Tag Archives: Nature

Wildlife: A Chameleon Birthing On Mount Kenya

In these frozen peaks, a chameleon gives birth to live young as it is too cold to lay eggs out in the open.

 In East Africa, during the day, on the high slopes of Mount Kenya the tropical sun keeps the cold at bay – but at night the frost descends. During this cycle of freeze and thaw, a pregnant high casqued chameleon must choose the right time to give birth, if her new-borns are to escape the deadly night freeze.

Views: The Sunflower Fields Of South Dakota

“Sunday Morning” takes us to field aglow in central South Dakota. Videographer: Kevin Kjergaard.

South Dakota consistently ranks as one of the world’s top sunflower producers. This makes late summer an amazing time to experience gorgeous yellow fields that seem to stretch forever. 

Depending on the growing season, sunflowers begin to bloom sometime in late July or early August and stay brilliant for approximately 30 days. Young pre-bloom plants track the sun throughout the day and turn back to the east overnight, putting them in position to catch the morning sunlight. As they bloom and the heads become heavier, the flowers stay facing the east. 

Wildlife: A Pallas’s Cat In The Steppes Of Mongolia

Dinnertime is a gamble for Pallas’s cats, and this one’s hangry. Relative to their body size, they have the shortest legs of any cat, which makes attacking prey in a timely fashion somewhat tricky…

The Pallas’s cat, also known as the manul, is a small wild cat with long and dense light grey fur. Its rounded ears are set low on the sides of the head. Its head-and-body length ranges from 46 to 65 cm with a 21 to 31 cm long bushy tail. 

Research Preview: Nature Magazine – Sept 22, 2022

Volume 609 Issue 7928


A gentle lick or nibble makes this brain circuit buzz

Scientists identify a neuronal pathway in rats that drives ‘social grooming’, a behaviour that helps to hold animal communities together.

Warming Arctic brings jet-stream waviness and extreme weather

As high-level winds shift, heat and heavy rain can persist.

A diamond sensor shines at ‘seeing’ voltages

Crystalline device could be used to visualize voltages with high resolution, speed and stability.

A chocoholic’s best friends are the birds and the bats

The trees that provide the raw material for chocolate have a higher yield when the groves are accessible to certain species.

How did the sea cow cross the Pacific? At a ponderous paddle

A family tree of sea cows suggests that the dugong traversed an ocean to reach its present habitat.

Builder drones

Ground-based robots have potential for helping in the construction industry, but they are limited by their height. In this week’s issue, Mirko Kovac, Robert Stuart-Smith and their colleagues introduce highly manoeuvrable aerial robots that can perform additive 3D construction tasks. Inspired by natural builders such as wasps and bees, the researchers created BuilDrones (as shown on the cover) that can work in an autonomous team to perform 3D printing tasks using foam- or cement-based materials. They also created ScanDrones to assess the quality of the structures

 being built. The team hopes that this approach of ‘aerial additive manufacturing’ could help to build structures in difficult to access areas.

Nature Views: Ospreys In Delaware Bay, New Jersey

“Sunday Morning” takes us among ospreys feathering their nests at the Delaware Bay estuary, near Morristown, New Jersey. Videographer: Jeff Reisly.

Unique among North American raptors for its diet of live fish and ability to dive into water to catch them, Ospreys are common sights soaring over shorelines, patrolling waterways, and standing on their huge stick nests, white heads gleaming. These large, rangy hawks do well around humans and have rebounded in numbers following the ban on the pesticide DDT. Hunting Ospreys are a picture of concentration, diving with feet outstretched and yellow eyes sighting straight along their talons.

Nature: The Native Ponies Of New Forest National Park, Southern England

“Sunday Morning” takes us to New Forest National Park, the site of England’s first royal hunting ground established in the year 1079. Videographer: Henry Bautista.

The New Forest is an area of southern England that includes New Forest National Park. The region is known for its heathland, forest trails and native ponies. In the southeast, the National Motor Museum houses F1 race cars and vintage motorbikes. Exbury Gardens & Steam Railway is home to exotic trees, plus colourful rhododendrons and azaleas. Owls, otters and wolves are among the residents of New Forest Wildlife Park.

Kingfishers: Nature’s Tiny & Colorful Hunters (8K)

Kingfishers or Alcedinidae are a family of small to medium-sized, brightly colored birds in the order Coraciiformes. They have a cosmopolitan distribution, with most species found in the tropical regions of Africa, Asia, and Oceania but also can be seen in Europe.

Kingfishers are known for their stocky body, long, thick bill and striking colors and markings. Many kingfishers are decked out in feathers of bright blue, green, turquoise, red, or gold. Some have splotches, dashes, stripes, or speckles. The dagger-shaped bill often seems too long or too big for the rest of the bird, but it is well designed for capturing food. Most kingfishers have short legs and strong feet, since they spend most of their time perched on a stalk, twig, or branch while keeping an eye out for a meal. Even though they are chunky birds, kingfishers are fast flyers. Some, like pied kingfishers, can even flap their wings fast enough to hover over water.

Kingfishers like to keep clean and bathe by diving into water and then perching in the sun to dry and preen their feathers. Some use their wings to scrub and scratch the top of their head. They also keep that impressive bill clean by scraping it against a branch until they are satisfied that the bill is in good condition.

Views: Turtle Hatchlings Great Barrier Reef Beach