Animal Life news stories

Verse by verse, whales learn songs like humans
27th July 2017 | Animal Life

Humpback whales learn songs in segments – like the verses of a human song – and can remix them, a new study involving University of Queensland research has found.

Why dogs are friendly – it’s written in their genes
24th July 2017 | | Animal Life

Being friendly is in dogs’ nature and could be key to how they came to share our lives, say US scientists.

Dogs evolved from wolves tens of thousands of years ago.

Giant deep-sea worms may live to be 1000 years old or more
24th July 2017 | | Animal Life

In the depths of the ocean, life can extend far beyond its usual limits. Take the tube worm Escarpia laminata: living in an environment with a year-round abundance of food and no predators, individuals seem to live for over 300 years. And some may be 1000 years old or more – meaning they would have been around when William the Conqueror invaded England.

Elephant Seals Can Recognize Rhythm And Pitch
24th July 2017 | | Animal Life

What do elephant seals and Shakira have in common? They can both keep the beat.

A new study suggests that northern elephant seals memorize the rhythm and pitch of individual vocal calls in order to recognize each other.

Could sharks help save shipping industry billions?
24th July 2017 | | Animal Life, Tech

Whales, sharks, butterflies and lotus leaves might together hold the secret to saving the shipping industry millions and help save the planet, according to a marine biologist.

Genetically Engineered Yeast Soak Up Heavy Metal Pollution
23rd July 2017 | | Animal Life, Earth, Tech

Environmental contamination with heavy metals is often the result of various types of industrial processes. Because heavy metals can be dangerous to humans and other wildlife, contaminated sites need to be cleaned up. This isn’t easy. Chemical extraction methods can introduce different types of pollutants into the environment.

Indian Poultry Farms Are Breeding Drug-Resistant Superbugs
23rd July 2017 | | Animal Life

Indian poultry farms aren’t just rearing chickens — they’re also breeding germs capable of thwarting all but the most potent antibiotics, researchers found.

Random tests on 18 poultry farms raising about 50,000 birds each in India’s northwestern state of Punjab found that two-thirds of fowl harbored bacteria that produce special enzymes, known as extended-spectrum beta-lactamase, or ESBL, that destroy most penicillin- and cephalosporin-based antibiotics.

Cows produce powerful HIV antibodies
23rd July 2017 | | Animal Life

An unlikely hero has emerged in the quest to fight HIV: the cow. In a first for any animal, including humans, four cows injected with a type of HIV protein rapidly produced powerful antibodies against the virus, researchers report. Learning how to induce similar antibodies in humans may be key to a successful HIV vaccine.

Dog domestication happened just once, ancient DNA study suggests
21st July 2017 | | Ancient, Animal Life

People and pooches may have struck up a lasting friendship after just one try, a new genetic study suggests.

New data from ancient dogs indicates that dogs became distinct from wolves between 20,000 and 40,000 years ago

Study reveals ways in which cells feel their surroundings
21st July 2017 | Animal Life

Cells push out tiny feelers to probe their physical surroundings, but how much can these tiny sensors really discover? A new study led by Princeton University researchers and colleagues finds that the typical cell’s environment is highly varied in the stiffness or flexibility of the surrounding tissue, and that to gain a meaningful amount of information about its surroundings, the cell must move around and change shape.

Scientists Are Fighting over Whether Monkeys Could Ever Talk like Humans
21st July 2017 | Animal Life

The question of whether monkeys could ever talk like humans has been debated in scientific circles since the 1950s and now scientists from the U.S., Austria and Belgium claimed to have the answer—yes, physically they could, but they lack the cognitive abilities to do so.

UK rhino eggs ‘could save last northern whites’
21st July 2017 | | Animal Life

A UK zoo is taking part in a radical plan to save the world’s last three northern white rhinos from extinction.

At Longleat safari park, scientists have collected eggs from southern white rhinos – a closely related sub species – to use for IVF.

‘Truly unique’: lioness adopts and nurses leopard cub
21st July 2017 | | Animal Life

No wild cat has ever been observed nursing a cub from another species – the event may be the result of the Tanzanian lioness having lost her own litter

Can spiders really count?
21st July 2017 | Animal Life

A recent issue of Interface Focus examined the idea of convergent minds, which pertains to how distantly related species can think about problem solving in very similar ways.

Squirrels have long memory for problem solving
21st July 2017 | | Animal Life

Squirrels can remember problem-solving techniques for long periods and can apply them to new situations, researchers have discovered.

University of Exeter scientists found grey squirrels quickly remembered how to solve a problem they had not seen for almost two years.

Ravens are so smart it’s actually kind of disconcerting, new study finds
20th July 2017 | | Animal Life

Ravens can solve puzzles, trick other animals into helping them out, and communicate with each other at a level even apes can’t match. And now we know they can hatch plans.

Alt: Ravens can plan for future as well as 4-year-old children can

News stories covering Animal Science, bacterial life, DNA.