When you first jump into a swimming pool on a really warm day, the water feels rather chilly at first, but then you get used to the cold temperature. Why?

Answered by Tamara Cox, RN, Eastern Idaho Public Health Human skin contains different kinds of sensory receptors (cells) that can identify several distinct types of sensations, such as tapping, vibration, pressure, pain, heat, and cold. Each receptor is triggered by a specific stimulus. Thermoreceptors detect temperature changes and send electrical pulses through sensory nerves to…

We were at a zoo in the Midwest this summer when the tornado sirens went off. Zoo employees made sure people were safe in a shelter, but it didn’t seem like the animals were given any protection. We were wondering if a plan to care for zoo animals during a crisis situation is required for zoos?

Answered by Darrell Markum, General Curator, Idaho Falls Zoo As an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the Idaho Falls Zoo does have a catastrophic emergency plan. Because each emergency situation is going to be unique the plan provides basic details to address a variety of circumstances. It describes who is…

We have heard so much about the solar eclipse that will occur in Idaho next August. The news article we read talked about the path of totality. What does that mean?

Question Answered by Dr. Brian Tonks, Astronomy Professor, BYU-Idaho On 21 August, 2016, Southeastern Idaho and many other places in the United States are in for a rare treat. We will experience a total Solar eclipse. This means that the Moon will pass directly in front of the Sun and cast its shadow on the…

Why does lightning sometimes hit the ground and other times go from cloud to cloud?

Answered by Travis Wyatt, National Weather Service, Pocatello Office All lightning comes from thunderstorms. When a thunderstorm develops, electrical charges (either positive or negative) within the cloud separate. This creates two different electric fields between the top of the cloud and the base of the cloud. When these electric fields build up enough, there is…