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31 Interesting Facts We Learned In 2020 That Will Never Leave My Brain

1.

An extinct species of monkey crossed the Atlantic on its own.

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Monkey eating a banana


Georgi Fadejev / Getty Images

2.

Mars constantly makes a humming noise.

A digitized Mars


Derek Berwin / Getty Images

3.

When plants are under attack from insects, they let out aromas that warn other plants and entice the insects’ predators.

A rainforest


Ghislain & Marie David De Lossy / Getty Images

4.

It’s likely that over eleven species of fish can walk on land.

Cute fish


Pornpimon Lekudom / Getty Images

5.

Over a thousand years ago, Puebloans in modern-day New Mexico survived droughts by melting ancient ice in the depths of caves.

A rock formation in New Mexico


Cavan Images / Getty Images

6.

There was a badger-like animal 66 million years ago, and scientists named it Adalatherium, which means “crazy beast.”


DamianKuzdak / Getty Images

7.

In the past couple decades, supermassive black holes in distant galaxies have launched jets of material.

A computer rendering of a black hole


MARK GARLICK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY / Getty Images

8.

Some hummingbirds use colors we can’t see to find food.

A hummingbird at a flower


DansPhotoArt on flickr / Getty Images

9.

There is a giant lakebed a mile under northwest Greenland.

An aerial shot of mountains in Greenland


Per Breiehagen / Getty Images

10.

A 550-million-year-old fossilized digestive track was found in Nevada, making it the oldest-known digestive track ever.

A fossil


Walter Geiersperger / Getty Images

11.

On average, lightning strikes Earth 100 times each second.

Lightning over a populated area


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12.

And lightning strikes over 100 million times a year in the tropics.

One strike of lightning


Jose A. Bernat Bacete / Getty Images

13.

A Cuvier’s beaked whale can stay underwater for at least 3 hours and 42 minutes.

A Cuvier's beaked whale


HeitiPaves / Getty Images

14.

Babies’ brains are wired to see faces and places.

A baby smiling


Tuan Tran / Getty Images

15.

Through sensing electrostatic fields, bumblebees can tell if another bee has visited the flower they’re at in the past couple of minutes.

A bumblebee on a flower


itsabreeze photography / Getty Images

16.

There are four buried lakes on Mars.

A view of Mars from a telescope


Christophe Lehenaff / Getty Images

17.

Modern humans reached westernmost Europe 38,000 to 41,000 years ago — 5,000 years earlier than we thought.

An aerial view of Sete Cidades, Portugal


Enrico Pescantini / Getty Images

18.

The oldest-known species of pythons were in Germany.

A python coiled around a branch


Alan Tunnicliffe Photography / Getty Images

19.

A gas associated with living organisms is in Venus’s atmosphere.

A computer rendering of Venus


SCIEPRO / Getty Images

20.

Some bats make different kinds of sounds to talk about different subjects, like food or sleep.

A group of bats flying


Bruno Guerreiro / Getty Images

21.

There’s a blue fruit that gets its color from its fat.

The blue fruit


Michel VIARD / Getty Images

22.

Tectonic plates became a thing over 4 billion years ago — at least a billion years earlier than we thought.


ANDRZEJ WOJCICKI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY / Getty Images

23.

The New Guinea Singing Dog isn’t extinct.

The New Guinea Singing Dog lying down


kwiktor / Getty Images

24.

An animal in Antarctica hibernated over 250 million years ago, which is the oldest evidence of a hibernation-like state.

Northern Antartica


Ashley Cooper / Getty Images

25.

There’s a coral reef in the Great Barrier Reef that’s taller than the Empire State Building.

A colorful area of the Great Barrier Reef


Dulyanut Swdp / Getty Images

26.

Duckbilled dinosaurs were present in Africa, and they swam from Europe or Asia.

A 3D rendering of dinosaurs on a beach


Daniel Eskridge / Getty Images

27.

Tropical songbirds reproduce less during droughts.

A colorful bird on a branch


Cavan Images / Getty Images

28.

There were periods of extreme cold in Ancient Rome, and it was caused by a volcano eruption in Alaska.

A volcano in Alaska


Patrick J. Endres / Getty Images

29.

3.8 billion years ago, Earth’s continents were submerged.

North America from Space


James Cawley / Getty Images

30.

After sea turtles lay eggs, they create decoy nests to fool predators.

A sea turtle swimming


M Swiet Productions / Getty Images

31.

And lastly, there is water on the moon.

A full moon


Yaorusheng / Getty Images

2020 is finally (almost) over, and we’re looking back on the year. Check out even more from the year here!