Keep your head: the self-decapitating sea slugs that regrow their bodies – hearts and all

Keep your head: the self-decapitating sea slugs that regrow their bodies – hearts and all

If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, then it’s unlikely that you are a sacoglossan sea slug (apologies to Rudyard Kipling). Scientists in Japan have discovered that this species of sea slug can decapitate itself and then regrow an entirely new body, complete with …

Daddy longlegs: there is one piece of information every child will know | Helen Sullivan

Daddy longlegs: there is one piece of information every child will know | Helen Sullivan

The daddy longlegs spider looks as though it was drawn very quickly on a sheet of paper by the hand of God (the hand of God is the MC Escher drawing of the hands drawing themselves) and then – perhaps after that sheet of paper was photocopied a few billion …

Land could be worth more  left to nature than when farmed, study finds

Land could be worth more left to nature than when farmed, study finds

The economic benefits of protecting nature-rich sites such as wetlands and woodlands outweigh the profit that could be made from using the land for resource extraction, according to the largest study yet to look at the value of protecting nature at specific locations. Scientists analysed 24 sites in six continents …

Global heating pushes tropical regions towards limits of human livability

Global heating pushes tropical regions towards limits of human livability

The climate crisis is pushing the planet’s tropical regions towards the limits of human livability, with rising heat and humidity threatening to plunge much of the world’s population into potentially lethal conditions, new research has found. Should governments fail to curb global heating to 1.5C above the pre-industrial era, areas …

Avid Black hiker hopes to ‘break down stereotypes’ with 1,200-mile trek

Avid Black hiker hopes to ‘break down stereotypes’ with 1,200-mile trek

Trekking across 1,200-miles of Wisconsin forests and prairies carrying a 65lb pack in temperatures as low as -37F was initially meant as a passion trip for Emily Ford, during her off season as a professional gardener. The 28-year-old ended up taking along thousands of online fans on her journey across …

Shining through: Dutch artist paints farming in a new light to boost crops

Shining through: Dutch artist paints farming in a new light to boost crops

By day, the field of leeks looks like any other. But, as the sun sets, blue and red light, mixed with invisible ultraviolet (UV) radiation, transforms the scene into a multicoloured landscape. This LED light show is not just for effect. For a couple of hours every evening the lights …

Hopes, dreams and fears: the world of teenage girls through their diaries

Hopes, dreams and fears: the world of teenage girls through their diaries

Masuma Ahuja was tired of seeing the same stories told about teenage girls. They were either victimised or sexualised, even if an “exceptional girl” such as Greta Thunberg or Malala Yousafzai was occasionally held up as a role model for fighting back. “We have very little understanding of the day-to-day …

School for female shepherds aims to restore balance in Spain’s countryside

School for female shepherds aims to restore balance in Spain’s countryside

The rugged pathways crisscross Spain, sprawling across an estimated 1% of its territory. Etched into the land over centuries, the country’s livestock roads have long been the domain of solitary men leading their flocks to lush pastures. Now a new initiative is looking to change this with the launch of …

One of world’s rarest toads bred in captivity for first time in Manchester

One of world’s rarest toads bred in captivity for first time in Manchester

One of the world’s rarest toads has been bred in captivity for the first time, thanks to the scientists at Manchester Museum. The critically endangered variable harlequin toad, Atelopus varius, lives deep in the central American rainforests of Panama and Costa Rica, breeding only in turbulent streams filled with stones …