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By Seth Borenstein The Associated Press

2016 weather report: Extreme and anything but normal

WASHINGTON — Last year’s global weather was far more extreme or record-breaking than anything approaching normal, according to a new report.

The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Thursday released its annual checkup of the Earth, highlighting numerous records including hottest year, highest sea level, and lowest sea ice in the Arctic and Antarctica.

In invasive species battle, thinking outside the cage works

WASHINGTON — A robot zaps and vacuums up venomous lionfish in Bermuda. A helicopter pelts Guam’s trees with poison-baited dead mice to fight the voracious brown tree snake. A special boat with giant winglike nets stuns and catches Asian carp in the U.S. Midwest.

In the fight against alien animals that invade and overrun native species, the weird and wired wins.