As my first post in the new year, I found an article that gives quick blurbs about their opinion of the most fascinating scientific discoveries of 2012. All of the discoveries have links so you can learn more about each one, but 4 of the 11 were animal based:
2. Ancient Antarctic Life Discovered 60 Ft Below the Surface
– Scientists discovered an unknown species of bacteria below a 60 ft slab of ice! The area was previously thought to be unable to sustain any kind of life because it is cut off from surface oxygen and light for 2,800 years. This seems to be becoming a more common occurrence as technology improves.
8. The Impossibility of Jurassic Park
– Research showed that DNA has a half-life of 521 years. In other words, half the bonds in DNA break after 521 years and the DNA is unusable for cloning purposes.
10. An Implant That Makes Monkeys Smarter
– 2012 also led to the invention of an electrical brain implant that can improve the thinking power of monkeys. The implants allow monkeys to solve complex brain puzzles faster.
11. Gangster Dolphins
– It is common knowledge that dolphins are incredibly smart creatures, and with more focused behavioral work lots of new information is surfacing about their social groups and interactions. This article showed that dolphins have intricate social webs that most closely compare to the Mafia in humans. So even though dolphins get the “super cute” stereotype, they have more of a dark side than most of the general population is not aware of. ALSO a reason why you shouldn’t interact with wild dolphins/animals. They aren’t always the “super cute/nice” animals you believe them to be!
As previously mentioned, the article goes through some other really cool discoveries like the Higgs boson and an invisibility cloak. Really cool stuff to get distracted by! Hopefully 2013 has some amazing breakthroughs as well!