Taylor Swift has received numerous music awards and even an Emmy. Now, the popular American singer-songwriter can add an unusual achievement to her growing list of accolades — a new millipede species named after her. The Nannaria swiftae (N. swiftae) is one of 17 new twisted-claw millipede species recently identified by Dr. Derek Hennen and his team at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia.
On April 9, 2022, four civilians made history as the first all-private "astronaut" team to reach the International Space Station (ISS). Former NASA astronaut Michael López-Alegría and three first-time fliers, Mark Pathy, Larry Connor, and Eytan Stibbe — who each paid $55 million for the trip — will spend eight days on the orbiting science laboratory. They are scheduled to return to Earth aboard SpaceX's Crew Dragon capsule on April 19, 2022.
Russia's unprovoked attack on Ukraine, which began on February 24, 2022, shows no signs of abating. After being forced to withdraw from the northern cities of Kyiv, Chernihiv, and Sumy, the Russian army focused its military efforts on the port city of Mariupol in southeastern Ukraine. Their relentless bombardment has destroyed 80 percent of the city's infrastructure and killed as many as 10,000 civilians.
On April 7, 2022, the U.S. Senate voted 53-47 to confirm Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson as the 116th Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. The 51-year-old is the first African American woman and only the sixth female to serve on the nation's highest court.
A flamingo on the "run" from a Wichita, Kansas, zoo for 17 years was recently spotted in Texas. No. 492 and its buddy, No. 347, escaped from the Sedgwick County Zoo in 2005. While No. 347 has disappeared since, No. 492, nicknamed Pink Floyd by Texas officials, has been a frequent visitor to the Lone Star State. The famous fugitive's latest sighting, posted online on March 28, 2022, by the Texas Coastal Fisheries Division, is making headlines worldwide.
In 2020, Stan, one of the world's largest and most complete Tyrannosaurus Rex (T. rex) skeletons, was auctioned for a record $27.5 million ($31.8 million with fees and costs). The precious fossil, bought by an anonymous private buyer, led many paleontologists to fret that the T. rex was lost to science forever. As it turns out, they had nothing to worry about.
The search for famed polar explorer Ernest Shackleton's ship Endurance, which sank in 1915, is finally over. On March 9, 2022, the Endurance22 expedition team announced the wreck had been found in the Weddell Sea off the coast of Antarctica.