When an animal population is limited to a very small environmental area, its members may become reduced in size. This phenomenon, known as insular dwarfism, is most common on islands but may also occur in caves and isolated valleys. Experts remain divided on what causes this dwarfing. One theory is that it is a gene-encoded response to environmental stress; another is that smaller animals have a survival advantage when food is scarce. What extinct and extant species have undergone this process?
Lucy Maud Montgomery
Back in the day
France was a major US ally during the American Revolutionary War, but relations between the two countries soured in the wake of the French Revolution and the Jay Treaty between the US and Britain. The US refused to pay debts to the new French Republic, while the Jay Treaty granted the US trading privileges with Britain. The French Navy began seizing American trading ships, and the Quasi-War, also known as the Pirate Wars, resulted, lasting from 1798 to 1800. What ended the undeclared war?
Born on a day like today
Siffert was a Swiss driver who began his career racing motorcycles but switched to Formula One in 1962. He won the 1968 British Grand Prix but was killed on the same track three years later. After suffering suspension damage, Siffert's car crashed and burst into flames so intense that rescue crews were unable to reach him. It was later determined that the injuries he sustained in the crash were not fatal—he died of smoke inhalation. What safety measures were implemented after the accident?