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2010-09-16 11:42:26

By Robert Sanders, University of California, Berkeley Millimeter-size marine organisms called foraminifera have been used to monitor pollutants in marshes and oceans, and could help to assess recovery in the Gulf of Mexico following the three-month long Deepwater Horizon oil spill. That was the message from a French/American team of researchers who recently reported on the health of French marshes and mudflats 32 years after the Amoco Cadiz spilled 220,000 tons of oil along the Brittany coast...


Word of the Day
humgruffin
  • A terrible or repulsive person.
Regarding the etymology of 'humgruffin,' the OED says (rather unhelpfully) that it's a 'made-up word.' We might guess that 'hum' comes from 'humbug' or possibly 'hum' meaning 'a disagreeable smell,' while 'gruffin' could be a combination of 'gruff' and 'griffin.'