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Environment

  • Turtles making a return?

    Turtles making a return?

    The recent nesting of a loggerhead turtle at Ramla tal-Mixquqa (Golden Bay) has, predictably, stirred much local interest in view of the charismatic nature of these iconic nomads of the sea. Way back in 1960, the same beach was a far cry from the...

  • Quake Watch during July

    Quake Watch during July

    A 7.7-magnitude earthquake struck the Mariana Islands in the Pacific Ocean on July 29. Although this magnitude is high, no damage was reported by the inhabitants, mainly because the quake occurred at a depth of 210km. Moreover, no tsunami warning...

  • Summer of Applied Geophysical Experience

    Summer of Applied Geophysical Experience

    Mariya Grech Muscat, who is currently reading for a PhD at the University of Malta’s Department of Geosciences, attended the 34th annual Summer of Applied Geophysical Experience (Sage) in Santa Fe, New Mexico, US. Sage is a four-week intensive...

  • The hottest year ever, 2015, broke other climate records

    The hottest year ever, 2015, broke other climate records

    Dozens of climate records were broken last year, according to a report nicknamed the ‘annual physical for the planet’. Soon after 2015 ended, it was proclaimed the hottest on record – and the new report shows the broad extent of other records and...

  • Large carnivores at risk as their prey decline

    Large carnivores at risk as their prey decline

    Large carnivores around the world are increasingly at risk of going hungry as the prey species they depend on for survival decline, research has shown. The tiger is one of five land predators with the greatest proportions of threatened prey whose...

  • Managing Nwadar parkland

    Managing Nwadar parkland

    A stretch of land the size of Rabat, where terraced fields run down to the coastline, is set to become managed parkland on Malta’s southeastern coast. The aim is to steer away from ‘showcase conservation’ by providing local context and objectives...

  • World night sky atlas

    World night sky atlas

    Nothing steals away at the awe of the night sky more than light pollution. It is recognised by scientists all over the world as a threat not just to star gazing but also to nocturnal birds, insects, mammals and the ecosystems in which they...

  • University, UPEI, to share Unesco Chair in Island Studies and Sustainability

    A new Unesco Chair in Island Studies and Sustainability is to be jointly hosted by the University of Malta and the University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI), Canada.It will work to establish and expand academic and research programmes on small...

  • Plant pollination

    Plant pollination

    A seed plant must be pollinated to produce seeds. In fact, plants have evolved various means to ensure that pollination takes place. Pollination involves a process whereby pollen grain produced by the male part of a flower is transferred to the...

  • Orangutan’s voice control is clue to human speech

    Orangutan’s voice control is clue to human speech

    An orangutan called Rocky has outperformed Sylvester Stallone in the film of the same name by displaying an ability to emulate human speech. In the film, Stallone’s character Rocky Balboa is better at talking with his fists than communicating...

  • Ditch metal and plastic and turn to wood to save planet

    Ditch metal and plastic and turn to wood to save planet

    For design enthusiasts worried about forests being axed for furniture, this may come as a bit of a surprise: buying a table made of wood instead of metal or plastic could significantly help cut carbon emissions, according to a UN...

  • Boathouses in paradise

    Boathouses in paradise

    Tucked away in the southeast coast of Gozo, a stone’s throw from the busy Mġarr Harbour, is Xatt l-Aħmar. It owes its name to the reddish hues of the surrounding soils and of the sand on its beach. The site is a treasure trove for geologists and...

  • First Sustainable Practices Awards

    First Sustainable Practices Awards

    At the recent Greenpak Annual Awards 2016 ceremony, the first Sustainable Practices Awards were presented to local councils that introduced the highest number of sustainable waste practices and registered the greatest increases in the collection...

  • Biology students join scientific expedition in Transylvania

    Biology students join scientific expedition in Transylvania

    Nine students from Sir Mikiel Anġ Refalo Sixth Form, Victoria, accompanied by their biology teacher Adrian Vassallo, took part in Operation Wallacea – a 15-day scientific expedition in Nou Sasesc and Mesendorf, two villages in Transylvania,...

  • Centralised AC system for school

    A centralised air conditioning system that uses the latest energy-saving technology has been in­stalled in Grade 5 and 6 and Senior 1 and 2 classes at Mater Boni Consilii St Joseph School, Paola. The system will enable the school administration to...

  • After warming fast, part of Antarctica gets a chill

    After warming fast, part of Antarctica gets a chill

    The Antarctic Peninsula, among the fastest warming places on earth last century, has since cooled due to natural swings in the local climate, scientists said, adding that the respite from the thaw is likely to be brief. Rapid warming until the...

  • El Niño driving child marriage, labour across southern Africa

    El Niño driving child marriage, labour across southern Africa

    Tens of thousands of children across southern Africa are being pushed out of school and into early marriage or child labour because of drought and hunger caused by the El Niño weather pattern, charities said. Southern Africa has been hard hit over...

  • Turtle shell was originally developed for digging, not protection

    Turtle shell was originally developed for digging, not protection

    Turtle’s shell is an excellent protection from an enemy’s attacks but it wasn’t originally developed for that purpose, a new study suggests. The development of turtle’s shell originated from the need of digging, a group of palaeontologists has found.

  • A ‘magical’ wild flower that blooms in sun-parched land

    A ‘magical’ wild flower that blooms in sun-parched land

    One does not expect to see many wild flowers at this time of the year. The sun-parched soil cannot provide plants with much, if any, water that is essential for life; but the wavy-leaved mullein is one of the few exceptions. This plant is...

  • Hummingbirds see the world differently

    Hummingbirds see the world differently

    Hummingbirds have a unique collision avoidance system built into their brains that allows them to perform high-speed aerobatics in safety, research has shown. The super-agile birds, whose wings beat up to 70 times a second, can hover, fly...

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