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Animals and plants

Ants make medicine out of tree sap and fungi

Ants vaccinate each other against diseases and make medicine out of tree sap.

5,000-year-old cob reveals the origins of corn

Genetic analyses of a 5,000-year-old corncob shows how early farmers modified what would go on to become one of the world’s most important crops.

Animal teeth record how species live and die

New technique uses animals’ teeth to see how their environment changed throughout their lives.

Inuit hunted whales 4,000 years ago

Fossil DNA from kitchen midden deposits reveal masses of whale blubber, leading scientists to believe that Greenlanders hunted the ocean’s giants 4,000 years before anyone else.

Snake venoms’ deadly secret unlocked: study

Scientists move one step closer to developing a near-universal antidote that could treat a broad range of snake bites.

New evidence that early chimps and bonobos interbred

Chimpanzees and bonobos have not always been able to keep their hands off each other. A new discovery could change our perception of how new species form.

Copenhagen Zoo antelope killed by fox

DNA analysis reveals the mystery killer of Copenhagen Zoo’s only duiker antelope.

Scientists do away with Darwinian tradition

Scientists suggest a completely new way of classifying organisms that does away with conventional idea of species.

Cave paintings and bones reveal origins of European bison

Fossil DNA from bison bones reveals that the European bison was a cross between aurochs and bison. Cave painters depicted the species in detail, 15,000 years ago.

Climate change threatens the existence of Arctic musk oxen

Rising temperatures are making Arctic musk oxen struggle so much to find food that their very existence could soon be threatened, say scientists.