When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.


Pigeon Interuptus — A Fish That Hunts Pigeons On Land

Dec 11, 2012
Originally published on December 11, 2012 4:34 pm

In science, categories matter: phylum, family, class, species, solid, liquid, endo-, exo-, we analyze by creating groups, by making clean distinctions. Nature, on the other hand, is messier. It defies categories, at least at the edges. There is always something in the group that isn't doing what it's supposed to, that doesn't quite fit. It's those exceptions that make the world so surprising.

Fish, for example, generally eat other fish. But at the edges, and I mean literally the edges of the water, there are sea creatures that jump onto the land to eat land animals.

Killer whales are the greatest example (see below). But the latest addition is a catfish that hunts pigeons.

Don't Go Near The Water, Mr. Pigeon!

We are in southwestern France, along the river Tarn, where there's a small hunk of gravel at the river's edge where pigeons like to gather. What the pigeons don't know is that right next to them, hiding in the water, is a European catfish.

At extraordinary risk to themselves, these catfish will leap onto the beach, snatch a moving pigeon, and then, bearing the struggling bird, they roll or push themselves back into the water. There is a real chance they won't have the energy or the talent to get back to watery safety, but biologist Julien Cucherousset, filming from a bridge above, saw 54 attacks, and 28 times, he reports, the fish got its pigeon.

On the other hand, when you watch this video, notice in the third attack, there's a pigeon sitting in the sun suddenly yanked and pinned by a dark thing that emerges out of the water. He (or she) struggles, gets free, and then with what seems like amazing matter-of-factness, he waddles back onto the beach as if nothing odd has happened.

Pigeons, I guess, don't have bad dreams.

I found Professor Cucherousset's paper (with others) on Ed Yong's blog, Not Exactly Rocket Science. Go there to find out what it says about how catfish do it. Cucherousset called the study "Freshwater Killer Whales" because he was reminded of those brazen orcas that, in spite of their enormous hulk, fling themselves high up a beach to grab a seal and then roll 10, 20 feet back to the water — if they can. It's a very dangerous way to hunt, and it inspired one of the most remarkable BBC wildlife videos I've ever seen.

Two photographers, one in the water with the orcas, the other sitting with baby seals on the beach, filmed a real-life killer whale attack. The beached photographer assumed (what was he thinking?) that the incoming killer whale would notice that the animal with the camera was NOT a seal, and so he'd be safe. David Attenborough did a video about this. If you've never seen it, take the time. It's just six minutes, and it's brilliant.

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