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In pictures: Muslims around the world mark first day of Ramadan

In pictures: Muslims around the world mark first day of Ramadan

People around the world are marking the beginning of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which is determined by the lunar cycle and this year will run from 6 May. Ramadan takes place during the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. Muslims believe the Koran was first revealed to the […]

Five things we‘ve learned from nature crisis study

Five things we‘ve learned from nature crisis study

The most comprehensive and detailed review of the state of nature has been published in Paris. Our environment correspondent Matt McGrath extracts the key messages. 1 – “Boy, we are in trouble” This phrase was uttered by Prof Sir Bob Watson who has chaired this report from the Intergovernmental Science-Policy […]

Ash dieback: Killer tree disease set to cost UK £15bn

Ash dieback: Killer tree disease set to cost UK £15bn

The outbreak of ash dieback disease is set to cost the UK in the region of £15bn, it has been estimated. Scientists expressed shock at the “staggering” financial burden on taxpayers. The authors warn that the cost of tackling the fallout from ash dieback far exceeds the income from importing […]

British bluebells ‘have advantage over Spanish bluebells‘

British bluebells ‘have advantage over Spanish bluebells‘

Fears that the British bluebell could go extinct are unfounded, say scientists. The introduced Spanish variety has lower fertility and is unlikely to wipe out the native plant, according to genetic tests. The Spanish bluebell‘s escape into the wild has raised concerns that the two plants could mix, leading to […]

Trophy hunting: Gove ‘cautious‘ over ban on imports

Trophy hunting: Gove ‘cautious‘ over ban on imports

The UK will not be banning imports from trophy hunting yet, Michael Gove has told Radio 5 Live. The Environment Secretary said it was a “delicate political balancing act”. He said he had been advised by wildlife charities to “be cautious” in following other countries in outlawing imports from the […]

Lady Latrine: ‘Why I rate toilets I visit on Instagram‘

Lady Latrine: ‘Why I rate toilets I visit on Instagram‘

A woman who found herself regularly using public toilets has told how she began blogging about them so she could stop “boring” her friends. Lady Latrine, as she is known, won fans on Instagram for her reviews of loos in her home county of Cambridgeshire. Rating them out of 10 […]

Facebook bets on stars in quest for sales

Facebook bets on stars in quest for sales

Stars with legions of followers on Instagram will soon be able to sell products directly to users using the company‘s apps. Facebook, which owns Instagram and Whatsapp, said this week that the future of shopping would depend on content “creators”. Hiring so-called influencers to shift goods is nothing new. have […]

Google ads promote firms charging extra for services

Google ads promote firms charging extra for services

Google says it will investigate examples of adverts leading search results for companies offering to carry out a service for a higher fee than the official channels. For example, a search for the term “driving licence application” in the UK led to a firm charging £49 ($64) for a change […]

YouTuber Austin Jones gets 10 year prison sentence

YouTuber Austin Jones gets 10 year prison sentence

A former YouTube star has been sentenced to ten years in prison in the US after pleading guilty to a charge of receiving indecent images of children. Austin Jones admitted encouraging six underage girls to send him sexually explicit videos in private messages, telling some they needed to “prove” that […]

Islandeering: The woman walking on the edge of hidden islands

Islandeering: The woman walking on the edge of hidden islands

Islandeering shares the same psychology as climbing to the summit of a mountain, according to Lisa Drewe, the woman who invented the term. She says: “People never really start out with the aim of just going half way up a mountain.” And for Lisa, the same “completist” urge applies to […]