Glowing millipede genitalia help scientists tell species apart

Sometimes, it's really easy for scientists to tell species of animals apart—they'll be obviously different shapes or colors. Other times, different species will look nearly identical to the naked eye. In those cases, scientists ...

Screw-shaped bird sperm swim faster—but it comes at a cost

A study by Ph.D. student Hanna Nyborg Støstad has investigated the peculiar spiral shape of songbird sperm. Støstad compared sperm cells of 36 bird species including house sparrows and tree swallows, and found that species ...

Study identifies a key to soybean cyst nematode growth

The soybean cyst nematode, one of the crop's most destructive pests, isn't like most of its wormy relatives. Whereas the vast majority of nematodes look like the microscopic worms they are, the female soybean cyst nematode ...

Scientists develop printable water sensor

A new, versatile plastic-composite sensor can detect tiny amounts of water. The 3-D printable material, developed by a Spanish-Israeli team of scientists, is cheap, flexible and non-toxic and changes its colour from purple ...

Assembly in the air: Using sound to defy gravity

Scientists at the University of Bath have levitated particles using sound in an experiment which could have applications in so-called "soft robotics" and help reveal how planets start to form.

How Capsella followed its lonely heart

The Brassicaceae plant family boasts a stunning diversity of fruit shapes. But even in this cosmopolitan company the heart-shaped seed pods of the Capsella genus stand out.

Ferroelectric polymers made more versatile

The ferroelectric polymer PVDF (polyvinylidene fluoride) has interesting properties and could be used to store information or energy. One of the main drawbacks of PVDF is that extra functional groups added to improve certain ...