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Why California Almonds Need North Dakota Flowers (And A Few Billion Bees)

This month, the bees from 1.6 million hives — many of them trucked in commercially from as far away as North Dakota — will pollinate California's almond orchards. Then beekeepers will pack up their colonies and drive them back to the northern Plains, where bees can graze for the summer. But scientists says that floral feast in the Great Plains is shrinking because of high corn prices.
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Corn Prices Making Life Difficult For N.D. Bees

The northern plains, especially the Dakotas, are home to about half of the country's honey bee hives during the summer. It's been a good place for bees because they can gather nectar and pollen from so many wildflowers. But the landscape of the area is becoming less bee-friendly, and the consequences could be felt as far away as the almond groves of California, which depend on those same bees for pollination.
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Why The Best Chocolate Is The One You Eat Last

In a recent study, people were three times more likely to favor the last chocolate when they were told no more were coming. Researchers say this built-in bias for endings might also have implications in the world of online dating.
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Caregivers Press For Experimental Alzheimer's Drug

A medical study published in Science finds that an FDA-approved skin cancer drug can reduce Alzheimer's-like symptoms in mice. It is unclear if the drug, marketed as Targretin, will have the same effect on humans. Some researchers want to begin testing the drug for its efficacy in treating Alzheimer's patients.
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Digging Deeper Into Obama's 2013 Budget

President Obama laid out his proposed federal budget for 2013 at a community college in Virginia on Monday. The $ 3.8 trillion plan calls for new government spending, including stimulus-style spending on roads. It also seeks to achieve $4 trillion in deficit reduction over the next decade
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Washington Nuclear Cleanup Project Under Scrutiny

The federal government's largest nuclear cleanup project is being called into question by some key players. Managers for the Hanford Nuclear Reservation's waste treatment plant say the design is deeply flawed and could endanger workers or the public. The plant in south central Washington state is designed to treat 56 million gallons of radioactive sludge.
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Virtual Penguins A Prescription For Pain?

When Sam Brown was terribly burned in an IED attack in Afghanistan, he found relief from the pain in an unlikely place: a cool, cartoony virtual reality game called SnowWorld. Research shows virtual reality can often help ease the pain of burn victims when drugs fail.
NPR

Battling The Bottle: Students And Industry Face Off Over Water

Colleges are pulling bottled water off campuses as students argue the products hurt the environment and aren't well regulated. But the industry fired back this week with a YouTube video it hopes will sway students to keep buying bottles of water.
NPR

The Zebra's Stripes, A Personal No-Fly Zone

Scientists in Hungary and Sweden say they've found an answer to the age-old question of how the zebra got its stripes. It turns out the pattern may have evolved to repel Africa's biting flies. The researchers discovered this by placing models of patterned zebras next to models of their plainer cousins, horses, and measuring how many flies ended up on each one. Host Scott Simon has more.

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