‘Interspecies innovation arms race’: cockatoos and humans at war over wheelie bin raids
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2022/sep/13/interspecies-innovation-arms-race-cockatoos-and-humans-at-war-over-wheelie-bin-raids, posted Sep '22 by peter in bird cognition science
Sydney residents are resorting to increasingly sophisticated measures to prevent sulphur-crested cockatoos from opening and raiding household wheelie bins, detailed in new research published in the journal Current Biology.
What Vladimir Putin misunderstood about Ukrainians
https://www.economist.com/1843/2022/04/04/what-vladimir-putin-misunderstood-about-ukrainians?etear=nl_today_3, posted Apr '22 by peter in politics russia science ukraine
Ukrainians have reminded us what freedom means -- a word that for many in rich democracies had long ago curdled into platitudes. The resilience of the population has impressed the West and surprised the Kremlin. It shouldn't have. For the past few years I've been trying to unlock the secret of Ukrainian identity by talking to Ukrainians. Through my research project, Arena, based originally at the LSE and now at Johns Hopkins University, I've worked with Ukrainian journalists and sociologists to find ways of strengthening democracy. My team has interviewed thousands of adults across the country. Our fieldwork shows that the response to Russia's invasion has deep roots in Ukrainian history.
Learn How to Grow A Beautiful Cluster of Table Salt Crystals
https://crystalverse.com/cluster-of-table-salt-crystals/, posted Dec '21 by peter in forkids howto science todo
You might have heard that although salt is very common, growing crystals with it is hard.
Yes, and no. Growing big, transparent salt crystals is indeed very difficult, but anyone can easily grow a beautiful cluster at home.
Parrots Will Share Currency to Help Their Pals Purchase Food
https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/parrots-share-currency-help-their-pals-purchase-food-180973917/, posted Nov '21 by peter in bird cognition science
But despite the nuts' value -- or perhaps because of it -- parrots are also willing to share their treats and the tokens to buy them with other birds. Given the option, the birds will transfer the precious metal rings to a friend in a neighboring cage so they, too, can enjoy some nutty nosh -- even without the promise of reciprocation, Brucks' latest research shows.
The Amazon's Little Tipping Points: Nearing a point of no return?
https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/climate-un-amazon-tipping-point/, posted Oct '21 by peter in environment nature science
Some scientists fear we are nearing a point of no return in the Amazon rainforest, which exerts power over the carbon cycle like no other terrestrial ecosystem on Earth. Evidence is mounting that in certain areas, localized iterations of irreversible damage may already be happening.
Why can't I go faster than the speed of light? Hints from electrodynamics
https://gravityandlevity.wordpress.com/2009/04/08/why-cant-i-go-faster-than-the-speed-of-light-hints-from-electrodynamics/, posted Sep '21 by peter in science
In this post, I'll try to explain how simple rules for electric and magnetic fields demonstrate that all velocities must be less than the speed of light. It can be done by imagining the consequences of a simple experiment, where a charged particle is watched by two different observers.
How a vegan diet could affect your intelligence
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200127-how-a-vegan-diet-could-affect-your-intelligence, posted Aug '21 by peter in food health science
"There are some tragic cases of children whose brains failed to develop because of their parents being ill-informed vegans," says David Benton, who studies the link between our diets and brain chemistry at Swansea University. In one example, the child was unable to sit or smile. In another, they slipped into a coma.
Later in life, the amount of B12 in a person's blood has been directly correlated with their IQ. In the elderly, one study found that the brains of those with lower B12 were six times more likely to be shrinking.
Even so, low B12 is widespread in vegans. One British study found that half of the vegans in their sample were deficient. In some parts of India, the problem is endemic — possibly as a consequence of the popularity of meat-free diets.
Covid: Misleading stat claims more vaccinated people die
https://www.bbc.com/news/health-57610998, posted Jul '21 by peter in conspiracy covid19 health science toread
One conspiracy site even claimed vaccinated people were dying at higher rates than those who had not received the jab, which is untrue.
This site and others use real figures in a misleading way, to arrive at a completely false conclusion - that the vaccine may not be working or even doing more harm than good.
Behavioral and neurophysiological evidence suggests affective pain experience in octopus
https://www.cell.com/iscience/fulltext/S2589-00422100197-8, posted Apr '21 by peter in cognition science
It is generally accepted that vertebrate animals experience pain; however, there is currently inconclusive evidence that the affective component of pain occurs in any invertebrate. Here, we show that octopuses, the most neurologically complex invertebrates, exhibit cognitive and spontaneous behaviors indicative of affective pain experience. In conditioned place preference assays, octopuses avoided contexts in which pain was experienced, preferred a location in which they experienced relief from pain, and showed no conditioned preference in the absence of pain. Injection site grooming occurred in all animals receiving acetic acid injections, but this was abolished by local anesthesia. Thus, octopuses are likely to experience the affective component of pain.
Science Brief: Community Use of Cloth Masks to Control the Spread of SARS-CoV-2
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/science/science-briefs/masking-science-sars-cov2.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fmore%2Fmasking-science-sars-cov2.html, posted Apr '21 by peter in covid19 health science
Experimental and epidemiological data support community masking to reduce the spread of SARS-CoV-2. The prevention benefit of masking is derived from the combination of source control and personal protection for the mask wearer. The relationship between source control and personal protection is likely complementary and possibly synergistic14, so that individual benefit increases with increasing community mask use. Further research is needed to expand the evidence base for the protective effect of cloth masks and in particular to identify the combinations of materials that maximize both their blocking and filtering effectiveness, as well as fit, comfort, durability, and consumer appeal. Adopting universal masking policies can help avert future lockdowns, especially if combined with other non-pharmaceutical interventions such as social distancing, hand hygiene, and adequate ventilation.