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Joshua Klein Shows What Crows Can Do

Joshua Klein is interested in synanthropic species: those animals that have specifically adapted to live within human ecologies, like large cities. Example species are rats and cockroaches, which survive well in human habitats. But Klein is most interested in crows: they don't just survive, they thrive in human environments, even using human technology to feed themselves.

Klein discusses crows creating and using tools, using human fishing gear, using cars to open nuts, and much more. Okay, so Klein demonstrates that crows are smart. But what can we do with this information? Watch his ten-minute talk to learn how Klein used Skinnerian training to create a "Crow Vending Machine" in which crows exchange lost coins for peanuts.

Read more about Klein's crow vending machine at his website. No word yet on whether he's rich from all that spare change.

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Belly Flop Physics 101: The Science Behind the Sting
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Belly flops are the least-dignified—yet most painful—way of making a serious splash at the pool. Rarely do they result in serious physical injury, but if you’re wondering why an elegant swan dive feels better for your body than falling stomach-first into the water, you can learn the laws of physics that turn your soft torso a tender pink by watching the SciShow’s video below.

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What's the Saltiest Water in the World?
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Saltwater is common around the world—indeed, salty oceans cover more than two-thirds of the globe. Typical saltwater found in our oceans is about 3.5% salt by weight. But in some areas, we find naturally occurring saltwater that's far saltier. The saltiest water yet discovered is more than 12 times saltier than typical seawater.

Gaet’ale is a pond in Ethiopia which currently holds the record as the most saline water body on Earth. The water in that pond is 43.3% dissolved solids by weight—most of that being salt. This kind of water is called hypersaline for its extreme salt concentration.

In the video below, Professor Martyn Poliakoff explains this natural phenomenon—why it's so salty, how the temperature of the pond affects its salinity, and even why this particular saltwater has a yellow tint. Enjoy:

For the paper Poliakoff describes, check out this abstract.

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