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Study: Birds evolve shorter wings to survive highway traffic

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Cliff swallows that nest in highway overpasses have evolved shorter wingspans over the last 30 years to help them survive close encounters with highway traffic, according to a new study in scientific journal Current Biology.

The conclusion was reached by Charles Brown, a University of Tulsa researcher who’s spent the last three decades picking dead birds off roadways, New Scientist noted.

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Brown particularly noticed a sharp decline in roadkill in southwestern Nebraska since the 1980s, even as cliff swallows were building nests near highways in record numbers. After extensive studies of dead birds recovered from Nebraska highways, Brown spotted the trend: mortality went down as more of the birds were born with shorter wings.

The swallows’ shorter wingspans enable greater mobility in flight and faster take-offs. It’s also possible that it gives them an advantage when hunting insects, which could explain why more shorter-winged birds were better able to survive unusually cold weather.
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Photo: Shutterstock.com.


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Matt Gaetz forgot which network he was on: Surprised CNN anchor said ‘I’ve never been called Sean Hannity’

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Rep. Matt Gaetz seemed to confuse cable news networks during a Thursday appearance

Gaetz was interviewed by CNN's Chris Cuomo, who aggressively challenged Gaetz on the facts as the Florida Republican attempted to defend President Donald Trump.

Despite the fact Cuomo's interview was nothing like the puff segments Gaetz is used to on Fox, the congressman seemed confused by the end.

"Congressman, you are always welcome, wherever I am, at nine or eleven, whenever," Cuomo said.

"Thanks Sean," Gaetz replied.

"Did you just call me Sean?" Cuomo asked. "Did you just call me Sean?"

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California lawmaker who chaired Republican Assembly caucus leaving GOP — to become an independent: report

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On Thursday, the Sacramento Bee reported that California Assemblyman Chad Mayes, the former Assembly Minority Leader, is leaving the Republican Party and registering as No Party Preference.

"Instead of focusing on solutions for the big problems that we've got, we focused on winning elections," said Mayes in his announcement. "For me, I'm at the point in my life where I'm done with gamesmanship."

Mayes, a controversial figure who was implicated in an affair with a fellow public official, represents Yucca Valley. He is the second Republican Assemblyman this year to leave the party, after Brian Maienschein of San Diego, who Maienschein of San Diego.

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‘Quantum physics generator’ incident in Ohio results in evacuation — hazmat found no radiation

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Authorities in Columbus, Ohio evacuated dozens of homes after a man called 911 to report being burned by a

"Firefighters say nothing threatening was found in a northwest Columbus garage," WCMH-TV reported. "According to firefighters, a man called and reported that he received ‘RF burns’ while building some sort of ‘quantum physics generator’ in a garage. The man used words like ‘particle accelerator,’ ‘alpha rays,’ and ‘radiation’ while describing how he was burned."

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