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Animal/Plant/New Species

Wild pandas frequently spotted in SW China

On the way to deliver some goods with two friends, Yang Sijie suddenly saw a panda leisurely sitting in a tree.

Panda cubs pose for New Year greetings in SW China

Eight giant panda cubs posed for Lunar New Year greetings on Wednesday at a breeding base in southwest China's Sichuan Province.

Chimpanzees capable of learning 'food calls': study

Chimpanzees are capable of learning calls that refer to specific food items such as apple to communicate better with other members of their species, according to a study of two separate groups that were merged together at Britain's Edinburgh Zoo.

Large bird's nest crushes a tree

A bird nest weighing over 2000 pounds (about 907 kilograms) -- believed to be the world's largest -- has crushed a tree supporting it, the UK-based Wired Magazine reported recently.

'Colossal bad luck' led to extinction of dinosaurs

Dinosaurs might have survived if the asteroid that killed them had struck slightly earlier or later, according to a new study led by British scientists.

Dogs can be jealous too: study

Dogs can feel jealous if they think you pay more attention to other dogs, a U.S. study said Wednesday.

U.S. research identifies world's biggest-ever flying bird

U.S. researchers said Monday they have identified the fossilized remains of an extinct giant bird that could be the biggest flying bird ever found.

China tightens control on Antarctica expeditions

Chinese authorities have strengthened their management of citizens and organizations going to Antarctica to avoid damage to the environment, according to a statement issued by the State Oceanic Administration (SOA) on Wednesday.

Singapore-based giant panda Kai Kai has health check

Male giant panda Kai Kai, who lives in Singapore's River Safari, had a thorough medical examination on Friday, and the results showed he was healthy and fertile, River Safari said on Thursday.

Makeshift egg repairs help survival of rare New Zealand parrot

Tape and a bit of glue have helped save the life of a hatchling chick of one of the world's rarest birds, New Zealand conservation officials said Monday.

China Exclusive: China produces genetic map of Tibetan barley

Chinese scientists said on Monday that they have sequenced the entire genome of highland barley, an achievement that can help cultivate better breeds of Tibet's staple food and increase yield.

First egg found by scientists studying presumably extinct New Zealand seabird

New Zealand scientists announced Friday they had found for the first time an egg of an endangered bird that was presumed extinct for more than a century.

New species reveals secrets to life in deep oceans: New Zealand scientists

New Zealand scientists say they have discovered a new species of crustacean, which provides an important insight into the little known lives of creatures in the deep sea.

Int'l Rice Research Institute releases 44 new rice varieties in 2013

Philippine-based International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and its partners released 44 new and improved rice varieties last year to help Asian and African countries prop up their rice output despite declining resources.

Australian scientists awarded for method of identifying water efficient crops

Two Australian scientists have been awarded with the UK-based Rank Prize for developing an innovative method of identifying crops with superior water efficiency, the Australian National University (ANU) said Wednesday.

Whales stranded again after day-long rescue effort in New Zealand

Eight of the 13 pilot whales stranded on a beach at the top of New Zealand's South Island on Tuesday were stranded again Wednesday after a brief period back in the sea.

Wild pandas expand habitat in SW China

A wild panda has been found in Yibin City, southwest China's Sichuan Province, indicating the species may have expanded its habitat back to an area it used to inhabit in ancient times.

Scientists discover gene for increasing rice yield

Scientists from the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and Japan announced on Tuesday the discovery of a rice gene that has the potential to increase the production of modern long-grain indica rice varieties.

China's panda breeding hits record in 2013

A total of 49 panda cubs were born in China this year, with 42 surviving, marking a record for giant panda breeding in the country, according to experts at an international panda protection conference on Thursday in southwest China's Sichuan Province.

International DNA barcoding agreement signed

Experts have urged strengthening international scientific cooperation in species database sharing at the recently concluded fifth International Barcode of Life Conference (IBLC) in southwest China's Yunnan Province.

Twin panda cubs in Zoo Atlanta get names via vote

The twin giant panda cubs in Zoo Atlanta, the first surviving pair of panda twins ever born in the United States, now get their names 100 days after birth according to a Chinese tradition, the zoo announced on Wednesday.

Giant panda at Edinburgh Zoo "very likely" lost pregnancy: experts

The female panda Tian Tian at Edinburgh Zoo was confirmed of losing pregnancy, the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) announced on Tuesday.

Giant panda cub practises crawling at Taipei Zoo

Giant panda cub nicknamed "Yuan Zai" practises crawling at the Taipei Zoo in Taipei, southeast China's Taiwan, Sept. 24, 2013. The female cub, born on July 6, is the first baby of giant pandas "Tuan Tuan" and "Yuan Yuan", which were presented as goodwill gifts to Taiwan by the Chinese mainland.

Panda ambassadors visit Beauval Zoo to wrap up conservation tour

Three panda ambassadors will visit Beauval Zoo, the French home of Huan Huan and Yuan Zi, two giant pandas on loan from China, on Friday during the last leg of a global tour promoting the conservation of the endangered species.

Belgian zoo owner set to host Chinese pandas

Belgian zookeeper Eric Domb and his team have been in state of what could be described as pandemonium for months as they prepare for two pandas scheduled to arrive in spring.

Global panda conservation campaign launched in Hong Kong

Organizers and panda ambassadors urged the public to step up efforts to protect pandas and other endangered species as the Global Panda Conservation Tour kicked off here Friday.

Dolphins keep longest memory among non-human species: Study

There’s a saying elephants never forget, but a new study conducted by the University of Chicago indicates that it is dolphins that can remember call of another dolphin decades later, according to a paper in Wednesday’s Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

Dolphins call each other by signature whistles: study

Dolphins have long been recognized as a smart animal. A new study by British researchers have even found that bottlenose dolphins address each other by using signature whistles.

Sino-U.S. scientists sequence Mongolian genome

Scientists from China and the U.S. have finished sequencing the genome of Mongolians living in northwest China's Qinghai Province, according to the research team responsible for the sequencing.

Giant panda from mainland gives birth in Taiwan

Giant panda Yuan Yuan, which was one of the Chinese mainland's free gifts for Taiwan, successfully gave birth to a cub at Taipei Zoo in the island at 8:05 p.m. Saturday, according to sources with the zoo.

China endeavors to boost wildlife protection

To better protect the country's biodiversity, China is pooling efforts to further protect endangered species and crack down on illegal animal trafficking.

More pests evolve resistance to GM crops: study

Five of 13 major crop pests have evolved resistance to Bt corn and cotton, crops engineered to be toxic to certain insects, as of 2010, compared with only one in 2005, a study said Monday.

Panda lives well in the wild

The State Forestry Administration on Monday reported on the success of an artificially-bred panda's life in the wild over the past eight months.

White tiger coat caused by single gene mutation: study

The spectacular white coats of white tigers are caused by a single change in a known pigment gene, a new study has found.

Researchers regenerate 400-year-old frozen plants

Plants buried inside the Teardrop Glacier in the Canadian Arctic 400 years ago still have the ability to regrow, according to a new study published Monday in the U.S. journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Israeli biotech company grows bones from fat

An Israeli biotech company has developed a way to turn extra fat into new bones to replace missing or damaged bone structure.

Rhinos arrive at National Forest Park in Yunnan

Rhinos died out in China in the late 1950s. But in 2010 China adopted several South African white ones. On Sunday six reached the Puer National Forest Park in southwest China’s Yunnan Province. When they’re ready and given the all clear, they’ll be released into the wild.

Chinese scientists unlock key genetic code of wheat

Scientists from China and the United States have mapped a key genetic code for bread wheat, a discovery that will help improve the crop's productivity and ability to withstand extreme conditions.

Risk of new coronavirus infection unchanged: WHO

A World Health Organization (WHO) spokesman said Wednesday that the risk of the novel coronavirus infection is unchanged but urged health authorities to remain vigilant as it is impossible to predict the future.

Carbon emissions rise as predators decline: study

Freshwater ecosystems emit a lot more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere when the animals at the top of the food chain are removed, a new Canadian study has found.

New study offers hope for species conservation: New Zealand researcher

A New Zealand-led international team of scientists have debunked the theory that most species of life on Earth will be extinct before they can be discovered.

Experts call for greater protection of endangered finless porpoise

Experts involved in a scientific survey said China's finless porpoise population has dropped significantly in the past few years, and they called for top protection of the endangered animal.

World's rarest cats spotted as protection takes effect

A pair of endangered Amur leopards have been spotted in the northeastern Chinese province of Jilin.

Knowledge of marine species still largely unknown: New Zealand researcher

The world's most comprehensive assessment of ocean life has revealed that one to two thirds of species are still unknown to science, according to an international study.

Chinese survey team looks for rare white-flag dolphins

Scientists who are conducting a survey of endangered finless porpoises on the Yangtze River said Monday that they also hope to find white-flag dolphins, a native species that was declared extinct in 2007.

Warming temperatures cause aquatic animals to shrink most: study

Warmer temperatures cause greater reduction in the adult sizes of aquatic animals than in land-dwellers, according to a new study by scientists from Queen Mary, University of London and the University of Liverpool.

WWF to survey endangered porpoises in Yangtze River

The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) will launch a survey of endangered finless porpoises on the Yangtze River, China's largest river, in November and December, the head of WWF's China office said Thursday.

Israeli scientist awarded 2012 World Food Prize for micro-irrigation

Israeli scientist Daniel Hillel was awarded the 2012 World Food Prize here Thursday evening for conceiving and implementing a radically new mode of bringing water to crops in arid and dry land regions, known as micro-irrigation.

Panda ambassador campaign's Asia Pacific semifinal kicks off

The Asia Pacific semifinal of a global initiative to recruit three giant panda conservation ambassadors kicked off in Singapore on Saturday.

Japanese researchers successfully create ova from IPS stem cells

Japanese researchers have succeeded in creating ova from artificially derived multipurpose stem cells and using the ova to produce mice offspring through in vitro fertilization for the first time in the world, Kyodo News reported.  The achievement, announced in the online edition of U.S.

U.S. scientists find molecular link to obesity, insulin resistance in mice

Flipping a newly discovered molecular switch in white fat cells enabled mice to eat a high- calorie diet without becoming obese or developing the inflammation that causes insulin resistance, U.S. scientists reported Thursday.

Giraffe-boy in South Africa

The giraffe-boy has resurrected the tradition of his British ancestor - for RIDING giraffes. Living in a South African farm gave 17-year-old Shandor Larenty the opportunity to raise cute baby giraffe, Mara who had been sadly abandoned by her parents.