National Geographic : 2014 May
NEXT photos: pier Francesco Ferrari (top); nasa/JpL/texas a&M/corneLL. art: ÁLvaro vaLiÑo (top) Graphic: Jason treat, nGM staFF. source: Laura K. BarGer, harvard MedicaL schooL Monkey See one monkey looks at another and imitates the expression on its face. that’s what primatologist elisabetta palagi saw in a zoo in rheine, Germany, where she was studying geladas, a species that has roamed ethiopia’s high grasslands for some three million years. For her, it was a eureka moment. humans instinctively en- gage in what’s called rapid facial mimicry, but this was evidence of its ancient origins. the geladas, which weigh in at 30 to 45 pounds, are the only surviving species of grazing primates. “it is not a behavior that can be learned,” says palagi, who works at the university of pisa. “if you don’t have a brain adapted to express the behavior, you can’t do it.” the copying is believed to be a form of emotional connection. —Catherine Zuckerman 1 week 1 week 78 DAYS ON MARS 80.1 DAYS ON EARTH 1 day on Mars = 24 hours + 39 minutes Martian Time Mars research can come with jet lag. For the first few months of missions, Earth-based scien- tists driving rovers prolong their days and nights to match the red planet’s slightly slower rotation. To help, NASA facilities usually include nap rooms. —Daniel Stone cockroaches can live without their heads for weeks.