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Hoover IB partners with mental_floss to raise funds

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Dear Hoover IB Supporter,

Today's challenging economy has made it harder than ever for us to raise funds, but we think we've found a fun, smart solution that's going to make everyone happy.

We've teamed up with mental_floss magazine-- the brainchild of Hoover High alum Will Pearson -- to offer you a quick and easy way to support the IB program. In 2001, mental_floss began as a magazine for knowledge junkies. Since then, it's wowed critics and received rave reviews in everything from Newsweek to the Washington Post. The company, which specializes in blurring the lines between education and entertainment, has a whole host of products that are perfect for every knowledge lover you know: from wonderful books, to hilarious T-shirts, to a whole host of games and puzzles.
The partnership is simple. When you use the special Hoover IB coupon code at the bottom of this post, 30%* of your purchase price will come back to us for IB programs. The offer's good from April xx until June xx. So, go ahead and get your Mother's Day, Father's Day and graduation shopping out of the way, and help out our school in the process.

Thanks again for your support for Hoover IB. We're excited about the potential of this exciting, new partnership.
Brad Coltrane
Hoover IB Advisor


1) Visit

2) Pick out the mental_floss products you enjoy and put them in your online shopping cart.

3) Before checkout, enter "HooverIB" in the coupon code space. If you'd like a specific student to receive credit for this sale, enter his/her name in the space labeled "If this is a fundraiser, please name the student you're supporting."

4) That's it!

*Hoover will get 30% of your purchase; all items in the store with the exception of bundled items (t-shirt+subscription deal, book packages, etc) are eligible for the Hoover IB fundraising campaign.



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Fisherman Catches Rare Blue Lobster, Donates It to Science
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Live lobsters caught off the New England coast are typically brown, olive-green, or gray—which is why one New Hampshire fisherman was stunned when he snagged a blue one in mid-July.

As The Independent reports, Greg Ward, from Rye, New Hampshire, discovered the unusual lobster while examining his catch near the New Hampshire-Maine border. Ward initially thought the pale crustacean was an albino lobster, which some experts estimate to be a one-in-100-million discovery. However, a closer inspection revealed that the lobster's hard shell was blue and cream.

"This one was not all the way white and not all the way blue," Ward told The Portsmouth Herald. "I've never seen anything like it."

While not as rare as an albino lobster, blue lobsters are still a famously elusive catch: It's said that the odds of their occurrence are an estimated one in two million, although nobody knows the exact numbers.

Instead of eating the blue lobster, Ward decided to donate it to the Seacoast Science Center in Rye. There, it will be studied and displayed in a lobster tank with other unusually colored critters, including a second blue lobster, a bright orange lobster, and a calico-spotted lobster.

[h/t The Telegraph]

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Courtesy Murdoch University
Australian Scientists Discover First New Species of Sunfish in 125 Years
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Courtesy Murdoch University

Scientists have pinpointed a whole new species of the largest bony fish in the world, the massive sunfish, as we learned from Smithsonian magazine. It's the first new species of sunfish proposed in more than 125 years.

As the researchers report in the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, the genetic differences between the newly named hoodwinker sunfish (Mola tecta) and its other sunfish brethren was confirmed by data on 27 different samples of the species collected over the course of three years. Since sunfish are so massive—the biggest can weigh as much as 5000 pounds—they pose a challenge to preserve and store, even for museums with large research collections. Lead author Marianne Nyegaard of Murdoch University in Australia traveled thousands of miles to find and collected genetic data on sunfish stranded on beaches. At one point, she was asked if she would be bringing her own crane to collect one.

Nyegaard also went back through scientific literature dating back to the 1500s, sorting through descriptions of sea monsters and mermen to see if any of the documentation sounded like observations of the hoodwinker. "We retraced the steps of early naturalists and taxonomists to understand how such a large fish could have evaded discovery all this time," she said in a press statement. "Overall, we felt science had been repeatedly tricked by this cheeky species, which is why we named it the 'hoodwinker.'"

Japanese researchers first detected genetic differences between previously known sunfish and a new, unknown species 10 years ago, and this confirms the existence of a whole different type from species like the Mola mola or Mola ramsayi.

Mola tecta looks a little different from other sunfish, with a more slender body. As it grows, it doesn't develop the protruding snout or bumps that other sunfish exhibit. Similarly to the others, though, it can reach a length of 8 feet or more. 

Based on the stomach contents of some of the specimens studied, the hoodwinker likely feeds on salps, a jellyfish-like creature that it probably chomps on (yes, sunfish have teeth) during deep dives. The species has been found near New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, and southern Chile.

[h/t Smithsonian]


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