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Marine microbes: a startling new world of bacteria has been discovered in the oceans, raising fundamental questions about evolution and the future of life on Earth. The discovery suggests that microbial diversity in the oceans is between 10 and 100 times higher than previously thought. Above, a collection of marine microbes found in deep seawater.

Poland: a man was bruised but alive after a Saint Bernard dog thrown out of a second floor window landed on him as he was walking down the street in the southern Polish city of Sosnowiec.

The 50kg dog was pushed out of the window by its drunken owner. Police spokesman Grzegorz Wierzbicki said: "The dog escaped with just a few scratches. The man was also more in a psychological state of shock than physically hurt."

NEW ZEALAND: Two smurfs were left with red faces after they were arrested by police for stealing a trampoline. Senior Sergeant Brian Benn said two drunk 19-year-olds, "dressed as smurfs", were seen carrying the trampoline along a street in Dunedin about 1am.

The pair, and one other who got away, had stolen the trampoline from a back garden, and dropped it and attempted to run away from police when they were spotted.

UNITED KINGDOM: A music lover and steam train enthusiast said he had created the world's first steam-powered gramophone. The novel machine took Geoff Hudspith four years and less than pounds 100 to build using scrap metal.

The 51-year-old engineer from Christchurch, Dorset, decided to create something to play his collection of old 78rpm records. He used spare parts from two old gramophones, including a pickup arm from a 1922 Winner model

GERMANY: A 91-year-old beekeeper who attracted more than 20,000 wasps into his home when he brought his honeycombs indoors, managed to escape injury.

Skull found: a five million-year- old mesopithecus skull was found at an excavation in northern Greece. The remains of the Mesopithecus ( a monkey-like animal, a little more than 3ft long ( were found in the northern Halkidiki peninsula, outside the city of Thessaloniki.

Rare cloud formations: Some of the coldest temperatures on Earth have fostered a rare cloud formation over Australia's Mawson station in Antarctica. Meteorological officer Renae Baker captured spectacular images of the nacreous clouds, on July 25. The clouds only occur at high polar latitudes in winter, requiring temperatures less than approximately minus 80 Celsius(minus 176 Fahrenheit). A weather balloon measured temperatures down to minus 87C (minus 189 F) on the day the photos were taken.
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Aug 3, 2006
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