News

Schoolteacher William Buchman was arrested after officers found over 300 living and dead snakes inside his property

World's oldest prehistoric toilet unearthed in Argentina

Fossilised dung left by megaherbivores 240-million years ago have been found clustered together

The video of a dolphin is shocking, but is it just because it reminds us of ourselves?

We like to think of ourselves as better than giving in to our animal urges

The week in radio: Home truths in a heartbreaking tale of the child victims of war

"I must go to bed now as we have an early start in the morning," wrote 12-year-old Joyce Henderson in her diary on 31 Aug 1939. "Tomorrow, I become an evacuee and it's all because of something called war."

Elephant tusks smuggled into Thailand from Kenya. Thailand is yet to implement a legal framework to tackle the ivory trade

US to destroy entire six-ton stockpile of ivory in message to poachers – but experts say it could just make problem worse

There are fears destruction just increases value of remaining stockpiles on illegal markets

Theatre review: Our Ajax, Southwark Playhouse, London

Inspired by Sophocles tragedy Ajax, Timberlake Wertenbaker's new play updates the action to a modern-day warzone; the sand-covered stage naturally evokes Afghanistan.

No pound signs: The John Lewis television ad is cuddly, cosy and ruthlessly efficient

Seasonal advertising: As John Lewis well knows, commerce is the gift that keeps on giving

If its TV ad now sets the Christmas tone, then we have only ourselves to blame

The Hare brings a gift to introduce his friend the Bear to Christmas

First View: John Lewis Christmas commercial - 'The Bear and The Hare'

'Biggest advertising event of the year' makes debut in X Factor break on Saturday

Sergei Rumyantsev, 55, at hospital in Borogontsy

Armed only with a small knife and a loyal dog, man beats bear in Siberian forest

Sergei Rumyantsev, 55, stabbed the animal in heart after he was attacked

A cameraman has accused the BBC of faking its nature scenes

Nature scenes filmed in 'controlled conditions', BBC admits after cameraman says small animal footage was 'faked'

Doug Allen said the infamous Frozen Planet polar bear incident wasn't the only specially-arranged shot on a BBC wildlife show

Professionals are concerned about the direction taxidermy is heading as it gains popularity

Stuff and nonsense: The fashion for taxidermy is growing apace, but professional artists worry about 'ghoulish' amateurs having a go

Once, stuffing a guinea pig for pleasure was considered mildly eccentric. Now, the craze has become so popular that even leading practitioners say it has got out of hand. Polly Morgan, who made taxidermy fashionable 10 years ago with her zany displays of birds, says she has become "uncomfortable with the direction taxidermy is taking", saying it is "ghoulish and macabre to stuff animals for kicks". She thinks that young people are "glorifying or sexualising" dead animals.

Lostprophets announce split after 'year of heartache'

Welsh band Lostprophets, whose frontman Ian Watkins is standing trial for sex offences, have announced their split.

Connecticut Supreme Court to decide if horses are a 'naturally vicious species'

The Connecticut Supreme Court will decide whether horses in the state should be classified as a " naturally vicious species", in a court case that dates back to 2006.

Stephen Hawking appears during the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Paralympic Games

Stephen Hawking speaks out in favour of assisted suicide

71-year-old cosmologist had previously been less supportive of the right to die as 'there is always hope'

Man punches bear (but he's not sure where)

The couple were alarmed to see a bear's paw, or possibly a head, poking its way into their tent

Postcard from... Brussels

Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
TV
Life and Style
Apple showed no sign of losing its talent for product launches with the new, slightly larger iPhone 6 making headlines
techSecurity breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
News
The official police photograph of Dustin Diamond taken after he was arrested in Wisconsin
peopleDownfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Clarkson, left, and Richard Hammond upset the locals in South America
tvReview: Top Gear team flee Patagonia as Christmas special reaches its climax in the style of Butch and Sundance
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people
Sport
Ashley Barnes of Burnley scores their second goal
footballMan City vs Burnley match report
Arts and Entertainment
Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca alongside Harrison Ford's Han Solo in 'Star Wars'
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Arts and Entertainment
Man of action: Christian Bale stars in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
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Arts and Entertainment
Tracy Emin's 1998 piece 'My Bed' on display at Christie's
artOne expert claims she did not
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Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?