Science news from the National Geographic Society

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News from the National Geographic Society. The society is is one of the largest non-profit scientific and educational institutions in the world. Its interests include geography, archaeology and natural science, the promotion of environmental and historical conservation, and the study of world culture and history. The National Geographic Society’s historical mission is “to increase and diffuse geographic knowledge while promoting the conservation of the world’s cultural, historical, and natural resources” and the news feed covers all manner of subjects in these areas.

All content is copyright National Geographic Society.

National Geographic News

Reporting our world daily: original nature and science news from National Geographic.

Last feed update: Wednesday August 15th, 2018 08:41:12 AM

Would a U.S. Space Force Be Legal? Get the Facts.

Thursday August 9th, 2018 05:40:00 PM Michael Greshko
As the Trump Administration calls for a new military branch, get the plan's pros and cons and learn the rules governing off-world soldiers.

A Running List of How President Trump Is Changing Environmental Policy

Thursday August 2nd, 2018 05:30:00 PM Michael Greshko
The Trump administration has promised vast changes to U.S. science and environmental policy—and we’re tracking them here as they happen.

What Do Wild Animals Do in Wildfires?

Monday July 30th, 2018 04:00:00 AM Sarah Zielinski
Big wildfires, like those tearing through Northern California, can hurt some animals—while others escape, and some species even thrive.

5 Reasons to Like the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Thursday July 5th, 2018 08:00:00 PM Brian Clark Howard
It keeps a lot of dangerous stuff from being dumped in our air, water, and land.

Living Fireworks, These Animals Produce Light Shows with Their Bodies

Saturday June 30th, 2018 04:01:00 AM Liz Langley
A variety of animals produce bioluminescent light, creating signals that can be used for mating and communication.

Rule to Allow Hunting Could Doom Rare Red Wolves

Friday June 29th, 2018 09:53:39 PM Erik Vance
Wildlife experts aren’t keen on a plan by the government to allow private landowners to shoot wolves living on their land.

Learning to Love Dogs in Kigali

Friday June 29th, 2018 08:32:25 PM Alexandra E. Petri
Rwandans are embracing dogs as pets in spite of the country’s dark canine history.

The Last Cowboys: A Cattle-Ranching Family Fights to Survive

Friday June 29th, 2018 07:00:00 PM Simon Worrall
Bucking broncs, drought, and tourism are just a few challenges for the Wright family’s 150-year-old way of life.

Headless Pompeii Victim Wasn't Crushed to Death, After All

Friday June 29th, 2018 03:26:43 PM Erin Blakemore
A surprising new discovery reveals the truth about what really happened to an unfortunate man in 79 A.D.

Why This Zoo Lion Killed a Lost Water Bird

Thursday June 28th, 2018 09:17:59 PM Elaina Zachos
When a heron inexplicably ended up in the lion enclosure, the big cat’s instincts sprung into action.

What's Giving Some Beachgoers Rashes? Get the Facts.

Thursday June 28th, 2018 08:54:00 PM Theresa Machemer
Lifeguards reported this year’s first cases of sea lice, which aren’t lice at all.

Humans Gave Leprosy to Armadillos. Now, They’re Giving It Back

Thursday June 28th, 2018 06:08:20 PM Jason Bittel
Wild armadillo meat is popular in Brazil, but a new study shows those who eat it put themselves at risk of contracting leprosy.

Meet the 'Kickboxing Grannies' of Kenya's Most Dangerous Slum

Thursday June 28th, 2018 05:17:41 PM Lauren O'Brien
A group of grandmothers hailing from Korogocho have come together to protect and empower themselves and their community.

Gorgeous Panoramic Paintings of National Parks Now Online

Thursday June 28th, 2018 04:29:03 PM Betsy Mason
The iconic illustrations by Austrian artist Heinrich Berann have been digitized in high resolution for the first time, three decades after they were created.

Right Stuff for Life Found on Small Saturn Moon

Wednesday June 27th, 2018 05:00:07 PM Nadia Drake
Data from a dead spacecraft suggest that this world may be the best place besides Earth for life as we know it.

Coldest Place on Earth Found—Here's How

Wednesday June 27th, 2018 03:34:08 PM Alejandra Borunda
"It's a place where Earth is so close to its limit, it's almost like another planet."

Why These Leopard Sisters Are Mating With the Same Male

Wednesday June 27th, 2018 03:16:45 PM Doug Main
This unusual arrangement was likely the result of the two females coincidentally going into heat at the same time.

19 Eel Smugglers Sentenced, But Lucrative Trade Persists

Wednesday June 27th, 2018 01:50:11 PM Rene Ebersole
With prices for baby eels soaring to a high of nearly $3,000 a pound, illegal traders continue to chance their luck with the police.

Tropical Forest Loss Slowed in 2017—To the Second Worst Total Ever

Wednesday June 27th, 2018 07:47:00 AM Stephen Leahy
Brazil and the Democratic Republic of the Congo lost the most; things improved in Indonesia. Here are five takeaways from a new report.

Amid a Civil War, These Syrians Keep Dancing

Tuesday June 26th, 2018 07:05:43 PM Heather Brady
The group calling themselves 'Dare' says they are using dance as an agent of change in a nation beset by conflict.

How Ancient Mummies Helped This Soccer Player Get to the World Cup

Tuesday June 26th, 2018 03:56:01 PM Sarah Gibbens
After Paolo Guerrero tested positive for cocaine, scientists used Inca mummies to argue that the result may have been influenced by something else.

National Geographic Explorer and Space Architect Dies at 53

Monday June 25th, 2018 10:40:23 PM Alexandra E. Petri
A pioneer in her field, Constance Adams’ love of the solar system and Earth fueled her life’s work.

What Does It Take to Raise a Flamingo?

Monday June 25th, 2018 09:34:00 PM Annie Roth
A zoo celebrates as its flamingo flock gives birth to five new chicks—but the process is more difficult than it may seem.

Birds That Leave Nest Too Late Can Endanger Their Families

Monday June 25th, 2018 08:57:36 PM Elaina Zachos
A baby bird’s ability to move and its chances of survival are closely tied, a new study finds.

Could DNA Testing Reunite Immigrant Families? Get the Facts.

Monday June 25th, 2018 08:00:25 PM Maya Wei-Haas
Genetic testing offers a potential solution to the crisis, but logistics and privacy concerns pose major challenges.

Meet the Bug That Armors Itself With Shells

Saturday June 23rd, 2018 09:00:00 AM Liz Langley
The caddisfly is one of many insects that get creative in shielding themselves from predators.

Why the Short-Lived Pony Express Still Fascinates Us

Saturday June 23rd, 2018 04:01:00 AM Simon Worrall
The Pony Express operated for less than two years, but its legend—burnished by Buffalo Bill Cody—lives on.

Here’s What Makes a Dripping Faucet Go ‘Plink’

Friday June 22nd, 2018 08:25:00 PM Sarah Gibbens
Annoyed by the persistent dripping of water in a bucket, one scientist set out to learn what creates the distinctive sound.

Delusions of Infestation Aren't as Rare as You'd Think

Friday June 22nd, 2018 07:44:00 PM Erika Engelhaupt
More people are turning to entomologists to identify parasites they believe are crawling on their bodies, but which turn out not to be real.

Could Humans and Dinosaurs Coexist? Here's the Science.

Friday June 22nd, 2018 06:55:21 PM John Pickrell
“The dinosaurs would be aliens in our world.”

Why These Children Are Forced to Scale a 40-Foot Well

Friday June 22nd, 2018 06:38:38 PM Heather Brady
A short video shows young girls in India climbing into dangerous, deep wells to retrieve worm-infested water.

World’s Biggest Pig Captured in Rare Video

Friday June 22nd, 2018 06:23:00 PM Christine Dell'Amore
The 600-pound giant forest hog is expert at avoiding people, who are increasingly hunting the animal in its African habitat.

Smoking Ocean Vents Found in Surprisingly Shallow Water

Thursday June 21st, 2018 08:29:40 PM Stephen Leahy
Scientists have found new hydrothermal vents off the Azores, and they may harbor unique life.

Orcas Slap, Kill, But Don't Eat Their Prey

Thursday June 21st, 2018 07:45:32 PM Elaina Zachos
It’s impossible to tell why the whales didn’t eat their prey, one expert says, but here are a few suggestions.

Syphilis DNA Pulled From Colonial-Era Bones

Thursday June 21st, 2018 06:00:14 PM Sarah Gibbens
The 350-year-old genes may help researchers settle the debate about where the disease originated.

Ancient Royal Tomb Yields Strange New Ape Species

Thursday June 21st, 2018 06:00:00 PM Maya Wei-Haas
The toothy creature provides rare evidence of early human-caused extinctions.

Den of Mountain Lion Kittens Found in Unlikely Place

Thursday June 21st, 2018 04:24:46 PM Annie Roth
National Park Service researchers discovered a litter of four cougar kittens near California’s Simi Hills, an area surrounded by highways.

Why Koko the Gorilla Mattered

Thursday June 21st, 2018 02:48:00 PM Douglas Main
Featured twice on the cover of National Geographic magazine, Koko led to major revelations about animal empathy and communication.

UNESCO Biosphere Reserve Drops Monkey Circus

Thursday June 21st, 2018 02:11:57 PM Rachael Bale
At Vietnam’s Can Gio reserve, monkeys performed tricks in subpar conditions. The circus has left—but the monkeys remain in possession of the corporation.

This Summer Solstice, Earth's Days Are Longer Than Ever

Wednesday June 20th, 2018 09:20:55 PM Alejandra Borunda
Earth hasn't always had a 24-hour day. Here's what that means for the June solstice.

Why T. Rex Couldn't Waggle Its Tongue

Wednesday June 20th, 2018 07:34:00 PM Theresa Machemer
Scientists were in for a surprise after peering inside the mouths of modern alligators and birds.

Can Bees Help Save Elephants From Train Strikes?

Wednesday June 20th, 2018 06:55:00 PM Mary-Rose Abraham
In India, where elephants are hit by trains, people are trying innovative solutions.

This Bird Has Been Singing the Same Song for 1,000 Years

Wednesday June 20th, 2018 04:06:26 PM Annie Roth
The American swamp sparrow’s amazing ability to pass down its song perfectly is an example of handing down a cultural tradition, scientists say.

After Fleeing War, Refugee Children Face Lasting Psychological Trauma

Wednesday June 20th, 2018 02:21:48 PM Nina Strochlic
In Lesbos, Greece, young refugees cope with a growing mental health crisis.

Some Rivers Are So Drug-Polluted, Their Eels Get High on Cocaine

Wednesday June 20th, 2018 10:00:00 AM Joshua Rapp Learn
Illegal drug residues in the water could be affecting native fish.

These Groundbreaking Photos Show Two Worlds in One

Wednesday June 20th, 2018 10:00:00 AM Christina Nunez
Photographer David Doubilet's "over-under" images present a view of the ocean most people will never get to experience.

Why This Rare Lobster Is Colored Like Blue Cotton Candy

Tuesday June 19th, 2018 08:18:33 PM Maya Wei-Haas
The critter’s pastel rainbow hues may be the result of a genetic mutation or an unusual diet.

Why Great White Sharks Hang Out in Warm Whirlpools

Tuesday June 19th, 2018 06:58:47 PM Douglas Main
New research on famous white sharks Mary Lee and Lydia shows the giant fish spend a surprising amount of time in warm oceanic eddies.

Leopard Plays With Prey’s Own Bones

Tuesday June 19th, 2018 05:40:54 PM Elaina Zachos
Rare video shows big cat tearing open its warthog victim and perusing its innards with its jawbone.

What Is Hogweed, the Invading Plant That Burns and Blinds?

Tuesday June 19th, 2018 04:55:00 PM Sarah Gibbens
The striking plant was brought to North America to decorate gardens and arboretums, but now officials are working to wipe it out.

Nuns Resurrect Endangered Salamanders in First-of-its-Kind Conservation Effort

Tuesday June 19th, 2018 12:35:17 PM Elaina Zachos
This may be the first time a religious group has been involved in amphibian breeding program, an expert says.

These 38 Coral Reefs Are Thriving, Despite Threats

Monday June 18th, 2018 11:00:00 PM Theresa Machemer
A new study found "oases" of resilient coral reefs around the world that are beating the odds against warming, pollution, and other impacts.

Rare Manta Ray Nursery Discovered

Monday June 18th, 2018 09:57:43 PM Alejandra Borunda
Off the coast of Texas, a coral reef houses a vibrant nursery ground where young manta rays grow up.

Yellowstone: A Place, A Drama

Monday June 18th, 2018 08:45:00 PM
'Yellowstone' presents a sweeping tableau of family, money, and tradition with some of the West’s most stunning mountains and valleys as a backdrop.

12 Historic LGBTQ Figures Who Changed the World

Monday June 18th, 2018 07:45:00 PM Mary Beth McAndrews
These activists, artists, doctors, and writers had a lasting impact on communities around the globe.

No, World Cup Fans Didn't Trigger an Earthquake. Here's Why.

Monday June 18th, 2018 06:55:03 PM Annie Roth
Mexico's win over Germany rocked Mexico City. But not literally.

Python Swallows Woman Whole—What Experts Say About the Rare Attack

Monday June 18th, 2018 05:04:14 PM Sarah Gibbens
Development in their native habitat might be influencing their behavior, but humans have a history of conflict with snakes.

Long-Lost Panda Relative Revealed by 22,000-Year-Old Fossil

Monday June 18th, 2018 03:00:00 PM Maya Wei-Haas
The weathered remains from a cave in China contain the world's oldest sample of panda DNA.

Marine Protected Areas Are Important. But Are They Working?

Saturday June 16th, 2018 11:00:04 AM Sarah Gibbens
The world won't meet international ocean conservation targets by 2020, so a team of scientists is looking at what's next for saving our seas.

Searching for Elusive Green Sea Turtles in the Persian Gulf

Saturday June 16th, 2018 10:00:03 AM Craig Welch
Scientists are trying to solve riddles about where and how green sea turtles live in the Middle East, one of the world's least-understood turtle populations.

Meet the Single Dads of the Animal World

Saturday June 16th, 2018 09:00:00 AM Liz Langley
These fathers fly, swim, and hop the extra mile for their babies.

When Nature Runs Wild, the Results Can Be Spectacular

Saturday June 16th, 2018 04:01:06 AM Simon Worrall
So-called rewilding involves taking a hands-off approach to the land and letting natural processes happen.

How Surfing Helped These Scientists Make Waves

Saturday June 16th, 2018 01:32:00 AM Alejandra Borunda
From the oceans' depths to the insides of atoms, researchers of all stripes have found inspiration in the surf.

Where Did Soccer Start? Archaeology Weighs In.

Friday June 15th, 2018 07:49:10 PM Erin Blakemore
“The idea of the team sport was invented in Mesoamerica.”

The Ocean Is Getting More Acidic—What That Actually Means

Friday June 15th, 2018 06:15:41 PM Eric Niiler
Thanks to carbon emissions, the ocean is changing, and that is putting a whole host of marine organisms at risk. These scientists are on the front lines.

Why the Iceland National Team Has So Many Polish Fans

Thursday June 14th, 2018 07:14:00 PM Alexandra E. Petri
For many Polish natives, this island nation is their second home.

Rare Bunny-Faced Mammal Captured on Video

Thursday June 14th, 2018 06:08:00 PM Maya Wei-Haas
The tiny Ili pika faces many threats in its mountainous home of northwestern China.

Climate Change May Spark Global ‘Fish Wars’

Thursday June 14th, 2018 06:00:00 PM Craig Welch
Warming seas are driving commercial seafood poleward into waters controlled by other countries, setting up international conflicts.

Virunga National Park Sees Its Worst Violence in a Decade, Director Says

Thursday June 14th, 2018 05:46:00 PM Jani Actman
Gunmen recently killed five rangers and a driver—the park’s deadliest attack in recent history.

These 5 New Snake Species Suck Snails Out of Their Shells

Thursday June 14th, 2018 03:00:06 PM Elaina Zachos
The names of the snakes were auctioned off, and funds from the event will go toward preserving some of the species.

Meet the Next Generation of National Geographic Explorers

Thursday June 14th, 2018 01:41:08 PM Alexandra E. Petri
These six Explorers are using conservation, photography, science, and innovation to better understand our world and work toward improving it.

World's Oldest Rain Forest Frogs Found in Amber

Thursday June 14th, 2018 01:27:53 PM John Pickrell
“It was exhilarating to hold these small fossils up to the light to reveal the frogs within.”

Why Rescued Kangaroo Joeys Need Handmade Pouches

Wednesday June 13th, 2018 11:29:28 PM Alejandra Borunda
Orphaned joeys need care 24/7, as they would in a mother’s pouch—here's how caregivers mimic the marsupial experience.

Mars Rover Powers Down During Dust Storm—But It's Not Dead Yet

Wednesday June 13th, 2018 08:31:00 PM
A huge dust cloud has swallowed up a quarter of the red planet's surface, threatening NASA's Opportunity rover.

5 Surprising Raccoon Superpowers

Wednesday June 13th, 2018 07:18:00 PM Maya Wei-Haas
Though many see them as pests, these masked bandits have some pretty impressive skills.

Evian and Loop Industries: Starting a Revolution in Plastic Recycling

Wednesday June 13th, 2018 05:55:42 PM
An innovative recycling method invented in a garage is offering a solution to plastic waste.

The West Antarctic Ice Sheet Seems to Be Good at Collapsing

Wednesday June 13th, 2018 05:07:49 PM Douglas Fox
As it shrinks, sea level rises—and a new study finds it shrank dramatically even when Earth was not as warm as today.

These Soft, Magnetic Robots May One Day Crawl Inside Your Body

Wednesday June 13th, 2018 05:04:49 PM Sarah Gibbens
Researchers think the robots could perform a number of medical treatments like delivering medication or taking samples.

Ancient Native American King's House Rediscovered in Florida

Wednesday June 13th, 2018 03:30:00 PM Megan Gannon
Known from Spanish records, the once-lost structure belonged to Caalus, ruler of an indigenous people famous for resisting colonial missionaries.

32 Astonishing Photos From a Career Spent Underwater

Wednesday June 13th, 2018 10:01:00 AM Christina Nunez
Photographer David Doubilet sets out to astound people with his images—and inspire conservation. See how in this retrospective photo gallery.

These Communities Turn Discarded Fishing Nets Into Carpets

Wednesday June 13th, 2018 04:00:00 AM Laura Parker
Explorer Heather Koldewey is helping people in the Philippines and beyond clean up ocean plastic, starting with ghost nets.

Thousands of Tiny Red Crustaceans Strand on California Beach

Tuesday June 12th, 2018 06:58:18 PM Elaina Zachos
Roughly the size of your thumb, pelagic red crabs are not true crabs.

Where Women Must Defy the Odds to Become Scientists

Tuesday June 12th, 2018 06:58:00 PM Angeli Gabriel
In their new documentary, Clare Fieseler and Gabby Salazar explore the lives of women working in science despite intense cultural and social barriers.

These Fish Keep Forests Alive—And Fishing Threatens Them

Tuesday June 12th, 2018 09:00:04 AM Adam Popescu
Scientists have found that many South American forests rely on large fish to transport their seeds—and that may put them at risk.

Artists Used 5,000 Bottles to Build Brooklyn Bridge Replica

Monday June 11th, 2018 09:57:00 PM Heather Brady
The bottles were also a nod to a larger installation made by National Geographic explorer Asher Jay, drawing attention to conservation issues.

These Are the First Jaguars Born in This Argentinian Wetland in Over a Century

Monday June 11th, 2018 09:48:00 PM Elaina Zachos
A pair of cubs was born in Iberá National Park, and scientists are aiming to be as minimally invasive in their lives as possible.

Here’s What It Really Means to Become a National Geographic Explorer

Monday June 11th, 2018 05:49:00 PM Alexandra E. Petri
These scientists, conservationists, storytellers, and educators are changing the world.

Africa's Oldest Trees Are Dying, and Scientists Are Stumped

Monday June 11th, 2018 03:02:20 PM Nadia Drake
A mysterious killer is claiming the mighty baobab.

See Amazing Ocean Creatures That ‘Glow’

Monday June 11th, 2018 04:01:06 AM Elaina Zachos
From coral to sea turtles, marine biologist David Gruber has found several biofluorescent marine species.

Why a Squirrel Stashed 50 Pounds of Pine Cones in a Car

Saturday June 9th, 2018 09:00:12 AM Liz Langley
Many animals have discovered that human-made objects are even better than what's found in nature.

When, How Did the First Americans Arrive? It’s Complicated.

Saturday June 9th, 2018 04:01:00 AM Simon Worrall
The first Americans weren't one group of people; they arrived at different times, and likely by different methods.

How These Remote Locations Celebrate LGBTQ Pride

Friday June 8th, 2018 11:02:00 PM Alexandra E. Petri
Even at the ends of the Earth, LGBTQ communities are finding ways to celebrate one another.

No, Killer Dog Flu Isn't the Next Human Pandemic

Friday June 8th, 2018 08:28:16 PM Theresa Machemer
A study about a new strain of canine influenza made waves this week. Here's why claims about it triggering a human pandemic should give you pause.

These Millennial Monks Are Adapting to a Modernizing World

Friday June 8th, 2018 06:09:50 PM Heather Brady
Young Buddhist monks in Mongolia look to keep their religion alive by passing on their traditions to younger citizens.

Turtle Trafficker Sentenced, But Suspected Mastermind Still Not Charged

Friday June 8th, 2018 05:33:54 PM Jani Actman
Vietnamese man trading endangered hawksbill turtles was sentenced to more than four years in prison. The alleged kingpin has yet to be brought to justice.

This Lizard Has a Blue, Ultraviolet Tongue—Here’s Why

Friday June 8th, 2018 03:29:19 PM Elaina Zachos
When threatened, the northern bluetongue skink brandishes its UV-reflective, cobalt tongue.

New Game Asks Players to Clean the Ocean of Plastic

Friday June 8th, 2018 02:38:36 PM Sarah Gibbens
It also highlights pressing issues like warming oceans and coral bleaching.

For Cash and Pride, Replanting Canada's Forests by the Millions

Friday June 8th, 2018 01:32:00 PM Michelle Z. Donahue
Each year, twentysomethings from all over the world take on one of the most grueling yet satisfying summer jobs imaginable.

Why Humpback Whale Babies Whisper to Mom

Friday June 8th, 2018 10:00:00 AM Dawn Spiller
On World Oceans Day, we take a deeper dive into the fascinating world of marine mammals.

Musician Jack Johnson Wages War on Ocean Plastic

Friday June 8th, 2018 04:00:12 AM Richie Hertzberg
The artist and surfer, who grew up in Hawaii, is driving awareness of ocean pollution.

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