Creature

All that slithers, swims, flits, flies, grows and dies

Animals, plants, microbes, fungi and all life on Earth, from long-buried dinosaurs to newly emerging infections, often serve to instruct and amaze. We are interested in everything from the simplest physical structures to the most complex emergent behavior of life's many forms — from the extinct to the evolved and from the web of ecology to the promise of animal-inspired technology. 

By mimicking the diabolical ironclad beetles' wing cases, engineers may be able to build stronger joints for applications such as airplanes.
Charles Q. Choi, Contributor
Accidents like the Deepwater Horizon spill may hurt the rays’ ability to hunt.
Joshua Learn, Contributor
The subterranean rodents have little use for vision, but their magnetic sense tells them which direction is which.
Charles Q. Choi, Contributor
Separate subspecies of the fork-tailed flycatcher make different trill sounds with their wing feathers.
Charles Q. Choi, Contributor
The bright flowerlike symmetry of Australia’s northern jeweled orb-web spider lures in hungry prey.
Veronica Tremblay, Contributor
Adding seaweed to cows’ diets could help reduce methane production and help curb climate change.
Karin Heineman, Executive Producer
The animals' bodies contained pollutants not found in dolphins before.
Joel Shurkin, Contributor
The discovery raises hopes that chimps can adapt to threats such as climate change.
Joshua Learn, Contributor
Finding suggests "megapredators" may have been more common in Mesozoic Era than previously thought.
Charles Q. Choi, Contributor
For Asiatic lionesses, sex may be a way of protecting their cubs from murderous males.
Nala Rogers, Staff Writer
Alligator blood inhibits a key toxin in the venom of vipers such as rattlesnakes and copperheads.
Joshua Learn, Contributor
Study suggests parts of the animals' backs and legs fused together to form wings.
Charles Q. Choi, Contributor