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This millennium, Britain’s dragonfly contingent has been in the throes of revolution. Several sparkling species have crossed the sea to start colonising the UK. In this ambitious itinerary, you might see up to seven magnificent dragonflies unknown in Britain two decades previously.

As attention turns to Geneva, Assad is starving millions of Syrians

6.3 million people are now in critical need of food

More than a quarter of young Brits still with their parents

More than a quarter of young Brits still with their parents

More than a quarter of young Brits still live with their parents as the economic downturn and rising house prices prevent them from moving out.

Short-termism in the welfare debate is shortchanging our society

Making access to benefits tougher for young people could be counter-productive

Bill and Melinda Gates, whose charitable foundation publishes an annual letter tackling issues surrounding world poverty

‘No poor countries by 2035’: Bill Gates annual letter says extreme poverty and child mortality could be virtually wiped out in next two decades

Bill and Melinda Gates use letter to quash ‘three myths’ about world poverty

50 years after the passage of the Civil Rights Act, how have things changed on Martin Luther King Day in Birmingham, Alabama?

Matthew Wood, on a year abroad at the University of Alabama, discusses what life is like today in one of the major battlegrounds of the 60s

Former US Commander Stanley McChrystal warns Afghanistan could descend into civil war when foreign troops leave

General Stanley McChrystal said that a civil war could be avoided if Afghanistan was backed by its allies

Cambridge students take to Facebook to discuss 'serious flaws’ in university welfare system

Students at Cambridge have spoken out on social media to complain about what they claim are serious flaws in the university’s welfare system.

Wild Target: Washington DC’s Rock Creek Park has four times as many deer as it can cope with, say authorities

The deerhunter returns to Washington

The rose gardens and parks of the US capital are under attack and only lethal force can save them from the doe-eyed assailants

At Night We Walk in Circles, By Daniel Alarcon: Book review - A hyped but graceful second novel that aims for the head over the heart

Daniel Alarcón's second novel arrives in Britain heralded by the familiar sounds of hype. The New Yorker listed him among their best novelists under 40, and he is one of 'Bogota's 39' which promoted rising stars from 17 Latin American nations. His writing appears in the usual hip locales: McSweeney's, n+1, and Harper's.

An environmental crime investigator walks past the carcass of a three-day-old rhinoceros killed by poachers. The number of rhinos killed in South Africa for their horns soared to more than 1,000 last year

Number of rhinos killed in South Africa soars

The number of rhinos killed in South Africa for their horns soared to more than 1,000 last year, a 50 per cent jump on 2012 and up from just 13 in 2007.

Devyani Khobragade, India's Deputy Consul General, was allegedly handcuffed and strip-searched on her arrest

It's not the treatment of Devyani Khobragade that is fuelling India's anger at the US

The diplomat was caught bang to rights. But election season changes things...

A 25 year gap between the life expectancy of rich and poor Londoners is a further indictment of our unequal society

One of the greatest determinants of a person’s health is their income

Amartya Sen, professor of economics and of philosophy at Harvard University, is an Indian-born Nobel laureate

The lost girls: Girls are still aborted in states with more educated women, by Amartya Sen

A distinct bias of "boy preference" can be found in countries extending from North Africa and West Asia to South Asia, including India, and East Asia, including China. That such discrimination has a place in a large part of the modern world is distressing: the number of "missing women" can be quite large.

The KSR2 gene reduces the ability of cells to metabolise glucose and fatty acids

Lidl chucks out checkout sweets, but not because the supermarket is worried for our health

The hysteria around obesity in this country is starting to get silly

Third of a million get cancer every year

Ageing population one of the main causes of increase

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This artist impression shows a modern-day Atlantis
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Vladimir Putin fixes a GPS satellite transmitter onto a tiger in 2008
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Animals found with 'puncture holes the size of a human finger'

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Food blogger and Guardian writer Jack Monroe with her young son
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Life and Style
Fraud contributes 11p to a £2.00 box of half a dozen eggs
Environment
The plant ‘Nepenthes zygon’ was donated to Kew in 2004
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Arts and Entertainment
booksPhotographer snapped celebrities for 40 years - but it wasn’t all fun and games
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Aguero - who single-handedly has kept City's Champions League dreams alive - celebrates his dramatic late winner
footballManchester City 3 Bayern Munich 2: Argentine's late hat-rick sees home side snatch vital victory
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Muhammad Ali pictured in better health in 2006
peopleBut he has enjoyed publicity from his alleged near-death experience
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Independent Travel
Bruges
Lake Como
Burgundy
South AFrica
Paris
Northern Corsica
Prices correct as of 21 November 2014
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?
Nightclubbing with Richard Young: The story behind his latest book of celebrity photographs

24-Hour party person

Photographer Richard Young has been snapping celebrities at play for 40 years. As his latest book is released, he reveals that it wasn’t all fun and games
Michelle Obama's school dinners: America’s children have a message for the First Lady

A taste for rebellion

US children have started an online protest against Michelle Obama’s drive for healthy school meals by posting photos of their lunches
Colouring books for adults: How the French are going crazy for Crayolas

Colouring books for adults

How the French are going crazy for Crayolas
Jack Thorne's play 'Hope': What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

Playwright Jack Thorne's latest work 'Hope' poses the question to audiences
Ed Harcourt on Romeo Beckham and life as a court composer at Burberry

Call me Ed Mozart

Paloma Faith, Lana del Ray... Romeo Beckham. Ed Harcourt has proved that he can write for them all. But it took a personal crisis to turn him from indie star to writer-for-hire
10 best stocking fillers for foodies

Festive treats: 10 best stocking fillers for foodies

From boozy milk to wasabi, give the food-lover in your life some extra-special, unusual treats to wake up to on Christmas morning
Phil Hughes head injury: He had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Phil Hughes had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Prolific opener had world at his feet until Harmison and Flintoff bounced him
'I have an age of attraction that starts as low as four': How do you deal with a paedophile who has never committed a crime?

'I am a paedophile'

Is our approach to sex offenders helping to create more victims?
How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

Serco given Yarl’s Wood immigration contract despite ‘vast failings’
Green Party on the march in Bristol: From a lost deposit to victory

From a lost deposit to victory

Green Party on the march in Bristol
Putting the grot right into Santa's grotto

Winter blunderlands

Putting the grot into grotto
'It just came to us, why not do it naked?' London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital

'It just came to us, why not do it naked?'

London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital