Archive for April, 2008

Animals Use Chemical Compasses, Study Says

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: April 30, 2008   View Article

The idea that some animals navigate by “seeing” Earth’s magnetic field has been shown to be feasible in laboratory tests, a new study says.

First proposed about 30 years ago, the theory suggests that sunlight absorbed by molecules in the eyes of animals such as birds and bats triggers a chemical reaction.

Narwhal More at Risk from Warming than Polar Bear?

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: April 29, 2008   View Article

A porpoise with a long, spiraled tusk that inspired the myth of the unicorn ranks higher than the polar bear on a new list of marine mammals most at risk due to Arctic warming.

That’s because the narwhal, also known as the corpse whale, may be slightly more sensitive to habitat changes.

When E.T. phoned home, where did he call?

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: April 28, 2008   View Article

When E.T. phoned home, where did he call? If it was a local connection, Mars was the likeliest place. Learn about Mars and seven more relatively nearby targets where scientists believe they could find E.T.

Masters of disguise

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: April 28, 2008   View Article

Blend in or be eaten is the name of the game for many of Earth’s creatures. Some trick predators into thinking they’re toxic and thus are best avoided. Others don a cloak of camouflage to hide from hungry eyes. Meanwhile, the predators themselves match up with their surroundings in hopes of getting closer to their unsuspecting prey. All are evolutionary adaptations intended to help the creatures survive another day. Learn about ten of these masters of disguise.

Nine killer earthquakes

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: April 25, 2008   View Article

Thousands of earthquakes happen every day around the world. Most are hardly felt, if at all. But sometimes pieces of Earth’s crust suddenly slip past each other in a massive release of pent-up stress. The jolted Earth rumbles, buildings collapse, streets buckle, and thousands of people die. These movements are nature’s most violent act and take a grim toll on human life and infrastructure. Learn about nine of the deadliest.

“Extinct” Pygmy Elephants Found Living on Borneo

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: April 23, 2008   View Article

A gift exchange between Asian rulers several centuries ago may have inadvertently saved a population of elephants from extinction, according to a new study.

U.S. Leads World in Wind Power Growth

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: April 21, 2008   View Article

As Earth Day approaches, a new report finds that the United States is on track to breeze past Germany within two years as the world leader in installed capacity to spin the wind into electricity.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach