Why be human when you can be otherkin?

16 Jul 2016

As social beings, a sense of identity plays an important role in our relations – and in our own happiness. But identity doesn’t have to be narrowly human. In an essay looking at the groups that exist on the edge of conventional boundaries, and are often subject to prurience and ridicule, Pedro Feijó considers those who feel different, other than human.

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A 100 million-year partnership on the brink of extinction

25 May 2016

A symbiotic relationship that has existed since the time of the dinosaurs is at risk of ending, as habitat loss and environmental change mean that a species of Australian crayfish and the tiny worms that depend on them are both at serious risk of extinction. 

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Why Spider-Man can’t exist: Geckos are ‘size limit’ for sticking to walls

18 Jan 2016

Latest research reveals why geckos are the largest animals able to scale smooth vertical walls – even larger climbers would require unmanageably large sticky footpads. Scientists estimate that a human would need adhesive pads covering 40% of their body surface in order to walk up a wall like Spider-Man, and believe their insights have implications for the feasibility of large-scale, gecko-like adhesives.

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How the stick insect sticks (and unsticks) itself

07 Oct 2015

New research shows the fluid found on insects’ feet does not help them adhere to vertical and inverted surfaces, as previously thought, but may in fact help them to unstick their feet more easily to allow greater control over their sticking power.

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