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Canada's Magical Ice Hotel Inspired by Jules Verne - My Modern Metropolis

Canada's Magical Ice Hotel Inspired by Jules Verne - My Modern Metropolis | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Canada's Hôtel de Glace, the unique ice hotel, is back this season for its 13th annual reconstruction. The magical castle-like lodge is built each year with a…
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“The more we nurture the planet, the better and more natural a life we'll have.”  Chris d'Lacey, Icefire
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Carl Sagan's Pale Blue Dot OFFICIAL - YouTube

"It is sometimes said that scientists are unromantic, that their passion to figure out robs the world of beauty and mystery. But is it not stirring to understand how the world actually works — that white light is made of colors, that color is the way we perceive the wavelengths of light, that transparent air reflects light, that in so doing it discriminates among the waves, and that the sky is blue for the same reason that the sunset is red? It does no harm to the romance of the sunset to know a little bit about it It is sometimes said that scientists are unromantic, that their passion to figure out robs the world of beauty and mystery. But is it not stirring to understand how the world actually works — that white light is made of colors, that color is the way we perceive the wavelengths of light, that transparent air reflects light, that in so doing it discriminates among the waves, and that the sky is blue for the same reason that the sunset is red? It does no harm to the romance of the sunset to know a little bit about it."
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Border collies run like the wind to bring new life to Chilean forest

Border collies run like the wind to bring new life to Chilean forest | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
After the worst wildfire season in Chile's history, border collies are spreading seeds to regrow the forest by running, something they know how to do.
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Plants feel the heat

Plants feel the heat | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Understanding how plants respond to heat stress is crucial for developing crops that can withstand rising average temperatures and more frequent heat waves under climate change. As a result, many people have been working for many years to try to understand how plants sense temperature and then how plants use this information to activate chemical pathways to protect themselves by, amongst other things, manufacturing protective heat shock proteins (HSP).
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Every winter, ladybirds break their solitude and assemble for a once-in-a-lifetime love-fest | Aeon Videos

Every winter, ladybirds break their solitude and assemble for a once-in-a-lifetime love-fest | Aeon Videos | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The Hippodamia convergens (the convergent ladybug, or ladybird) beetle spends most of its life alone, feasting on aphids and other small, soft-bodied insects. But each year as the cold weather sets in, they migrate to hibernation hiding places – generally the same cozy spots. Their journey is made all the more impressive by the fact that the insects, which live only up to a year, have never been to the meet-up points before. Scientists believe that they find their way using pheromone trails left by previous generations. And, as this short video from the science documentary series Deep Look shows, when they assemble en masse to enter a state of diapause and eventually mate in the spring, it’s a natural wonder worth beholding. You can read more about this insect's lifecycle at KQED Science.
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Thank Plate Tectonics for Tasty Oranges

Thank Plate Tectonics for Tasty Oranges | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The evolution of citrus crosses paths with the Himalayas, a Bohemian pirate and more. 
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A Wilderness Like No Other: Chile’s New Patagonia National Park

A Wilderness Like No Other: Chile’s New Patagonia National Park | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A Christmas-time adventure in Patagonia reveals new meanings of wilderness
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'Sinking' Pacific nation is getting bigger: study

'Sinking' Pacific nation is getting bigger: study | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The Pacific nation of Tuvalu—long seen as a prime candidate to disappear as climate change forces up sea levels—is actually growing in size, new research shows.

A University of Auckland study examined changes in the geography of Tuvalu's nine atolls and 101 reef islands between 1971 and 2014, using aerial photographs and satellite imagery.

It found eight of the atolls and almost three-quarters of the islands grew during the study period, lifting Tuvalu's total land area by 2.9 percent, even though sea levels in the country rose at twice the global average.

Co-author Paul Kench said the research, published Friday in the journal Nature Communications, challenged the assumption that low-lying island nations would be swamped as the sea rose.

"We tend to think of Pacific atolls as static landforms that will simply be inundated as sea levels rise, but there is growing evidence these islands are geologically dynamic and are constantly changing," he said.

"The study findings may seem counter-intuitive, given that (the) sea level has been rising in the region over the past half century, but the dominant mode of change over that time on Tuvalu has been expansion, not erosion."
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Surreal Images of Frozen Niagara Falls at Night by Adam Klekotka

Surreal Images of Frozen Niagara Falls at Night by Adam Klekotka | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Photographer Adam Klekotka captured incredible images of an icy Niagara Falls at night. Illuminated by colorful lights, the pictures of a frozen Niagara Falls look like they are from another planet.
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Country diary: a peacock butterfly wakes into living room summer | Environment | The Guardian

Country diary: a peacock butterfly wakes into living room summer | Environment | The Guardian | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Sandy, Bedfordshire: It should have been hibernating, but there it was, bashing its head against a cold window. Something had to be done
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How archaeologists discovered an ancient Assyrian city – and lost it again | Science | The Guardian

How archaeologists discovered an ancient Assyrian city – and lost it again | Science | The Guardian | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The Ilisu dam in Turkey will soon flood hundreds of ancient sites, but twenty years of archaeological effort has saved a rich record of what will be lost
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“ANTARCTICA” UHD 4K 2’50. on

"ANTARCTICA" - UHD 4K. avec Alban Michon. De retour de ce continent, où les extrêmes se rassemblent, où le jour est sans fin. Plonger…
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Rainforest collapse 307 million years ago impacted the evolution of early land vertebrates

Rainforest collapse 307 million years ago impacted the evolution of early land vertebrates | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Researchers at the University of Birmingham have discovered that the mass extinction seen in plant species caused by the onset of a drier climate 307 million years ago led to extinctions of some groups of tetrapods, the first vertebrates to live on land, but allowed others to expand across the globe. This research is published today in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

The Carboniferous and Permian periods (358 - 272 million years ago) were critical intervals in the evolution of life on land. During the Carboniferous Period North America and Europe lay in a single land mass at the equator which was covered by dense tropical rainforests. These rainforests flourished because of the warm humid climate, providing an ideal habitat for early tetrapods (vertebrates with four limbs), allowing them to diversify into a variety of species.
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Venomous Weaponry

Venomous Weaponry | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Nature’s arsenal contains thousands of venomous creatures and a diverse array of armaments that are as brilliant, varied, and surprising as the creatures that wield them.
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You Can Literally See Through the Head of This Fascinating Fish

You Can Literally See Through the Head of This Fascinating Fish | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Anyone that might be wondering what is going on in the head of a Marcopinna microstoma fish can easily do so by simply looking at one these fascinating fish
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Valentine′s Day tips from the animal world

Valentine′s Day tips from the animal world | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
At this flirting time of the year, how about some inspiration from our animal friends? DW presents some of the most amazing master plans to get a date. Be ready for surprises!
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Dreamy Photography of Birds is Out of a Storybook Fairytale

Dreamy Photography of Birds is Out of a Storybook Fairytale | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Rupa Sutton has captured a dreamy series of parrotlet birds that are awash in pastel pinks, blues, and yellows. The resulting photography of birds feels like a scene out of a storybook romance, as many of the creatures appear “in love” and gently nuzzle one another against soft, tranquil backdrops.
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Winning photos from the International Garden Photographer of the Year 2018

Winning photos from the International Garden Photographer of the Year 2018 | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The winners of the 2018 International Garden Photographer of the Year competition
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Eighteen new 'pelican' spiders discovered in Madagascan rainforest | ScienceNordic

Eighteen new 'pelican' spiders discovered in Madagascan rainforest | ScienceNordic | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A team of scientists have discovered 18 new species of so-called pelican spiders on the East African island of Madagascar. The new discovery brings the total number of known pelican spiders to 90.
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I Visited the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone with an Infrared Camera

I Visited the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone with an Infrared Camera | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A few years ago, I visited the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone with an infrared camera. We always hear praises of the might of Mother Nature, how it renders useless mans’ creations and bears life above the ruins. Well, it’s something that is always felt, but never on such a huge scale. This place IS the place for these contrasts.
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Fake nests fight real threat of extinction for the shy albatross – video | Environment | The Guardian

Fake nests fight real threat of extinction for the shy albatross – video | Environment | The Guardian | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Tasmanian scientists are trialling a new tactic to help the shy albatross fight extinction: constructing artificial nests. So far the results are looking promising with the breeding success of pairs on artificial nests 20% higher than those on natural nests
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Asteroid to pass between Earth and Moon on Friday

Asteroid to pass between Earth and Moon on Friday | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The asteroid, which is between 50 and 130 feet wide, will miss Earth by a distance of 39,000 miles ¬— less than one-fifth the distance between Earth and the Moon.
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Hedgehog numbers plummet by half in UK countryside since 2000 | Environment | The Guardian

Hedgehog numbers plummet by half in UK countryside since 2000 | Environment | The Guardian | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Longterm decline is blamed on loss of hedgerows and insect prey but urban hedgehogs may offer a glimmer of hope, says a new report
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Study sheds new light on antibiotics produced by ants

Study sheds new light on antibiotics produced by ants | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Ants, like humans, deal with disease. To deal with the bacteria that cause some of these diseases, some ants produce their own antibiotics. A new comparative study identified some ant species that make use of powerful antimicrobial agents - but found that 40 percent of ant species tested didn't appear to produce antibiotics. The study has applications regarding the search for new antibiotics that can be used in humans.

"These findings suggest that ants could be a future source of new antibiotics to help fight human diseases," says Clint Penick, an assistant research professor at Arizona State University and former postdoctoral researcher at North Carolina State University who is lead author of the study.

"One species we looked at, the thief ant (Solenopsis molesta), had the most powerful antibiotic effect of any species we tested - and until now, no one had even shown that they made use of antimicrobials," says Adrian Smith, co-author of the paper, an assistant research professor of biological sciences at NC State and head of the NC Museum of Natural Sciences' Evolutionary Biology & Behavior Research Lab.
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No volcanic winter in East Africa from ancient Toba eruption

No volcanic winter in East Africa from ancient Toba eruption | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The Toba supereruption on the island of Sumatra about 74,000 years ago did not cause a six-year-long 'volcanic winter' in East Africa and thereby cause the human population in the region to plummet, according to new research based on an analysis of ancient plant remains from lake cores. The new findings disagree with the Toba catastrophe hypothesis, which says the eruption and its aftermath caused drastic, multi-year cooling and severe ecological disruption in East Africa.
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Photographer Captures Incredibly Rare Sight Of Sperm Whales Sleeping

Photographer Captures Incredibly Rare Sight Of Sperm Whales Sleeping | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Photographer Franco Banfi and his fellow divers were following this pod of sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) when the giants suddenly seemed to fall into a vertical slumber. This phenomenon was first studied in 2008, when a team of biologists from the UK and Japan inadvertently drifted into a group of non-responsive sperm whales floating just below the surface. Baffled by the behavior, the scientists analyzed data from tagged whales and discovered that these massive marine mammals spend about 7 percent of their time taking short (6- to 24-minute) rests in this shallow vertical position. Scientists think these brief naps may, in fact, be the only time the whales sleep.
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