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Study: Indonesian Birds Face Extinction due to Pet Trade

Thirteen species of Indonesian birds, including the country's symbolic Javan Hawk-eagle, are at serious risk of extinction mainly due to the pet trade, a wildlife watchdog warned Wednesday.

The vast Indonesian archipelago is home to a dizzying array of birds and keeping them as pets has long been part of the national culture, with birdcages a common sight outside homes and shops across the country.

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U.S. Biochemist Wins Award for Rewriting DNA to Mimic Evolution

U.S. biochemical engineer Frances Arnold on Tuesday won a million-euro technology prize in Finland for her work on "directed evolution", a method of rewriting DNA to improve medicines and develop green fuels.

"Frances Arnold receives the 2016 Millennium Technology Prize in recognition of her discoveries that launched the field of 'directed evolution', which mimics natural evolution to create new and better proteins in the laboratory," the Technology Academy Finland, which awards the prize at two-year intervals, said in a statement.

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India's Mini Space Shuttle Blasts off

India successfully launched its first model space shuttle on Monday, a top official said, as New Delhi joined the race to develop a reusable rocket to make space travel easier and cheaper.

The winged shuttle blasted off on a rocket from the southeastern spaceport of Sriharikota at about 7:00am (0130 GMT), with television footage showing it streaming through a clear sky.

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Costa Rica Volcano Eruption Chokes Towns in Smoke and Ash

A volcano erupted Friday near the capital of Costa Rica, choking surrounding communities with smoke and ash.

In the capital San Jose, 30 kilometers (19 miles) from the Turrialba volcano, the air reeked of sulphur as dust and ash coated buildings and vehicles.

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Study: Mega-Tsunamis Sculpted Mars Surface

Monster tsunamis caused by meteor impacts swept across the northern plains of Mars more than three billion years ago, radically resculpting the edges of the Red Planet's ancient seas, according to a study published Thursday.

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'Now or Never' to Save Barrier Reef

Australia's Great Barrier Reef could be beyond saving in five years without "now or never" funding to improve water quality as climate change ravages the World Heritage-listed site, scientists warned Thursday.

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Glass Beads Found in Australia Point to Huge Asteroid Hit

Australian scientists have found evidence of a huge asteroid they say slammed into Earth some 3.46 billion years ago -- making it the second oldest known to have hit the planet and larger than the one blamed for wiping out the dinosaurs.

Andrew Glikson, from the Australian National University's Planetary Institute, said that while the asteroid would have been massive, the exact location of where it hit was not known.

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Solar Impulse 2 Lands in Oklahoma on Record-Breaking Flight

The Solar Impulse 2 plane touched down in Tulsa, in the south-central U.S. state of Oklahoma late Thursday, ending the latest stage of its record-breaking quest to circle the globe without consuming a drop of fuel.

The experimental solar-powered aircraft, aimed at promoting clean energy technologies, landed at 11:17 pm local time (0417 GMT) at Tulsa International Airport after taking off at 3:00 am (1000 GMT) from Phoenix, Arizona, live feed showed.

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Solar Impulse 2 Leaves Arizona on Record-Breaking Flight

The Solar Impulse 2 plane took off from Phoenix, Arizona en route to Oklahoma on Thursday, resuming its record-breaking quest to circle the globe without consuming a drop of fuel.

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Legal Culling of Wolves Increases Poaching, Finds Study

Allowing the legal culling of wild wolves in order to discourage illegal poaching is counter-productive, researchers reported Wednesday in a study that challenges long-practiced conservation strategy.

During a 15-year period when wildlife management policies in two US states flipped half-a-dozen times, growth in wolf populations slowed systematically whenever culling was permitted, even after controlling for the number of animals legally killed, they found.

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