It’s no surprise that one of the ways we’ll fight climate change is to plant a lot of trees. Across the entirety of northern Africa, millions of trees are being planted to help, and also to hold back the spread of the Sahara.
Lord Byron, the Romantic poet and infamous libertine, wrote a book of memoirs that may have set 19th century England aflame with scandal – if they hadn’t been deliberately destroyed within a month of his death.
A common migraine medication has an uncommon side-effect: it can turn blood green. People with urinary catheters can sometimes produce purple pee.
What do you get when you cross three motorways, two railway lines, three canals, and two rivers? The first junction to be called spaghetti.
If you’re a gambling man, you better believe in God. So suggested Pascal’s wager, one of the first applications of decision theory to philosophy.
Topsy the elephant was famously electrocuted in 1903. History has not been kind to her, so let’s set the record straight. No, she was not a victim of the AC vs. DC wars. No, she was not a killer elephant. Yes, she killed one man, but in clear self defence.
In the 1960s, Australia proposed moving the entire population of Nauru onto another island. Instead, the Nauruans opted for independence.
There’s a pill you can swallow with a little camera inside. It’s great for identifying gastrointestinal damage, and usually comes out the other end in a day or two. Usually.
The Akan of Ghana name their children after days of the week, birth order, and sometimes notable facts about their birth. Kofi Atta Annan, for example, was a twin born on a Friday. But nobody wants to be called Obím̀pέ.
Princess Alexandra of Bavaria was a noted author and translator in the mid-19th century. She also firmly believed that as a young child she had swallowed a grand piano made of glass.
Michael Rockefeller, of the famous oil dynasty, was collecting indigenous art in Dutch New Guinea when his boat overturned. He may have drowned or been eaten by crocodiles, but the most likely theory is he suffered a much worse fate.
The first tin cans of food were manufactured around 1813. The first can openers arrived more than thirty years later.
Around 1200 BCE, almost every civilisation in the Eastern Mediterranean collapsed, or just barely survived. One possible culprit were invaders from across the sea: the Sea Peoples. No-one knows precisely who they were.
Cuckoos are not the only animal to have their young raised by other species. Bees, wasps, and fish also exhibit the same parasitic behaviour.
Every year in late February and early March, at the South Pole research station, the last flight leaves and the last sun sets. Neither will return for months. How do you mark such an occasion? With a horror film festival, of course.