The Scientist spoke with Chapman University’s Yu Zeng about his lab’s finding that the slime-producing cells of the slippery marine fish vary with the creature’s size, which may be an adaptation to thwart different predators.
Researchers excavated human footprints out of a small bluff next to a dried-up playa lake and radiocarbon-dated embedded seeds to around 23,000 years ago. Their results suggest that people entered the Americas thousands of years earlier than the accepted estimate.
Leiden University’s Carel ten Cate tracked down 34-year-old duck recordings—and the man who made them—to verify that musk ducks are capable of vocal learning, an ability that hadn’t been thought to exist in waterfowl.
Researchers propose that some of the planet’s earliest photosynthesizers benefited from a slowing of the Earth’s rotation that allowed them to produce a surplus of oxygen and paved the way for more complex life.