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Byron Shire
February 29, 2024
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Science Goes Viral

Most migratory fish on the brink says global analysis

At least 2 in 5 migratory animal species prioritised for conservation are in decline and almost all significant migratory fish are threatened with extinction, says a new report.

What parents just don’t get about video games

New research reveals a generational disconnect over online games, with 94% of young people expressing positive feelings about the activity, yet only 15% of parents identifying benefits for their child.

First ever image of wild baby great white shark emerges!

A biologist and filmmaker have captured what might be the first images of a newborn great white shark in the wild.

Helper immune cells become killers to control melanoma

New Australian research has revealed a type on immune cell called CD4+ T cells traditionally thought to only assist other immune cells are effective in controlling melanoma.

How hydrogen trucks could make power cleaner and cheaper

Hydrogen-powered trucks could help to lower emissions and yield cheaper power on aging electricity grids, according to a team of Canadian researchers.

Searching for the secret to save the Great Barrier Reef

Researchers in north Queensland are breeding heat tolerant coral, hoping it might be one of the solutions needed to prevent disaster when the next marine heatwave hits the Great Barrier Reef.

Housemates’ lockdown project uncovers 1000+ species in their suburban backyard

A mathematician, an ecologist and a taxonomist go into lockdown in Brisbane suburbia… it might sound like the start of a joke, but it’s a lockdown project which became an academic research paper.

Could some fungi be an alternative to pesticides and fertilisers?

For the first time a large scale trial has shown that mycorrhizal fungi might provide an alternative to mineral fertilisers and pesticides on farms.

‘Unpromising’ archaeological site rewrites Roman history

What started as an unpromising archaeological site in central Italy could change our understanding of the fall of the Roman Empire. A 13-year archaeological investigation...

Abuse and falsehoods erode the public square of science

As the world faces existential problems such as pandemics and climate change, Australian scientists are facing a dilemma about the best way to connect with the wider public.

The secret love life of the echidna

How do echidnas make love? Carefully… of course!

Mission possible! How hummingbirds squeeze through tight spots

Lots of birds can fly through small gaps by simply folding in their wings closer to their bodies. But not hummingbirds! They’ve lost the ability to bend their wings at the wrists and elbows.

Pets on a vegan diet can help save the world!

When my six-month-old puppy was diagnosed with a congenital liver shunt, the vet placed him on a diet featuring predominantly dairy and plant-based protein.

Dino killer asteroid darkened Earth for 620 days, scientists say

Scientists continue to piece together the events surrounding the extinction of the dinosaurs.

One Pacific island’s plan to produce more scientists

It’s a wet Friday morning at Solomon Islands’ National University (SINU), and none of Dr John Fasi’s students have turned up to class.

How will El Niño change in the future?

Current evidence suggests both El Niño and La Niña could change significantly over the next 70 years, which will have consequences for how they affect us.

‘We have never seen a year like this’

Antarctica’s sea ice has reached its annual maximum – a record low – and has started to recede as temperatures warm during spring.

Pre-Incan mummies found in Peru by gas workers

The mummified bodies of eight individuals have been found by city workers who were digging a natural gas line in the Carabayllo district on the outskirts of Lima, capital of Peru.

Scientists measure how much weed Australians put in their joints

How much weed is in that joint?  A team of Australian researchers has found that it is quite varied, which could have implications for public health policy.

NASA shows how human life can be supported on Mars

NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover has generated oxygen on Mars for the 16th and final time with the agency saying it exceeded expectations.

Is an Earth-like planet hiding on the edge of the solar system?

Far past the reaches of Neptune there could be a planet hiding in our Solar System, according to two scientists.

Forecast for sea off south-east Australia spells danger for marine life

Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology has forecast a patch of the Tasman Sea to reach temperatures at least 2.5°C above average from September to February.

Music lessons improve brain auditory development

Musical training is shown to boost brain development, according to a 12-year international study which compared the neural progress of 66 musicians and 46 non-musicians.

Small ancient whale discovered in Egypt named after King Tut

Fossilised remains of a small prehistoric whale found in Egypt is the smallest species of basilosaurid – an extinct family of aquatic whales.

Are wild winter temperatures a warning for southern summers?

It’s winter in the southern hemisphere, but try telling that to folks living in Chile...

Little forest bats: Earth’s tiniest heroes

These tiny bats punch above their weight when it comes to pest control, eating hundreds of insects every night, catching prey in mid-air, and using their tail to scoop insects into their mouth while flying!

Australian fur seal: cheeky, chunky, boof-head of the sea

The Australian fur seal is the largest of all fur seals in the world: the big boof heads of the sea.

Honey possum: tiny nectar-lovers with enormous testes and giant sperm

Honey possums are extremely specialised Australian mammals that are so different from other species that they are classified into a family of their own.

A new frontier in fundamental physics as quantum phase created by frustrating electrons

A new phase of quantum matter, called a “chiral bose-liquid state” has been discovered by experimental physicists. The discovery may open new avenues of research into the most fundamental questions about the physical world.

Frog microbiomes respond well to vaccine for deadly chytrid fungus

Deadly chytrid fungus is killing frogs in huge numbers around the world, and researchers are racing to find solutions.

We’ve already breached most of the Earth’s limits. A safer, fairer future means treading lightly

People once believed the planet could always accommodate us. That the resilience of the Earth system meant nature would always provide. But we now know this is not necessarily the case. As big as the world is, our impact is bigger.

Planet will likely clear 1.5°C barrier for the first time before 2027

Brought to you by Cosmos Magazine and The Echo The prospect of a strong El Niño event and increased greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere has prompted the...

Trial begins to test koala-ty of chlamydia vaccine

Brought to you by Cosmos Magazine and The Echo Scientists have begun an ambitious field trial in New South Wales, vaccinating wild koalas against chlamydia. Many of us have...

Queensland and Papua New Guinea among regions most at risk from record-breaking heatwaves

Every region in the world needs to be prepared for extreme heatwaves, according to a new paper in Nature Communications – but Afghanistan, Papua New Guinea, and Central America are particularly at risk.

World’s ice melting five times faster than in the 90s

Polar ice is melting at an unprecedented rate and accounts for a quarter of all sea level rise, researchers say.

New hair testing uncovers drug use in Bronze Age cultures

Hairs found in an ancient cave in Spain have shed light on the use of drug plants in ancient Europe.

Fire danger period to end early for Northern Rivers

Tweed, Byron, Ballina, Kyogle, Lismore, Richmond Valley and Clarence Valley are among the local government areas (LGAs) that will see an early end to  the Bush Fire Danger Period.

Israel Palestine

Audacious, humane, sensible, permanent. Achieving such a solution to the present Middle East crisis would require persons of state, that, unlike the current ones...

Byron Dog Rescue: 20 years of lifesaving love and dedication

Celebrating two decades of compassion and dedication to our four-legged friends by Byron Dog Rescue.

Stolen ute, ransacked service station and vandalised police cars

Stolen Brunswick Heads ute allegedly taken on wild adventure ransacking service station and being party to vandalising police cars before being abandoned in the bush at Coraki.