First new butterfly species in decades

Some might say it takes a rare breed to survive the Alaska wilderness. The discovery of a possible new species of hybrid butterfly from the state’s interior is proving that theory correct. Belonging to a group known as the Arctics, the Tanana Arctic, Oeneis tanana, is the first new butterfly species described from the Last…

Scientists grow ‘dinosaur leg’ on a chicken

Chilean scientists have grown ‘dinosaur legs’ on a chicken through reverse evolution. Last year, scientists had successfully turned the beaks of chicken embryos into snouts that look just those once found on Velociraptors. In a ‘reverse evolution’ experiment, the scientists at the Universidad de Chile, headed by Joâo Botelho, have modified chicken embryos so that…

Sleeping With Neanderthals

  Ancient trysts between Neanderthals and modern humans may have influenced modern risks for depression, heart attacks, nicotine addiction, obesity and other health problems, researchers said. The Neanderthals were once the closest relatives of modern humans. Scientists recently discovered that Neanderthals and modern humans once interbred; nowadays, about 1.5 to 2.1 percent of DNA in…

How fish dodged extinction’s bullet

LIFE on Earth was nearly extinguished 251 million years ago. Some 96 per cent of marine species went extinct. The world’s forests disappeared, and for about a million years no plant grew higher than a half a metre. It took 100 million years for biodiversity to return to pre-extinction levels. The global ecosystem was shattered…

2-million-year-old fossils reveal hearing abilities of early humans

Research into human fossils dating back to approximately two million years ago reveals that the hearing pattern resembles chimpanzees, but with some slight differences in the direction of humans. Rolf Quam, assistant professor of anthropology at Binghamton University, led an international research team in reconstructing an aspect of sensory perception in several fossil hominin individuals…

DNA from Neandertal relative may shake up human family tree

LONDON—In a remarkable technical feat, researchers have sequenced DNA from fossils in Spain that are about 300,000 to 400,000 years old and have found an ancestor—or close relative—of Neandertals. The nuclear DNA, which is the oldest ever sequenced from a member of the human family, may push back the date for the origins of the…