Beluga whale filmed playing “fetch”

A beluga whale has been filmed playing “fetch” with South African rugby fans using an official 2019 Rugby World Cup ball near the Arctic Pole. In the video published on Facebook by Alon Kowen, a group of South African rugby fans can be seen throwing a 2019 Rugby World Cup ball out into the ocean. […]

Diver saves a whale shark trapped in a commercial fishing line

In a video published by the Smithsonian channel, a diver stumbles across a whale shark trapped in a commercial fishing line in a marine sanctuary that bans fishing and frees him by cutting the rope. The giant fish lies still while the rope is cut. The footage also shows the scale of a whale shark […]

Top 10 most extreme places where life can be found on earth

The Earth is the only planet we know of that can support life in the cold, vast space. It seems we’re so, so lucky because our planet has a lot of unique characteristics that made life possible on it. But, interestingly, it also seems “where life can evolve, it will”. The diversity in life our […]

Forget the Anthropocene: we’ve entered the synthetic age

One fact about our time is becoming increasingly well-known. No matter how far you travel, no matter in which direction you point, there is nowhere on Earth that remains free from the traces of human activity. The chemical and biological signatures of our species are everywhere. Transported around the globe by fierce atmospheric winds, relentless […]

Humanity’s birthplace: why everyone alive today can call northern Botswana home

Vanessa Hayes, University of Sydney Where was the evolutionary birthplace of modern humans? The East African Great Rift Valley has long been the favoured contender – until today. Our new research has used DNA to trace humanity’s earliest footsteps to a prehistoric wetland called Makgadikgadi-Okavango, south of the Great Zambezi River. Our analysis, published in […]

Evolution tells us we might be the only intelligent life in the universe

Nick Longrich, University of Bath Are we alone in the universe? It comes down to whether intelligence is a probable outcome of natural selection or an improbable fluke. By definition, probable events occur frequently, improbable events occur rarely – or once. Our evolutionary history shows that many key adaptations – not just intelligence, but complex […]

Animals are disappearing from forests, with grave consequences for the fight against climate breakdown – new research

Charlie Gardner, University of Kent; Jake Bicknell, University of Kent; Matthew Struebig, University of Kent, and Zoe Davies, University of Kent It’s tempting to think that our forests would be fine if we could simply stop trees being felled or burnt. But forests – particularly tropical ones – are more than just trees. They’re also […]