Watch the behind-the-scenes footage of any effects-laden blockbuster film and you'll see actors running around in checkered body suits. Capturing the motions of a human performer is the most lifelike way to bring a digital character to life, but scientists at Stanford have come up with a less intrusive way to capture and study the motions of animals.
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Boning is one of the most important actions in the evolutionary game. Who we bone ultimately decides what traits get passed on to the next generation, and whether we continue along as one species with a diverse set of traits, or if isolation of certain traits eventually turns us into multiple species. But what if we bone a lot of different partners all over the world?
We all like to admire ourselves in the mirror from time to time, but there's a bird in Australia that seems to have developed a rather unhealthy fixation, gazing upon its reflection for hours on end while seemingly oblivious to its surroundings. It's pretty funny, but should we be worried about this fine feathered fellow?
It's been said that the pterosaur, which can only be described as a bird-reptile-dinosaur-esque-thing, was the largest flying animal. This giant beast — which roamed the Earth during the Cretaceous period roughly 66.5 million years ago — was a reptile but not actually a dinosaur. Despite being winged, it wasn't bird, either. The pterosaur basically looked like a platypus on bath salts.
Even the most manoeuvrable aircraft we've designed is no match for the agility of a bird. Mother Nature has all but perfected flight, so why are we wasting our time re-inventing the wheel? As researchers at Switzerland's École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne realised, we should just be copying our fine feathered friends.
Last week, thousands of snow geese died in Montana after landing on "the acidic, metal-laden waters of an old open pit mine" to escape a snowstorm, the AP reported. Montana Resources, the mining company in charge of the toxic water, told the Billings Gazette that the agency won't release the exact number until mid-week, but it estimates about 10,000 birds perished on the evening of November 28.
Man, this Costa's hummingbird legitimately looks like it has a shiny purple baby octopus attached to its face like the facehugger in Alien. I mean, look at how wacky it looks, it almost seems as if the octopus was digitally slapped onto the face. But it's not. It looks that way because male Costa's hummingbirds have a beautiful purple cap of feathers that stretch over their head and onto their throat that flares out when they try to court females.