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Latest Feng Sheng Hu Stories

Insects Offer Clues To Ancient Climate Variability 10,000
2011-11-15 11:55:51

An analysis of the remains of ancient midges — tiny non-biting insects closely related to mosquitoes — opens a new window on the past with a detailed view of the surprising regional variability that accompanied climate warming during the early Holocene epoch, 10,000 to 5,500 years ago. Researchers at the University of Illinois and the University of British Columbia looked at the abundance and variety of midge larvae buried in lake sediments in Alaska. Midges are highly...

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2010-11-18 09:29:20

In September, 2007, the Anaktuvuk River Fire burned more than 1,000 square kilometers of tundra on Alaska's North Slope, doubling the area burned in that region since record keeping began in 1950. A new analysis of sediment cores from the burned area revealed that this was the most destructive tundra fire at that site for at least 5,000 years. Models built on 60 years of climate and fire data found that even moderate increases in warm-season temperatures in the region dramatically increase...

2010-11-16 21:40:08

According to a popular hypothesis, grasses such as maize, sugar cane, millet and sorghum got their evolutionary start as a result of a steep drop in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels during the Oligocene epoch, more than 23 million years ago. A new study overturns that hypothesis, presenting the first geological evidence that the ancestors of these and other C4 grasses emerged millions of years earlier than previously established. The findings are published in the journal Geology. C4 plants...

2010-11-15 20:45:36

Innovative research technique reveals C4 grasses older than previously thought A new analysis of fossilized grass-pollen grains deposited on ancient European lake and sea bottoms 16-35 million years ago reveals that C4 grasses evolved earlier than previously thought. This new evidence casts doubt on the widely-held belief that the rise of this incredibly productive group of plants was driven by a large drop in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations during the Oligocene epoch. The...


Word of the Day
sough
  • A murmuring sound; a rushing or whistling sound, like that of the wind; a deep sigh.
  • A gentle breeze; a waft; a breath.
  • Any rumor that engages general attention.
  • A cant or whining mode of speaking, especially in preaching or praying; the chant or recitative characteristic of the old Presbyterians in Scotland.
  • To make a rushing, whistling, or sighing sound; emit a hollow murmur; murmur or sigh like the wind.
  • To breathe in or as in sleep.
  • To utter in a whining or monotonous tone.
According to the OED, from the 16th century, this word is 'almost exclusively Scots and northern dialect until adopted in general literary use in the 19th.'
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