Monday, April 23, 2012

Bringing rocks back from Mars and carnivory’s role in success of intelligent life forms

Welcome! "Alien Life" tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. Here's today's news:
g Life - Using high-resolution satellite mapping, scientists have discovered that there are twice as many emperor penguins in Antarctica than was previously thought. See article.
g Intelligence - Carnivory is behind the evolutionary success of humankind. When early humans started to eat meat and eventually hunt, their new, higher-quality diet meant that women could wean their children earlier. Women could then give birth to more children during their reproductive life, which is a possible contribution to the population gradually spreading over the world. The connection between eating meat and a faster weaning process is shown by a research group from Lund University in Sweden, which compared close to 70 mammalian species and found clear patterns. See article.
g Cosmicus - Rocks from Mars can teach us much about the red planet - its geology, its climate, and whether or not it ever hosted life. A new study says that looking for evidence of past life on Mars should be one of the driving forces behind a sample return mission. See article.

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