Archive for July, 2016:

How a huge school of sharks ‘flips the food pyramid’

Image copyright Guillaume Funfrock Image caption Schools of up to 700 sharks occupy a 30m-deep channel in the Fakarava atoll Ecologists have discovered a food web beneath the waves of French Polynesia that is both unusual and spectacular. A small channel hosts up to 700 sharks – far more than it can support based on

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May had objections to Hinkley Point, says Cable

Image copyright AFP Theresa May had “objections” to a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point during the coalition, the then Business Secretary Sir Vince Cable has said. Lib Dem Sir Vince said the prime minister had worried about a “gung-ho” approach to Chinese investment in it. The government said nuclear energy was important but

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Plastic bag use plummets in England since 5p charge

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption A 5p charge for plastic bags was introduced in England in 2015 Plastic bag use has plummeted in England since the introduction of a 5p charge last year, the government has said. In the six months after the levy was brought in last October, 640 million plastic bags were

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Civic pride ‘can help sustain urban biodiversity’

Image caption Using shared green spaces in cities to grow food are good for communities as well as biodiversity, say researchers The establishment of community gardens in inner city areas can boost social and ecological sustainability, suggest researchers. A study found those that produced food were the ones most likely to deliver “win-win” scenarios. Urban

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Drop in little terns numbers concerns RSPB

Image copyright KEVIN SIMMONDS Image caption Little terns nest on the UK coast after overwintering in West Africa Wildlife conservators have said they are “extremely concerned” that the number of little terns nesting in the UK’s biggest breeding colony dropped by almost half in a year. In 2014, the largest colony of the rare seabirds

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Plastic bag use plummets in England

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption A 5p charge for plastic bags was introduced in England in 2015 Plastic bag use has plummeted in England since the introduction of a 5p charge last year, the government says. In the six months after the levy was brought in last October, 640 million plastic bags were used

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English Bulldog health problems prompt cross-breeding call

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption English Bulldogs are loving family dogs. But as a breed they suffer from health problems Crossing the English Bulldog with another breed is the best way to ensure its survival, scientists have argued. Due to centuries of selective breeding for physical traits, the Bulldog has become so inbred it

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Debate needed on 1.5C temperature target

Image copyright Getty Images Scientists are calling for a “thoughtful debate” about the wisdom of attempts to keep a global rise in temperatures under 1.5C. At the Paris climate summit last December, governments agreed that they would “pursue efforts” to keep warming below this figure. But a new study shows the limit will be breached

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Hinkley Point: New hitch for UK nuclear plant deal

Media captionWhy do we need a new nuclear plant? Simon Jack explains Plans to build the first new UK nuclear plant in 20 years have suffered an unexpected delay after the government postponed a final decision until the early autumn. French firm EDF, which is financing most of the £18bn Hinkley Point project in Somerset,

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Clever koalas learn to cross the road safely

Image copyright Griffith University Image caption Koalas were “able to learn new tricks” when provided with a safe way to cross busy highways Koalas have quickly learned to use wildlife passageways to cross busy roads in Australia’s Queensland state as they move between habitats, writes Myles Gough. A new study tracked 72 koalas living near

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