Italy's Mount Etna Puts Up A Dazzling Show

Mount Etna, Europe's most active volcano, has been erupting regularly since 2011. However, the latest series of explosions, which began on February 16, 2021, has been particularly noteworthy. Emanating from the youngest of the volcano's four craters — the Southeast Crater— they have spewed spectacular fountains of lava as high as 0.9 miles (1.5 kilometers). To put it in perspective, that is about three times the height of One World Trade Center, the tallest building in the United States.

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Everyone Is A Little Irish On St. Patrick's Day!

St. Patrick may have been an Irish clergyman, but his death anniversary — observed annually on March 17 — is celebrated worldwide, even in cities and towns with few or no ethnic Irish people. Here is a brief history of the man behind the holiday and the origins of some of the fun traditions associated with the commemoration.

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World's Oldest DNA Recovered From Million-Year-Old Siberian Mammoth Teeth

A team of Swedish scientists has successfully extracted and reconstructed the world's oldest DNA from the tooth of a Siberian mammoth, which roamed Earth over a million years ago. Also known as deoxyribonucleic acid, the all-important molecule — which contains the genetic instructions for the development and function of living things. — provides new insights into the evolution of the ancient Ice Age giants. Prior to this, the oldest DNA sequenced came from the bone of a horse that trotted around Canada about 700,000 years ago.

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Stunning Yellow King Penguin Photographed On South Georgia Island

King penguins, the second-largest penguin species, typically sport a distinct black-and-white coat with a yellowish-gold dash of color on their collar. However, one young penguin in the South Atlantic appears to have missed the memo on the dress code. It decided to forgo the black feathers and retain just the bright yellow plumage.

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Get Ready To "Lose" An Hour! Daylight Saving Time Starts On March 14, 2021

On March 14, 2021, millions of Americans and Canadians will mark the start of Daylight Saving Time (DST) by moving their clocks forward an hour. The time manipulation — which will result in the loss of sixty minutes of precious sleep or leisure time on Sunday — is designed to enable North Americans to enjoy longer days during the upcoming spring and summer months.

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When Life Gives You Oranges Make . . . Electricity?

The over 48,000 orange trees that permeate all corners of Seville, Spain, not only fill the city's air with the pleasant smell of azhar, or orange blossoms, in spring; they also yield over 16,500 tons of fruit every winter. Though that gives the capital of southern Spain’s Andalusia region the bragging rights of being Europe's top orange-producing city, the fruit is too tart to be consumed fresh. While some of the produce is used to make marmalade and orange liqueur, most of it ends up in Seville's landfills. However, that may change soon thanks to an ingenious idea to use the oranges to produce clean energy.

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Conservationists Rescue Endangered Giraffes Trapped On Kenyan Island

In 2011, conservationists moved eight Rothschild's giraffes to Longicharo Island, a rocky peninsula on Lake Baringo in Western Kenya. The scientists hoped the isolated area would save the endangered animals from poachers and allow their numbers to multiply. However, intense rainfall in August 2020 caused the lake water levels to rise substantially, cutting the area off from the mainland and reducing the once lush, 100-acre habitat to about eight acres.

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Six Skeletons Discovered Inside Ancient Shipwreck Helmed By Legendary Pirate Samuel Bellamy

The 1984 discovery of the Whydah Galley — the only fully verified and authenticated pirate shipwreck of the Golden Age of Piracy (1650-1720) ever found — has yielded an enormous treasure trove of artifacts. However, any evidence of its legendary captain Samuel, or "Black Sam," Bellamy has proved elusive. That may change soon thanks to the recent discovery of six skeletons found embedded in the ancient wreck's compacted masses of matter.

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This Year's Largest And Fastest Asteroid Is About To Zoom Past Earth

On March 21, 2021, Earth will have its closest encounter with 2001 FO32 — the largest and fastest-known asteroid scheduled to fly past our planet this year. The space rock, estimated to be between 2,526 feet ( 0.47 miles) and 5,577 feet (1.05 miles) in diameter, will zip past Earth at a staggering speed of 76,980 miles per hour (123,887 km/h). To put it in perspective, that is about 100 times faster than the speed of sound!

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Cereal-Loving Rescue Cat Gets A Custom Delivery Of Fruity Pebbles

Trash Panda, the Fulton County Emergency Services and Disaster Agency's (ESDA) feline mascot, often featured in the organization's memes to spread safety information, has openly declared his love for Fruity Pebbles. So the cereal's manufacturer, Post Consumer Brands, decided to surprise the two-year-old rescue cat with an honor usually reserved for star athletes like Michael Jordan and Simone Biles — its face featured on a cereal box.

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How Texans Stepped Up To Help One Another During The Brutal Freeze

The deadly winter storm, which swept across 22 states — from Texas to Maine — the week of February 14, 2021, delivered large amounts of snow and ice, and established numerous low-temperature records. While over 140 million Americans were impacted, Texas was particularly hard hit. The Arctic chill caused about 60 percent of the state's energy sources to go offline and water pipes to freeze and burst, leaving millions without electricity and water.

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Children's Ferrari Replica Sets A New Price Record At Paris Auction

When RM Sotheby's was commissioned to sell a Ferrari 330 P2 Junior, they expected it to fetch between $6,000 and $12,000 (5,000 to 10,000 euros). As it turned out, the experts had significantly underestimated the vehicle's value. On February 13, 2021, an enthusiastic bidder paid a record $145,445 (120,000 euros) — including the auctioneer's 20 percent commission — for the pristinely-preserved replica of one of Ferrari's finest 1960s sports-racing cars.

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How GameStop And Other "Meme" Stocks Became The Centerpiece Of A Stock Market Frenzy

If you have been paying any attention to the news over the past few weeks, you may have heard of the exponential rise and the equally dramatic drop in the share price of video game retailer GameStop (GME) and other "meme" stocks — those favored by millennials — like AMC Theaters. The two-week frenzy, which pitted individual amateur investors against seasoned professionals — and resulted in a Congressional inquiry— began rather innocently in an online community on Reddit.

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NASA's Perseverance Rover Successfully Lands On The Red Planet

The NASA Perseverance rover's 293 million mile (472 million km) journey to Mars ended successfully on February 18, 2021, with a picture-perfect landing inside the Jezero Crater. The car-sized, six-wheeled rover, nicknamed Percy, is the US space agency's biggest and most advanced explorer to date. Its primary mission is to search for signs of ancient microbial life on Mars.

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The Significance Of Black History Month

Celebrated every February, Black History Month is an annual commemoration to honor and recognize the central role of African Americans in U.S. history and reflect on their continued struggle for racial justice. While President Gerald Ford is credited for officially recognizing what is also called African American History Month in 1976, the idea was the brainchild of American historian and author Dr. Carter G. Woodson.

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The World's Smallest-Known Reptile Is About The Size Of A Sunflower Seed!

Madagascar, an island off the coast of Africa, is home to some of the world's most exciting and unique animal species — about 75 percent of which cannot be found anywhere else on the planet. These include the long-necked giraffe weevil, the colorful, cat-sized panther chameleon, and the bright orange-red tomato frog! The latest to join this impressive list of exotic creatures is a new reptile species small enough to perch on the tip of a finger!

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Yosemite National Park's Stunning "Firefall" Phenomenon Has Started

Located in California's Sierra Nevada mountains, Yosemite National Park is famous for its giant, ancient sequoia trees and impressive rock formations, like El Capitan and Half Dome. However, from mid-to-late February each year, the pristine preserve's main attraction is Horsetail Fall — a temporary waterfall that flows over the eastern edge of El Capitan every winter. During the brief two-week-period, the 1,500-foot-tall waterfall frequently transforms into a spectacular natural Firefall.

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The Heartwarming Story Behind Nike's First Hands-Free Sneaker

Matthew Walzer, who was born with cerebral palsy, had overcome most of the mobility and motor skills challenges associated with the congenital disorder by the time he turned 16 in 2012. However, with limited dexterity in his right hand, one essential task remained elusive — tying his shoelaces. Realizing there were probably millions of others facing a similar challenge, he reached out to his favorite shoe company, Nike, for help. Little did the teenager know that his heartfelt request would lead to the creation of Go FlyEase — the world's first fully hands-free sneaker.

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