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For a decade, people who study Europe's bison population have been baffled by a genetic mystery. The animals, which are a protected species, seemed to have appeared out of thin air about 11,000 years ago.

"There's something very fishy in the history of European bovids," says Alan Cooper of the University of Adelaide, one of the lead authors of a paper published Tuesday in the journal Nature Communications.

The head of the largest association of police chiefs in the U.S. has issued a formal apology on the group's behalf for "historical mistreatment of communities of color."

Speaking Monday at the annual meeting of the International Association of Chiefs of Police in San Diego, Terry Cunningham said his remarks on behalf of the group were aimed at breaking a "historic cycle of mistrust."

He said that policing is, in essence, a "noble profession" that has seen dark periods in its history.

Larry Schwitters is putting a lot of hope into a five-gallon bucket of bird poop.

It’s one of the ways he plans to lure thousands of Vaux's swifts into his homemade version of the chimneys these birds use as a nightly roost.

"The idea is we throw it in the chimney and it has an odor supposedly the swifts can smell," he said. "If they fly over it and take a sniff, they’ll think, ‘Hey, swifts have used this before. This is a good one. You can smell it.’”

After much criticism around last year's round of '70s rockers and no women, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame announced its nominees for the class of 2017 this morning, which include first-time nominees Tupac Shakur, Pearl Jam, Bad Brains, Joan Baez and Depeche Mode.

There's a major gap between what parents view as quality child care and what developmental psychologists and other specialists define as good care. That's according to a poll released this week by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit


Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit


Unintentional Skydiving Trick Is Successful

Oct 18, 2016
Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit


The battle for the ISIS-held city of Mosul, now in its second day, is expected to drag on for weeks or months. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces approach the city, aid groups in the region are preparing for a humanitarian crisis.

Fighting has lulled in some areas, but is continuing in others, and airstrikes by the U.S.-led coalition continue, NPR's Alice Fordham reports from Kalak, Iraq.

"The Iraqi army is fighting its way toward the city from the south: a spokesman said they are facing resistance but moving," Alice says.

Teacher Training As 'Part Theater, Part Sport'

Oct 18, 2016

Rain beats against the windows of a downtown New York City building on a soporific Friday morning. A high school teacher is reading out loud from a sample recommendation letter when she notices a few students fidgeting and texting.

"I'm not seeing all eyes ..." she says, her voice trailing off.

Naama Wrightman, who is coaching the teacher, jumps in.

"All right, pause. It's the right correction. How can you frame it positively? ... Take out the 'not.' "

"All eyes on me?"

"Exactly, give that quick scan again."

Donald Trump is warning that the election will be rigged. He has precisely zero evidence to back up that claim. But he has a remarkably receptive audience.

Around 30 percent of Americans have "little or no confidence" that votes will be counted accurately — and Trump's voters are far less confident about that than Clinton's.

If presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were consumer products, they wouldn't exactly be flying off the shelves, according to a firm that studies brand loyalty.

The Reputation Institute, which gauges how consumers view companies, politicians and even countries, gives Republican nominee Trump what it calls an overall "pulse score" of 31.7. Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton rates a bit better, at 38.7.

Any score less than 40 qualifies as having a "poor reputation," the firm says.

Traditionally, candidates do not complain about an election being rigged until they have actually lost. But 2016 is not a traditional year, and Donald Trump is no traditional candidate.

Allegations of media conspiracy, partisan collusion and Election Day shenanigans have become a staple of Trump's rally speeches and Twitter blasts. In his widely quoted tweet on Sunday, he was characteristically blunt: "The election is absolutely being rigged by the dishonest and distorted media pushing Crooked Hillary — but also at many polling places — SAD."

When the Nazi leadership was put on trial in Nuremberg, Germany, in the wake of World War II, the notion of an international war crimes tribunal was new and controversial.

British Prime Minister Winston Churchill proposed a summary execution of Nazi leaders. But it was decided that trials would be more effective, and would set a precedent for prosecuting future war crimes.

Claims by one side — so far without evidence — that the coming presidential election will somehow be "rigged" are being echoed at campaign rallies and in one new poll of voters.

Donald Trump has questioned the integrity of the election, and there's been talk of the race for the Democratic nomination having been rigged at the expense of candidate Bernie Sanders.

It's the most pressing problem, but fire-prone phones aren't the only challenge facing the world's leading seller of mobile phones. In Samsung's home country of South Korea, the conglomerate was already feeling the heat from investors, who want to streamline its complicated corporate structure, and from critics, who say it's not changing from its previously top-down, "militaristic" ways.

When Jolie Ritzo was looking for day care for her son Cannon in Falmouth, Maine, she checked out as many centers as she could.

She was looking for a place with the right feel.

"Most importantly, the people who are providing the care are loving and kind, nurturing and interested in developing these little beings," she says.

There was one center in town that had a great reputation, but it was so pricey, Ritzo says, "It would break the bank."

This election has been particularly noisy.

But when all the Twitter storms and heated exchanges (maybe) fade away after Nov. 8, the issues that affect real voters will remain.

With that in mind, we set out to create a cheat sheet on where each candidate stands on the issues voters care about most. The issues we chose to highlight come from the top 10 issues voters said were "very important" to their vote, according to a 2016 poll from the Pew Research Center.

Amy Goodman — the host of the left-leaning Democracy Now news program will not face criminal charges for her coverage of an oil pipeline protest in North Dakota last month. At least not for now — prosecutors say they may still bring charges later.

On Sept. 3, Goodman and her crew captured images of security teams with dogs trying to keep protesters from entering a pipeline construction site. She wanted to know if security members were "telling the dogs to bite the protesters?"

Too Sweet, Or Too Shrill? The Double Bind For Women

Oct 17, 2016

Fewer than 1 in 5 members of Congress are women. At Fortune 500 companies, fewer than 1 in 20 CEOs are women. And if you look at all the presidents of the United States through Barack Obama, what are the odds of having 44 presidents who are all men?

If men and women had an equal shot at the White House, the odds of this happening just by chance are about 1 in 18 trillion.