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Want to monitor air pollution? Test a pigeon | Environment

Feral pigeons are exposed to the same environmental factors as humans, so help explore the affect of contaminants, say researchers A study in Manhattan found that lead levels in pigeons’ blood were linked to the rate of children with raised blood lead levels. Photograph: Lucas Jackson/REUTERSPigeons might

‘Evolution in real time’: silent crickets still singing for a mate | Science

Scientists are fascinated that Hawaiian crickets still perform their vigorous mating call, despite having evolved to lose their song to avoid a deadly new parasite Scientists are studying the crickets to see if their silent singing fulfils another undetected function. Photograph: ImageBroker/Rex/ShutterstockMale field crickets traditionally attract a

Terrawatch: clues of unexpected creatures in the ocean depths | Science

Recently discovered fossil worm burrows reveal that, in the right sediment, life can survive far deeper than imagined Sandstone outcrops in the Karoo Basin, in southern South Africa. Photograph: David Hodgson/University of LeedsBlue Planet II gave us a glimpse of the weird and wonderful life that swims

Secrets of killer whale evolution revealed by genetic study | Environment

Orcas exist in every ocean, adapting to different conditions and diets. Genome sequencing has allowed insights into their evolution – and similarity to humans Mammal-hunting orcas have a genetic variation that helps them store vital nutrients between meals. Photograph: John Durban, NOAA Southwest Fisheries Science CenterGeneticists have