Sid Perkins

Sid Perkins is a freelance science writer based in Crossville, Tenn.

All Stories by Sid Perkins

  1. An image of a 3-D scan of a fossilized trilobite with shell fragments, bits of sea urchin-like creatures and other bottom-dwellers represented in shades of red and blue.

    A one-of-a-kind trilobite fossil hints at what and how these creatures ate

    The preserved contents suggest the trilobite fed almost continuously and had a gut environment with an alkaline or neutral pH, researchers say.

  2. An image of Venus.
    Planetary Science

    Flashes in Venus’ atmosphere might be meteors, not lightning

    With upcoming missions planned for Venus, scientists are eager to figure out the origin of the mysterious flashes.

  3. Hubble telescope image showing a blue trail of dust behind the asteroid Dimorphos (also blue), with circles showing new boulders around the asteroid
    Planetary Science

    NASA’s DART mission lofted a swarm of boulders into space

    Hubble telescope images of the asteroid Dimorphos reveal a halo of 37 dim, newfound objects — most likely boulders shaken loose from the surface.

  4. a composite of photos of a lion, a resplendent quetzal, golden poison frog and blue shark (left to right)
    Science & Society

    Humans exploit about one-third of wild vertebrate species

    An analysis of nearly 47,000 vertebrate animal species reveals that using them for food, medicine or the pet trade is helping push some toward extinction.

  5. A photo of sprinklers watering crops.

    Irrigation may be shifting Earth’s rotational axis

    Computer simulations suggest that from 1993 to 2010 irrigation alone could have nudged the North Pole by about 78 centimeters.

  6. A radar map of the North Atlantic ocean showing large areas of unusually high temperatures in orange and red, with some blue spots near the east coast of North America

    Why is the North Atlantic breaking heat records?

    Record-breaking sea-surface temperatures off the coast of Africa may affect the 2023 hurricane season. What’s fueling the unusual heat is unclear.

  7. Seven ancient bone flutes, each shown from three different angles, against a black backdrop

    These ancient flutes may have been used to lure falcons

    Seven bird-bone flutes unearthed from a site in northern Israel are about 12,000 years old and may have been used as bird calls.

  8. An illustration of a pterosaur flying over rocky terrain with mountains, a body of water and the sun in the background.

    New discoveries are bringing the world of pterosaurs to life

    The latest clues hint at where pterosaurs — the first vertebrates to fly — came from, how they evolved, what they ate and more.

  9. A United States maps focused on the average summer temperatures in 2021. The west coast is covered in a darker red color while the rest of the country is a light red/orange color.

    The summer of 2021 was the Pacific Northwest’s hottest in a millennium

    Tree ring data from the Pacific Northwest reveal that the region’s average summer temperature in 2021 was the highest since at least the year 950.

  10. A photo of a fossilized bat skeleton

    Newfound bat skeletons are the oldest on record

    The newly identified species Icaronycteris gunnelli lived about 52.5 million years ago in what is now Wyoming and looked a lot like modern bats.

  11. An illustration of an orange planet with dark orange and red spots scattered across its surface.

    The biggest planet orbiting TRAPPIST-1 doesn’t appear to have an atmosphere

    TRAPPIST-1b is hotter than astronomers expected, suggesting there’s no atmosphere to transport heat around the planet.

  12. A photo of a fossil with two dark brown pieces attached to the shell.

    520-million-year-old animal fossils might not be animals after all

    Newly described fossils of Protomelission gatehousei suggest that the species, once thought to be the oldest example of bryozoans, is actually a type of colony-forming algae.