Backyard Nature's Direct Feed from
The British Broadcasting Company's
Science & Nature News

BBC News - Science & Environment

Last updated on  August 30th, 2016

Tasmanian devil DNA shows signs of cancer fightback: Click here

A genetic study uncovers signs that wild Tasmanian devils are rapidly evolving to fight back against the infectious face cancer threatening them with extinction.


New Solar System objects revealed: Click here

Astronomers in the US have uncovered previously unknown objects in the outer reaches of the Solar System.


DNA sequenced in space for first time: Click here

DNA has been successfully sequenced in space for the first time.


Badger cull extended to more English counties: Click here

Badger culling is rolled out to more parts of England, in a bid to tackle bovine TB.


SES company first to use 'second-hand' SpaceX rocket: Click here

Luxembourg-based SES says it is going to be the first satellite operator to launch a spacecraft on a "second-hand" rocket - a Falcon 9 that previously sent supplies to the space station.


Geologists search for Anthropocene 'golden spike': Click here

Scientists investigating whether we have entered a new geological age are seeking a suitable "spike" in the environmental record that betrays significant human influence.


Early human ancestor Lucy 'died falling out of a tree': Click here

New evidence suggests that the famous fossilised human ancestor dubbed 'Lucy' by scientists may have died falling from a great height - probably from a tree.


Air pollution 'neglected for road safety', researchers claim: Click here

Air pollution in UK cities has failed to improve because politicians prioritise road safety and economic growth instead, research suggests.


Wood fuel plan to cut plane CO2 branded as 'pipe dream': Click here

Proponents say new, greener jet fuels made from waste wood could significantly reduce airline CO2 emissions but environmentalists say it's a "pipe dream".


Shetland turbines at Bluemull Sound connected to grid: Click here

Turbines installed off the coast of Shetland could herald a "new era" in tidal energy, according to the company running the project.


EU's Sentinel satellites dissect Italian quake: Click here

Europe’s Sentinel radar satellites map Italy's Apennine mountains, revealing the scale of ground movement in Wednesday's big earthquake.


Nasa ends year-long Mars simulation on Hawaii: Click here

A team of six people complete a Nasa-funded Mars simulation in Hawaii, after living in a dome in near isolation for a year.


Juno probe makes close pass of Jupiter: Click here

The US space agency’s Juno probe makes its first close approach to Jupiter since going into orbit in July.


North Atlantic 'weather bomb' tremor measured in Japan: Click here

Researchers track a particular type of tiny vibration for the first time, as it wobbles through the Earth from the Atlantic to Japan.


Extinct 'lion' named after Attenborough: Click here

A tiny marsupial lion, extinct for at least 18 million years, is named after Sir David Attenborough after fossilised remains are found in remote Australia.


Surface water shifting around the Earth: Click here

Scientists have used satellite images to study how the water on the Earth's surface has changed over the last 30 years.


World's largest marine reserve created off Hawaii: Click here

US President Barack Obama expands a national monument off Hawaii, creating the world's largest marine reserve.


Pneumatic octopus is first soft, solo robot: Click here

Engineers in the US have built the first self-contained, entirely soft robot - in the shape of a 7cm octopus.


Drone captures stunning view of Uluru: Click here

One of Australia's best-known landmarks, Uluru, has been filmed from a new perspective.


New wind tunnel reveals bird flight secrets: Click here

Researchers at Stanford University have designed a unique bird tunnel to observe how tiny birds fly.


Life on Mars: Moment Nasa crew emerges from year-long trial: Click here

A Nasa team has emerged from a Mars simulation in Hawaii, where they lived in near isolation for a year.


Reindeer killed in Norway lightning storm: Click here

More than 300 reindeer have been killed in a lightning storm on a mountain plateau in Norway.


Italy earthquake: 98 aftershocks in 36 hours: Click here

How 98 aftershocks rocked devastated areas of central Italy in the first 36 hours after the earthquake.


India Ganges floods 'break previous records': Click here

Monsoon floods in the Ganges river have broken previous records in four locations in northern India, officials tell the BBC


Zika virus: Singapore confirms 41 locally transmitted cases: Click here

Singapore has confirmed 41 cases of the Zika virus in people who had not travelled to Zika-affected areas, meaning the virus has spread locally.


Sock maths: Click here

Can an algorithm turn you into an efficient sock-sorting machine?


Forgotten pioneer: Click here

Thirty years ago, India discovered the dreaded HIV virus had reached its shores when blood samples from six sex workers tested positive.


Seeking ET: Click here

How do astronomers decide whether a planet is potentially habitable?


Aiming high: Click here

Amateur rocket enthusiasts have gathered in Scotland to mark 30 years of aiming for the skies.


Bane of the oceans: Click here

MPs have recommended banning the tiny particles of plastic called "microbeads" which are used in a number of cosmetics and cleaning products. But why have they taken the move?


Snail 'Swat teams': Click here

Australian researchers are investigating if the scent of giant sea snails could help repel millions of coral-eating starfish from the Great Barrier Reef.