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Daily alternative news articles at the News Desk for GrahamHancock.com. Featuring alternative history, science, archaeology, ancient egypt, paranormal & supernatural, environment, and much more. Check in daily for updates!

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August 30 2014

Junk Food Diet Keeps Rats from Seeking Out New Foods


Junk food may trap people in a cycle of unhealthy eating by making them less likely to try new foods and more likely to respond to cues for junk food in the future.

It’s no secret that high-fat and calorie-rich foods are a major contributor to weight gain and obesity. But a junk food diet doesn’t just pack on the pounds — it may actually reduce a person's desire to eat a more diverse diet.

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August 30 2014

Ancient DNA Could Return Passenger Pigeons to the Sky


The last lonely bird of a species that once numbered three billion or more died on September 1, 1914. Martha, as she was known, had been the last passenger pigeon since her mate George died in 1910. The last of a social species, she lived out her days in solitary confinement in a cage in the Cincinnati Zoo. Her corpse—stuffed and primped—can now be seen at the Smithsonian Institution.

But what if the passenger pigeon could be brought back?

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August 30 2014

Possible ‘babysitter’ spotted in nest of 24 dinosaurs


A rock slab that contains the fossils of 24 very young dinosaurs and one older one suggests a caretaker was watching the group of hatchlings, scientists say.

Amateur paleontologists discovered the fossils, which are about 120 million years old, in the Lujiatun beds of the Yixian Formation in northeastern China’s Liaoning Province.

Though the entire specimen is only about two feet across, it contains fossils from 25 creatures, all of the species Psittacosaurus lujiatunensis.

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August 30 2014

The original Eskimos have no living descendants, say scientists


Ancient human DNA is shedding light on the peopling of the Arctic region of the Americas, revealing that the first people there did not leave any genetic descendants in the New World, unlike previously thought.

The study's researchers suggest the first group of people in the New World Arctic may have lived in near-isolation for more than 4,000 years because of a mindset that eschewed adopting new ideas. It remains a mystery why they ultimately died off, they added.

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August 30 2014

Ancient skeletons move one step closer to reburial


Three scientists yesterday lost their bid to prevent burial of two 9000-year-old human skeletons claimed by the Kumeyaay people of southern California. The 9th circuit federal court in San Francisco ruled against university professors who filed suit in 2012 to halt the repatriation in order to analyze the ancient bones. But the professors aren’t giving up yet and may appeal.

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August 30 2014

Unique 2000-Year-Old Wooden Toilet Seat Found


Archaeologists excavating a Roman fort in northern England have unearthed a 2,000-year-old wooden toilet seat — the only find of its kind to have survived.

The seat was found in a muddy trench at the Roman fort of Vindolanda, which was a key military post on the northern frontier of Britain before the building of Hadrian’s Wall. It had clearly been well used by soldiers stationing there.

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August 30 2014

Massive 4,000-year-old wine cellar reveals the wild nights of ancient Canaanites


The discovery of a 4,000-year-old wine cellar in Israel has provided the best direct evidence yet of the raucous, boozy celebrations that were a key part of the region’s culture at the time.

The cellar was found during a recent excavation at Tel Kabri, Israel, described in a new paper in the journal PLOS ONE. In the remains of a palatial storage complex, archaeologists uncovered ceramic jars and fragments of other vessels dating from the Middle Bronze Age, a period which ran from roughly 1900 BC to 1600 BC.

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August 30 2014

World's oldest Aga discovered in Croatia


Prehistoric experts in Croatia claim to have found what they say is the world's oldest Aga. The 6,500-year-old oven was unearthed in a ancient home during an archeological dig at a Neolithic site in Bapska, a village in eastern Croatia, which experts say is one of the most important in Europe.

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August 30 2014

Ancient metal workers were not slaves but highly regarded craftsmen


In 1934, American archaeologist Nelson Glueck named one of the largest known copper production sites of the Levant "Slaves' Hill." This hilltop station, located deep in Israel's Arava Valley, seemed to bear all the marks of an Iron Age slave camp – fiery furnaces, harsh desert conditions, and a massive barrier preventing escape. New evidence uncovered by Tel Aviv University archaeologists, however, overturns this entire narrative.

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August 30 2014

Holes in the Ground Could Be Our Longest-Lasting Legacy


It's estimated that humans have altered over half of the planet's surface, and those changes are easy to see — the ice sheets are melting, forests are shrinking and species are going extinct.

People have changed the planet so dramatically that some geologists think the Earth has entered a new phase in its geological timeline, named the "Anthropocene." But what about the marks humans are leaving deep underground?

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August 29 2014

An Icy Solution To The Mystery Of The Slithering Stones


A century ago, miners working in California's Death Valley reported seeing boulders on the desert floor with long trails behind them — as if the stones had been pushed across the sand. But despite 60 years of trying, no one ever saw what moved them.

Now scientists think they've solved the mystery of the "slithering rocks of Death Valley." Using GPS tags pasted to the boulders, and a video camera, a geologist from Scripps Institution of Oceanography and his engineer cousin have evidence that broad, jagged panes of melting ice push the stones across the desert, nudged in one direction or another by the breeze.

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August 29 2014

Study examines 13,000-year-old nanodiamonds from multiple locations across three continents


Most of North America's megafauna—mastodons, short-faced bears, giant ground sloths, saber-toothed cats and American camels and horses—disappeared close to 13,000 years ago at the end of the Pleistocene period. The cause of this massive extinction has long been debated by scientists who, until recently, could only speculate as to why.

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August 29 2014

Animals first flex their muscles: Earliest fossil evidence for animals with muscles


A new fossil discovery identifies the earliest evidence for animals with muscles. An unusual new fossil discovery of one of the earliest animals on earth may also provide the oldest evidence of muscle tissue -- the bundles of cells that make movement in animals possible. The fossil, dating from 560 million years ago, was discovered in Newfoundland, Canada.

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August 29 2014

This fish walks better when it's raised on land, study finds


Sometimes a fish out of water really can do better on land! Scientists studying a strange fish called a bichir from riverbanks in Africa have found that when they raise this fish in a terrestrial environment, their bodies actually change in ways that make them more successful walkers.


Related: Fish raised on land give clues to how early animals left the seas

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August 29 2014

Mouse memories 'flipped' from fearful to cheerful


By artificially activating circuits in the brain, scientists have turned negative memories into positive ones.

They gave mice bad memories of a place, then made them good - or vice versa - without returning to that place.

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August 29 2014

Scientists stake out wolves to see whether their yawns are contagious


People do it. So do chimpanzees, bonobos and baboons. Even dogs do it: They yawn when someone near them yawns. But why? Scientists believe it’s a sign that these animals are capable of feeling empathy – and a new study of wolves suggests it’s more widespread among animals than experts had realized.

Yawning in response to another yawn isn’t an emotional reaction per se, but the tendency for yawns to be contagious has been “clinically, psychologically, neurobiologically, and behaviorally linked to our capacity for empathy”.

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August 29 2014

Scientists are recording the sound of the whole planet


In a few weeks, sensors in Indiana will go online that will record, in the words of Bryan Pijanowski, every sound the Earth makes. The array of microphones, geophones, and barometric gauges will run for a year, taping everything from the songs of birds arriving in the spring to the vibrations of the continent as ocean waves pound the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. They will measure earthquakes on the other side of the world and the stomping of cattle nearby, the ultrasonic whistles of bats and the barometric drop of cold fronts.

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News desk archive...

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