Mysterious News Briefly — April 1, 2022 (These are NOT April Fool's stories!)
Using a super-sensitive new probe that took decades to invent, researchers from Cornell University found that dunes in the Qatar desert regularly inhale and exhale tiny amounts of water vapor – which may be what allows microbes to live deep in sand dunes even when no liquid water is available. Do they hold their breath every time a camel looks like it’s about to drop a load?
A PhD student in ecology at San Diego State University (SDSU) posted a video of a normally mild-mannered western banded gecko (Coleonyx variegatus) biting down on a scorpion, repeatedly whipping its head from side to side, and slamming the scorpion into the ground over and over again in what he described as “berserker mode." We saw Berserker Mode open for Depeche Mode
A 5,000-year-old human femur from the Neolithic period was discovered on the banks of the River Thames in London, making the bone one of the oldest objects ever found in the Thames. Was this from the last time the Thames was safe for swimming?
NASA announced it will send four astronauts to the ISS on SpaceX’s long-awaited Crew-4 mission on 4/20 (April 20), a favorite day of SpaceX CEO and pot smoker Elon Musk … who once had the two rocket engines on a SpaceX Starship prototype positioned to spell “420”. Ironically, he also dates women too young to understand it.
Space tourists, including the first married couple in space, were stuck for over 45 minutes on top of their Blue Origin rocket due to an unexplained delay before they were finally launched into near space for a 10-minute flight. They should have paid for Amazon Prime.
Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology studying the songs of four different zebra finch populations found the males have distinct dialects that female zebra finches can recognize and use instead of male plumage to choose a suitable mate. Are they like human females -- disgusted by that one male zebra finch who only knows wolf whistles?
Astrophysicists at UCLA and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory witnessed for the first time a dying a red giant star named V Hydrae expel six slowly expanding molecular rings which indicate the star is undergoing rapid evolution as it goes out in a blaze of glory. Are they sure it’s not an intelligent civilization that just figured out how to make a giant smoke ring cannon?
Engineers at the University of California, Irvine, were inspired by squid skin to invent an adaptive composite material that can insulate beverage cups and restaurant to-go bags – keeping the insides hot and the outsides cold with just an infrared-reflecting metallized polymer film. To make it more realistic, they should have the squid cups squirt coffee.
The five permanent residents of the village of Lubbey, in the Turkish province of Izmir, say paranormal influencers and ghost hunters are ruining their quiet, albeit crumbling, town with their investigations that are also attracting unwanted tourists. Have they considered turning it into a ‘scare’ bnb?
Airbus completed the first A380 flight powered by 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) – the flight lasted three hours and the crew said it smelled like the used cooking oil the SAF was made from. Plane flies on fries, reaches highs, causes sighs and weepy eyes.