Weekly News Digest – March 3, 2020

Reviewed by: BD Editors

Scientists have found a new connection between whale strandings and solar flares. Apparently, these whales are sensitive to sunspots and the increased electrical activity they bring to the Earth, which disrupts their navigation skills.

Scientists found fossil green algae that may be the common ancestor of all modern plants! While this has been theorized for a long time, the new fossils provide physical evidence of this complex history.

Think Salmonella is nasty? It likely wasn’t an issue before the advent of farming and agriculture, according to a new study on the origins of the bacterial disease. Researchers showed that the disease evolved as people were beginning to domesticate farm animals.

Artificially created chemicals can be devastating for the environment. Luckily, a group of researchers has developed a new kind of super-strong glue created with water and cellulose – the molecule that helps form cell walls in all plants. That’s as natural as it gets!

Ever wonder why chimps can’t run on two feet efficiently? The answer may be the “transverse arch” within your foot, which provides a spring-like bounce during walking and running. While there are many other changes in the human skeleton, the transverse arch mechanisms are not found in a chimp’s foot. But, they allow us to bounce with joy!

Coconut Crabs seem to “talk” during sex. Researchers studying coconut crabs have recently realized that while the crabs are breeding, they make quite a racket. We can’t possibly know what they are saying, but we can guess!

Seagulls are watching you! No, they really are. A new study details just how seagulls watch humans, see what they eat, then go after the same items. Seagulls are essentially watching us eat to avoid non-edible items and find the best food. Creepy…

The coronavirus likely transferred to humans from a wild animal. China is taking big steps to curb their wildlife trade, one of the largest in the world. This is a great step to help stop future virus outbreaks and protect wild animals from being eradicated by the pet and traditional medicine industries.

In-vitro fertilization (IVF) is a process used to implant a fertilized egg into a surrogate mother. The process has just been used for the first time in cheetahs, which may help scientists help the cheetah avoid extinction!

One of the problems of Climate Change is that the process is self-reinforcing. As the planet gets warmer, a series of changes take place that drive the warming process to higher levels. Researchers in the Arctic have identified that the permafrost – or frozen ground – found near the Arctic Circle are thawing extremely fast and releasing more greenhouse gases. Not good for the planet!

You’ve probably heard that corals are suffering due to the changes in ocean environments caused by Climate Change. Researchers at the University of Hawaii have shown that ALL CORAL could be decimated by 2100. This would essentially kill most life forms in the ocean.

Think you know plants? Think again… Researchers recently discovered that plant growth is not driven by turgor pressure, as previously thought. They discovered a network of proteins within the cell wall that can change and manipulate the way a plant grows. This will likely lead to more discoveries on the mechanisms that drive plant growth.

In studying past extinctions, researchers have shown that the most diverse groups of animals are the most likely to survive. While this is common sense because more diversity means more opportunity to adapt, this review of the fossil record really drives the point home!

7% of Brazil believes the Earth is flat, and that’s a problem. There is overwhelming physical, visual, and mathematical evidence proving the Earth is a sphere. So, if you know a “flat-earther”, tell them not to be ridiculous.

Life on Mars?! Maybe, according to a new study. Researchers have found organic molecules that could have been formed by bacteria on Mars. While these substances are billions of years old, this finding suggests that the Red Planet may have been able to support life at one point.

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Biologydictionary.net Editors. “Weekly News Digest – March 3, 2020.” Biology Dictionary, Biologydictionary.net, 15 Mar. 2020, https://biologydictionary.net/weekly-news-digest-march-3-2020/.
Biologydictionary.net Editors. (2020, March 15). Weekly News Digest – March 3, 2020. Retrieved from https://biologydictionary.net/weekly-news-digest-march-3-2020/
Biologydictionary.net Editors. “Weekly News Digest – March 3, 2020.” Biology Dictionary. Biologydictionary.net, March 15, 2020. https://biologydictionary.net/weekly-news-digest-march-3-2020/.

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