Intermediate Word:  taciturn -  (a) uncommunicative  (b) boisterous  (c) tall and slender  (d) accommodating
Difficult Word: - whimbrel  (a) ox-drawn wagon  (b) wading bird  (c) cart in which the accused were taken to the guillotine  (d) whittling tool 

Scientists Discover Unique Microbe In California's Largest Lake - SpaceDaily  Left: This new cyanobacterium, isolated from the Salton Sea by the laboratory of University of Oregon biologist Michelle Wood, uses a combination of infrared and visible light for oxygen-evolving photosynthesis. Transmission electron micrograph by Sunny Augustine. Scale bar is 0.10 millimeters. Credit: University of Oregon/ National Academy of Science.  The new microbe is one of only three organisms known to science that use a combination of near-infrared light and visible light to produce oxygen by photosynthesis. "While there are some bacteria that can use infrared light for photosynthesis, they do not produce oxygen," Wood explains. "This new microbe opens up a whole new range of possible habitats where oxygen could be produced by photosynthesis using wavelengths of light that exist beyond the visible spectrum."   
Drought's Growing Reach: NCAR Study Points To Global Warming - SpaceDaily  Left:  This depiction of linear trends in the Palmer Drought Severity Index from 1948 to 2002 shows drying (reds and pinks) across much of Canada, Europe, Asia, and Africa and moistening (green) across parts of the United States, Argentina, Scandinavia, and western Australia. Illustration courtesy Aiguo Dai and the American Meteorological Society.  The percentage of Earth's land area stricken by serious drought more than doubled from the 1970s to the early 2000s, according to a new analysis by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). Widespread drying occurred over much of Europe and Asia, Canada, western and southern Africa, and eastern Australia.   

Good News From Big Bad Black Holes - SpaceDaily  Left:  This false-color image incorporates infrared data (invisible to the human eye). The blue regions (essentially the whole of Minkowski's Object) show enhanced star formation. The red background galaxy and two red foreground stars appear in sharp contrast. The red overlay is the radio jet. Image courtesy: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.   Astronomers have discovered how ominous black holes can create life in the form of new stars, proving that jet-induced star formation may have played an important role in the formation of galaxies in the early universe. "The formation of massive black holes is critical to the formation of new galaxies," Croft said. "Some 20 years ago this kind of thinking was thought to be science fiction." 

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