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When Western scrub jays summon others to screech over the body of a dead jay, they come a'runnin', and those 'funerals' can last for up to half an hour.

But why? Western scrub jays live in breeding pairs and are not particularly social birds. “They’re really territorial and not at all friendly with other scrub-jays,”  said Teresa Iglesias, a U.C. Davis graduate student and co-author of a new study in Animal BehaviourIt turns out that death seems to signify danger, which opens up an even odder set of questions.
Researchers have discovered how to store diverse forms of artificial short-term memories - in isolated brain tissue.

Memories are often grouped into two categories: declarative memory, the short and long-term storage of facts like names, places and events; and implicit memory, the type of memory used to learn a skill like playing the piano.  In the study, researchers sought to better understand the mechanisms underlying short-term declarative memories such as remembering a phone number or email address someone has just shared. 
Want to avoid a baby mama without getting surgery or enduring condoms that are too small?  Men may soon have the same choice as women when it comes to birth control.

A male contraceptive pill has been talked about for decades, but so far none has been successfully created despite strong demand. Recent surveys found that about 70 percent of men would be willing to take a birth control pill if it were available.

A new study says such a birth control pill for men, without side effects, may soon be ready.  Working on mice, the team found that a compound called JQ1 acts as an inhibitor to sperm production and also sperm mobility. 
The Quest project, the first carbon capture and storage (CCS) project for an oil sands operation in Canada, has gotten support from the Governments of Canada and Alberta and will soon be underway, Shell announced.

If you are flying an airplane and detect an unusual odor in a confined space 5 miles up in the air, what can it be? Burritos for lunch?   

Not this time. The foul smell with traces of sulfur in the cockpit came from none other than the Grímsvötn volcano that was spewing gas and ash from southeast Iceland. Sulfur dioxide often indicates volcanic ash, and the presence of ash in the atmosphere can endanger jet engines. Once landed, Captain Klaus Sievers used data from the MetOp satellite via the Support to Aviation Control Service – SACS – to confirm that it was high-altitude sulfur dioxide.
Hurricane Isaac may have disappointed the news networks and the federal government - it was declared a state-of-emergency before the first rain drop fell and Sean Penn was not roaming the streets of New Orleans with a shotgun to prevent Republican-created zombies - but it was a good test run for some new technology; “terrestrial lidar” or “T-lidar”.