In the past, there were five major extinction event (a widespread and rapid decrease in the biodiversity on Earth), and a lot of minor ones. Now, we are in the middle of the sixth one, called the “Holocene extinction event”. And the cause is… guess what? Humans.
According to the WWF’s (World Wildlife Fund) new Living Planet Report (2016), now we are in the middle of the biggest mass extinction on Earth, since the dinosaurs, which was around 65 million years ago. And the world set to lose two-thirds of its wildlife by as close as 2020.
An alligator’s brain weighs only 8 or 9 grams, and it has the size of a walnut, but that doesn’t mean they are stupid. In fact, they’re much smarter than you’d think. In Everglades National Park in the United States, a 400-pound (181 kg) gator displays a clever way and uses a bait branch stick to catch egrets during the breeding season.
A spectacular video from the National Geographic: explorer Sam Cossman operated camera-mounted drones to capture high-definition images of the Marum (also spelled Maroum) crater in Ambrym, Vanuatu. Vanuatu is a Pacific island nation located in the South Pacific Ocean.
In 2006, Planet Earth, the British television series produced by the BBC Natural History Unit “has changed our view of the world”. It was the first nature documentary series filmed in high definition. It took five years in the making and it was the most expensive nature documentary series ever commissioned by the BBC. Now, ten years later, in February 2016, the BBC announced a six-part sequel had been commissioned, titled Planet Earth II. On October 2016, BBC released the new series’ trailer.
What if Mars still had liquid water on its surface and a thick atmosphere filled with clouds, like Earth? How would it look like? Software engineer Kevin Gill of JPL (NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory) wondered this and prepared an image using data from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO)(1) and Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA)(2). The result is stunning!
Gill picked an arbitrary sea level and used GIMP (a free and open-source raster graphics editor used for image retouching and editing) to paint the features onto the satellite images using these measurements.
The Saffir–Simpson hurricane wind scale (SSHWS) is a 1 to 5 rating based on a hurricane’s sustained wind speed. The Weather Channel meteorologist Mark Elliot prepared a video titled “Why Hurricane Categories Make a Difference” and explained what each category means.
Researches of France’s National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) have calculated the size and surface properties of the planet and concluded it may be an “ocean planet” similar to Earth. There are possibilities, though, it may have continents and oceans like Earth, or its entire surface may be covered by a massive ocean.
Elon Musk, the founder, CEO, and Lead Designer of the private space travel company SpaceX announced that “they are planning to get humans to Mars in six years”. In order to achieve this goal, Musk revealed the Interplanetary Transport System, which aims to reach Mars with a human crew for the first time in history.
Like crocodiles, snakes also suffer from a prevalence of “big fish” stories and over-exaggeration in the internet era. In fact, it is very difficult to measure how large actually a snake is, especially if it’s really big. So, how big are the largest snakes actually?