Complex social lives of orcas revealed by drone observations

newscientist.com – Killer whales tend to have close friendships with those of similar age and sex, scientists have discovered by filming them from drones

Source: Michael N. Weiss, et al. Age and sex influence social interactions, but not associations, within a killer whale pod. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 2021.

World's tiniest computer shows how South Pacific snail survived mass extinction

upi.com – Researchers used the world's smallest computer, which they attached to leaves and the shells of the predatory snails, to solve a mass extinction survival mystery.

Source: Cindy S. Bick, et al. Millimeter-sized smart sensors reveal that a solar refuge protects tree snail Partula hyalina from extirpation. Communications Biology, 2021.

Hollywood stereotypes of female journalists feed a 'vicious cycle' of sexism

eurekalert.org – As threats against female journalists rise, a researcher examines the damage done by the Hollywood trope of the unethical female reporter who trades sex for information.

Source: T. Franklin Waddell. Who Thinks that Female Journalists Have Sex with their Sources? Testing the Association Between Sexist Beliefs, Journalist Mistrust, and the Perceived Realism of Fictional Female Journalists. Journalism Studies, 2021.

Ultra-thin film could one day turn regular glasses into night vision goggles, researchers say

theguardian.com – Developed by Australian and European researchers, the film works by converting infrared light into light visible to the human eye

Source: Rocio Camacho-Morales, et al. Infrared upconversion imaging in nonlinear metasurfaces. Advanced Photonics, 2021.

Puppies’ ability to communicate with people is present almost from birth

arstechnica.com – We might one day be able to predict which puppies will make the best service dogs.

Source: Emily E. Bray, et al. Early-emerging and highly heritable sensitivity to human communication in dogs. Current Biology, 2021.

'Strange beast' in amber is a very weird lizard

livescience.com – Oculudentavis lived about 99 million years ago in what is now Myanmar.

Source: Arnau Bolet, et al. Unusual morphology in the mid-Cretaceous lizard Oculudentavis. Current Biology, 2021.

Toward the first drug to treat a rare, lethal liver cancer

eurekalert.org – After scouring more than 5,000 compounds, scientists have identified several new classes of therapeutics that may help treat fibrolamellar carcinoma.

Source: Gadi Lalazar, et al. Identification of Novel Therapeutic Targets for Fibrolamellar Carcinoma Using Patient Derived Xenografts and Direct from Patient Screening. Cancer Discovery, 2021.

Why North Atlantic right whales are smaller now than they were 40 years ago

cbc.ca – Today's North Atlantic right whales are on average a metre shorter than whales in the 1980s. Researchers suspect whales becoming tangled in fishing nets is the problem.

Source: Joshua D. Stewart, et al. Decreasing body lengths in North Atlantic right whales. Current Biology, 2021.

This Neptune-like planet has a thick atmosphere and maybe even a tail

digitaltrends.com – Oddball planet TOI-1231 b is a bit smaller than Neptune but has a substantial atmosphere, which gives it some interesting astronomical quirks.

Source: Jennifer A. Burt, et al. TOI-1231 b: A Temperate, Neptune-Sized Planet Transiting the Nearby M3 Dwarf NLTT 24399. arXiv, 2021.