Oryzomys antillarum was a medium-sized rat, similar in most respects to Oryzomys couesi. The head and body length was 120 to 132 mm (4.7 to 5.2 in) and the skull was about 30 mm (1.2 in) long. The upperparts were reddish and graded into the yellowish underparts. The tail was about as long as the head and body, sparsely haired, and darker above than below. The species differed from O. couesi in having longer nasal bones, shorter incisive foramina (perforations of the front part of the palate), and more robust zygomatic arches (cheekbones). (Full article...)
Material relevant to the genus was first named by Lawrence Lambe in 1902. Over twenty years later, the modern name was coined in 1923 by William Parks, in honour of Lambe, based on better preserved specimens. The genus has a complicated taxonomic history, in part because small-bodied crested hadrosaurids now recognized as juveniles were once thought to belong to their own genera and species. Currently, the various skulls assigned to the type speciesL. lambei are interpreted as showing age differences and sexual dimorphism. Lambeosaurus was closely related to the better known Corythosaurus, which is found in slightly older rocks, as well as the less well-known genera Hypacrosaurus and Olorotitan. All had unusual crests, which are now generally assumed to have served social functions like noisemaking and recognition. (Full article...)
Phagocytes are cells that protect the body by ingesting harmful foreign particles, bacteria, and dead or dying cells. Their name comes from the Greekphagein, "to eat" or "devour", and "-cyte", the suffix in biology denoting "cell", from the Greek kutos, "hollow vessel". They are essential for fighting infections and for subsequent immunity. Phagocytes are important throughout the animal kingdom and are highly developed within vertebrates. One litre of human blood contains about six billion phagocytes. They were discovered in 1882 by Ilya Ilyich Mechnikov while he was studying starfishlarvae. Mechnikov was awarded the 1908 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his discovery. Phagocytes occur in many species; some amoebae behave like macrophage phagocytes, which suggests that phagocytes appeared early in the evolution of life.
Phagocytes of humans and other animals are called "professional" or "non-professional" depending on how effective they are at phagocytosis. The professional phagocytes include many types of white blood cells (such as neutrophils, monocytes, macrophages, mast cells, and dendritic cells). The main difference between professional and non-professional phagocytes is that the professional phagocytes have molecules called receptors on their surfaces that can detect harmful objects, such as bacteria, that are not normally found in the body. Phagocytes are crucial in fighting infections, as well as in maintaining healthy tissues by removing dead and dying cells that have reached the end of their lifespan. (Full article...)
The 2007 pony swim
The history of human activity in Chincoteague, on the Eastern Shore of Virginia, begins with the Native Americans. Until European colonizers possessed the island in the late 17th century, the Chincoteague Indians used it as a place to gather shellfish, but are not known to have lived there; Chincoteague Island lacked suitable soil for their agriculture. The island's name derives from those early visitors: by one popular tale, chincoteague meant "Beautiful land across the water" in their language.
Use of Chincoteague Island by European settlers began in the 17th century, when the island was granted to a Virginia colonist. Legal disputes followed, and it was not until 1691 that title was determined by the courts. Although a few people were living on the island by 1700, it was primarily used as a place to graze livestock. This was probably the origin of the Chincoteague ponies, feral horses that long roamed in the area. They are no longer present in the wild on Chincoteague Island. During the American Revolutionary War, the islanders supported the new nation's bid for independence. The local fishing and seafood resources began to be systematically exploited in the early 19th century. (Full article...)
Carnotaurus was a lightly built, bipedal predator, measuring 7.5 to 9 m (24.6 to 29.5 ft) in length and weighing at least 1.35 metric tons (1.33 long tons; 1.49 short tons). As a theropod, Carnotaurus was highly specialized and distinctive. It had thick horns above the eyes, a feature unseen in all other carnivorous dinosaurs, and a very deep skull sitting on a muscular neck. Carnotaurus was further characterized by small, vestigial forelimbs and long, slender hind limbs. The skeleton is preserved with extensive skin impressions, showing a mosaic of small, non-overlapping scales approximately 5 mm in diameter. The mosaic was interrupted by large bumps that lined the sides of the animal, and there are no hints of feathers. (Full article...)
Within its range, the black currawong is generally sedentary, although populations at higher altitudes relocate to lower areas during the cooler months. The habitat includes densely forested areas as well as alpine heathland. It is rare below altitudes of 200 m (660 ft). Omnivorous, its diet includes a variety of berries, invertebrates, and small vertebrates. Less arboreal than the pied currawong, the black currawong spends more time foraging on the ground. It roosts and breeds in trees. (Full article...)
Hurricane Nate was an Atlantic hurricane that threatened Bermuda but remained at sea during early September 2005. The fourteenth named storm and seventh hurricane of the annual Atlantic hurricane season, Nate formed southwest of Bermuda on September 5 and initially moved very slowly to the northeast. Early forecasts suggested a possible threat to the island, but Nate passed well to its south as a Category 1 hurricane on September 8. After moving away from the island, the storm entered a region with cooler sea surface temperatures and unfavorable wind shear, causing it to weaken to a tropical storm before becoming extratropical on September 10. The extratropical remnant was later absorbed by a larger weather system.
The hurricane caused no structural damage while tropical, although it generated rip currents in combination with other storms that killed one person off the New Jersey coast. Nate dropped light rainfall and produced gusty winds on the island of Bermuda. The remnants of hurricanes Nate and Maria contributed to heavy rainfall in parts of Scotland and later Western Norway, triggering a mudslide that killed one person. Canadian Navy ships en route to the US Gulf Coast, carrying relief supplies to assist in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, were delayed while trying to avoid Nate and Hurricane Ophelia. (Full article...)
The alpine newt (Ichthyosaura alpestris) is a species of newt native to continental Europe and introduced to Great Britain and New Zealand. Adults measure 7–12 cm (2.8–4.7 in) and are usually dark grey to blue on the back and sides, with an orange belly and throat. Males are more conspicuously coloured than the drab females, especially during breeding season.
The alpine newt occurs at high altitude as well as in the lowlands. Living mainly in forested land habitats for most of the year, the adults migrate to puddles, ponds, lakes or similar water bodies for breeding. Males court females with a ritualised display and deposit a spermatophore. After fertilisation, females usually fold their eggs into leaves of water plants. The aquatic larvae grow up to 5 cm (2.0 in) in around three months before metamorphosing into terrestrial juvenile efts, which mature into adults at around three years. In the southern range, the newts sometimes do not metamorphose but keep their gills and stay aquatic as paedomorphic adults. Larvae and adults feed mainly on diverse invertebrates and themselves fall prey to dragonfly larvae, large beetles, fish, snakes, birds or mammals. (Full article...)
Turner spent part of each year in Norfolk, and her 1911 image of a nestling bittern in Norfolk was the first evidence of the species' return to the United Kingdom as a breeding bird after its local extinction in the late 19th century. She also travelled widely in the United Kingdom and abroad photographing birds. (Full article...)
Though Vamei was officially designated as a tropical storm, its intensity is disputed; some agencies classify it as a typhoon, based on sustained winds of 120 km/h (75 mph) and the appearance of an eye. The storm brought flooding and landslides to eastern Peninsular Malaysia, causing $3.6 million in damage (2001 USD, $5.26 million 2021 USD) and five deaths. (Full article...)
Proxima Centauri is a red dwarf star with a mass about 12.5% of the Sun's mass (M☉), and average density about 33 times that of the Sun. Because of Proxima Centauri's proximity to Earth, its angular diameter can be measured directly. Its actual diameter is about one-seventh (14%) the diameter of the Sun. Although it has a very low average luminosity, Proxima Centauri is a flare star that randomly undergoes dramatic increases in brightness because of magnetic activity. The star's magnetic field is created by convection throughout the stellar body, and the resulting flare activity generates a total X-ray emission similar to that produced by the Sun. The thorough internal mixing of its fuel by convection through its core, and Proxima's relatively low energy-production rate, mean that it will be a main-sequence star for another four trillion years. (Full article...)
Pluto is the ninth-largest and tenth-most-massive known object directly orbiting the Sun. It is the largest known trans-Neptunian object by volume but is less massive than Eris. Like other Kuiper belt objects, Pluto is primarily made of ice and rock and is relatively small—one-sixth the mass of the Moon and one-third its volume. It has a moderately eccentric and inclined orbit during which it ranges from 30 to 49 astronomical units or AU (4.4–7.4 billion km) from the Sun. This means that Pluto periodically comes closer to the Sun than Neptune, but a stable orbital resonance with Neptune prevents them from colliding. Light from the Sun takes 5.5 hours to reach Pluto at its average distance (39.5 AU). (Full article...)
Though it was a small dinosaur, Heterodontosaurus was one of the largest members of its family, reaching between 1.18 m (3 ft 10 in) and possibly 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in) in length, and weighing between 2 and 10 kg (4.4 and 22.0 lb). The skull was elongated, narrow, and triangular when viewed from the side. The front of the jaws were covered in a horny beak. It had three types of teeth; in the upper jaw, small, incisor-like teeth were followed by long, canine-like tusks. A gap divided the tusks from the chisel-like cheek-teeth. The body was short with a long tail. The five-fingered forelimbs were long and relatively robust, whereas the hind-limbs were long, slender, and had four toes. (Full article...)
Pelicans are a genus of large water birds that make up the familyPelecanidae. They are characterized by a long beak and a large throat pouch used for catching prey and draining water from the scooped-up contents before swallowing. They have predominantly pale plumage, except for the brown and Peruvian pelicans. The bills, pouches, and bare facial skin of all pelicans become brightly coloured before the breeding season. The eight living pelican species have a patchy global distribution, ranging latitudinally from the tropics to the temperate zone, though they are absent from interior South America and from polar regions and the open ocean.
An 18th Century Persianastrolabe used for determining the time at both day and night. The points of the curved spikes on the front rete plate mark the positions of the brightest stars, the name of each star being labeled at the base of each spike. The back plate, or mater, is engraved with projected coordinate lines. From the Whipple Museum of the History of Science collection.
Australian and Chinese researchers announce the discovery of two new, distinct species of woolly flying squirrel in the Himalayas: the Tibetan woolly flying squirrel (Eupetaurus tibetensis) and the Yunnan woolly flying squirrel (Eupetaurus nivamons). (Mirage News)
Image 3Image of veins from William Harvey's Exercitatio Anatomica de Motu Cordis et Sanguinis in Animalibus. Harvey demonstrated that blood circulated around the body, rather than being created in the liver. (from Scientific Revolution)
Image 30One possible signature of a Higgs boson from a simulated proton–proton collision. It decays almost immediately into two jets of hadrons and two electrons, visible as lines. (from History of science)
Image 31Clay models of animal livers dating between the nineteenth and eighteenth centuries BCE, found in the royal palace at Mari in what is now Syria (from History of science)