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Big algae surprise in mountain lake

A common type of ocean algae has been found in a lake in the mountains of western Norway. Why are they there?

Poor classroom acoustics drive teachers away

Classroom acoustics play an important part in determining a school teacher’s job satisfaction. Poor acoustics can make them consider leaving their job.

Urban design makes birds hit the high C

Birds raise their pitch to drown out traffic noise and to make themselves understood in the urban landscape.

Multi-resistant bacteria fear avocados

Substances in avocado plants can fight off multi-resistant bacteria. The newly-discovered extracts can complement existing antibiotics.

Lilliputian shop of horrors

Do you cringe at the thought of head lice or intestinal worms? Well, if you were a little creepy thing you would risk something much worse than an itch.

Zebra stripe mystery solved

It’s been unclear up to now why zebras are striped, but now a team of Swedish and Hungarian researchers claim to have solved the mystery.

What’s the deal with morning breath?

While you sleep the bacteria in your mouth are forced onto a low-carb diet. They protest by gassing your breath with sulphur.

Microbe masters

Viruses, bacteria and parasites make us sneeze, poop or scratch our behinds. Can they also be behind some of the world’s major cultural differences?

Neutron star riddle solved

New theoretical calculations show how quickly rotating neutron stars – millisecond pulsars – slow down when they no longer attract matter from their companion stars.

The illusion of light constricts pupils

Which of the figures below is brightest in the middle? Maybe when your brain plays tricks on you it isn’t a mistake, but rather a sort of improvement on reality.

The giant that perished

The largest known razorbill, or auk, was a powerful swimmer that couldn’t fly. Our ancestors carved images of the Great Auk in caves 35,000 years ago. But in the 1800s we drove it to extinction.

Ants in supercolonies defy evolution

Some invasive ants create supercolonies which eliminate other ants in an area. But the supercolonies cannot continue to exist, since evolution doesn’t allow for this social behaviour.

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