Top Stories: A New Dolphin Species, Why Not to Fight a Fever, and Earth's Life Expectancy

Detlev van Ravenswaay/Science Source; ESA; Credit: Nicole Dutra

Top Stories: A New Dolphin Species, Why Not to Fight a Fever, and Earth's Life Expectancy

New Dolphin Discovered in Brazil

In the Amazon Basin, local legends claim that it's bad luck to kill a river dolphin. But that's not the only reason to protect these animals. Researchers recently identified a whole new species of river dolphin in Brazil—and discovered that each species of river dolphin is much rarer than we thought.

Earth Won't Die as Soon as Thought

Good news, everyone! New studies show that the sun won’t vaporize our planet's water for at least another 1 billion to 1.5 billion years—hundreds of millions of years later than we thought. The findings won’t change your retirement plans, but could imply that habitable, Earth-like alien worlds are more common than scientists thought.

Facebook Spreads—and May Die Out—Like a Disease

A pair of researchers has used a simple epidemiological model to track the use of Facebook and found that it has spread just like a contagion. Moreover, their model suggests that, just like Myspace before it, Facebook will suffer a colossal fall within the next few years.

Rosetta Awakes and Prepares to Chase Comet

This week, the European comet-chasing probe Rosetta successfully roused itself from a 2.5-year sleep and signaled anxious controllers on the ground. Rosetta has traveled 6.2 billion km in an attempt to do something never done before: to catch up with a comet, 67 P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, as it speeds toward the sun and to go into orbit around it.

Fight the Flu, Hurt Society?

Taking medication to control your fever when you have the flu may not actually be a good idea. Scientists say that lowering your body temperature when you have a fever may make the virus replicate faster and increase the risk that you will transmit it to others. In fact, a new study claims that there are at least 700 extra flu deaths in the United States every year because people suppress their fever.