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A Failure to Evolve

We humans have inhabited Earth for at least 130,000 years. In the course of our history we have spread across the planet, established vibrant cities, developed effective means of global transportation, created technologies to advance...Show More Summary

Hamsters Don't Eat Burritos. They Eat Each Other.

A few months ago, a video made the rounds featuring a tiny hamster eating a tiny burrito. If you haven’t seen it yet, then behold the pinnacle of human-hamster achievement: I’ll admit, this is probably the cutest thing to happen to us since baby sloths, surprised red pandas, or goats on sheet metal. Show More Summary

Rosie O’Donnell, New Co-Host of The View, Killed an Endangered Hammerhead Shark

After controversial anti-vaccine activist Jenny McCarthy was let go from The View, the producers were presumably looking for someone with less of a history of being on the wrong side of public policy. In Rosie O’Donnell, they made an awful choice. Show More Summary

How the World’s Largest Flying Dinosaur Avoided Crash Landing

In the dinosaur world, raptors have a reputation for being ferocious, fast, and having sharp claws to slash open their prey. A new fossil unearthed in China confirms that some raptors could not only rip your face off—they could also fly. Show More Summary

These Flowers Have an Ingenious Pollination Mechanism

Flowers used to come with understood meanings. Marigolds were for the jealous and aggrieved; ambrosias a sign of love returned. Dumas fil’s heroine in Camille carried white camellias when in the mood for a tryst; red ones said, ???not tonight, sweetheart.” Un-plucked flowers, however, don’t leave their intentions up to human interpretation. Show More Summary

Watch Amazing Bird Artist David Allen Sibley Draw a Townsend’s Warbler

This article originally appeared on BirdNote. Famed illustrator, ornithologist, and author David Allen Sibley dropped by the BirdNote studio while in Seattle on a book tour. We talked to him about his art, the artistic process behind his best-selling The Sibley Guide to Birds, and how his appreciation of nature was cultivated as a child. Show More Summary

Do Dogs Get Jealous?

Inspiration struck psychologist Christine Harris when she was visiting her parents and their three border collie puppies. “I was petting two of them, and the third would take his head and push the others away,” she says. At the time,...Show More Summary

Sawfish Are Some of the World’s Weirdest and Most Endangered Fish

The sawfishes, best known for the distinctive tooth-covered rostrum that gives them their name, are a family of rays. The saw is used to stun and kill prey, and it is so sharp that pups are born with a thick membrane over their saws to protect the mother during birth. Show More Summary

Why Aren’t the World’s Giant Insects Even Bigger?

Chinese villagers have provided specimens of aquatic insects to local researchers, who believe they’re the largest of their kind. The bugs join a brethren of huge insects around the world, but entomological research is beginning to explain why these oversize bugs never grow to true B-movie-monster size.

The Longest Brooder in the Animal Kingdom

A female octopus will defend her eggs to the death—literally. In species that live in shallow water, the mother guards a den where her eggs are clustered. An open-sea octopus carries her eggs in her arms, protecting them as she drifts through the water. Show More Summary

This Is What It Looks Like to Get Attacked by a Great White Shark (Spoiler Alert: It's Terrifying)

Some people have reasonable crippling fears: Heights, drowning, finding out what's actually in a Slim Jim. Not me. I saw Jaws when I was an impressionable 10-year-old, and from about the moment the Kintner kid bought it, I've been absolutely certain that my life will end painfully in the mouth of a great white. Show More Summary

Almost Every Lobster Image You See Is Anatomically Incorrect

Humans have two legs. Dogs and cats have four. Spiders have eight. Quick, how many do lobsters have? What? You don’t know? Thank goodness, then, for lobsters’ rights activists. A new blog called Lobsters Have Ten Legs is dedicated...Show More Summary

Blobs and The Meaning of Life

I'm kind of a linear person. I can't do one thing until I've finished the first thing. So when I have a lot of irons in the fire I go a little nuts. Right now, I'm trying to finish my new book. The whole manuscript and all the paintings are due April 15. Show More Summary

Shark Week Is Lying Again About Megalodon Sharks

Carcharocles megalodon sharks were amazing animals. They were capable of growing up to 50 feet long and are commonly regarded as the largest predatory sharks that ever lived. Savvy readers will notice I used the past tense to describe...Show More Summary

Environmentalist Marmot Is the Perfect Mascot

There are two rules to keep in mind when attempting to spread the word about a noble cause. No. 1: Have a noble cause. No. 2: Adopt an adorable animal as your mascot. The people at Greenpeace USA are leading a campaign against the federal coal leasing program, a program that expedites climate change and may put some of our national parks at risk. Show More Summary

Big, Bad Botany: Deadly Nightshade (Atropa Belladonna), the Poisonous A-Lister

All week on Wild Things, we’ll be presenting our favorite dangerous, horrifying, and monstrous plants, excerpted from The Big, Bad Book of Botany: The World’s Most Fascinating Flora by Michael Largo. Out now from William Morrow. Atropa belladonna is a Eurasian perennial with reddish, bell-shaped flowers that bear glossy-coated, black berries. Show More Summary

Why Do We Eat Wilbur But Not Fido?

I live around the corner from a gourmet grocery store that has, for the past several weeks, displayed three-foot-long sides of cured beef in the display window. The meat looks like what hangs from those big metal hooks in a slaughterhouse after people saw the cow in half. Show More Summary

Grasshoppers in March

We generally associate the presence of Orthopterans (grasshoppers, crickets, katydids) with hot summer days and balmy August nights. However, some species may be encountered in early spring, especially during periods of warm weather.Following...Show More Summary

The Legend of the Loneliest Whale in the World

This article is excerpted from “52 Blue,” the newest single from the Atavist. You can purchase the full story from the Atavist’s website. It is also available on Amazon. Dec. 7, 1992: Whidbey Island, Puget Sound. The World Wars were over. Show More Summary

A Normal Lion Cub, and Another Normal Lion Cub, and a White Lion Cub

I'm of the opinion that there is nothing cuter than a lion cub. Those little bundles of apex predator are the most adorable things on the planet, and if I were to raise one as my own at some point—with that relationship culminating in a Christian-esque reunion and lion hug, obviously—I would die a happy man. Well, it turns out I was wrong. Show More Summary

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