Why is it nice to be nice? Solving Darwin's puzzle of kindness

World Kindness Day is a global 24-hour celebration dedicated to paying-it-forward and focusing on the good. We are encouraged to perform acts of kindness such as giving blood, cleaning a communal microwave at work, or volunteering ...

Aliens may be more like us than we think

Hollywood films and science fiction literature fuel the belief that aliens are other-worldly, monster-like beings, who are very different to humans. But new research suggests that we could have more in common with our extra-terrestrial ...

The five most common misunderstandings about evolution

Given its huge success in describing the natural world for the past 150 years, the theory of evolution is remarkably misunderstood. In a recent episode of the Australian series of "I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here", former ...

What blind beetles can teach us about evolution

Evolution is often perceived as being a "directional" or "adaptive" process. We often think of species evolving to become stronger or faster, or to have sharper teeth, for example. And we tend to see this as being inherently ...

Social insects, your grandma and Darwin

Darwin was not a fan of social insects, or at least not of those you're likely to step on or be stung by. Some of these critters—notably ants and termites, and certain wasps, bees and aphids—exhibit a high degree of social ...

Biologists link sexual selection and placenta formation

Sexual selection refers to species' selection for traits that are attractive to the opposite sex. This special type of natural selection enhances opportunities to mate, the tail of male peacocks being an iconic example.

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