How bird feather patterns form

Feathers evolved in dinosaurs and are a key characteristic of birds today. They are arranged in a precise hexagonal pattern in a bird's skin, but it has been unclear how this happens. According to a new study published February ...

Cold atoms offer a glimpse of flat physics

These days, movies and video games render increasingly realistic 3-D images on 2-D screens, giving viewers the illusion of gazing into another world. For many physicists, though, keeping things flat is far more interesting.

Where will future migrants come from?

In times of desperation—after a hurricane flattens a community, for example, or droughts cause widespread hunger—people inevitably search for better lives and better opportunities elsewhere. In some cases, migrants may ...

Mapping movements of ocean creatures great and small

A whale and a turtle differ in size, shape and lifestyle but their patterns of movement are surprisingly similar, reveals the largest collection of movement data for a diverse group of large marine vertebrates.

Fixated on food?

Contrast has an impact on the optokinetic reflex, which enables us to clearly perceive the landscape from a moving train. Researchers from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have now shown that visual features ...

The courting cephalopods of the East China Sea

William Shakespeare wrote with a quill, Helen Keller liked her typewriter, and the oval squid prefers to use its body, when it comes to expressing love. But unlike these famous authors, the romanticisms of Sepioteuthis lessoniana ...

What's cuing salmon migration patterns?

The spring-fed water that flows through Hansen Creek in southwestern Alaska is almost always clear. Its rate and temperature stay relatively constant throughout the year. Each summer, sockeye salmon migrate through the shallow, ...

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