Giant sea creatures that filled Earth's oceans for ages began dying off in vast numbers approximately 2.6 million years ago, and researchers say supernovas may have played a role. Stellar radiation from a string of nearby star explosions would have drastically affected the animals, likely triggering the Pliocene marine megafauna extinction along with climate changes at the time, according to findings accepted for publication in Astrobiology.
Culinary students at a career academy in Georgia are working to prepare community meals that are open to family members, school staff and others. The students learn how to prepare the meals, clean a kitchen and other duties.
Students at a Pennsylvania high school will be able to enroll next year in a new manufacturing academy program. The program will include lessons in personal finance and business, technology design and engineering, career exploration and other areas, and students will be required to complete an internship.
Agriculture students at an Illinois high school are learning about potential career paths working with livestock and in an on-campus greenhouse. The students raise chickens, quail and other animals -- selling some and donating eggs to a local food pantry -- as well as raise fish to restock local waterways and grow vegetables.
Members of a high-school robotics team in Missouri are building a robot that local law enforcement will use in hostage situations. The robot -- to be used to bring items to people during a crisis without endangering officers -- will cost about $5,000 to build.
If climate change caused by humans continues unabated, it could rapidly reverse millions of years of global cooling trends, a study found. "We are living through, and causing, a geological-scale episode of global change, and are climatically rewinding the clock by millions of years," said geography professor John Williams of the University of Wisconsin at Madison.
The now-extinct marsupial lion was about the size of a large pig with a skull like a cat's and razor-sharp teeth that it used to cut up prey that it likely ambushed, according to a new analysis of skeletons found throughout Australia that was published in PLOS ONE. Thylacoleo carnifex, which died out around 45,000 years ago, most resembled the modern Tasmanian devil but was much larger.
A pair of ancient rocks carved into likenesses of snake heads may have been used in Stone Age rituals, according to findings published online in Antiquity. The carved stones, found in Ukraine, are different ages: One dates back to between 8300 B.C. and 7500 B.C. and the other to 7400 B.C.
A hybrid rice plant has been engineered to clone its own seeds, raising hopes of producing a higher volume of plants more economically, according to findings published online in Nature. Researchers got the plants to clone their seeds by turning off a trio of genes and subsequently using CRISPR-Cas9, enabling asexual reproduction.
The risk of stroke among black women in their late 60s and early 70s equals that of black men the same age, while white women have a lower risk of ischemic stroke than white men from ages 45 to 74, researchers reported in JAMA Neurology. They found that the lower risk of stroke among black women, compared with black men, only lasts until age 64.