Archive for the ‘biology’ Category

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“Rudolph Zallinger’s painting of cynognathus for the Brooke Bond tea card album

Photos from Alan Friswell’s post in Vintage Dinosaur Pictures

This group gets some pretty cool art posted to it. The kind of superb stuff that graced the books of my youth, assuring a never ending love of ancient life.

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Stranger things have happened!

Check this out… (via AboveTopSecret.com)

Massive dose of measles vaccine clears woman’s cancer, page 1.

 

Seriously! It has been officially reported! And here as well.

But wait, aren’t we firmly in the grip of the 21st century? I do believe so… One might think that we’d’ve gotten our own anatomy down pat. I guess not! Ha! Sigh.

This is especially intriguing since this new part is a ligament in the knee. There are, after all, quite a lot of knee surgeries on the books.

Although having said that, it would appear that a French fellow got suspicious back in 1879 and put forth the idea that this ligament existed. Didn’t go on to prove it, though.

new ligament!

An image of a right knee after a full dissection of the anterolateral ligament (ALL). (Credit: University Hospitals Leuven)

S1 – What’s that gross-looking thing in the picture up there? Oh, just a newly discovered part of the human body, no big deal. Two surgeons at University Hospitals Leuven in Belgium have found and named a new ligament in the knee, which they dubbed the anterolateral ligament, or ALL.

S2 – Despite successful ACL repair surgery and rehabilitation, some patients with ACL-repaired knees continue to experience so-called ‘pivot shift’, or episodes where the knee ‘gives way’ during activity. For the last four years, orthopaedic surgeons Dr Steven Claes and Professor Dr Johan Bellemans have been conducting research into serious ACL injuries in an effort to find out why. Their starting point: an 1879 article by a French surgeon that postulated the existence of an additional ligament located on the anterior of the human knee.

As has been noted here by Rewey in a forum thread about this find, the part seems to have been illustrated in textbooks for a good long while now. It‘s just been simply falsely classed as being a part of a ligament it appears to connect to. No one noticed that it doesn’t really do that. Except that French guy. Now that is odd.

In Rewey’s reply he says:

lateral collateral ligaments… when I look at this image below, it refers to the lateral collateral ligaments – as in plural. It seems to show the LCL as reaching down in two separate strands, hence why maybe it’s referred to in plural form. This seems like exactly what is shown as the ‘new’ tendon in the photos in the OP.

In the pic below, one strand of the LCL joins to the outer top edge of the tibia, and one to the outer top edge of the fibula. I think the photo in the OP shows the same thing – it’s just that the tibia and fibula in the photo are still joined by tissue and cartilage, and therefore maybe it isn’t as clear?

I think this seems less a matter of discovering a NEW ligament, and more along the lines of realising that it performs a slightly different function to what we assumed, and therefore have given it another name?

Seems legit.

Peace.

Strange Trees

Posted: February 20th, 2013 in biology, life, nature
Tags: , ,

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Trees are cool.

So… above are a few rather strange trees from around the world. My favorite tree of all time is shown… yay… if you guessed that it’s the one that looks remarkably like a young lady dancing in glorious happiness… you’d be right. That one is just way too cool.

See even more good weirdness at 10 Strangest-Trees On Earth, The “crooked forest” of Gryfino (Poland) – updated and at xinhuanet.

There’s the thread called Strangest Trees On Earth which was the impetus for this post.

Although things are better every day and preparations to transform into something or other are underway, I still haven’t been feeling 100% right in the head after the incident. Hence the lack of posts. Saw this surfing ATS and figured this’d be an entertaining quickie to hold WATT over until I can regroup and start up properly again.

More coming soonest…

Peace.

Miss Patty, stabilized.

Miss Patty, stabilized.

Well now… this is certainly interesting!

I found out somewhat inadvertently by checking my twitter feed, which is something I hardly ever do as, being an old hippy I simply can’t keep up with it

So I scrolled down a bit and there was a tweet from Craig Woolheater of Cryptomundo with the title shown below as the text with a link. There I found what appears below…

Wondering if this study is a part of the one that I meant to post about way back when when it was announced which I learned of through SLAYER69’s thread at ATS called Project to examine ‘Yeti’ DNA launched. I don’t think so as it was “A new collaboration between Oxford University and the Lausanne Museum of Zoology will use the latest genetic techniques to investigate organic remains that some have claimed belong to the ‘Yeti’ and other ‘lost’ hominid species.” But, hey, you never know.

As for this Facebook press release, it’s a very exciting result. I must say and not at all what I expected.

Enjoy…

Sasquatch DNA Study Announcement
Posted by: Craig Woolheater on November 23rd, 2012

Igor Burtsev made the following announcement on his facebook page today:

Urgent!

The DNA analysis of the Bigfoot/Sasquatch specimen conducted by Dr. Melba Ketchum the head of DNA Diagnostics, Timpson, TX, USA has been over!

Team of American scientists led by Dr. Melba Ketchum for five years has analyzed 109 purported samples of such creatures. The study has sequenced DNA of a novel North American hominin, commonly called Bigfoot or Sasquatch.

There were a large number of laboratories associated with this study including academic, private and government laboratories in which blind testing was utilized to avoid prejudice in testing. Great time and care was taken in the forensic laboratories to assure no contamination occurred with any of the samples utilized in this study.

After 5 years of this study the scientists can finally answer the question of what Bigfoot/Sasquatch really is. It is human like us only different, a hybrid of a human with unknown species. Early field research shows that the Bigfoot/Sasquatches are massively intelligent which has enabled them to avoid detection to a large extent. They are different than us, however human nonetheless.

The hybridization event could not have occurred more than 15,000 years ago according to the mitochondrial data in some samples. Origin of this Hominin was probably Middle Eastern/Eastern Europe and Europe originally though other geographic areas are not excluded. The manuscript associated with this study has been submitted to a scientific reviewed magazine.

For many years, people have refused to believe they exist. Now that we know that they are real, it is up to us to protect them from those that would hunt or try to capture them for research or for sport. They should be left alone to live as they live now. After all, they are our relatives.

At this time, analysis of the Sasquatch genomes is still ongoing. Further data will be presented in the future following this original study. Additionally, analysis of various hair samples purportedly from Siberian Wildman are being tested in an effort to determine if relatedness exists between the Sasquatch and Russian Wildman.

~ Dr. Igor Burtsev,
Head of International Center of Hominology,
Moscow, Russia +7(916)812-6253
inhomin@yandex.ru

My assistant in the USA, Megan Wheeler: sasquatchdna@gmail.com

Peace.

Edit to Add: Interesting discussion of this topic started 11/24 on ATS by Caver78: ‘BIGFOOT’ DNA SEQUENCED IN UPCOMING GENETICS STUDY. Pretty sure the mods will make the OP get rid of the all-caps. The title (in accordance with ATS rules, (except for the caps)) is from the article ‘Bigfoot’ DNA Sequenced In Upcoming Genetics Study on Yahoo! News.

At an admittedly odd pitch, but yes, they do mimic human speech. Very unlike the songs whales normally sing in their own language. I wonder about the possibilities for the future… and about how much they could teach us!

Published on Oct 22, 2012 by  A US Navy-trained beluga whale named NOC can imitate human speech. Wild belugas have long been informally called “sea canaries.”

And this…

Published on Oct 19, 2012 by  A new paper published by the National Marine Mammal Foundation in the scientific journal Current Biology sheds light on the ability of marine mammals to spontaneously mimic human speech. The study details the case of a white whale named NOC who began to mimic the human voice, presumably a result of vocal learning. “The whale’s vocalizations often sounded as if two people were conversing in the distance,” says Dr. Sam Ridgway, President of the National Marine Mammal Foundation. “These ‘conversations’ were heard several times before the whale was eventually identified as the source. In fact, we discovered it when a diver mistook the whale for a human voice giving him underwater directions.” As soon as the whale was identified as the source, NMMF scientists recorded his speech-like episodes both in air and underwater, studying the physiology behind his ability to mimic. It’s believed that the animals close association with humans played a role in how often he employed his ‘human’ voice, as well as in its quality. Researchers believe NOC’s sonic behavior is an example of vocal learning by a white whale. After about four years, NOC’s speech-like behavior subsided. “When NOC matured, we no longer heard speech-like sounds, but he did remain quite vocal,” Ridgway said. “While it’s been a number of years since we first encountered this spontaneous mimicry, it’s our hope that publishing our observations now will lead to further discoveries about marine mammal learning and vocalization. How this unique ‘mind’ interacts with other animals, humans and the ocean environment is a major challenge of our time.” Ridgway co-authored the paper published this week with Drs. Donald Carder, Michelle Jeffries and Mark Todd. Dr. Ridgway has 48 years of experience in marine mammal medicine and research. Colleagues often call him the “father of marine mammal medicine” because of his development of dolphin anesthesia, medical technology, and discoveries aiding marine mammal care. Dr. Ridgway has served on the Scientific Advisory Committee to the Marine Mammal Commission, on four different committees of National Research Council/National Academy of Sciences, and was elected a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America for his studies on hearing of marine mammals and as a fellow of the American College of Zoological Medicine for his work on marine mammal medicine. How this unique “mind” interacts with other animals and the ocean environment is a major challenge of our time. The National Marine Mammal Foundation has a mission to improve and protect life for all marine mammals, humans, and our shared oceans through science, service, and education. The Foundation’s vision for the future is to revolutionize the way we think about marine mammals. By embracing the partnership created between human and marine mammal, we can create a sea change in our global approach to scientific exploration, ocean conservation, and public education. More about the National Marine Mammal Foundation can be found at www.NMMF.org

Yowza. Simply fascinating.

Sorry I have not been active, there is a life changing situation going on here and there is not a lot of time available. I will try to do more quickies like this one for you all. I appreciate you being there.

Ice Age Flower Blooms after 32000 Years – photo by anemoneprojectors (Peter O)

Ice Age Flower Blooms after 32000 Years – photo by anemoneprojectors (Peter O)

Gosh and Wow!

Beautiful, isn’t it?

From American Live Wire, via, as usual, an ATS thread, we read…

Ice Age Flower Blooms after 32000 Years

Nature is a wondrous beauty as the ice age flower blooms after 32000 years of being non-existent.

According to Discover Magazine, Russian scientists announced that they had unearthed the fruit and brought tissue from it back to life. after the seeds were buried over 32000 years ago. The discovery was made in northwestern Siberia, where the winter team of Russian scientists found the seeds of the flower and regrew it. The plant breaks the previously held record of the oldest tissue to give life to healthy plants, which was previously held by the Israeli date palm seed.

In 1995, researchers studying and working with ancient soil composition in an exposed Siberian riverbank found 70 fossilized Ice Age squirrel burrows, some of which stored up to 800,000 seeds and fruits. With the help of the permafrost, the narrow-leafed campion plant tissue was preserved well enough for the team at the Russian Academy of Sciences to culture the cells to see if they would grow. The team, led by team leader Svetlana Yashina, were successful and re-created Siberian conditions in the lab and watched as the refrigerated tissue sprouted buds that developed into 36 flowering plants within weeks.

Wow, I say again. Finally something credible from out of Russia – and it’s pretty darn exciting.

OLD DNA A plant has been generated from the fruit of the narrow-leafed campion. It is the oldest plant by far to be grown from ancient tissue.

OLD DNA A plant has been generated from the fruit of the narrow-leafed campion. It is the oldest plant by far to be grown from ancient tissue.

I am impressed by the seemingly short recovery and growing time, although do note that I am lacking in horticultural knowledge and skills. It makes you wonder what it was like back then, probably verdant and lush like we can only imagine. Then again they had #loads of really big bugs back then, so probably scary at times, maybe all the time, but you’d go in a heartbeat in a time machine, wouldn’t you?

Hell Yeah!

From the New York Times (nice article):

Dead for 32,000 Years, an Arctic Plant Is Revived

By 
Published: February 20, 2012

Living plants have been generated from the fruit of a little arctic flower, the narrow-leafed campion, that died 32,000 years ago, a team of Russian scientists reports. The fruit was stored by an arctic ground squirrel in its burrow on the tundra of northeastern Siberia and lay permanently frozen until excavated by scientists a few years ago.

This would be the oldest plant by far that has ever been grown from ancient tissue. The present record is held by a date palm grown from a seed some 2,000 years old that was recovered from the ancient fortress of Masada in Israel.

Seeds and certain cells can last a long term under the right conditions, but many claims of extreme longevity have failed on closer examination, and biologists are likely to greet this claim, too, with reserve until it can be independently confirmed. Tales of wheat grown from seeds in the tombs of the pharaohs have long been discredited. Lupines were germinated from seeds in a 10,000-year-old lemming burrow found by a gold miner in the Yukon. But the seeds, later dated by the radiocarbon method, turned out to be modern contaminants.

[…]

What happened in Arctic regions so long ago? It has always been a fascination. Discoveries like this living yet dormant seed and the undigested meals in the stomachs of perfectly preserved mammoths among so many others… whatever it was, it was instantaneous… and that intrigues me no end. What on earth could do such a thing?

Permafrost… holder of mysteries, countless mysteries. Imagine what else could be found within it. Should dig it all up and find out!

Enjoy…

Peace.

Trogloraptor spider.

Meet Trogloraptor, fearsomeness incarnate. The creature more than lives up to its name—it is, in fact, an eight-legged showcase for scientific novelty. The spider somewhat resembles the brown recluse, famed for its flesh-necrotizing venom—but at four centimeters, Trogloraptor is about twice as large. In fact, this spider is an entirely new critter—just look at those legs, each ends in a curved, scythelike claw. Citizen scientists and arachnologists have uncovered these spiders in the caves of southwestern Oregon and old-growth redwood forests. As they report in ZooKeys, the discovery of Trogloraptor is a taxonomic wonder that establishes a new family, genus and species in the spider family tree.

Troglo’s story begins with citizen scientists in the Western Cave Conservancy who spotted the strange spider in Oregon’s caves. They sent specimens to researchers at the California Academy of Sciences where entomologist Tracy Audisio, a research fellow at the California Academy of Sciences, puzzled over the new find. After approaching every member of the arachnology lab, she and Charles Griswold, the academy’s curator of arachnology, took the finding to arachnologists around the country. They combed through comparative anatomy, fossil records and genetic analyses in their efforts to place the new spider, only to conclude that the cave dweller has a totally unique lineage. […]

Daisy Yuhas

learn more, read the rest of it!

Cool, no? Weird, too. Just doesn’t look right… It’s the stance, the way the body is jutting forward from where the legs attach… dunno… just looks quite odd. Then there are those teardrop antennae and of course… the feet, er, claws! Claws?! Yep, eight of ‘em. Yikes. Good thing it’s not all that big.

It is always a treat when creatures are discovered that necessitate the rewriting of established ‘facts.’ It shows that we know so very little about the totality of the world around us. There is so much to find, so much top see, so much to learn, on every level, in every field of study… everywhere.

Let the search continue.

Peace.

Glimpse into primordial times: Genetic analyses of a micro-organism that lives in the sludge of a lake in Ås, 30 km south of Oslo i Norway, are providing researchers with an insight into what the first life on Earth looked like. (Credit: UiO/MERG)

Glimpse into primordial times: Genetic analyses of a micro-organism that lives in the sludge of a lake in Ås, 30 km south of Oslo i Norway, are providing researchers with an insight into what the first life on Earth looked like. (Caption Credit: ScienceDaily) (Image Credit: UiO/MERG)

Meet Collodictyon, our oldest known ancestor.

And by ‘our’ I don’t mean just our oldest known ancestor, I mean everything remotely like us’ oldest known ancestor.

Pretty cool, pretty darn cool… and to my eye – it is a cryptozoological masterpiece, even though cryptozoologists were not involved in this tale. None that I know of, at least. Surprising where kindred souls pop up.

An entirely new organism has been found in a Norwegian lake; and gol dang it, man, it is neither plant, animal, fungi, algae or protist! Wa Hey!

Source 1 (PopSci) : New Primordial Protozoan Species Is Not in Any Known Kingdom of Life

“We have found an unknown branch of the tree of life that lives in this lake. It is unique! So far we know of no other group of organisms that descend from closer to the roots of the tree of life than this species,” study researcher Kamran Shalchian-Tabrizi, of the University of Oslo, in Norway, said in a statement.

A tiny microorganism found in Norwegian lake sludge may be related to the very oldest life forms on this planet, a possible modern cousin of our earliest common ancestor. It is not a fungus, alga, parasite, plant or animal, yet it has features associated with other kingdoms of life. It could be a founding member of the newest kingdom on the tree of life, scientists said.

Life on Earth is divided into two main groups, the prokaryotes and the eukaryotes. Prokaryotes are simple life forms, with no membranes or cell nuclei; this group includes bacteria and archaea. Eukaryotes, which include humans, animals, plants, fungi and algae, have cell membranes and nuclei. This new organism is a eukaryote.

Source for Source 1 (lots of details!): Science DailyRare Protozoan from Sludge in Norwegian Lake Does Not Fit On Main Branches of Tree of Life

This organism has several characteristics that set it apart from every other (currently) known kingdom:

Source 2 (MSNBC): Strange organism has unique roots in the tree of life

“The microorganism is among the oldest currently living eukaryote organisms we know of. It evolved around one billion years ago, plus or minus a few hundred million years. It gives us a better understanding of what early life on Earth looked like,” Shalchian-Tabrizi said.

What it looked like was small. The organism the researchers found is about 30 to 50 micrometers (about the width of a human hair) long. It eats algae and doesn’t like to live in groups. It is also unique because instead of one or two flagella (cellular tails that help organisms move) it has four.

It would appear that this little guy shares attributes of critters that belong within two other kingdoms, but is nonetheless considered by scientists to be sufficiently different from either of them that they have felt compelled to give it it’s own classification:

Because it has features of two separate kingdoms of life, the researchers think that the ancestors of this group might be the organisms that gave rise to these other kingdoms, the amoeba and the protist, as well. If that’s true, they would be some of the oldest eukaryotes, giving rise to all other eukaryotes, including humans.

I find all this most fascinating…

Other related articles:

Enjoy.

Peace.

Smash Monsanto!

It is increasingly important for the world, yes, the whole world, to Smash Monsanto!

Do whatever you can.

Please.

Peace.

I find this fascinating. I am one of those who think that there are remedies for most of what ails us out there in nature and that most of what ails us is of our own doing. Fake, processed foods, GE and GMO monstrosities… all of that, just the processing kills the goodness even without GMOs involved.

Most of the species of foods that our parents and grandparents ate are extinct at our own, on-purpose hand, tomatoes, potatoes, stuff like that. Food grown now has only about 20% of the nutrition in it than the foods we ate even as recently as my younger years did. Kids today have no idea what a tomato or apple is supposed to taste like. Seriously.

There may be a connection to aluminum in dementia as well, so avoid it.

I am also one of those who feel strongly that greed and profit affects medical research much more than helping people does. Cures are low on the list, the treatment of symptoms is high upon it. How often is the phrase “You’ll have to take this for the rest of your life” doled out? A lot. Sometimes its for real, but very often not so much. The importance of diet and exercise that can reverse many conditions is not mentioned as that would reduce profits. I used to take Lipitor and some other stuff. They gave me that line mentioned above. No need anymore. My aunt’s pills garner Big Pharma well over $1,000 a month. Multiply that by all the dementia sufferers.

And that is just one condition we suffer from. Treat the symptoms… don’t fix it. I find it loathsome.

The video in this thread features Ken Lightburn, the president of Nature’s Approved, a health supplement producer, doing an interview with Dr. Mary Newport, a medical doctor and her husband Steve, who is, apparently, now suffering a lot less. I decided I should post this as regulars will know that I am quite sensitive to the dementia subject since I am the full time caregiver to my 89 year old aunt who is at an advanced stage of this exceptionally frightening condition. Figured as well, since hardly anyone ever clicks on anything around here, to post all 6 parts for your convenience.

As soon as I get some loot I will be buying some coconut oil, regardless of her advanced stage, just because. I will also be getting some for my consumption.

Part 1

Uploaded by on Oct 11, 2009

Visit http://www.OrganicCoconutOil.info for more on the use of coconut oil.

1. Dr Newport learns that the medium chain triglycerides in coconut oil may help her husband Steve, who suffers from early onset Alzheimer’s.

Part 2

2. Dr. Newport discusses ketone bodies, an alternative fuel for the brain that the body makes in digesting coconut oil.

Part 3

3. Dr. Richard Veech of the NIH makes a ketone ester that can help with neurological diseases including Alzheimers.

Part 4

4. Mini Mental Status Exam (MMSE) and the clock test. Steve Newports symptoms of Alzheimers disease improve rapidly after eating coconut oil.

Part 5

5. Dr. Veech’s ketone project needs funding to produce the ketone ester, which may help millions with memory loss, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, Lou Gerhig’s (ALS), Multiple Sclerosis and Duchenne muscular dystrophy and poor memories.

Part 6

6. Dr. Theodore VanItalie of Harvard and Columbia University: “My view of the ketone ester story is that – if the results in human subjects bear out the findings in laboratory animals – they could well be the major advance in nutrition in the 21st century.”

Dr. Newport’s website is Coconut Oil and Ketones.

Discussion at AboveTopSecret.

Check back for possible updates.

Peace.

Giant Weta.

Rather large, this cricket, eh? … Or, this weta, to be precise.

This thing weighs more than a sparrow, three times more than a mouse… and eats carrots, whole ones I bet.

While not exactly cryptozoology as wetas are already well known, it was not, it seems, known that they get this big.

This story has been all over the net and I am willing to bet that you have seen this story in the last few days. Sorry if you have, this is for those who have not clapped eyes on this ginormous bugger. I saw it a couple of days ago and naturally am just getting a round tuit here.

I do dig large critters of any stripe, (my good friend Willy will surely attest to my twisted fear of stepping out of my time machine (Oh, Jeez, I wasn’t supposed to mention that thing) only to come face to face with a 9-foot eurypterid… (they had those back then, you know)… frikken shivers, man…) crickets included, so here we go…

From the Daily Mail:

A nature-lover has revealed how he spent two days tracking down a giant insect on a remote New Zealand island – and got it to eat a carrot out of his hand.

Mark Moffett’s find is the world’s biggest insect in terms of weight, which at 71g is heavier than a sparrow and three times that of a mouse.

The 53-year-old former park ranger discovered the giant weta up a tree and his real life Bug’s Bunny has now been declared the largest ever found.

He came across the cricket-like creature, which has a wing span of seven inches, after two days of searching on a tiny island.

The creepy crawly is only found on Little Barrier Island, in New Zealand, although there are 70 other types of smaller weta found throughout the country.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2068547/Weta-insect-Heaviest-world-weighs-3-times-mouse.html#ixzz1fbl7A9ak

World's heaviest insect.

Just look at this thing! Fantastic!

You can learn even more about this fella by reading this discussion thread. I wonder if it is omnivorous… yeesh… nah, couldn’t be…

Peace.

Okay, I could not resist adding this… from the inimitable davespanners…

Snowmen everywhere are in big trouble.

This is bad news for snowmen everywhere

:)

 

William Corliss. Photo from the Cryptomundo site.A deep sadness overtook me yesterday when I learned of the passing of William Corliss a month ago, on July 8th, 2011. William Corliss was the great Fortean man who I have always have called the reincarnation of Charles Hoy Fort himself, for his decades of ceaseless, tireless compilation of anomalous reports from around the world and the publication of same.

We have lost a real treasure. Forteana has lost a heck of a lot. My thoughts are with his family and friends.

While Fort was not averse to sometimes using reportage from non-scientific sources, (although most were), Bill Corliss never did that and was very pure and in a way even “truer to the cause” in his gathering of goodies than Charlie was.

I once had the great privilege of hearing Mr. Corliss speak at a meeting of the crumbling INFO group from Maryland.

Corliss' Incredible LifeHe filled his allotted time with a lot of information, delivered in a deliberate and methodical way, much like his myriad books. Some thought him boring as he regaled us with obscure cryptozoological strangeness… yes, it was true that his speaking (and writing) and were not grand and glorious in a flamboyant sense or a cynically humorous sense a la Fort, but what he said and what he wrote were worth so much that it really just didn’t matter. To me anyway.

Regretfully I only have one of Corliss’ Sourcebooks, this awful inventory due only to interminable personal circumstance. It is wonderful. And – by hook or by crook – before too long I will have them all. If you can do it I heartily recommend them. You will love every word and every picture. Seriously.

In his recent obituary piece, noted chronicler of those who have passed, Loren Coleman of Cryptomundo, famous cryptozoologist from Maine, had this to say, in part…

He was an American physicist and writer who became known for his interest in collecting data regarding anomalous phenomena, some of which included cryptozoological topics. William R. Corliss was presented with the Tim Dinsdale Award (named after the famed seeker of the Loch Ness Monsters) on June 10, 1994, at the 13th Annual Meeting of the Society for Scientific Exploration in Austin, Texas. It was presented to Corliss for his unique and comprehensive cataloguing of scientific anomalies. Corliss then gave the Dinsdale Lecture entitled, “The Classified Residuum.”

Arthur C. Clarke described him as “Fort’s latter-day – and much more scientific – successor.”

Since 1974, Corliss published a number of works in the “Sourcebook Project.” Each volume was devoted to a scientific field (archeology, astronomy, geology, and other topics) and featured articles culled almost exclusively from scientific journals. Corliss was inspired by Charles Fort, who decades earlier also collected reports of unusual phenomena. Unlike Fort, Corliss offered little in the way of his own opinions or editorial comments, preferring to let the articles speak for themselves. Corliss quoted all relevant parts of articles (often reprinting entire articles or stories, including illustrations). Many of the articles in Corliss’s works were earlier mentioned by Fort works.

You can read the rest of Loren’s very informative piece and others here:

Mr. Corliss’ website, Science Frontiers, has a wealth of information for anomalists of all stripes and in any scientific discipline they might be interested in… dozens are covered.

Soar through the stars, William Corliss, may you discover things endlessly and may you know the answers to them all…

Peace.

 

Dinochelus ausubeli, photo by Tin-Yam Chan.

Author: Shapiro, Leo
Compiler: Hammock, Jen
Indexed: October 01, 2010 Permalink

Dinochelus ausubeli is a new species of deepwater lobster (family Nephropidae) first collected in 2007 from the Philippine Sea off the island of Luzon and was formally described in 2010. The species is so distinct that it was not only described as a new species but placed in a newly erected genus as well (Dinochelus). “Dinochelus” is derived from the Greek dinos, meaning “terrible”, and chela, meaning “claw”, an allusion to the massive, spinose major claw. The specific epithet ausubeli honors Jesse Ausubel, an enthusiastic sponsor of the Census of Marine Life, a major effort to document marine life in the first decade of the 21st century. (Ahyong et al. 2010)

Wow, man, that’s one hell of a claw! I’m diggin’ it. It reminds one of a precision instrument that some technician might wield for maximum tweakage of something obscure and specialized.

And it is obviously extremely specialized. I would imagine it is designed to do one thing really well, whether that’s getting into a seriously narrow nook or similarly configured cranny wherein its main nutrient-filled nodule resides, or, perhaps it somehow conforms to said nutrient-filled nodule’s unique physiognomy.

Shivers, I surely wouldn’t want to be that unfortunate creature!

For additional perusal and introspection into the vastness of life’s catalog:

At AboveTopSecret: Newly Discovered Deep Sea Lobster *pic*

At ScienceDaily (source for the ATS discussion thread): Newly Discovered Deep Sea Lobster

At Encyclopedia of Life (source of the extract above): Dinochelus ausubeli

At WoRMS – World Register of Marine Species: WoRMS Image

Whenever I look at new creatures from the sea I am always, always reminded of the fact that we know more about the Moon and Mars than our own oceans. A LOT more. A situation I find very saddening. Indeed, don’t spend our resources on learning what’s out there… spend them on global acts of corporate criminality and on killing each other in support of the same. Great.

Every time a probe or submersible or anything goes down below, at least one lifeform is seen for the first time. Less than 5% of the world’s oceans have had any sort of exploration.

Interestingly, when humans briefly visited the deepest deepness that there is on this planet, the bottom of the Marianas Trench in the fabulous Trieste… right there on the bottom scurrying away… was a fish.

Absolutely amazing.

Vincent van Gogh, Skeleton Smoking A Cigarette, 1886 Oil on canvas, 32 x 24.5 cm Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, NetherlandsApologies to all for the lack of posts. Things are getting stranger by the day here and I’m not at all certain that a good future will be forthcoming.

Hence my mind is heavily distracted by things related to my imminent collapse, both economic and otherwise; and less focused on Forteana. Please… bear with me.

I received this article today via the Konformist. It may help to explain my head. While I sit relating to the fellow on the right, I offer this piece…

Enjoy…

Saturday, 29 May 2010
Creative minds ‘mimic schizophrenia’
Michelle Roberts
Health reporter, BBC News

Creativity is akin to insanity, say scientists who have been studying how the mind works.

Brain scans reveal striking similarities in the thought pathways of highly creative people and those with schizophrenia.

Both groups lack important receptors used to filter and direct thought.

It could be this uninhibited processing that allows creative people to “think outside the box”, say experts from Sweden’s Karolinska Institute.

In some people, it leads to mental illness.

But rather than a clear division, experts suspect a continuum, with some people having psychotic traits but few negative symptoms.

Art and suffering

Some of the world’s leading artists, writers and theorists have also had mental illnesses – the Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh and American mathematician John Nash (portrayed by Russell Crowe in the film A Beautiful Mind) to name just two.

Creativity is known to be associated with an increased risk of depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Associate Professor Fredrik Ullen believes his findings could help explain why.

He looked at the brain’s dopamine (D2) receptor genes which experts believe govern divergent thought.

He found highly creative people who did well on tests of divergent thought had a lower than expected density of D2 receptors in the thalamus – as do people with schizophrenia.

The thalamus serves as a relay centre, filtering information before it reaches areas of the cortex, which is responsible, amongst other things, for cognition and reasoning.

“Fewer D2 receptors in the thalamus probably means a lower degree of signal filtering, and thus a higher flow of information from the thalamus,” said Professor Ullen.

“Creative people, like those with psychotic illnesses, tend to see the world differently to most. It’s like looking at a shattered mirror”
Mark Millard
UK psychologist

He believes it is this barrage of uncensored information that ignites the creative spark.

This would explain how highly creative people manage to see unusual connections in problem-solving situations that other people miss.

Schizophrenics share this same ability to make novel associations. But in schizophrenia, it results in bizarre and disturbing thoughts.

UK psychologist and member of the British Psychological Society Mark Millard said the overlap with mental illness might explain the motivation and determination creative people share.

“Creativity is uncomfortable. It is their dissatisfaction with the present that drives them on to make changes.

“Creative people, like those with psychotic illnesses, tend to see the world differently to most. It’s like looking at a shattered mirror. They see the world in a fractured way.

“There is no sense of conventional limitations and you can see this in their work. Take Salvador Dali, for example. He certainly saw the world differently and behaved in a way that some people perceived as very odd.”

‘TROUBLED’ GENIUSES

Writer Virginia Woolf
Painter Vincent van Gogh
Painter Salvador Dali
Painter Edvard Munch
Composer Robert Schumann
Mathematician John Nash
Pianist David Helfgott

He said businesses have already recognised and capitalised on this knowledge.

Some companies have “skunk works” – secure, secret laboratories for their highly creative staff where they can freely experiment without disrupting the daily business.

Chartered psychologist Gary Fitzgibbon says an ability to “suspend disbelief” is one way of looking at creativity.

“When you suspend disbelief you are prepared to believe anything and this opens up the scope for seeing more possibilities.

“Creativity is certainly about not being constrained by rules or accepting the restrictions that society places on us. Of course the more people break the rules, the more likely they are to be perceived as ‘mentally ill’.”

He works as an executive coach helping people to be more creative in their problem solving behaviour and thinking styles.

“The result is typically a significant rise in their well being, so as opposed to creativity being associated with mental illness it becomes associated with good mental health.”

***

Received via Robert Sterling
Editor, The Konformist
www.konformist.com

Elysia chlorotica. Credit: Nicholas E. Curtis and Ray Martinez

Well, well now… this creature is certainly unusual… it’s half animal… and it’s half plant… and according to this article in LiveScience describing Sidney Pierce’s paper presented on January 7 at the annual meeting of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology in Seattle, this is apparently the only one known to possess a certain unique quality – making it’s own chlorophyll and it’s own food –  from light! How weird is that?

Pierce is a biologist at the University of South Florida in Tampa.

“We collect them and we keep them in aquaria for months,” Pierce said. “As long as we shine a light on them for 12 hours a day, they can survive [without food].”

Amazing! Meet the sea slug known as Elysia chlorotica, (although I prefer George in this case), amazingly enough a resident of salt marshes in my own neck of the woods… here in New England and in Canada, too. Who knew?

It is actually able to steal genes from the algae that it eats – specific genes – the very genes that let said algae make chlorophyll; and then incorporate them into it’s own body in a way that they really work.

Even though George can perform that feat as a matter of course, it must rip off the hapless little algae  critters still further –  by taking their little chloroplasts. Chloroplasts are the biodevices within the algal cells that actually convert sunlight into energy, called photosynthesis, using the chlorophyll as fuel.

Eating is just an option for this thing… as long as there’s a bit of light about.

It also has the ability to pass the genes on to the kids, fully functioning, but they too must steal enough chloroplasts for the process to start working for them.

What I find interesting is that the article says that Pierce has been studying these creatures for 20 years… Surely it can’t be that he’s only noticed this ability now? No. Or is it that he’s crying out, so to speak, for others to continue to assist in the research so that the phenomenon can finally be understood? As he says…

“It certainly is possible that DNA from one species can get into another species, as these slugs have clearly shown,” Pierce said. “But the mechanisms are still unknown.”

Hey, here’s a very nice website concerning this little critter, from the Department of Biological Sciences, University of Maine.

Is it not fascinating to think that the mysterious forces of evolution have come together to give this simple creature the ability to so specifically choose to eat a certain organism and to extract from that animal something so small as a gene and then to use it in it’s own body… absolutely amazing! A real ganglia tickler, that! Damn!

Fog ThingA little while ago, there in my mailbox was the usual roundup of headlines at Phantoms and Monsters… this one though, had a flying creature report from the very gung ho guys at the Centre for Fortean Zoology!

I love flying Cryptids! One of my life goals, in fact, if you don’t know is to capture, (on film at least), both a Thunderbird and a Pterodactyl. [Please Note: The imagery in this post is suggestive or illustrative only as no images were captured during the reported sightings.] Checked it out… here’s what it said…

Flying Cryptid Reported in County Durham, UK

This was reported at CFZ:

We saw a Thing the other night. Not sure at all WHAT it was, but both myself and Gareth saw it. We were driving back from Darlington to home at about 10pm on Wednesday 7th October, and just west of Harperley roundabout on the A698 to Wolsingham, when “it” flew in front of the car.

Whatever it was, was not a bird, and was not a moth or bat. It was approx. 3 feet long, about 1ft wide at the head, tapering down to a short tail. It was white and almost see-through – like a cloud, perhaps – pear-drop shaped, and moved very fast.

It rose from a hedge (or from the ground close to the hedge), which borders the road. Then it sped across the road at about 30ft high. Not sure how fast it was going, but a few mins later we saw a tawny owl flying across the road, and the Thing was much faster than the owl.

Before anyone gets the wrong idea, I am not suggesting that the Thing and the owl were connected in any way. It was incidental and only serves as an indication of air-speed.

The site we saw it at was close to the POW camp, which has recently been put up for sale on ebay. There are no street lights nearby, and it is a remote area of the high north Pennines. Very few dwellings, not much human activity, other than the fairly quiet A689. There was very little wind, and it was quite dark as it was cloudy/overcast. No rain.

Ideas?

A critter?And in response to that post, a short while later a person sent this report in to Phantoms and Monsters

I read the article you had listed entitled “Flying Cryptid in County Durham UK”. I live in the USA, and saw something very similar to what was described in the article. My sighting occurred in a rural area of Henderson, West Virginia, approximately 20 years ago (1989). I had been visiting a friend with my daughter and was on my way home in the afternoon. The day was partly sunny with clouds in the sky, but not rainy or misty. We were traveling down an incline in the car and we saw something strange go across the road (from the left side to the right side of the road). I’m not good with distances but it was probably no more than fifty feet from us. The thing described in the article was much smaller than what my daughter and I saw. I watched it disappear and asked my daughter if she had seen anything, and she confirmed that she had seen it also.

What we observed was approximately horse or cow sized and it had a white, translucent appearance, without identifiable head, tail, or appendages. It was just a big oval shaped airy “blob” that you could see through! This thing was like watching a tiny cloud or a mass of fog move on its own. It was flying or gliding quickly across the road and just disappeared on the other side of the road. It moved straight and did not weave or bobble. We only saw it for maybe 5 seconds. I had never seen anything like it before and haven’t seen another one since. I never reported it but I always remembered my sighting and was immediately struck by the similarity of what was reported in the UK.

Thanks for your website…it is extremely interesting.

Pat Queen, Ohio

It’s exciting!

And the reason it is so, to me, is because, as a Fortean and big fan of both on and off-world cryptozoology, it is my humble opinion that these two sightings are appearances of a “new” form of life that I’ve recently rekindled my interest in and have become very hot on… the Critter, or, the Plasma Lifeform.

Trevor J Constable photo - "amoeba"Not really new, though,  to those immersed in such things – interest started a long time ago within the scientific community following renowned plasma physicist Dr. David Bohm’s discovery through repeated laboratory observations that plasmas, more often than not, act just like living things; and there’s always researcher Trevor James Constable’s infrared photography to peruse, wherein he managed to regularly capture these “critters” back in the late 50s, and coined the term we still use for them. But surely, this concept is not something the majority of people have ever thought about.

The idea is that there are perhaps as many species of plasma creatures as there are “regular” creatures, with the same diversity as all our known life… replete with the same diversity of intelligence endowment, too.

As Mr. Constable noted, due to their rather exotic makeup, most of the critters would normally be invisible to us; his photos, after all, were in the infrared spectrum. They’d possibly become visible during certain interactions with the environment… while passing through localized electrical fields in search of food, namely the electrons that gives plasma life, (Bohm’s original observation), maybe, or perhaps through other phenomena; perhaps light can catch some qualities of their amorphous bodies in certain situations.

NASA's famous tether incidentMany UFOs, perhaps up to 80% of good sightings, a great deal  of the things usually deemed to be “spirits,” aerial BVM apparitions, shadow people and indeed lots of other oddly intangible sightings may in fact be plasma critters… who are, for whatever reason, occasionally visible to us at certain places, at certain times.

Clearly the two featured sightings here were real enough, but also were clearly not animals in the sense of flesh and blood beings… nevertheless, I do feel that these two sightings represent living creatures, or rather, critters… and as living things, these fabulously different critters should not be cast by cryptozoologists into the abyss of the paranormal. What’s needed is a broadening of the playing field, to think in terms of all that’s out there; to include all living things, not just those that are like us.

That may be asking too much, I’m not sure. Critters not made of flesh and blood may be too radical a departure for biologists, who have enough on their plate already. Maybe a special branch is needed… not sure who they might be, though. I suggest a multi-disciplinary approach… after all, this is radically different from our norms. But it should be done… they are alive… they are all around us… even in space… we should know all there is to know about them.