OT: Science News

3 interesting science tidbits (at least from my perspective) that I learned today:

#1:New subpopulation of polar bears discovered, isolated for hundreds of years
But now researchers have found a new genetic population of polar bears in Greenland that don’t rely on sea ice to hunt, rewriting how we think about the sea bears and their ability to adapt to a warming planet. Scientists described their discovery of this 20th subpopulation of polar bears in a study released Thursday in the journal Science.


#2: Tortoise, long thought extinct, discovered. Pretty hard for a giant tortoise to hide, but she did.
The “fantastic giant tortoise” — a rare Galápagos species with a huge, flared shell — has only been identified once, more than a century ago, in 1906. It’s since widely been considered extinct.


#3: 5-planet alignment & the moon crashes the party.
But even more interesting is that these five planets will appear in the same sequence in the sky as they are in their respective orbits around the sun. In this particular case, scanning from the east-northeast horizon and continuing upward and toward the right, will be Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. Add the moon, which can serve to mark Earth’s position in this lineup from June 23 to 25, and we have an exceptionally rare configuration.

Incredibly, the last time this kind of alignment happened was March 5, 1864!