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Zooplankton move in time to the moon’s tune

Posted on 8 Jul 2007 in Animal Behaviour, Evolution, Journalism

How do ocean animals that live below the depth to which moonlight penetrates migrate in phase with the moon? Zooplankton travel up and down the water column despite remaining at or below 800 metres – moonlight penetrates no deeper than 150 metres. Image: lrargerich

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Rats influenced by the kindness of strangers

Posted on 6 Jul 2007 in Animal Behaviour, Evolution, Journalism, Life

If rats benefit from the kindness of strangers they are more likely to assist an unfamiliar rat in future. In doing so, they provide the first evidence of an unusual form of altruism that appears to violate evolutionary theory. Image: Capt’ Gorgeous

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Disease causing bugs may have come from the deep

Posted on 3 Jul 2007 in Evolution, Health, Journalism, Life

What is the difference between the bacteria around a deep-sea vent and those in the human body? Surprisingly little, according to a comparison of the genomes of bacteria from deep-sea vents with those of human and animal bacterial pathogens. Their evolutionary relationship suggests that animal pathogens came from the deep. Image: NOAA Photo Library

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