Jun 19, 2021 I Paul Seaburn

Led Zeppelin Frogs, Bionic Vultures, Smile Detectors and More Mysterious News Briefly — June 18, 2021

Researchers in the Ecuadorian Andes discovered a new species of terrestrial frog and named it Pristimantis ledzeppelin or Led Zeppelin’s Rain Frog after the iconic band. Did the discovery leave them dazed and confused or did they find it in a tree by the brook after hearing a bustle in the hedgerow?

The genomes of a family of 14 Neanderthals that lived 49,000 years ago in a cave high in Siberia’s Altai Mountains show that the seven males were more closely related than the females. Get ready for a new prehistoric movie, “Seven Brides for Seven Neanderthal Brothers.”

One of the big problems with electric vehicles is discarded batteries, but the Bioleaching Research Group at Coventry University has found that all metals present in EV batteries can be recovered with bioleaching -- using bacteria like Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans and other non-toxic species target and recover the metals in the batteries for reuse. Put down that hand sanitizer – you may be killing the solution to pollution!

Canon Information Technology in China is attempting to solve its workplace morale problem by installing cameras with AI-enabled “smile recognition” technology that only lets smiling workers enter rooms or book meetings. Warning – painting a smiley face on your middle finger won’t fool the camera.

New research shows that huge human-size Coelacanth fish, once thought to be extinct, may actually live as long as 100 years — which is a good thing because they don't reach sexual maturity until age 55 and gestate their offspring for five years. There’s no words in the Coelacanth language for meemaw or pawpaw, but plenty for ‘cougar’.

In a Vienna veterinary hospital, a bearded vulture who lost its right leg after a major injury while still a nestling has received a functioning prosthetic limb, making it the world’s first bionic vulture. It’s perfectly normal, except for an occasional urge to circle over amputation clinics.

Researchers have discovered two previously-unknown cell types in the brains of adult mice and named one of them "gorditas" due to their plump, rounded appearance. Will this make mice more appealing to Spanish-speaking cats?

A 26.5 million-year-old skull found in northwest China has been identified as a species of hornless giant rhino (Paraceratherium linxiaense), one of the largest land mammals ever – reaching 20 tons in weight and a shoulder height of about 15.7 feet (4.8 meters) or about the height of the largest modern giraffes and towering above today’s 10-foot rhinos. And yet, they all still wished they had a horn.

Scientists from the Canadian Conservation Institute discovered a 6,000-year-old throwing dart in southern Yukon that was waterproofed with castoreum, a product taken from the anal sacs of beavers, making it the earliest evidence of indigenous First Nations people using castoreum harvested from beaver butts. And you thought YOU had a tough job.

A new study finds that people from Transylvania to southern England in the 5th – 7th centuries opened graves and took things, including bones, for sentimental reasons rather than to rob them. If you want to get sentimental today, you just find the deceased's Facebook page up and steal their photos.

Paul Seaburn

Paul Seaburn is the editor at Mysterious Universe and its most prolific writer. He’s written for TV shows such as "The Tonight Show", "Politically Incorrect" and an award-winning children’s program. He's been published in “The New York Times" and "Huffington Post” and has co-authored numerous collections of trivia, puzzles and humor. His “What in the World!” podcast is a fun look at the latest weird and paranormal news, strange sports stories and odd trivia. Paul likes to add a bit of humor to each MU post he crafts. After all, the mysterious doesn't always have to be serious.

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