Pterosaurs, birds, bats, and insects were the first to evolve the ability to fly, and in modern times, insects, birds, and bats are capable of true flight. So how exactly did this nearly 400 million year old process first start?
At this time of year, some animals are eating and sleeping more than usual to prepare themselves for the frigid weather ahead—and for their long winter ‘nap’. You see, these animals protect themselves in the harsh winter conditions by hibernating. Right now, you’re probably picturing a bear falling into a deep sleep throughout the winter, but there’s actually more to the story!
We like to think that we’re aware of what we’re putting in our bodies, picking out organic, lactose- and allergen-free food. But what if I told you that we each unknowingly eat a credit card’s weight of plastic every week?
Many of us have heard the lyrics, “You would not believe your eyes / If ten million fireflies / Lit up the world as I fell asleep,” by the musical artist Owl City. But the truth is sometimes stranger than fiction—nature already has millions of bioluminescent organisms scattered across various ecosystems.
You may only know little, if anything, about the atmosphere, but we have a lot to thank it for. It’s an invisible blanket of air that surrounds Earth, protecting it and allowing for life to exist!
If you have a dog, you may know that they don’t see the same colours as humans do. Different animals and individuals have different views of the world—literally. But why do these differences exist? Are there whole worlds of colour that we’re missing out on?
Humans have always looked to the stars for guidance and a sense of belonging, whether it was for celebrations and harvests or for physics and math. But if wanting to feel a part of something is a uniquely human trait, so is the ability to trash every place we’ve ever set foot on.
We humans seem to have developed a higher level of consciousness that we haven’t found anywhere else in our universe. But what exactly caused our species to diverge so much from other organisms in this particular aspect?
We humans tend to place ourselves on a pedestal above all other organisms, but we should take the time to thank these little microbes for the work they do in keeping our gut healthy.
When you think of climate change, you likely think of glaciers melting, stranded polar bears, or ocean levels rising. It’s pretty clear that rising sea levels threaten to plunge us all underwater, but why should we care about the other stuff, like ocean acidification?