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Polar bears crowd on Russian island in sign of Arctic change
The bears had come to feast on the carcass of a bowhead whale that washed ashore, later resting around the food source. The crowd included many families, including two mothers trailed by a rare four cubs each, Gruzdev told AFP. Climate change means ice, where polar bears are most at home, is melting earlier in the year and so polar bears have to spend longer on land, scientists say.
US southwest sizzles as experts predict record Thanksgiving
The southwestern United States was gripped by a heat wave on Wednesday as experts warned of temperatures that would smash century-old records over the Thanksgiving weekend. Record breaking heat will peak today, with only a slight decrease tomorrow, the agency tweeted. Joe Sirard, a meteorologist at the NWS, told the Los Angeles Times the heat record for Thanksgiving in California was set at 90 degrees on November 26, 1903.
New CO2 device for unmanned ocean vessels
Carbon dioxide in remote parts of the world's oceans will be measured by a new instrument being developed by scientists. The CaPASOS, created by the University of Exeter and the National Oceanography Centre, will be carried on unmanned robotic boats to locations including the Southern Ocean. The other half is being absorbed, it is believed, in approximately equal amounts by 'carbon sinks' - vegetation on land and uptake by the ocean.
Meadows beat out shrubs when it comes to storing carbon
If a rainforest is cut down, the carbon stored in the trunks and leaves will be released to the atmosphere. It turned out to be the opposite: Shrubs, even though they are tallest, actually store the least carbon. It surprised me that meadows actually store a lot more carbon than shrubs. The carbon in meadows is stored mostly below the ground, next to the roots, she said.
Early life in India dating 2,000 mn years discovered
Bengaluru, Nov 23 A city-based geologist has discovered 2,000-million-year-old prokaryotic microfossils - considered to be the earliest form of life - from the Indian subcontinent in the Gwalior basin of the Bundelkhand region near Jhansi. The discovery by Naresh Ghose, formerly geology professor at Patna University, was reported at the recent annual convention of the Indian Geological Congress in Nagpur. Ghose found these in the 2,000-million-year-old black carbonaceous shale from the Bundelkhand region of the Gwalior basin in Central India.
The Hindu Explains: What is the Space Activities Bill, 2017?
It is a proposed Bill to promote and regulate the space activities of India. The new Bill encourages the participation of non-governmental/private sector agencies in space activities in India under the guidance and authorisation of the government through the Department of Space. The draft was posted on the website of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on November 21, 2017. A non-transferrable licence shall be provided by the Central Government to any person carrying out commercial space activity.
Three coffees a day may have health benefits
London, Nov 23 Moderate coffee drinking is safe and three to four cups a day may have some health benefits, a study in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) showed. The strongest benefits of coffee consumption were seen in reduced risks of liver disease, including cancer. There is a balance of risks in life, and the benefits of moderate consumption of coffee seem to outweigh the risks, he said.
A first look at how the Earth stops high-energy neutrinos in their tracks
Neutrinos are abundant subatomic particles that are famous for passing through anything and everything, only very rarely interacting with matter. The energy of the neutrinos was critical to the study, as higher energy neutrinos are more likely to interact with matter and be absorbed by the Earth. This probability-that neutrinos of a given energy will interact with matter-is what physicists refer to as a cross section.
NASA drone race: Human pilot emerges faster than AI
Washington, Nov 23 In a drone race that pitted a world-class pilot against Artificial Intelligence (AI), the human pilot emerged faster although the AI flew the drone more smoothly and consistently, NASA scientists have announced. The scientists raced drones controlled by AI against a professional human pilot on October 12 to put their work to the test. The results declared this week showed that world-class drone pilot Ken Loo averaged 11.1 seconds, compared to the autonomous drones, which averaged 13.9 seconds.
Who's got the upper hand? In sports, left-handers do
In such games, he found a higher proportion of lefties than in those with longer intervals between players' actions. For baseball and cricket, this involved the average time that elapsed between ball release and bat-ball contact in professional games. For the racket sports, he considered the intervals between racket-ball contact made by players in professional matches. Over all, left-handedness was 2.6 times more likely in the sports with higher time constraints.
EU bird ban sees huge drop in global trade
A new study says that an EU ban on the trade in wild birds has helped reduce the global business by 90%. Latin America has now become the main bird source, and is now responsible for 50% of the much smaller global market. It was in response to concerns about the spread of avian influenza that the EU imposed a temporary ban on wild bird imports in October 2005.
Smart person's secret? A well-connected brain
Until recently, however, it was not possible to examine how such 'intelligence regions' in the human brain are functionally interconnected. In their current study, the researchers took into account that the brain is functionally organized into modules. Our brain is functionally organized in a very similar way: There are sub-networks of brain regions - modules - that are more strongly interconnected among themselves while they have weaker connections to brain regions from other modules.
What happens once 'net neutrality' rules bite the dust?
The Federal Communications Commission formally released a draft of its plan to kill net-neutrality rules, which equalized access to the internet and prevented broadband providers from favoring their own apps and services. The FCC's move will allow companies like Comcast, AT&T and Verizon to charge internet companies for speedier access to consumers and to block outside services they don't like. The change also axes a host of consumer protections, including privacy requirements and rules barring price gouging and unfair practices.
Did you 'like' Russian propaganda? Facebook will clue you in
Facebook says it will show users if they followed or 'liked' Russia propaganda accounts on its service or on Instagram. Facebook, Google and Twitter testified before Congress this month, acknowledging that agents tied to the Russian government used their platforms to try to meddle with the US elections. Facebook has said that as many as 150 million Facebook and Instagram users may have seen ads from the Internet Research Agency.
Energy-saving LEDs boost light pollution worldwide
They were supposed to bring about an energy revolution-but the popularity of LED lights is driving an increase in light pollution worldwide, with dire consequences for human and animal health, researchers said Wednesday. Rather, it's that people keep installing more and more lights, he told reporters on a conference call to discuss the research. All of those new uses of light offset, to some extent, the savings that you had.
Raging debate: Does culling wolves curb poaching?
A researcher in Norway launched the latest salvo Wednesday in a fierce, sometimes caustic debate on how legal hunting impacts the poaching of large predators. The findings were widely reported, and hailed by conservationists as evidence that state-sponsored culling is bad policy. The conclusion that poaching increases with legal culling is without empirical support, he said. My conclusion is that there is negligible evidence for legal state culling resulting in increased levels of poaching in these data, Stien said, referring to Chapron's study.
'Ghost particles' absorbed by Earth
Neutrinos are known as ghost particles, because they are known to travel through solid objects with ease. A new study demonstrates that some of these sub-atomic particles are stopped in their tracks when they encounter our planet. It's an important measurement that's consistent with the Standard Model - the theory that describes the behaviour of fundamental forces and particles.
Camponotini ant species have their own distinct microbiomes
Many plant and animal species may have symbiotic relationships with bacteria that benefit them in various ways such as influencing reproduction, nutrition, defense, and adaptation to their environment. Many species of ants are known to possess diverse and stable microbial communities, and the microbiome in some genera of the Camponotini species has been well studied. They analyzed the ants' DNA and their bacterial DNA, and compared how the bacteria differed between each species and each stage of development.
Bowhead whales come to Cumberland Sound in Nunavut to exfoliate
Aerial drone footage of bowhead whales in Canada's Arctic has revealed that the large mammals molt and use rocks to rub off dead skin. The footage provides one answer to the mystery of why whales return to Cumberland Sound, Nunavut, every summer, and helps explain some unusual behavior that has been noted historically by Inuit and commercial whalers living and working in the area. We now know that Cumberland Sound serves as a habitat for feeding and molting, said Fortune.

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