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How sparrows from B.C. spread a new song to the rest of North America – CTV News

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VANCOUVER —
A team of biologists spent 14 years tracking how a group of birds from B.C. became song influencers, eventually changing how the white-throated sparrow warbles from the Rocky Mountains all the way to the border of Quebec.

“It hasn’t been reported on this kind of magnitude or scale before, and that’s why it was interesting project to do, to look at how quickly the song is actually spreading,” Ken Otter, a biology professor at the University of Northern B.C., told CTV News.

The original sparrow song included an introductory phrase, and then three notes at the end, something like, “Oh my sweet Canada Canada Canada,” Otter explained.

The new song has just two notes at the end, resulting in something more like, “Oh my sweet Cana Cana Cana.” (Watch the video to see a full interview with Otter, and to hear the two different types of birdsong.)

Otter and other researchers initially noticed the change in birdsong in 2005 in central B.C., and assumed it was contained to just one small population of white-throated sparrow.

“But in about 2010 to 2014, we realized the song seemed to be spreading eastward, so we’ve been enlisting people to help us track this and found that the song has spread right into Ontario and is bordering right around Quebec,” Otter explained.

Birdsong does change over time, Otter said, but typically a new song type doesn’t completely replace an older song. It’s also very unusual for it to happen so quickly.

The researchers tracked the migration patterns of the birds, and the song’s spread, by attaching geolocators to certain birds from Prince George, B.C. and tracking their migration to other parts of Canada and the United States.

“They have to learn their songs from adult tutors, and so what you would expect is that most of the birds would learn the song that’s common to their environment or their neighbourhood,” Otter said.

“And so when the new song type emerges, you’d expect it to peter out, but what’s happening is these birds seem to be adopting the new song type.”

No one knows for sure why the birds changed their tune, but in a paper Otter and the research team published, they hypothesize that it could help the males attract female mates.

“Within white-throated sparrows, females prefer songs that include the terminal phrase over those that simply have the introductory notes, suggesting that females are attentive to the terminal portion of the song,” according to the researchers.

“But if female response to song variants wanes slightly over time… males may integrate novelty to maintain female interest.”

With files from CTV News.

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Comet Neowise – Wawa-news.com

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A bright comet is now in the evening sky and you can see it without a telescope. Comet F3 (NEOWISE) has been a fantastic object in the early morning pre-dawn sky but will be well placed below the Big Dipper to see and photograph over the next couple of weeks and hopefully into August. I have been following and imaging this comet since the first week of July and could see it even without binoculars (naked eye).

The comet was discovered on March 27, 2020, by the NEOWISE space telescope as it looks for near-earth objects that could potentially impact our planet. Measuring a little more than half the height of Mount Everest, this object falls into the category of a “once in a decade comet”.

Every year astronomers both amateur and professional observe 5 to 10 comets with telescopes. In most cases, they show a green nucleus from the sublimation of frozen chemicals such as ammonia and others. The extremely faint tail is seen when photographed but all comets are different in composition and appearance as Neowise does not appear green. The last bright comet that was visible to the naked eye for the whole world to see was Comet Hale-Bopp in 1997. And like Neowise, it too had a blue ion or gas tail and a fan-shaped dust tail created when comets round the sun as this one did on July 3 at a close distance of 43 million kilometres.

Neowise will be closest to earth on its way out of the solar system on July 22 at a safe distance of 103 million kilometres and will be starting to fade with a shortening tail as it retreats from the sun’s heat and back to the icy depths of space. Comet Neowise originates from the Oort Cloud, where long-period comets reside and will return close to 6,800 years from now. Halley’s Comet is a short period comet originating from the Kuiper Belt. Along with this chart of the comet’s path, many smartphone astronomy apps will also guide you to our celestial visitor.

Enjoy this spectacular comet every chance you can as you never know when the next bright will come to visit.

Known as “The Backyard Astronomer”, Gary Boyle is an astronomy educator, guest speaker and monthly columnist for the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. He has been interviewed on more than 50 Canadian radio stations and local Ottawa TV. In recognition of his public outreach in astronomy, the International Astronomical Union has honoured him with the naming of Asteroid (22406) Garyboyle. Follow him on Twitter: @astroeducator or his website: www.wondersofastronomy.com

Latest posts by Gary Boyle (see all)

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Is Planet 9 Actually A Primordial Black Hole? – Forbes

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Conventional theory has it that Planet 9 —- our outer solar system’s hypothetical 9th planet —- is merely a heretofore undetected planet, likely captured by our solar system at some point over its 4.6 billion year history. 

But Harvard University astronomers now raise the possibility that orbital evidence for Planet 9 could possibly be the result of a missing link in the decades-long puzzle of dark matter. That is, a hypothetical primordial black hole (PBH) with a horizon size no larger than a grapefruit, and with a mass 5 to 10 times that of Earth.

How might it be detected?

In a paper accepted for publication in The Astrophysical Journal Letters, the co-authors argue that observed clustering of extreme trans-Neptunian objects suggest some sort of massive super-earth type body lying on the outer fringes of our solar system. Perhaps as much as 800 astronomical units (Earth-Sun distances) out.

So, the authors propose that a unique wide-field survey telescope, now under construction in Chile, will soon allow them to set new limits on the possibility that Planet 9 may indeed be a PBH instead of just an ordinary planet. If they exist, such PBHs would require new physics and go a long way towards solving the mystery of the universe’s missing mass, or dark matter. 

Our paper shows that if Planet 9 is a black hole, then comets residing in the outskirts of the Solar system (in the “Oort cloud”) would impact it, Avi Loeb, Chair of Harvard University’s Dept. of Astronomy and the paper’s co-author, told me. They would then be destroyed by its strong gravitational tide and within a second of accreting onto the black hole would produce a visible flare, he says.

For large enough comets, this flare of light would be detectable by the LSST’s 8.4-meter optical telescope.

The idea is that once in the vicinity of a black hole, small cometary bodies would melt as a result of Heating from the background accretion of gas from the interstellar medium onto the black hole, Amir Siraj, the paper’s first author and an Harvard University undergraduate, noted in a statement.  

The authors calculate that they would be capable of detecting the first such accretion flare within a few months of the LSST’s operation which is now slated for first light in 2021. 

Why the LSST?

The LSST will be unique in its ability to survey the entire sky about twice per week at a remarkable level of sensitivity, Siraj told me. We calculated that the flares from the accretion of a small body onto a Planet 9 black hole would be brightest near the optical band, where LSST operates, he says. And since Planet 9’s position is unknown, Siraj notes the fact that LSST surveys the sky so quickly maximizes its chance of catching a flare.

The authors say that such brief accretion flares would be detected at a rate of at least a few per year out to a distance of some 105 AU.  And they expect to be able to rule out or confirm Planet 9 as a primordial black hole within the first two years of the LSST’s operation.

Why would our own solar system harbor such an exotic primordial black hole?

Simply by their sheer numbers in the cosmos.  The authors estimate that it might be somewhat likely that our solar system gravitationally-captured at least once such primordial black hole over the eons.    

What would the detection of such an exotic black hole mean for physics?

Loeb says that the formation of primordial black holes would definitely represent new physics. The process that made them in the early universe is not predicted by the Standard Model of particle physics and cosmology, he says.

If Planet 9 is a primordial black hole, are there likely to be others within the galaxy?

If it is a black hole, there should be fifty quadrillions like it in the Milky Way alone, says Loeb.  

Loeb says there’s nothing to lose in using the LSST to look for such primordial black hole relics. Over the past four decades, lab searches for dark matter searches consumed tens of millions of dollars, he says.

“Our paper proposes to use LSST as a dark matter experiment, searching for primordial black holes at no extra cost,” said Loeb.

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The South Pole Wall: 100 Million Billion Stars Are Found Hiding in the Milky Way – haveeruonline

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Astronomers recently uncovered Nyx, a dwarf galaxy discovered building its way toward the center of the Milky Way, revealing a history of merging stellar bodies. Researchers are now report hidden new galaxies hiding in the Milky Way recognized as the South Pole Wall.

(Photo : Downloaded From South Pole Wall official internet site )

The Milky Way Galaxy is centered on our star the Sunshine wherever planets, dust, and other room objects are bound collectively by way of gravitational forces. The spiral galaxy is composed of up to 100 billion stars.

Missions this kind of as the World Astrometric Interferometer for Astrophysics (Gaia) by the European House Agency has been managing for more than 6 many years to create a specific a few-dimensional map of the complete Milky Way. Present-day technologies makes it possible for experts to notice bodies in house up to tens of billions of gentle-a long time away from Earth.

Observing the galaxy has been doable with missions like Gaia, NASA’s Hubble Room Telescope, the Wisconsin H-Alpha Mapper (WHAM) in Chile, and lots of other individuals. Astronomers are highly anticipating the start of the James Webb Area Telescope into space wherever it will ‘hunt for the unobserved formation of the 1st galaxies, as perfectly as seem within dust could where stars and planetary methods are forming today,’ according to NASA.

On July 10, cosmographers revealed a report in The Astrophysical Journal of a new concealed selection of galaxies discovered in the Milky Way called the South Pole Wall. They identified the huge stellar assembly as cosmographers made new methods to detect and map astral bodies not noticed instantly.

The South Pole Wall measures about 1.4 billion light-many years throughout the total assortment of stars and planets that remained in hiding until finally now. The huge wall is noticed to be coincidental with Earth’s south celestial pole which the workforce compared ‘to the Sloan Terrific Wall at fifty percent the distance’ and lies opposite of the Shapley Supercluster.

https://www.youtube.com/view?v=2GWIzAoFGMs

Hidden in the Milky Way

The discovery was made by Daniel Pomarède from Paris-Saclay College along with R. Brent Tully and a crew from the University of Hawaii. Pomarède shared, ‘One might speculate how these a significant and not-so-distant composition remained unnoticed.’

‘This is due to its area in a area of the sky that has not been fully surveyed, and exactly where direct observations are hindered by foreground patches of galactic dust and clouds,’ Pomarède continued. ‘We have observed it many thanks to its gravitational affect, imprinted in the velocities of a sample of galaxies.’

Just one hindrance to their observations the South Pole Wall’s locale at the rear of the Chamaeleon cloud complex. The star-forming location incorporates Chamaeleon I, II, and II dim clouds or absorption nebulas that are dense sufficient to maintain the stellar gentle of the new collection of galaxies hidden in the Milky Way.

Go through Also: Proof of Stars Born Elsewhere Suddenly Merged With the Milky Way

100 Million Billion Stars

To map what the cosmographers could not see, they gathered information from former surveys, measured their motion absent from Earth and all the surrounding gravitational forces, then produced a 2D and 3D map. Their consequence was a colossal structure of full galaxies grouped alongside one another amounting to about 100 million billion stars.

It continues to be a mystery what the South Pole Wall would seem like if the dark clouds ended up eliminated in front of it or what all that special issue in fact has. The best educated guess the group produced is hundreds of countless numbers of galaxies comprehensive of stars and planets still to be discovered.

Read Also: NASA Hubble Area Telescope Detects Galaxy Relocating Absent From Earth at 3 Million Miles Per Hour

©2017 ScienceTimes.com All legal rights reserved. Do not reproduce without the need of permission. The window to the globe of science times.

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