Honeybees are math stars (Update)

Start thinking about numbers and they can become large very quickly. The diameter of the universe is about 8.8×1023 km and the largest number with a name—googolplex, 1010100—outranks it enormously. Although that colossal ...

Risso's dolphins plan their dives

Slipping beneath the surface of the water in pursuit of food sets the timer ticking for hungry dolphins; the pressure is on to locate food and make it back to the surface before they run out of oxygen.

How red-eyed treefrog embryos hatch in seconds (Update)

When they come under attack by a predatory treesnake, red-eyed treefrog embryos must escape in seconds or risk becoming lunch. However, most frog embryos take hours to hatch. Intrigued by the treefrogs rapid emergence, scientists ...

Water-skiing beetles get a bumpy ride

Blink and you've missed it: Manu Prakash from Stanford University, USA, describes how one moment a waterlily beetle (Galerucella nymphaeae) is sat on the surface of a pond and the next it has vanished. 'The phenomenon is ...

Pregnant pipefish fathers are not super dads

Many aquatic species have a reputation for negligent parenting. Having cast their gametes to the currents, they abandon their offspring to their fate. However, hands-on parenting is taken to a whole new dimension in the Syngnathidae ...

Tarantula coordination disintegrates in heat

Scuttling across the floor, a spider's movements have more in common with robots than you may at first realise. Instead of contracting muscles to extend a limb, spiders inflate their joints with haemolymph to straighten them ...

Do homing pigeons navigate with gyroscope in brain?

No one knows how homing pigeons do it, but now a team of Swiss and South African scientists have discovered that the bird's navigation is affected by disturbances in gravity, suggesting that they navigate using a gravity ...

Lunar explorers will walk at higher speeds than thought

Anyone who has seen the movies of Neil Armstrong's first bounding steps on the moon couldn't fail to be intrigued by his unusual walking style. But, contrary to popular belief, the astronaut's peculiar walk was not the result ...

Arm swinging reduces the metabolic cost of running

Have you ever tried running without swinging your arms? It's not easy. Each step jars and it feels like hard work: but is it? Christopher Arellano, from Brown University, USA, says, 'We know from the literature that arm swinging ...

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