Orangutans Unique In Movement Through Tree Tops

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Orangutan in the rainforest Sumatra, Indonesia. Orangutans move in an irregular way which includes upright walking, four-limbed suspension from branches and tree-swaying, whereby they move branches backwards and forwards, with increasing magnitude.

Movement through a complex meshwork of small branches at the heights of tropical forests presents a unique challenge to animals wanting to forage for food safely. It can be particularly dangerous for large animals where a fall of up to 30m could be fatal. Scientists found that dangerous tree vibrations can be countered by the orangutan’s ability to move with an irregular rhythm. Continue reading… “Orangutans Unique In Movement Through Tree Tops”

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First Neotropical Rainforest Was Home Of The Titanoboa — World’s Biggest Snake

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Plant megafossils from Cerrejon coal mine in Colombia look much like modern rainforest plants.

Smithsonian researchers working in Colombia’s Cerrejón coal mine have unearthed the first megafossil evidence of a neotropical rainforest. Titanoboa, the world’s biggest snake, lived in this forest 58 million years ago at temperatures 3-5 C warmer than in rainforests today, indicating that rainforests flourished during warm periods. Continue reading… “First Neotropical Rainforest Was Home Of The Titanoboa — World’s Biggest Snake”

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Man-Made Crises Outpacing Our Ability To Deal With Them

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The world faces a compounding series of crises driven by human activity, which existing governments and institutions are increasingly powerless to cope with, a group of eminent environmental scientists and economists has warned.  In today’s issue of the leading international journal Science, the researchers say that nations alone are unable to resolve the sorts of planet-wide challenges now arising.

 

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Incredible Time Lapse Videos Of The Station Fire In Los Angeles

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Timelapse – Los Angeles Wildfire

When a brush fire started near a ranger station in the mountains northeast of Los Angeles on August 26, no one would have guessed that over a week later, smoke would still be spewing over the city. The Station Fire has claimed 148,000 acres in Angeles National Forest, as well as the lives of two firefighters, making it the largest fire in Los Angeles history (and to make matters worse, an arson investigation is now underway). The billowing mushroom-like clouds of smoke that puffed up over the city those first few days made for a stunning backdrop for local filmmakers who captured nature’s fury in a flurry of timelapse videos. Here are five of the most stunning. (Videos) 

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World’s Last Great Forest Under Threat: New Study

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Canadian evergreen forest.

The world’s last remaining “pristine” forest — the boreal forest across large stretches of Russia, Canada and other northern countries — is under increasing threat, a team of international researchers has found.

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Ferns Took To The Trees And Thrived During Cretaceous Period

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Hymenophyllum jamesonii, an epiphytic fern of  the neotropical rain forests

As flowering plants like giant trees quickly rose to dominate plant communities during the Cretaceous period, the ferns that had preceded them hardly saw it as a disappointment.

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More Than 200 New Amphibians Discovered In Madagascar

More Than 200 New Amphibians Discovered In Madagascar

 frog Boophis ulftunni

Highlighting a “vast underestimation” of Madagascar’s natural riches, up to 221 new species of amphibians have been found on the island country, including the frog Boophis ulftunni, pictured. The find nearly doubles the number of known amphibians in Madagascar, a new study says. (Pics)

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