Science & Health

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The past is often portrayed as a Pandora's Box of terrifying monsters. But while many palaeontologists reject this stereotype, the scientists behind the newly-discovered marine worm Websteroprion armstrongi have decided to embrace it. It turns out this Palaeozoic prince of darkness, which roamed the seas roughly 400-million-years-ago, has a pretty metal origin story.

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The population of forest elephants in Gabon's Minkébé National Park — one of Central Africa's largest and most important nature preserves — has declined by a whopping 81.5 per cent since 2004 due to poaching. It's considered a major setback for the preservation of this endangered species, of which less than 100,000 remain in the wild.

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Whenever you say a colour name, you're referring to specific properties of light waves. Sounds work the same way, but with properties of compression waves. But what about smell? With all of the different scented chemicals out there and their complex interactions, it's been impossible to create a simple scale to describe the odours or noses detect.

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Today in science that turns out to be totally bunk: Citronella candles warding off mosquitoes. At least, the natural "repellent" doesn't seem to have any effect on one of the most notorious disease-spreading blood suckers on Earth.

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Health Minister Greg Hunt is due to make the announcement today - the Federal Government has just approved the sale of medicinal marijuana in Australia.

The treatment - used for patients with cancer, epilepsy and motor neurone disease — could now be available via prescription from a GP in as little as eight weeks.