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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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May 22 2015

Organic farming 'benefits biodiversity'


Organic farms act as a refuge for wild plants, offsetting the loss of biodiversity on conventional farms, a study suggests.

Fields around organic farms have more types of wild plants, providing benefits for wildlife, say scientists.

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May 22 2015

Do trees communicate with each other?


Surprisingly, the answer is yes.

They might seem like the strong, tall and silent type, but trees actually communicate with each other.

Forest ecologist Dr Suzanne Simard, from the University of British Colombia, studies a type of fungi that forms underground communication networks between trees in North American forests.

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May 22 2015

This Futuristic Concrete Heals Itself With Built-In Bacteria


Concrete has been a go-to building material since Roman times. It’s durable, easy to make, and relatively inexpensive. There’s just one problem: It has a tendency to crack.

There are a lot of different reasons that concrete cracks, but in general, it gets stressed either from the load its carrying, the weather, or other natural forces, and it fractures under the pressure.

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May 22 2015

Scientists to thrash out rules on genetically modified humans


Scientists in America will collaborate to draw up a set of ethical guidelines around the rights and wrongs of editing the human genome.

The move comes after the shock discovery in April that researchers in China had successfully edited genes within human embryos.

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May 22 2015

Billion-dollar particle collider gets thumbs up


A machine that would allow scientists to peer deeper than ever before into the atomic nucleus is a big step closer to being built. A high-level panel of nuclear physicists is expected to endorse the proposed Electron-Ion Collider (EIC) in a report scheduled for publication by October. It is unclear how long construction would take.

The panel is the Nuclear Science Advisory Committee, or NSAC, which produces regular ten-year plans for the US Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Science Foundation.

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May 22 2015

Dawn Probe Gets Closer Look at Ceres' White Spots, But Mystery Endures


NASA's Dawn spacecraft has provided an even closer look at the bright spots on the surface of the dwarf planet Ceres — but the origins of the spots are still subject to debate.

The latest view, released Wednesday, shows the flashes of sunlight reflected by the spots inside a 57-mile-wide (90-kilometer-wide) crater as Dawn flew within 4,500 miles (7,200 kilometers) of Ceres on May 16. There's one big spot with a smattering of smaller spots off to the right. The picture also shows that Ceres' surface is covered with scads of craters and channels.

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May 22 2015

Are Mars's moons homegrown—or snatched from the asteroid belt?


Long after astronomers found moons orbiting other planets in our solar system, Mars remained a loner. It wasn’t until the late 1800s, when astronomer Asaph Hall tried, failed, and then—at the urging of his wife—tried again, that scientists got their first peek at the Red Planet’s two tiny moons, which Hall named Phobos and Deimos.

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May 22 2015

Signs of extensive groundwater system on Mars


In its early years, planet Mars comprised large volumes of groundwater, which regularly flowed to the surface. This is the conclusion reached by Utrecht University's PhD candidate Wouter Marra following observations and scale experiments. Regardless of the climate, the water in the ground was liquid and was, for a long time, the main source of water on Mars. Marra will defend his PhD thesis from the User Support Programme Space Research on 22 May.

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May 22 2015

Driest place on Earth hosts life


Researchers have pinpointed the driest location on Earth in the Atacama Desert, a region in Chile already recognised as the most arid in the world. They have also found evidence of life at the site, a discovery that could have far-reaching implications for the search for life on Mars.

For more than a decade, the Yungay region has been established as the driest area of the hyper-arid Atacama desert, with conditions close to the so-called "dry limit" for life on Earth.

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May 21 2015

Stone tool discovery pushes back dawn of culture by 700,000 years


The oldest known stone tools, dating to long before the emergence of modern humans, have been discovered in Africa.

The roughly-hewn stones, which are around 3.3 million years old, have been hailed by scientists as a “new beginning to the known archaeological record” and push back the dawn of culture by 700,000 years.


Alt: 'New beginning to the known archaeological record' as oldest stone tools ever discovered found in Kenya

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May 21 2015

Oldest broken bone reveals our ancestors' switch to life on land


IT WAS one small fall for a tetrapod, but it signals one giant leap for tetrapod kind. A broken leg bone pushes back the emergence of our four-legged ancestors from water on to land by at least 2 million years.

A gap in the tetrapod fossil record means we know little about what happened between the time when limbs evolved from fish fins some 360 million years ago and the first land-adapted tetrapods appeared 330 million years ago.

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May 21 2015

Ancient Mourners May Have Left Flowers on 'Red Lady Grave'


Ancient mourners may have left flowers on the grave of an Ice-Age woman known as the Red Lady of El Mirón, new research suggests.

The woman, called the Red Lady because her body and bones had been smeared with a brilliant, sparkling pigment made from red ocher, lived about 18,700 years ago and was buried in a cave in what is now Spain. A large clump of pollen that was unearthed in the burial suggests people at the time placed flowers into the woman's grave, researchers said in a new study.

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May 21 2015

Neanderthal hunters became the hunted: Fossils found with puncture wounds


Neanderthals were tough enough to survive for almost 200,000 years and thrived during the freezing conditions of most of the last Ice Age.

But it seems these thick-boned, heavily built ancient human cousins were not strong enough to escape becoming meals for large predators that lived alongside them.

While Neanderthals are known to have been formidable hunters themselves, forensic analysis of injuries on their remains has suggested they fell victim to carnivores such as bears or big cats.

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May 21 2015

Why is it raining spiders in Australia?


Millions of tiny spiders recently fell from the sky in Australia, alarming residents whose properties were suddenly covered with not only the creepy critters, but also mounds of their silky threads. But that's not where the frightful news ends: Experts say that such arachnid rains aren't as uncommon as you might think.

This month's spider downpour in the country's Southern Tablelands region is just the most recent example of a phenomenon commonly known as "spider rain" or, in some circles, "angel hair,".

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May 21 2015

Male Java sparrows may 'drum' to their songs


Male Java sparrows may coordinate their bill-clicking sounds with the notes of their song, according to a study published May 20, 2015 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Masayo Soma and Chihiro Mori from Hokkaido University, Japan.

Birds may communicate using both vocalizations and movement, as for instance occurs during courtship displays, but scientists' understanding of how they coordinate their movements with the sounds they produce is limited. To further investigate birds' communicative and musical abilities, the authors of this study looked into the vocalizations and bill sounds associated with singing in the Java sparrow, a song bird.

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May 21 2015

Bigger brains help female fish outwit predators and live longer


"As clever as a guppy" is not a huge compliment. But intelligence does matter to these tropical fish: big-brained guppies are more likely to outwit predators and live longer than their dim-witted peers.

Alexander Kotrschal at Stockholm University, Sweden, and his colleagues bred guppies (Poecilia reticulata) to have brains that were bigger or smaller than average. His team previously showed that bigger brains meant smarter fish.

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May 21 2015

The octopus can see with its skin


Octopuses are well known for changing the colour, patterning, and texture of their skin to blend into their surroundings and send signals to each other, an ability that makes them both the envy of, and inspiration for, army engineers trying to develop cloaking devices. As if that wasn’t already impressive enough, research published today in the Journal of Experimental Biology shows that octopus skin contains the pigment proteins found in eyes, making it responsive to light.

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News desk archive...

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