse?
The cat parasite Toxoplasma gondii boosts curiosity in mice—which makes them more likely to be caught by cats, thus continuing the parasite’s life cycle. Karen Hopkin reports.
Jan 24, 2020
This Fish Knows How to Stick Around
The remora clings to other fish—and appears to use an unusual sense of touch to do so. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jan 17, 2020
Antarctic Is Ripe for Invasive Species
Mussels and crabs are two of the creatures most likely to invade Antarctica in the next 10 years, a panel of scientists say. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 16, 2020
Bacteria Helped Plants Evolve to Live on Land
Soil bacteria may have taken residence in early algal species, gifting the algae with the ability to withstand drier conditions on land. Annie Sneed reports.
Jan 14, 2020
Meteorite Contains Material Older Than Earth
The Murchison meteorite, which screamed to Earth 50 years ago, carried with it stardust that's seven billion years old. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jan 13, 2020
Loss of Large Mammals Stamps Out Invertebrates, Too
Hunted areas of Gabon have fewer large mammals and a thicker forest understory—but they also have fewer termites. Jason G. Goldman reports.
Jan 12, 2020
Brittle Stars Can "See" without Eyes
The starfish relatives can recognize patterns using photoreceptors on their arms—and their color-changing abilities could have something to do with it. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 10, 2020
Atlantic Puffins Spotted Using Tools
Scientists observed two Atlantic puffins using sticks to scratch themselves—the first known instance of seabirds using tools. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jan 08, 2020
Traffic Cameras Show Why the Yankees Should Suffer Fewer Injuries in 2020
The 2019 New York Yankees’ record number of injuries led to a change in training staff that will almost certainly correlate with, but not necessarily cause, a lower injury rate this coming season.  
Jan 07, 2020
Science News Briefs from around the Globe
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Indonesia to Spain, including one from Brazil about the highest-voltage electric eel ever discovered.
Jan 06, 2020
Part of Real Paleo Diet: It's a Tuber
In South Africa archaeologists found the charred remains of a roasted root vegetable. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 04, 2020
You Traveled Far in 2019
Getting around the sun last year was some trip.
Jan 03, 2020
Fido's Human Age Gets New Estimates
By comparing how DNA gets altered over the lifetimes of people and dogs, researchers came up with a new way to compare canine years with human years.
Dec 27, 2019
Gift Wrapping Is Effective Future Trash
Research suggests people value gifts more when they have to unwrap them. But how do we avoid all the wasted paper? Christopher Intagliata reports.
Dec 27, 2019
Superstrong Fibers Could Be Hairy Situation
Human hair tested stronger than thicker fibers from elephants, boars and giraffes, providing clues to materials scientists hoping to make superstrong synthetic fibers.
Dec 25, 2019
Flaky Scalps Have a Unique Fungal Microbiome
Certain species of bacteria and fungi seem to proliferate on dandruff-ridden scalps. The reason is a little more mysterious. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Dec 21, 2019
Moths Flee or Face Bats, Depending on Toxicity
Tiger moth species that contain bad-tasting and toxic compounds are nonchalant in the presence of bats, while edible moth species evade their predators.
Dec 19, 2019
Ancient Seawall Found Submerged
In shallow waters off the coast of Israel, archaeologists have found entire villages—including one with a sunken seawall. Christopher Intagliata reports.  
Dec 19, 2019
Citizen Scientists Deserve Journal Status Upgrade
Here’s an argument that citizen scientists deserve co-authorship on scientific journal papers to which they contributed research.
Dec 15, 2019
Not All Hydropower Is Climate-Considerate
While some hydropower facilities release almost no greenhouse gases, others can actually be worse than burning fossil fuels.
Dec 14, 2019
Certain Zip Codes Pick Losers
People in certain zip codes are more likely to purchase products that flop, buy homes that are poor investments and pick political candidates who lose. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Dec 12, 2019
Linguists Hear an Accent Begin
Residents of an overwintering station in Antarctica provided linguists with evidence of the first small changes in speech that may signal the development of a new accent.
Dec 12, 2019
Romans Would Roam for Wood
Archaeologists unearthed wood from a Roman villa when digging Rome’s subway—and scientists determined the planks came all the way from France. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Dec 10, 2019
When the Bellbird Calls, You Know It
The white bellbird of the Amazon may be the loudest bird in the world.  
Dec 10, 2019
Fishy Trick Lures Life Back to Coral Reefs
Playing the sounds of a healthy reef near damaged corals may help bring the fish community back. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Dec 05, 2019
Rain Forest Dwellers and Urbanites Have Consistently Different Microbiomes
A study done in South America found that with increasing population density, humans had more diversity of fungi on the skin but less microbial diversity in the gut.
Dec 04, 2019
Internet Cables Could Also Measure Quakes
The fiber-optic cables that connect the global Internet could potentially be used as seismic sensors. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Dec 04, 2019
Science News Briefs from All Over
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Mexico to Tanzania, including one about the need to quarantine bananas in Colombia that are potentially infected by a fungus.
Dec 03, 2019
Subtle Ancient Footprints Come to Light
Ground-penetrating radar can detect tiny density differences that lead to images of ancient footprints impossible to discern by eye.
Nov 30, 2019
Ancient Rock Art Got a Boost From Bacteria
Indigenous artists in what’s now British Columbia created pigments by cooking aquatic bacteria. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Nov 25, 2019
Ick Factor Is High Hurdle for Recycled Drinking Water
Recycled wastewater can be cleaner than bottled water, but people still avoid drinking it because of their disgust over its past condition.
Nov 25, 2019
Bots Outperform Humans if They Impersonate Us
Bots masquerading as humans in a game outperformed their human opponents—but the their superiority vanished when their machine identity was revealed. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Nov 22, 2019
Implanting Memories in Birds Reveals How Learning Happens
Researchers activated specific brain cells in zebra finches to teach them songs they’d ordinarily have to hear to learn.
Nov 21, 2019
Dogs Like Motion That Matches Sound
Pet dogs appeared more interested in videos of a bouncing ball when the motion of the ball matched a rising and falling tone. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Nov 20, 2019
Egyptian Vats 5,600 Years Old Were For Beer Brewing
Archaeologists working in the ancient city of Hierakonpolis discovered five ceramic vats containing residues consistent with brewing beer.
Nov 17, 2019
Famously Fickle Felines Are, in Fact, Clingy
Cats are clingier to their human owners than their reputation would suggest. Karen Hopkin reports.
Nov 14, 2019
Aversion to Broccoli May Have Genetic Roots
Study subjects with a gene variant that heightened their sensitivity to bitterness tended to eat fewer vegetables than people who didn’t mind bitter flavors. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Nov 13, 2019
Marine Mammal Epidemic Linked to Climate Change
A measleslike virus is ricocheting through marine mammal populations in the Arctic—and melting sea ice might be to blame. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Nov 10, 2019
Ant Colonies Avoid Traffic Jams
Researchers tracked thousands of individual ants to determine how they move in vast numbers without stumbling into gridlock.
Nov 08, 2019
Ranking Rise May Intimidate Opponents
In an analysis of chess and tennis matches, players rising in the rankings did better than expected against higher-ranked opponents and better than similarly ranked players who were not rising.  
Nov 06, 2019
Familiar Tunes Rapidly Jog the Brain
Within just a third of a second of hearing a snippet of a familiar refrain, our pupils dilate, and the brain shows signs of recognition. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Nov 06, 2019
Science News Briefs from around the Globe
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Brazil to Hong Kong, including one about male elephants in India exhibiting unusual social behaviors.
Nov 02, 2019
We Owe Our Pumpkins to Pooping Megafauna
The pumpkin’s ancestor was an incredibly bitter, tennis-ball-sized squash—but it was apparently a common snack for mastodons. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Oct 31, 2019
Bird Egg Colors Are Influenced by Local Climate
In cold, northern climates, eggs tend to be darker and browner—heat-trapping colors that allow parents to spend a bit more time away from the nest. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Oct 30, 2019
Crabs Do a Maze
Green crabs learned to navigate a maze without making a single wrong turn—and remembered the skill weeks later. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Oct 29, 2019
Odd Bird Migrates Twice to Breed
The phainopepla migrates from southern California to the desert Southwest to breed in the spring before flying to California coastal woodlands to do so again in summer.
Oct 24, 2019
Piranha-Proof Fish Gives Inspiration for Body Armor
A gigantic fish from the Amazon has incredibly tough scales—and materials scientists are looking to them for bulletproof inspiration. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Oct 24, 2019
Galloping Ant Beats Saharan Heat
The Saharan silver ant feeds on other insects that have died on the hot sands, which it traverses at breakneck (for an ant) speeds.
Oct 23, 2019
Some Mosquito Repellents Act like Invisibility Cloaks
Synthetic repellents such as DEET seem to mask the scent of our “human perfume”—making us less obvious targets for mosquitoes. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Oct 22, 2019
Your Skull Shapes Your Hearing
The resonant properties of your skull can amplify some frequencies and dampen others—and, in some cases, affect your hearing. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Oct 18, 2019
Tardigrade Protein Protects DNA from Chemical Attack
The Dsup protein protects DNA under conditions that create caustic free radical chemicals.
Oct 16, 2019
"Mars-quakes" Could Reveal How Mars Was Built
Rumblings on the Red Planet act like x-rays, allowing scientists to probe the hidden interior of Mars. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Oct 16, 2019
Artificial Intelligence Learns to Talk Back to Bigots
Algorithms are already used to remove online hate speech. Now scientists have taught an AI to respond—which they hope might spark more discourse. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Oct 11, 2019
Nobel in Chemistry for Lightweight Rechargeable Batteries
The 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry goes to John Goodenough, M. Stanley Whittingham and Akira Yoshino “for the development of lithium-ion batteries.”
Oct 09, 2019
Nobel in Physics for Exoplanets and Cosmology
The 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics goes to James Peebles “for theoretical discoveries in physical cosmology” and to Michel Mayor and Didier Queloz “for the discovery of an exoplanet orbiting a solar-type star.”
Oct 08, 2019
Nobel in Physiology or Medicine for How Cells Sense Oxygen Levels
The 2019 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine goes to William G. Kaelin, Jr., Peter J. Ratcliffe and Gregg L. Semenza “for their discoveries of how cells sense and adapt to oxygen availability.” They identified molecular machinery that regulates gene activity in response to changing levels of oxygen.
Oct 07, 2019
Teeth Tell Black Death Genetic Tale
DNA from the teeth of medieval plague victims indicates the pathogen likely first arrived in eastern Europe before spreading across the continent.
Oct 07, 2019
Tiny Worms Are Equipped to Battle Extreme Environments
Scientists found eight species of nematodes living in California’s harsh Mono Lake—quintupling the number of animals known to live there. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Oct 05, 2019
Heat Changes Insect Call, but It Still Works
Tiny insects called treehoppers produce very different mating songs at higher versus lower temperatures, but the intended recipient still finds the changed songs attractive.
Oct 02, 2019
Corals Can Inherit Symbiotic Adaptations to Warming
Adult corals can reshuffle their symbiotic algae species to adapt to warming waters—and, it appears they can pass those adaptations on. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Oct 02, 2019
Brains of Blind People Adapt in Similar Fashion
The brains of those who are blind repurpose the vision regions for adaptive hearing, and they appear to do so in a consistent way.
Oct 01, 2019
Science News Briefs from around the World
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Hungary to Japan, including one about a wine grape in France that DNA testing shows has been cultivated for almost a millennium.
Sep 29, 2019
Musical Note Perception Can Depend on Culture
Western ears consider a pitch at double the frequency of a lower pitch to be the same note, an octave higher. The Tsimane’, an indigenous people in the Bolivian Amazon basin, do not.
Sep 25, 2019
Nature Docs Avoid Habitat Destruction
BBC and Netflix nature documentaries consistently shy away from showing viewers the true extent to which we’ve damaged the planet. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Sep 25, 2019
Heat Loss to Night Sky Powers Off-Grid Lights
A slight temperature difference at night between a surface losing heat and the surrounding air can be harnessed to generate electricity to power lights.
Sep 19, 2019
Early Butchers Used Small Stone Scalpels
Homo erectus used hand axes to butcher elephants and other game. But a new study suggests they also used finer, more sophisticated blades. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Sep 18, 2019
Microplastics in Fresh Water Are Mostly Laundry Lint
Microplastic particles are everywhere, but in freshwater systems, 60 percent of particles are clothing lint from laundry.
Sep 17, 2019
Kids Are Not Hurt by Screen Time
A study finds no deleterious effects on mental health when kids spend their leisure time texting and engaging in other online activities.
Sep 16, 2019
Lab-Grown Human Mini Brains Show Brainy Activity
As the little structures grow, their constituents specialize into different types of brain cells, begin to form connections and emit brain waves. They could be useful models for development and neurological conditions.
Sep 13, 2019
Eavesdropping Puts Anxious Squirrels at Ease
Squirrels constantly scan their surroundings for hawks, owls and other predators. But they also surveil for threats by eavesdropping on bird chatter. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Sep 13, 2019
Earth's Magnetic Field Initiated a Pole Flip Many Millennia before the Switch
Lava flow records and sedimentary and Antarctic ice core data show evidence of planetary magnetic field activity 20,000 years before the beginning of the last pole reversal.
Sep 12, 2019
Humpback Whales Swap Songs at Island Hub
At the Kermadec Islands, humpbacks from all over the South Pacific converge and swap songs. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Sep 11, 2019
Food Expiration Dates May Mislead Consumers
Better food labeling could prevent people from throwing away a lot of “expired” food that’s still perfectly edible.
Sep 09, 2019
Farmland Is Also Optimal for Solar Power
The conditions of sunlight, temperature, humidity and wind that make cropland good for agriculture also maximize solar panel efficiency.
Sep 05, 2019
Chemical Tweak Recycles Polyurethane into Glue
It’s not easy to recycle polyurethane, so it’s usually tossed out or burned. But a chemical tweak can turn polyurethane into glue. Christine Herman reports. 
Sep 05, 2019
Cholesterol Climbs after Crows Chomp Cheeseburgers
Wild animals that live near humans have higher cholesterol than their rural counterparts—and our food could be to blame. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Sep 03, 2019
How Hurricanes Influence Spider Aggressiveness
As Hurricane Dorian approaches Florida, consider that feeding style means that aggressive tangle-web spider colonies produce more offspring after severe weather, while docile colonies do better in calm conditions.
Aug 30, 2019
Graphene Garment Blocks Blood-Sucking Skeeters
A small patch of graphene on human skin seemed to block the mosquitoes’ ability to sense certain molecules that trigger a bite. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Aug 28, 2019
Martian Winds Could Spread Microbe Hitchhikers
Microbes fly tens of miles over Chile’s dry, UV-blasted Atacama Desert—and scientists say the same could happen on Mars. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Aug 26, 2019
Including Indigenous Voices in Genomics
A program at the University of Illinois trains indigenous scientists in genomics—in hopes that future work will be aimed at benefiting those communities. Christine Herman reports. 
Aug 22, 2019
West Point Uniforms Signify Explosive Chemistry
U.S. Military Academy cadets wear the colors black, gray and gold for reasons found in gunpowder’s chemistry.
Aug 20, 2019
Secrets of the Universe Trapped in Antarctic Snow
Scientists found an interstellar iron isotope in Antarctic snow samples—which hints that our region of the universe may be the remnant of an ancient exploding star. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Aug 14, 2019
Certain Personality Types Are Likely to Make a "Foodie Call"
Some people go on dates just to score a free meal—a phenomenon known as a “foodie call.” But it takes a certain personality type. Karen Hopkin reports. 
Aug 13, 2019
Artificial Intelligence Sniffs Out Unsafe Foods
Researchers trained machine-learning algorithms to read Amazon reviews for hints that a food product would be recalled by the FDA. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Aug 12, 2019
A Computer Tells Real Smiles from Phonies
Slight changes around the eyes are indeed a giveaway as to whether a smile is sincere or faked.
Aug 09, 2019
Stare Down Gulls to Avoid Lunch Loss
Researchers slowed the approach of greedy gulls by an average of 21 seconds by staring at the birds versus looking elsewhere. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Aug 08, 2019
Real Laughs Motivate More Guffaws
Honest, involuntary laughter cued people to laugh more at some really bad jokes than they did when hearing forced laughter.
Aug 08, 2019
Extinction Wipes Out Evolution's Hard Work
By killing off many of New Zealand’s endemic birds, humans destroyed 50 million years’ worth of evolutionary history. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Aug 06, 2019
London Is Crawling with Drug-Resistant Microbes
Nearly half of bacteria gathered in public settings around the city were resistant to two or more commonly used antibiotics, such as penicillin and erythromycin. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Aug 03, 2019
Male Black Widows Poach Rivals' Approaches
Mating is risky business for black widow males—so they hitchhike on the silk threads left by competitors to more quickly find a mate. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Aug 02, 2019
Babies Want Fair Leaders
Babies as young as a year and a half want leaders to fix situations in which they see someone else being treated unfairly.
Jul 31, 2019
Parrots Are Making the U.S. Home
Released or escaped parrots are now living in most states and are breeding in at least 21. For some, it’s a second chance at survival.
Jul 31, 2019
Science News Briefs from All Over
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Guatemala to Australia, including one about the first recorded tornado in Nepal.
Jul 30, 2019
Tourist Photographs Help African Wildlife Census
Photographs snapped by safari tourists are a surprisingly accurate way to assess populations of African carnivores. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jul 25, 2019
For Ants, the Sky's the Compass
Computer modeling revealed that insects with a celestial compass can likely determine direction down to just a couple degrees of error. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jul 24, 2019
Why Two Moonships Were Better Than One
Engineer John Houbolt pushed for a smaller ship to land on the lunar surface while the command module stayed in orbit around the moon.
Jul 20, 2019
One Small Scoop, One Giant Impact for Mankind
Just before Neil Armstrong climbed back into the lunar module, he scooped up a few last-minute soil samples--which upturned our understanding of planetary formation. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jul 20, 2019
Investigating the Zombie Ant's "Death Grip"
Researchers dissected the jaws of ants infected with the  Ophiocordyceps  fungus to determine how the fungus hijacks the ants' behavior. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jul 19, 2019
Attractive Young Females May Have Justice Edge
Youths rated as attractive were less likely to have negative encounters with the criminal justice system—but only if they were women. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jul 16, 2019
Tobacco Plants Made to Produce Useful Compounds
A proof-of-concept study got transgenic tobacco plants to make a useful enzyme in their chloroplasts, not nuclei, minimizing chances for transfer to other organisms.
Jul 15, 2019
Rhinos and Their Gamekeepers Benefit from AI
Starting in 2017, an artificial intelligence monitoring system at the Welgevonden Game Reserve in South Africa has been helping to protect rhinos and their caretakers.  
Jul 12, 2019
Backpack Harvests Energy as You Walk
The pack produces a steady trickle of electricity from the swinging motion of your stuff. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jul 11, 2019
Why Baseballs Are Flying in 2019
An analysis of the 2019 edition of the Major League baseball points to reasons why it's leaving ballparks at a record rate.
Jul 09, 2019
Some Hot Dog Histology
A lab analysis found that even an all-beef frankfurter had very little skeletal muscle, or "meat." So what’s in there? Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Jul 04, 2019
Mind and Body Benefit from Two Hours in Nature Each Week
People who spent at least two hours outside—either all at once or totaled over several shorter visits—were more likely to report good health and psychological well-being. Jason G. Goldman reports.
Jul 02, 2019
Scientist Encourages Other Women Scientists to Make Themselves Heard
Geneticist Natalie Telis noticed few women asking questions at scientific conferences. So she publicized the problem and set about to make a change. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jun 30, 2019
Male Bats Up Mating Odds with Mouth Morsels
Males that allow females to take food right out of their mouths are more likely to sire offspring with their dining companions.
Jun 27, 2019
Scientists Fool Flies with "Virtual Tastes"
By switching fruit flies' sensory neurons on and off with light, scientists were able to create the sensation of sweet or bitter tastes. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jun 27, 2019
Wheat Plants "Sneeze" and Spread Disease
Wheat plants' leaves repel water, which creates the perfect conditions for dew droplets to catapult off the leaves—taking pathogenic spores for the ride. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jun 26, 2019
Elite Runners' Microbes Make Mice Mightier
Mice that were fed bacteria isolated from elite athletes logged more treadmill time than other mice that got bacteria found in yogurt.
Jun 25, 2019
Science News Briefs from around the World
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Canada to Kenya, including one about how humans thousands of years ago in what is now Argentina butchered and presumably ate giant ground sloths.
Jun 24, 2019
Antiperspirant Boosts Armpit and Toe-Web Microbial Diversity
Rather than wiping microbes out, antiperspirants and foot powders increased the diversity of microbial flora in armpits and between toes. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jun 22, 2019
Monkey Cousins Use Similar Calls
Two monkey species who last shared a common ancestor 3 million years ago have "eerily similar" alarm calls.
Jun 18, 2019
How Millipedes Avoid Interspecies Sexual Slips
Millipedes, often blind, have come up with clever physical signals to ward off sexual advances from members of wrong species.
Jun 16, 2019
You Contain Multitudes of Microplastics
People appear to consume between 74,000 and 121,000 microplastic particles annually, and that's probably a gross underestimate.
Jun 13, 2019
A Biodegradable Label Doesn't Make It So
At the third Scientific American “Science on the Hill” event, “Solving the Plastic Waste Problem”, one of the issues discussed by experts on Capitol Hill was biodegradability.   
Jun 13, 2019
High School Cheaters Nabbed by Neural Network
Researchers trained a neural network to scrutinize high school essays and sniff out ghostwritten papers. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jun 06, 2019
Preserved Poop Is an Archaeological Treasure
Anthropologists found parasite eggs in ancient poop samples, providing a glimpse of human health as hunter-gatherers transitioned to settlements. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jun 05, 2019
Remembering Murray Gell-Mann
Murray Gell-Mann, 1969 Nobel Laureate in Physics who identified the quark, died May 24th.
Jun 04, 2019
Bonobo Mothers Supervise Their Sons' Monkey Business
Some wild female bonobos introduce their sons to desirable females—then make sure their relations won’t be interrupted by competing males. Karen Hopkin reports. 
May 30, 2019
Music May Orchestrate Better Brain Connectivity in Preterm Infants
Preterm babies who listened to music in the neonatal intensive care unit had brain activity that more closely resembled that of full-term babies. Christopher Intagliata reports.
May 29, 2019
Icy Room Temperatures May Chill Productivity

A new study suggests women's performance on math and verbal tasks increases as room temperature rises, up to about the mid 70s F. Christopher Intagliata reports.
May 24, 2019
Bird Beak Shapes Depend on More Than Diet
A study found that only a small percentage of bird beak shape variation is dependent on diet, with other factors like display and nest construction probably playing parts too.
May 22, 2019
Ancient Gum Gives Archaeologists Something to Chew On
Chewing gums discovered in western Sweden contain the oldest human DNA found in Scandinavia. Christopher Intagliata reports.
May 21, 2019
Nobelist: Harness Evolution as a Problem-Solving Algorithm
Frances Arnold, the Caltech scientist who shared the 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, says evolution can show us how to solve problems of sustainability.
May 17, 2019
Unread Books at Home Still Spark Literacy Habits
Growing up in a home filled with books enhances enhances intellectual capacity in later life, even if you don't read them all.
May 16, 2019
Kid Climate Educators Open Adult Eyes
A study finds that kids, especially daughters, are effective at teaching their parents about climate issues.
May 15, 2019
Penguin Poop Helps Biodiversity Bloom in Antarctica
Ammonia from penguin poop gets carried on Antarctic winds, fertilizing mosses and lichens as far as a mile away. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
May 15, 2019
Ancient Whiz Opens Archaeology Window
The residue of ancient urine can reveal the presence of early stationary herder-farmer communities.
May 13, 2019
U.S. Coral Reefs Do $1.8 Billion of Work Per Year
By dampening the energy of waves, coral reefs protect coastal cities from flooding damage and other economic losses. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
May 09, 2019
Could Air-Conditioners Help Cool the Planet?
Researchers want to outfit air conditioners with carbon-capture technology. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
May 06, 2019
Chemists Investigate Casanova's Clap
In his memoirs, the womanizing writer Giacomo Casanova described suffering several bouts of gonorrhea—but researchers found no trace of the microbe on his handwritten journals. Karen Hopkin reports.
May 03, 2019
Software Sniffs Out Rat Squeaks
Algorithms learned to sift ultrasonic rat squeaks from other noise, which could help researchers who study rodents’ emotional states. Lucy Huang reports. 
May 02, 2019
New Model Aims to Solve Mystery of the Moon's Formation
Scientists propose that the moon could have formed when a Mars-sized object slammed into an Earth covered in magma seas. Christopher Intagliata reports.
May 01, 2019
Cats Recognize Their Names—but May Not Respond
Felines move their ears, heads and tails more when they hear their names compared to when they hear similar words. Jim Daley reports.
Apr 30, 2019
Science News Briefs from All Over
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Liberia to Hawaii, including one on the discovery in Northern Ireland of soil bacteria that stop the growth of MRSA and other superbugs.
Apr 27, 2019
Hurricane Maria Rain Amount Chances Are Boosted by Climate Change
The likelihood of an event like Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, and of its massive precipitation, is fivefold higher in the climate of today than it would have been some 60 years ago
Apr 26, 2019
Harder-Working Snakes Pack Stronger Venom
Snake venom toxicity depends on snake size, energy requirements and environmental dimensionality more than on prey size.
Apr 26, 2019
River Dolphins Have a Wide Vocal Repertoire
Freshwater dolphins are evolutionary relics, and their calls give clues to the origins of cetacean communication in general. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Apr 25, 2019
Honeybees Can Put Two and Two Together
The tiny brain of a honeybee is apparently able to calculate small numbers' addition and subtraction. Annie Sneed reports.
Apr 24, 2019
4/20 Traffic Accidents Claim Curbed
A deeper data dive calls into question a 2018 study that found a spike in fatal traffic accidents apparently related to marijuana consumption on this date.  
Apr 20, 2019
Hyena Society Stability Has Last Laugh
Female hyenas keep their clans in line by virtue of their complex social networks. Jason G. Goldman reports. 
Apr 20, 2019
Gluten-Free Restaurant Foods Are Often Mislabeled
One in three gluten-free dishes tested at restaurants contained gluten—especially GF pizzas and pastas. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Apr 19, 2019
What Chickens Can Teach Hearing Researchers
At an April 9th event sponsored by the Kavli Foundation and produced by Scientific American that honored Nobel and Kavli Prize winners, neuroscientists James Hudspeth and Robert Fettiplace talked about the physiology of hearing and the possibility of restoring hearing loss.  
Apr 18, 2019
Nobelist Says System of Science Offers Life Lessons
At an April 9th event sponsored by the Kavli Foundation and produced by Scientific American that honored Nobel and Kavli Prize winners, economist Paul Romer talked about how the social system of science offers hope for humanity and for how we can live with each other.
Apr 16, 2019
Squeezed Potassium Atoms Straddle Liquid and Solid
At extreme pressures, potassium atoms can be both liquid and solid at the same time, a phase of matter known as "chain melt." Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Apr 13, 2019
Urban Coyote Evolution Favors the Bold
Coyotes become fearless around people in just a few generations—which isn’t good for their longterm co-existence with humans in cities. Jason G. Goldman reports.
Apr 12, 2019
Computers Turn an Ear on New York City
NYU’s “Sounds of New York City” project listens to the city—and then, with the help of citizen scientists, teaches machines to decode the soundscape. Jim Daley reports. 
Apr 11, 2019
Whitening Strips Alter Proteins in Teeth
Hydrogen peroxide in whitening treatments penetrates enamel and dentin, and alters tooth proteins. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Apr 09, 2019
Infrared Light Offers a Cooler Way to Defrost
Light tuned to a specific frequency warms ice more than water—which could come in handy for defrosting delicate biological samples. Adam Levy reports.
Apr 08, 2019
Spider Monkeys Optimize Jungle Acoustics
The monkeys lower the pitch of their "whinnies" when they're far from the rest of their group, which might help the calls travel further through jungle foliage. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Apr 05, 2019
Tennessee Whiskey Relies on Missing Ingredients
Food chemists precisely measured how charcoal filtration contributes to Tennessee whiskey's smoother flavor. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Apr 03, 2019
There's a Word for Today
English lacks some words that other languages pack with meaning.
Apr 01, 2019
Bumblebee Queens Prefer Layovers to Nonstop Flights
Scientists tracked bumblebee queens with radar when they emerged from hibernation and found the bees take only brief flights en route to a new nest. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Mar 29, 2019
Scenic City Sights Linked to Higher Happiness
Tracking the location and mood of 15,000 people, researchers found that scenic beauty was linked to happiness—including near urban sights like bridges and buildings. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Mar 27, 2019
Tech's Brain Effect: It's Complicated
We don't yet know what the immersion in technology does to our brains, but one neuroscientist says the answer is likely to be that there's good, there's bad, and it's complex.
Mar 26, 2019
Daylight Brings Toxic Beetles Together for Safety
During daylight hours, hundreds of bombardier beetles of multiple species will congregate together to more effectively ward off any predators not afraid of a lone beetle's toxic spray.
Mar 23, 2019
Solar Jets Cause Standing Waves in Earth's Magnetic Field
When jets of charged particles from the sun hit our magnetosphere, some of the ensuing ripples travel toward the northern and southern poles and get reflected back. The resulting interference allows standing waves to form, like on a drumhead.
Mar 19, 2019
Sing Solo for Higher Fidelity
By tracking duetting choir singers, researchers found that when an individual singer's pitch drifts off tune their partner’s tend to too. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Mar 19, 2019
Edible Insect Breeding Led to Larger but Not Necessarily Better Larvae
Researchers aiming to lower the cost of mealworms were able to double the worms' size, but the larger larvae had fewer eggs and weaker offspring. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Mar 15, 2019
Busting Earth-Bound Asteroids a Bigger Job Than We Thought
A new model suggests smashing killer space rocks with insufficient force could let gravity pull the pieces back together. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Mar 12, 2019
Weekday–Weekend Sleep Imbalance Bad for Blood Sugar Regulation
Weekday sleep deprivation with weekend make-up sleeping seems to be worse for blood sugar control than even chronic sleep deprivation alone.
Mar 11, 2019
Warm-Blooded Animals Lost Ability to Heal the Heart
Thyroid hormone, which helps warm-blooded animals regulate body temperature, also appears to put a halt on heart regeneration. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Mar 08, 2019
Animal Migrations Track with Wikipedia Searches
By analyzing nearly 2.5 billion Wikipedia page views, researchers found species searches reflect seasonal animal migrations and plant blooming. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Mar 06, 2019
Baseball Commish Talks Big Data
At a sports technology conference, baseball commissioner Rob Manfred addressed issues including an automated strike zone and advanced analytics.
Mar 05, 2019
Background Music Might Stifle Creativity
Volunteers who listened to music solved fewer word puzzles than others who worked in silence. Christopher Intagliata reports. 
Mar 04, 2019
Science News Briefs from around the Globe
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Greenland to Palau, including one on the discovery of a trove of mummified cats in Egypt.
Mar 04, 2019
Budding Yeast Produce Cannabis Compounds
Biologists have taken the genes that produce cannabinoids in weed and plugged them into yeast, making rare and novel compounds more accessible. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Mar 01, 2019
Who Has "the Right Stuff" for Mars?
Humans traveling to Mars will be required to operate with a degree of autonomy human astronauts have never had, due to communication delays. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 26, 2019
Grandma's Influence Is Good for Grandkids
Grandmothers can enhance the survival of grandchildren. That is, unless grandma’s too old or lives too far away. Karen Hopkin reports.
Feb 25, 2019
Should Robots Have a License to Kill?
Artificial intelligence experts, ethicists and diplomats debate autonomous weapons. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 23, 2019
Warming Climate Implies More Flies—and Disease
The incidence of foodborne illness could jump in a warming world, due to an increase in housefly activity. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 21, 2019
Light-Skin Variant Arose in Asia Independent of Europe
A new genetic study of Latin Americans provides evidence that gene variants for lighter skin color came about in Asia as well as in Europe. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 19, 2019
Teach Science Process over Findings
Seismologist and policy advisor Lucy Jones says science education needs to teach how science works more than just what it finds out.
Feb 19, 2019
Human Diet Drugs Kill Mosquitoes' Appetite, Too
When researchers fed mosquitoes a drug used to treat people for obesity, the insects were less interested in hunting for their next human meal ticket. Karen Hopkin reports.
Feb 16, 2019
Grazing Deer Alter Forest Acoustics
Deer populations have exploded in North American woodlands, changing forest ecology—and how sounds, like birdsong, travel through the trees. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 15, 2019
Elephant Weight Cycles with New Teeth
Elephants have six sets of teeth over their lives, sometimes two sets at once. At those times, they can extract more nutrition from food and put on weight.
Feb 15, 2019
Finally Over for Mars Rover
The rover Opportunity has called it quits after working for more than 14 years on Mars.
Feb 13, 2019
Our Brains Really Remember Some Pop Music
Although millennials' memory of recent pop tunes drops quickly, their ability to identify top hits from the 1960s through 1990s remains moderately high. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 12, 2019
Biologists Track Tweets to Monitor Birds
Conservation biologists can track the whereabouts of endangered species by the sounds they make, avoiding cumbersome trackers and tags. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 09, 2019
Desalination Could Cause Ecological Sea Change
An environmental assessment of the nation's largest desalination plant finds mixed results. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Feb 07, 2019
Different Humpback Whale Groups Meet to Jam
Humpback populations from the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet up south of Africa and trade song stylings.
Feb 07, 2019
Targeting Certain Brain Cells Can Switch Off Pain
By turning off certain brain cells, researchers were able to make mice sense painful stimuli—but not the associated discomfort. Karen Hopkin reports.
Feb 04, 2019
Neandertal Spears Were Surprisingly Deadly
Javelin throwers chucking replicas of Neandertal spears were able to hit targets farther away, and with greater force than previously thought to be possible. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 31, 2019
"Rectenna" Converts Wi-Fi to Electricity
Researchers built a small, flexible device that harvests wi-fi, bluetooth and cellular signals, and turns them into DC electricity. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 30, 2019
Science News Briefs from the World Over
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Papua New Guinea to Kazakhstan, including one on the slow slide of Mount Etna in Italy.
Jan 29, 2019
Cod Could Cope with Constrained Climate Change
Cod egg survival stays high with limited warming, but plummets when the temperature rises a few degrees Celsius in their current spawning grounds.
Jan 28, 2019
Intimate Hermit Crab Keeps Shell On
A species of hermit crab appears to have evolved a large penis to enable intercourse without leaving, and thus possibly losing, its adopted shell.
Jan 26, 2019
Ecologists Eavesdrop with Bioacoustics
By coupling audio recordings with satellite data and camera traps, ecologists can keep their eyes—and ears—on protected tropical forests. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 24, 2019
Saturn's Blingy Rings Are a Recent Upgrade
Though Saturn formed about 4.5 billion years ago, its rings were added relatively recently—only 100 million to 10 million years ago. Karen Hopkin reports. 
Jan 24, 2019
Do-Gooders Should Survey Communities First
Detroit residents declined an offer of free street trees—but were more willing to accept them if they had a say in the type of tree. Jason G. Goldman reports.
Jan 23, 2019
Viewing This Weekend's Lunar Eclipse
A total lunar eclipse will grace the skies this Sunday, January 20—and it may or may not be red. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 19, 2019
"Mona Lisa Effect" Not True for Mona Lisa
The Mona Lisa effect is the illusion that the subject of a painting follows you with her gaze, despite where you stand. But da Vinci's famous painting doesn't have that quality. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 18, 2019
Ants Stick to Cliques to Dodge Disease
Ants infected with fungal pathogens steer clear of other cliques within the colony—avoiding wider infection, and allowing for a sort of immunity. Lucy Huang reports. 
Jan 16, 2019
Mistimed Migration Means Bird Death Battles
Climate change is shifting population numbers and nest building by resident and migratory birds in Europe—sometimes leading to deadly conflict. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 13, 2019
Monogamy May Be Written in Our Genes
In animal studies, a set of 24 genes involved in neural development, learning and memory, and cognition, seem to be associated with monogamy. Karen Hopkin reports.
Jan 12, 2019
Seeing Superman Increases Altruism
Subject who saw a Superman poster were more likely to offer help than were people who saw another image.
Jan 10, 2019
Inhaled RNA Might Help Heal Cystic Fibrosis
Scientists are working to correct a genetic defect in cystic fibrosis patients by having them inhale RNA. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 09, 2019
Invisible Killers Hitchhike on Native Plant Seedlings
More than a quarter of the seedlings sampled at native plant nurseries were infected with pathogens—which could hamper restoration work. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 05, 2019
Facebook Users Value the Service More Than Investors Do
Users of the social network said they'd require payment of more than $1,000 to quit the platform for one year. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Jan 03, 2019
Science News from around the Planet
A few brief reports about international science and technology from Germany to Rwanda, including one on the discovery of the world's oldest known brewery, discovered in Israel.
Dec 31, 2018
Turn Xmas Tree into Food and Medicine
Pine needles can easily be broken down into sugars as well as the building blocks of paint, adhesives and medicines. Christopher Intagliata reports.
Dec 30, 2018
Simple Sugars Wipe Out Beneficial Gut Bugs
Fructose and sucrose can make it all the way to the colon, where they spell a sugary death sentence for beneficial bacteria. Karen Hopkin reports.
Dec 27, 2018
Smarter Pricing Could Ease Parking Frustration