When confronted by an enemy, Southeast Asian “exploding ants” do exactly what their name implies: they explode. Ignored for decades, researchers have completed a detailed survey of these enigmatic ants, discovering over a dozen species that fit into this group, including one that’s completely new to science.
Ever since the 19th century, when disease was first linked to sewage-contaminated water, humans have gone to great lengths to escape their own filth. Meanwhile, animals have gone on reveling in the stuff—eating it, strategically dropping it, flinging it around just to pass the time, etc. Same goes for mud, piss,…
When we see a large cat capturing its prey on the African savannah, we’re literally watching millions of years of evolution in action. But these attacks don’t always end in a meal, as “survival of the fittest” sometimes means the target gets to make a daring escape. New research uncovers the athleticism involved in…
Jellyfish-like salp are amazing swimmers, converting their gelatinous bodies into efficient undersea propulsion systems. But these tiny creatures can move even faster and further when banding together to create long, snake-like chains. Researchers have finally figured out how this unusual configuration makes salp even…
Last month, scientists aboard the NOAA ship Okeanos Explorer visited a poorly-explored deep sea area about 940 miles west of Hawaii. From giant sea spiders and rare snailfish through to comb jellies and glass-like corals, these are some of the weirdest critters we’ve seen in a while.
The ocean is full of mystery. It is also full of penises. And biologists have taken note. Some marine animals look especially phallic—to the point that no one’s even trying to hide the truth behind a veil of innuendo. By that I mean there are literally sea creatures whose scientific names have the word “penis” in them.
A conservation group has rescued an incredibly rare albino orangutan from villagers on the Indonesian part of Borneo island, who were keeping the blue-eyed, white-haired primate in a cage. Sick, dehydrated, and exhibiting signs of a bloody nose, it could take a month before the ape can be released back to the wild.
In a scientific first, researchers have discovered a bizarre inter-species relationship in which salamanders and algae cozy up together to share cells. Scientists aren’t entirely sure why these two very different organisms have adopted such an intimate arrangement, but the discovery could represent a completely new…
Many lizards are capable of detaching their tails when a predator strikes, but one group of geckos has evolved a particularly gruesome escape strategy: unusually large scales that tear off when a predator tries to take hold, allowing the tiny animals to break free.
Earlier this year, a very Pokémon-esque octopus was discovered in deep waters off the coast of Hawaii. Researchers are learning more about this previously unknown species, and how its fragile reproductive cycle could be threatened by deep-sea mining ventures.
Biologists working in the Greater Mekong area have identified a staggering 163 new species, including a horned lizard, a rainbow-headed snake dubbed “Ziggy Stardust,” and a newt that looks like a Klingon from Star Trek.
Marine biologists have discovered six new animal species in undersea hot springs nearly two miles deep in the southwest Indian Ocean—an area already slated for future seafloor mining.
Say hello to Dave, the largest earthworm ever discovered in Britain.
If you’ve ever been stung by a jellyfish while swimming in the ocean, you know firsthand the pain that a venomous creature can inflict, even if it doesn’t outright kill you. But scientists studying the chemical properties of venom might one day be able to develop therapeutic drugs that could save lives.
Sloths are one of the goofiest animals in the animal kingdom. Their passive faces and leisurely lifestyles make them ripe for jokes, but there has to be a biological explanation as to why sloths are so slow. It comes down to what they eat.
Flamingos are regal, but kind of dopey creatures that are known for standing on one leg for reasons that not even scientists can fully explain. If you’ve ever wanted to see them look sillier, check out these chicks, which hatched at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium in Ohio recently.
Will Burrard-Lucas likes to photograph unsuspecting African animals with strategically placed camera traps. For his latest project, the wildlife photographer sought to capture images of nocturnal animals as they conduct their affairs at night, and the results are spectacular.
Say goodbye to the Bramble Cay melomys, a small rat-like creature that lived on a tiny island near the north coast of Australia. Significantly, it marks the first time that a mammal has been declared extinct anywhere in the world, and the cause has been attributed to human-induced climate change.
Researchers working near the Mariana Trench have captured footage of a jellyfish that boggles the imagination.
Over a century ago, scientists discarded a proposed theory that human limbs evolved from gills, given the lack of evidence in the fossil record. That theory is being revisited in light of new genetic results just published in the journal Development.