Today's round-up of science stories. Links are normally to press releases on EurekAlert (at the bottom end I may also add a couple of newspaper stories). I include quotes from the summary (using quotation marks) in cases where the title alone doesn't reveal what the story is about.
Planetary collision that formed the moon made life possible on Earth
SwRI scientist sheds light on Titan's mysterious atmosphere
Astronomers find star material could be building block of life
Climate change tipping point could be coming sooner than we think
New study establishes link between climate change, conflict, and migration
Humpback whales' songs at subarctic feeding areas are complex, progressive
An icy forecast for ringed seal populations
Scientists have already observed and predicted that high ringed seal pup mortality rates are linked to poor environmental conditions like early ice breakup and low snow. Researchers have now gone a step further by coupling these hypotheses with forecasts of future spring snow and ice conditions, developing a mathematical model, and following it to some stark conclusions for populations off the Amundsen Gulf and Prince Albert Sound in Canada.
A ringed seal pup, still covered in its white baby fur, lies exposed on the sea ice.
Credit: Ian Stirling
from the news media:
a long read on the quest for a reliable flu vaccine in the Guardian