Posts Tagged ‘nature’

image of a hydrogen atom

What you’re looking at is the first direct observation of an atom’s electron orbital — an atom’s actual wave function! To capture the image, researchers utilized a new quantum microscope — an incredible new device that literally allows scientists to gaze into the quantum realm.

Source: io9
Primary Source: Phys Papers

Fabulous! Whoa!

This new quantum microscope is going to be a significant tool for discovery and enlightenment… I can just feel it!

It is not a photograph, in reality, it’s not an actual picture of an atom. What it is is a composite of millions of experimental results, as normally a wave function will collapse leaving only the electron… this shows the cumulative tracks the electrons take… and of course it is in just to dimensions.

See the links above for the details (it’s not long) but basically…

The researchers finally twigged how to make an image of it by bouncing other electrons off the field millions of times, eventually building up a suitable image using the accumulated data.

After zapping the atom with laser pulses, ionized electrons escaped and followed a particular trajectory to a 2D detector (a dual microchannel plate [MCP] detector placed perpendicular to the field itself). There are many trajectories that can be taken by the electrons to reach the same point on the detector, thus providing the researchers with a set of interference patterns — patterns that reflected the nodal structure of the wave function.

Go science! Quantum Microscopy!

Peace.

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Planetfall, Enceladus, vents

Space.com – Enceladus vents water into space from its south polar region. The moon is lit by the Sun on the left, and backlit by the vast reflecting surface of its parent planet to the right. Icy crystals from these plumes are likely the source of Saturn’s nebulous E ring, within which Enceladus orbits. Mosaic composite photograph. Cassini, December 25, 2009.
CREDIT: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Michael Benson/Kinetikon Pictures. © All rights reserved.

From Saturn Moon Enceladus Eyed for Sample-Return Mission at Space.com:

SAN FRANCISCO — Scientists are developing a mission concept that would snag icy particles from Saturn’s moon Enceladus and return them to Earth, where they could be analyzed for signs of life.

The spacecraft would fly through the icy plume blasted into space by geysers near Enceladus’ south pole, then send the collected particles back to our planet in a return capsule. Enceladus may be capable of supporting life, and the flyby sample-return mission would bring pieces from its depths to Earth at a reasonable price, researchers said.

“This is really the low-hanging fruit” of sample-return missions, said study leader Peter Tsou of Sample Exploration Systems in La Canada, Calif., who presented the idea here Wednesday (Dec. 5) at the annual fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. “It would be a shame not to pick it.”

[]

If the mission is approved, it could probably be ready to launch by 2020, Tsou added. Samples from Enceladus’ plume would make it to Earth about 14 years later.

Enceladus is a great candidate for sample-return, Tsou said. Its geyser-blasted particles are fresh, having come right out of the moon’s subsurface ocean. The mission can be done without landing on and re-launching from another world, two costly and complicating extra steps. And Enceladus seems to have all the ingredients necessary to support life.

“That doesn’t mean life is there,” Tsou said. “But we want to find out.”

Well, dang, doc, I want to find out, too!

I mean, just think… !

Enceladus is an awesome place. Seriously, I have always had a gut feeling that there are critters there.

Too bad it will be so far off, man, seven long years… but

It would be awesome if a base could be established, robotic, no doubt, that would bore through the ice to the ocean below… and have streaming video. Should be able to sort out the streaming part by then, eh?

There’s a strange old post here from October ‘09 called The Critters Of Enceladus,

Ha! That was a fun one.

Here’s a pic…

Resident of Enceladus? image N00121336(crop) NASA/JPL

Resident of Enceladus? image N00121336(crop) NASA/JPL

shocking

Yes, indeed, Enceladus is a fine place to get real and tangible material to study.

Peace.

P.S. This was a draft from way back in January… sigh.

 

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.

Check this out…

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On Christmas Day, an article was posted online called Warmer Arctic Waters Sprout Frost Flower Meadows. It had been posted before, on the 19th of December to the NPR website as Suddenly There’s A Meadow In The Ocean With ‘Flowers’ Everywhere.

Here’s a tantalizing little taste:

“I was absolutely astounded,” he says. They were little protrusions of ice, delicate, like snowflakes. They began growing in the dry, cold air “like a meadow spreading off in all directions. Every available surface was covered with them.” What are they?

“Frost flowers,” he was told. “I’d never heard of them,” Jeff says, “but they were everywhere.”

Whoa. I’ve never heard of them, either!

Nature is just amazing. These form when the water is warmer than the air and at the surface the conditions are such that these are sort of drawn out of the water carrying the salt with them forming delicate structures with three times the salinity of the water.

Also fascinating is that the team found that these little ‘flowers’ are teeming with life! Which they did not expect. Each one is a home for one million bacteria! One million!

Read the article! Either one, for the full story.

Gives more hope for finding critters in other unexpected places… places like moons and planets!

Let the search continue!

Peace.

Hey, get a load of this…

Titan's Nile (full)

From Wired

Vast Alien River System Spotted on Saturn’s Moon Titan

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has spotted a river system stretching more than 200 miles on Saturn’s moon Titan.

Though it isn’t the Nile — which is more than 20 times as long — the mighty river provides further evidence that this odd little moon is a wet world not unlike our own. Many lakes and small rivers have been found already on Titan but the newly discovered stream is the largest yet and represents the first time scientists have seen such a vast liquid system on any world other than Earth.

Titan’s mini-Nile doesn’t flow with water, which freezes to be hard as stone on the moon, but rather liquid hydrocarbons such as methane and ethane, which are stable in the moon’s -290 degree Fahrenheit average temperatures. From its headwaters, the flow follows a fault line and runs into the Kraken Mare, one of three gigantic seas that cover Titan’s northern hemisphere. Titan’s liquid cycle also includes seasonal downpours, which have been spotted from orbit. Whether all this liquid improves the chances for life on Titan remains an open mystery.

The enormous image above was acquired on Sept. 26 but only released on Dec. 12.

Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASI

The Saturnian system has always excited me. It is seriously cool… and seriously exotic. A treasure trove of anomalies. I have long said that the farther out you go, the stranger and weirder things get; and I am pleased to report that this observation has yet to disappoint me.

Okay, so this river isn’t exactly weird, being, well, a river, but it’s nice and long and actually is pretty exotic as outlined above and I, for one, am more than willing to speculate that there are a wide variety of critters living in and around those currents. And eddies! I love eddies. Sorry.

Not to go too off-topic, but you can probably guess that I really, truly like the fact that the ocean this river feeds is called the Kraken Mare. WAAAH!
I am hoping with all my heart that naming it that proves to be the very definition of “foresight!”

I’d say this calls for at least a rover. Better yet, how about a sub to go with it!

Edit to add that the Kraken Mare is five times bigger than Lake Superior!

Peace.

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.

1920s, Doreen taking an alligator ride.

I thought this worthy of inclusion.

We certainly can get along just fine with ancient reptilian lifeforms.

And too much regulation spoils the fun.

Rock on, Doreen!

Peace.

…from the album Mystery to Me.

Uploaded by  on Jul 31, 2009

from the CD “Mystery to Me”, by fleetwood Mac.
pics and video clips taken here in Oregon

Enjoy, yes, indeed do that thing!

I haven’t posted a tune in a while, so we’re due, but this thread didn’t start out in the usual way. You all know that I’m always lurking on ATS for the latest in high strangeness and conspiracy; I saw a thread entitled North Carolina’s strange, strange pond. by member ColeYounger, which as you might imagine is right up my alley, so of course I had to click it.

In it was the following very cool story and the reference to this song, along with this YouTube music video. Two birds, one stone for WATT, eh? Ha!

On the discussion board, there was an old post by a guy who said he grew up in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Apparently, the guy had been checking out the online discussions about strange power spots, vortexes and ‘Earth anamolies.’ [sic]

He said that one day in 1969, he and three friends were riding dirt-bike motorcycles in a large forested area near Winston-Salem. He described it as thick forest with bike trails worn through the woods. Deep in the middle of the forest was a large clearing. They had ridden their bikes there many times before, but on this day, when they reached the clearing, they were shocked to see a huge, perfectly round depression in the ground that was probably 80 – 100 feet in diameter . He said it was as if a giant iron ball had been pressed into the ground, buried halfway, and then lifted out. The dirt in the indentation was ‘smooth as glass’. There was not a bump or a ripple anywhere. Of course they thought that it had somehow been man-made…dug out with bulldozers or something. But there was no machinery anywhere. There was no way to get any machinery there! There were no roads, just bike trails. They got really spooked and got the hell out of there. From what the guy said, all four of them were pretty spooked.

They went back to town and told some friends. A couple other guys went there shortly thereafter and they saw it too. The weird depression was gone within a few days, as if it was never there.
Now this is weird! ….supposedly someone took some photos, but never gave them to any news people, reporters, etc. The story became quite a local legend. I’m surprised it’s not really famous. Maybe because the “mystery circle” was there and gone so quickly?

A couple years later, Fleetwood Mac released their song “Hypnotized”. Some of the lyrics definitely sound like the Winston-Salem circle, although the term “pond” is used.

Cole then wonders just exactly how Bob Welch, Fleetwood Mac’s guitarist and songwriter at the time, came up with the lyrics in question…

Well… In FleetwoodMac.net’s The Penguin Q&A Sessions section, ATS researcher Pauligirl found this quote regarding this very happening from the guy who wrote the song, Bob Welch, August 4 – 17, 2003:

Hey Bob! In Hypnotized you talk about a strange pond in North Carolina. What’s the story behind it, and where’s it supposed to be? A curious North Carolinian… (Louie Golden, Charlotte, NC, USA)

A guy that I used to work with from Winston-Salem told me the story of he and some friends riding dirt bikes 20 miles or so out in the woods when they came upon a strange “crater” in the ground with smooth sides like melted glass. It was a “pond” in the sense that there was some rainwater in it I guess.There were no access roads or caterpillar tracks so it wasn’t a construction site. I think the location must have been near Winston-Salem. They all immediately got the feeling they should get out of there. Maybe it was a meteor impact ? I just liked the imagery for the song.

So, Bob actually met and talked with one of the guys who experienced this first-hand. Seriously, how cool is that? What are the odds? Spock?

Needless to say that this is one heck of a mystery. The ‘smooth as glass’ nature of the depression is particularly fascinating. As is the fact that it ‘repaired itself,’ so to speak, after just a few days. Weird! Groundwater rising and falling within a water cave has been suggested, which I suppose is reasonably plausible, but what about the glassy smooth effect? Not a common sinkhole feature that I know of.

And in this reply, posted after I started writing, this feature, or a remnant of it, may have been located! Only those who were there could verify that, of course, but it is certainly intriguing. Maybe they’ll show up and clarify things! It’s happened before. But them Gol darn odds are agin’ us. It would be fabulous if the photos mentioned were to turn up!

I just love how utterly strange our world can be. I really do.

And,  it turns out, much to my delight, that Bob Welch is a big fan of various Fortean subjects, most notably UFOs. I like that and wonder if this incident helped trigger off his interest in the unexplained. If you read the interview with him at the Fleetwood Mac site you will see several questions relating to UFOs and the like. Such as this one…

Hi Bob and thank you for doing another Q&A for your devoted fans ! My questions are….

Since you are into the paranormal like me, who are your favourite authors on the subject ? (i.e. John A. Keel, Stanton Friedman, and Jenny Randles) (Arizona Ranger, Cranford, NJ, USA)

Jacques Vallee, Ingo Swann, Gary Schwartz (the Afterlife Experiments), David R. Hawkins MD (The Eye Of The I), Stephen Greer(Disclosure Project). The ones you mentioned (Freidman etc.) are also good. There are many more…John G White “The Unobstructed Universe” comes to mind. I’m planning to put a list of all the authors I like on my website.

Shame about Greer being in there, really… hopefully Bob has seen the light on that matter. It’s one I fell for initially, too, back in the day, so I can relate and I’m sure all’s well.

May strangeness befall you.

Peace.

Watch the bouncing droplet

Uploaded by  on Jun 7, 2009

I saw this on the TV show Time Warp and thought that I could do that. Well it turns out that Noah and I could do it! I was a little surprised at how small the parameter space was to achieve a good series of bounces. Near the end of this clilp, you can see waves entering from the lower right. I think these are reflections of a low frequency sloshing modes set up by the initial droplet. The smallest droplet bounces off these waves and start moving off to the side. In any case it is pretty cool. The only issue is that there was some dust on the sensor (dark spots that don’t move). The camera is a Vision Research Phantom v7.3 high speed video camera.

It is fascinating (and beautiful) to see water behave this way in such detail and I thought you all might think that this is as cool as I do.

It seems bizarre as what is revealed goes against our innate impression of what water is, how it should act and what it can do.

Great food for thought, too. There are so many things in nature that happen all the time and right before our very eyes… all forever unnoticed due to size or speed or both. Although a poster on the forum claims to see this regularly with his unaided eyes and has called it the “Anti Bubble” effect. … hmmm.

Here is another video of the phenomena:

Cascade Coalescence

Uploaded by  on May 31, 2010

High speed video of a droplet coalescence at the surface of deionized water. Filmed at the Laboratory of Porous Media and Thermophysical Properties.
www.lmpt.ufsc.br

And here is a great article that appears on the io9 site, with a hat-tip to this ATS article for providing the lead:

High speed video reveals the bizarre physics of an ordinary water droplet

The video is of an effect known in fluid dynamics as the coalescence cascade, which can be observed (provided you have access to a video camera with a sufficiently high frame rate) when a drop of liquid is deposited very gently onto the surface of a layer of the same liquid. Fuck Yeah Fluid Dynamics explains:

When a droplet impacts a pool at low speed, a layer of air trapped beneath the droplet can often prevent it from immediately coalescing into the pool. As that air layer drains away, surface tension pulls some of the droplet’s mass into the pool while a smaller droplet is ejected. When it bounces off the surface of the water, the process is repeated and the droplet grows smaller and smaller until surface tension is able to completely absorb it into the pool.

Pretty awesome, right? In the video shown up top, the effect manages to repeat itself four times (in what scientists who study fluid mechanics call “events”) before the viscous properties of the resting pool become too strong for the smallest drops to withstand coalescing completely.

And while the highest number of events I’ve been able to find anywhere else is five (see the video on the left), MIT’s John Bush claims to have observed as many as seven such events in a row. I just wish he’d included a video of it…[Spotted on Fuck Yeah Fluid Dynamics]

Enjoy Mother Nature. She’s a beautiful girl.

Peace.

Yep, it is true, my friends…

A Scrub Jay

I am not really all that surprised, actually.

The following is excerpted from an article on the BBC website…

Birds hold ‘funerals’ for dead

By Matt Walker

[…] The revelation comes from a study by Teresa Iglesias and colleagues at the University of California, Davis, US.

They conducted experiments, placing a series of objects into residential back yards and observing how western scrub jays in the area reacted.

The objects included different coloured pieces of wood, dead jays, as well as mounted, stuffed jays and great horned owls, simulating the presence of live jays and predators.

Alarming reaction

The jays reacted indifferently to the wooden objects.

But when they spied a dead bird, they started making alarm calls, warning others long distances away.

The jays then gathered around the dead body, forming large cacophonous aggregations. The calls they made, known as “zeeps”, “scolds” and “zeep-scolds”, encouraged new jays to attend to the dead.

The jays also stopped foraging for food, a change in behaviour that lasted for over a day.

[…]

(the article closes with these lines…)

Other animals are known to take notice of their dead.

Giraffes and elephants, for example, have been recorded loitering around the body of a recently deceased close relative, raising the idea that animals have a mental concept of death, and may even mourn those that have passed.

Birds have clearly shown themselves to be of very high intelligence. They use tools efectively and are able to solve complex conceptual problems with ease. I am of the opinion that all animals and plants are to one degree or another sentient and conscious and are possessed of emotion, also to one degree or another. Just like us. Anyone who has spent time with animals surely must be well aware of this.

What really struck me from the study was that the jays stopped eating for over a day. That is significant. I will repeat it, in bold, even – the jays stopped eating for over a day. Capiche? That is clearly mourning. Got to be.

A lot of people think of animals as just mindless eating machines that do little else. That assumption is just so very wrong. Have they no eyes, no senses, no thought processes or logic? Such a reality makes me have some rather sad feelings regarding my own species. It does! I do not understand it.

It does bother me that scientists are only now starting to ‘get with the program,’ as it were. Sigh. Well, at least they’re starting. A good thing, surely.

To nicely illustrate the point, I’ll present to you now a reply from the ATS thread on this matter, member phroziac posted this very poignant tale:

Ever had a conversation with a bird? Theyre extremely intelligent, and i have no doubt whatsoever they have emotions… and non speaking species are just as intelligent as speaking ones. Small birds are just physically incapable of speaking because of the size of their uhmn…voice box. Ive caught mocking birds attempting to speak though, lol…..

However, its a similar intelligence to a young child. Not an adult human. Do children understand death? not really.

I owned a male and female cockatiel. The female got sick and died with basically no warning at all….very common for birds…they hide that theyre sick. The male cuddled up with her before she died and stayed cuddled up with her for hours after she died.  he got really depressed and quiet and eventually we had to give him away to a friend that had cockatiels to try to help.

He would always whistle the andy griffith song when he was happy lmao….i never heard him do it again after his lady died……

So, birds do have an emotional response to other birds dying. But im not sure they understand death.

And there you go… Reality. Poor bird.

Also available should you desire it is the research paper that was used as BBC“s source, published at Science Direct and titled Western scrub-jay funerals: cacophonous aggregations in response to dead conspecifics. As with most science journals, you can read the abstract, but you have to buy the paper (for $31.50) to read the actual research. Here’s the start of the abstract:

All organisms must contend with the risk of injury or death; many animals reduce this danger by assessing environmental cues to avoid areas of elevated risk. However, little is known about how organisms respond to one of the most salient visual cues of risk: a dead conspecific. Here we show that the sight of a dead conspecific is sufficient to induce alarm calling and subsequent risk-reducing behavioural modification in western scrub-jays, Aphelocoma californica, and is similar to the response to a predator (a great horned owl,Bubo virginianus, model). Discovery of a dead conspecific elicits vocalizations that are effective at attracting conspecifics, which then also vocalize, thereby resulting in a cacophonous aggregation. Presentations of prostrate dead conspecifics and predator mounts elicited aggregations and hundreds of long-range communication vocalizations, while novel objects did not. In contrast to presentations of prostrate dead conspecifics, presentations of a jay skin mounted in an upright, life-like pose elicited aggressive responses, suggesting the mounted scrub-jay was perceived to be alive and the prostrate jay was not. There was a decrease of foraging in the area during presentations of prostrate dead conspecifics and predator mounts, which was still detectable 24 h later. Foraging returned to baseline levels 48 h after presentations. Novel objects and mounted jays did not affect foraging. Our results show that without witnessing the struggle and manner of death, the sight of a dead conspecific is used as public information and that this information is actively shared with conspecifics and used to reduce exposure to risk.

Peace.

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.

Sweet!

I was delighted to learn that this is not a new phenomenon and I am even more satisfied in the knowledge that the kids have learned how to do it. While the traps are not intended for them, gorillas do get maimed and killed by the infernal things, so it is mostly for self-preservation that they do it, but I wonder if their concern extends to other creatures.

Betting it does, as some primates are known to kidnap puppies to raise as pets to guard their families and groups.

Believing that animals are beneath us is simply ignorance at its finest.

The following text and picture is an excerpt from the source article at the GrindTV Blog…

Young gorillas disarming traps.Two days after a young mountain gorilla was killed in a poacher’s snare trap in Rwanda, two juvenile gorillas were observed deactivating two similar snares.

It is the first time since African gorilla field research began more than 50 years ago that juvenile gorillas have ever been witnessed destroying snare traps, which are indiscriminately injuring and killing mountain gorillas.

“We knew that gorillas do this, but all of the reported cases in the past were carried out by adult gorillas, mostly silverbacks,” Veronica Vecellio of The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International wrote on the fund’s blog.

“Today, two juveniles and one blackback from Kuryama’s group worked together to deactivate two snares, and how they did it demonstrated an impressive cognitive skill.”

According to Vecellio, field data coordinator John Ndayambaje of the fund’s Karisoke Research Center spotted a snare in the path of some gorillas and moved to disarm it. But Silverback Yuba “pig-grunted” a warning to him, as if to say, “Stay away, we’ve got it covered.”

At the same time, juveniles Dukore and Rwema, along with blackback Tetero, “ran toward the snare and together pulled the branch used to hold the rope. They saw another snare nearby and as quickly as before, they destroyed the second branch and pulled the rope out of the ground,” Vecellio wrote.

Unfortunately, the gorillas and trackers don’t find all the snares. In her blog, … [read more]

Peace.

Now, then, if you were a Mwanza Flat Headed Agama and wanted to dominate your little group of mates, what would you do? Why, you’d dress up as Spiderman, of course!

Well. wouldn’t you?

Mwanza Flat Headed Agama, the Spiderman lizard. Photo by Cassio Lopes.

And… our hero:

Marvel Comics superhero Spiderman.

Knows how to strike a pose, doesn’t he?

So, is this art imitating life, or life imitating art?

A remarkable coincidence. Not that I believe in coincidence, but we’ll leave that bit out.

This is not cryptozoology at all… as this fellow, spotted in the Masia Mara National park near the Rongai river by photographer Cassio Lopes is pretty well known it would seem.

Apparently you can even buy them in pet stores. I really need to get out more, I guess.

Yes, I know I’m slow out the gate and I’m quite sure you’ve all seen this on your Facebooks and such. I saw it a couple of days ago myself at this ATS post but my head’s just not torqued down properly these days, as you may recall from my last post.

Maybe someone will see our little buddy for the first time! Or not. Sigh.

You can get some more details at The Daily Fail, er, Mail. They have more details and a pic of the photographer, too. Here’s an excerpt.

What a MARVEL! The blue and red lizard with a striking resemblance to comic book superhero Spiderman

By KERRY MCQUEENEY

PUBLISHED: 14:00 EST, 1 July 2012 | UPDATED: 16:56 EST, 1 July 2012

One has to wonder whether this lizard’s spider-senses are tingling. For the reptile bears more than a passing resemblance to the Marvel comic superhero Spiderman.

The lizard’s amazing red and blue markings are strikingly similar to the suit worn by the crime-fighting, web-weaving daredevil.

And – as the reptile was captured crawling around on his rock – he appeared to strike an identical pose to Spidey’s favoured crouching pose.

[…]

Ha! Will wonders never cease…

I just hope Marvel doesn’t try to sue the little creatures.

Peace.

I… Am Envious.

Posted: June 29th, 2012 in animals, Art, nature, philosophy
Tags: , ,

Of this kid’s childhood…

A Nice Childhood

Seriously, now… is this not just lovely?

Serene, even.

Can you imagine spending your formative years in a place like that, so in tune with Nature that you can sit with a wild cat and just take in your surroundings, together? Buddies?

Wow.

I don’t know who this is or where it is, I got it off of Facebook. That saddens me as it seems our society just doesn’t care about such things anymore. That, in my humble opinion is not a good thing.

I think the scene is so telling about how nice things could be in this world.

I don’t think it will happen anytime soon, though, except in remote places. Not without some unspecified global event of epic proportions, anyway.

Just thought I’d share it.

Also…

Apologies for the lack of posts, I must give, as there are so many of you who subscribe. I am grateful that you feel good being here. I’m just not feeling well in my head of late and can’t seem to write. It should fix itself soon (I hope)… it seems a cyclical thing.

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.

Dolphins talk!

I think we all had an inkling that things like this are very real. It also carries some deep implications.

The observant will note that most animals are sentient beings. Self aware beings. All it takes is having a cat or a dog and spending any amount of time with them. If you watch birds you will note the same. Even the oft-denigrated rat. It just seems so obvious to me.

Many people feel that dolphins are endowed with a spiritual nature. Of this I have no doubt. It is known, for example, that dolphins have empathy, even for other species… we have all read stories of dolphins rescuing humans who are in great peril.

Humans have been interacting with dolphins for a long time. The US Navy, since the early 60s has been training and using dolphins (and sea lions) to mark and recover mines and assist in other underwater operations through it’s U.S. Navy Marine Mammal Program (NMMP). In view of the above realizations from this new research finding and knowing of their empathic nature, I have a lot of reservations about their use (abuse?) by our military in having them participate in any way in humanity’s greed-induced bloodshed. I wonder if they would help us if they knew the real purpose of such activities, because, although marking mines seems legit, I can not imagine the military sends them out solely on benign missions.

All in all, this finding shows dolphins are not only fully self-aware and wholly sentient but able to tell others about it. And probably not just other dolphins, either. Think whales, sea lions, etc. As such, they are quite obviously on par with homo sapiens sapiens; and since they have had 50 million years of evolution under their belts, compared to our 250,000, they must be far in advance of our developmental level.

Noted are some recent rumblings related to giving dolphins the same rights as people. I agree! But governments are unlikely to adopt the measure as it would likely economically and legally affect fishing operations adversely. There’s that greed based culture we all suffer within for ya.

Thousands upon thousands of dolphins die in fishing nets. This is because they can’t see them. Dolphins use sonar and sound to see in a similay way to our use of light to see. The nets do not reflect their sound beams, as they are, well, nets. Hence they get caught unawares. It is tragic.

Perhaps a way around it could be if nets could be re-engineered and redesigned to allow enough reflectance so that the dolphins could see them… things would be alright for all concerned.

Anyway…

Some data on this research…

Via ATS member Nicolas Flamel in this thread:

It looks like dolphins have names for each other and when first meeting other dolphins will introduce themselves and ask them to come play.

When meeting strangers in the wild, dolphins whistle signature tunes that may be the animal equivalent of “Hello, my name is…” stickers.

These introductions include other information as well:

‘I’m so-and-so, and I’m interested in making contact in a friendly way, I’m not attacking,'” said study researcher Vincent Janik, an expert in animal communication at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland.

Janik calls these names “signature whistles” and he claims only humans and dolphins have personal “names” used to identify each other.

Non-human social primates do have identification calls however, so that other primates know who is calling. Janik says this is not the same as having names:

Social primates know each other from the sounds of their voices, but they don’t create signature identification calls. Dolphins, on the other hand, start developing their own whistles at just a few months of age.

Regardless, this does raise the bar on the self-awareness and intelligence of dolphins.

Source: Dolphin’s Unique Whistles Say, ‘Hey! Come Play!’ at livescience.com.

Here’s some information about the author of the study:

Dr. Vincent Janik is a member of the Sea Mammal Research Unit and the Centre for Social Learning and Cognitive Evolution (SLACE) at the University of St Andrews in Scotland.

Besides getting his PhD, he also did some work with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, USA (whose members included Robert Ballard, discoverer of the Titanic). He’s also a Royal Society University Research Fellow (like Isaac Newton and Stephen Hawking among others).

biology.st-andrews.ac.uk…

His work with dolphins is ongoing:

Janik and his colleagues are now studying how the dolphins develop their personalized whistles. They’re also investigating the hypothesis that the whistles act as a dolphin’s name by recording wild dolphins’ signature whistles and playing them back to the animals.

www.livescience.com…

some dolphins already work for the U.S. Navy to help detect sea mines for example. I wonder how much they get paid?

science.howstuffworks.com…

Bottlenose dolphins have their own undersea weapons. They use echolocation, which is like active sonar, to not only locate or identify fish but also stun them with a sonic boom.

Indeed.

Oh, as a matter of interest, in searching for a picture for this thread, I ran across this fascinating piece: Translation technology may let humans speak with dolphins at a site called Digital Trends. Heres a taste:

Researchers have begun to create a new technology that could soon allow humans and dolphins to talk to each other.

Dolphins have long been considered by scientists to be the most intelligent animals on the planet (aside from humans, of course). But soon, with the help of newly developed underwater translation software, our two species may actually be able to talk to each other.

Armed with a waterproof computer, divers may soon be able to decipher the chirps of dolphins, then create and project an appropriate response, all in real time, reports New Scientist.

Dubbed Cetacean Hearing and Telemetry (CHAT), the project is being undertaken by Denise Herzing, founder of the Wild Dolphin Project, and Thad Starner, an artificial intelligence researcher at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta. The end-goal of the CHAT program is to “co-create” a language that uses the natural sounds of wild dolphins, which can then be employed to talk with our finned brethren.

Humans have been able to communicate with dolphins since the 1960′s. Studies have shown that dolphins can learn up to about 100 human words, and be able to decipher the difference between similar commands, like “bring the surfboard to the man” and “bring the man to the surfboard.” […]

What astounding things will they clue us in on? All about USOs, maybe?WAAAH!

Personally, to reiterate what I said above, I am of the opinion that they are, oh, just a tad smarter than us…

Peace.

I love Martian dust devils. Really. I do. Don’t know why, really… they’re just cool – in a decidedly alien sort of way. Yeah, yeah, we have plenty of them on Earth, but, well, these are on Mars. They act kind of weird. So there.

In case you have never seen any, here is a nice video of a whole bunch of them. Just 8 seconds and… Just delightful! To get the proper impact flowing through your synapses, you really should watch this in full screen. Note their size. You’ll need this spectacle lodged firmly in your head to fully dig the upcoming video.

Uploaded by on Dec 30, 2007

Dust devils on Mars sweep past the NASA rover Spirit. Movie sequence made by MERDAT. Sorry about the Chinese date tag, I am currently working on including other language capabilities in the programs image tagging function. Still image data courtesy NASA/PDS.

Okay… now that you are well-grounded in the visual coolness of dust devils on our dear Mars… get a load of this:

This next one is remarkable and quite seriously stunning.

I have never seen one this big! This ‘video’ is just a HiRISE image so we can’t see it’s true power and beauty, but after checking the video above, you will most likely get what I’m driving at here. It must be just intense to watch! Apologies in advance for the silly robovoice, maybe this tuber doesn’t have a mic.

Uploaded by on Mar 7, 2012

The Serpent Dust Devil of Mars
A towering dust devil casts a serpentine shadow over the Martian surface in this stunning, late springtime image of Amazonis Planitia.
http://www.uahirise.org/images/2012/details/cut/ESP_026051_2160-2.jpg

The length of the shadow indicates that the dust plume reaches more than 800 meters, or half a mile, in height. The tail of the plume does not trace the path of the dust devil, which had been following a steady course towards the southeast and left a bright track behind it.

The delicate arc in the plume was produced by a westerly breeze at about a 250-meter height that blew the top of the plume towards the east. The westerly winds and the draw of warmth to the south combine to guide dust devils along southeast trending paths, as indicated by the tracks of many previous dust-devils. The dust plume itself is about 30 meters in diameter.

Numerous bright tracks trend from northwest to southeast. It is interesting to see that these tracks are bright, whereas dust-devil tracks elsewhere on Mars are usually dark. Dark tracks are believed to form where bright dust is lifted from the surface by dust devils, revealing a darker substrate.
http://www.uahirise.org/images/2012/details/cut/ESP_026051_2160-1.jpg

Here in Amazonis, the dust cover is too thick to be penetrated by such scouring. A blanket of bright dust was deposited over this region recently, just before the arrival of MRO, so the surface dust here can still be moved. Perhaps the bright tracks form when the settled dust is stirred up by the strong winds generated by the dust devils (tangential wind speeds of up to 70 miles per hour have been recorded in HiRISE images of other dust devils).

It’s also interesting that this image was taken during the time of year when Mars is farthest from the Sun. Just as on Earth, Martian winds are powered by solar heating. Exposure to the sun’s rays should be at a minimum during this season, yet even now, dust devils act relentlessly to clean the surface of freshly deposited dust, a little at a time.

Written by: Paul Geissler (7 March 2012)

This is a stereo pair with ESP_025985_2160.
http://www.uahirise.org/ESP_025985_2160

– Credit HiRISE – NASA/JPL/University of Arizona –

Link – http://www.uahirise.org/ESP_026051_2160

Nice, huh?

Peace.

YouTube link

Uploaded by on Feb 13, 2012

Chris Packham examines some of the weirdest natural events on the planet. With the help of footage taken by eyewitnesses and news crews, he unravels the facts behind each story.

Episode 1 (3rd January 2012)

In the first programme, there is the mysterious case of the car cocooned by caterpillars in Holland, and the baffling case of the exploding toads in Germany. In Switzerland a lakeside town is entombed in ice and a once in a lifetime storm turns Sydney, Australia crimson overnight. There are some disturbing plagues of mice and locusts and a swarm of ladybirds. And finally there are extraordinary strandings of starfish, crabs and whales.

Chris tells the real story of the events behind the headlines and helps to explain what on earth happened.

YouTube link

Uploaded by on Feb 13, 2012

Episode 2 (4th January 2012)

The second programme features the incredible sea foam which turns part of the Australian coast into what looks like the world’s biggest bubble bath. Plus there is a look at the mysterious death of thousands of sea birds on America’s west coast, and the otherworldly phenomenon known as milky seas.

Other strange events include thousands of birds falling from the sky in America, causing panic and predictions of the apocalypse among the residents, and the fish that fell from the sky in south London.

And finally there is the story of the truly terrifying holes which open up in the earth’s crust and swallow not only buildings, but in the case of a nature reserve in Florida, an entire lake.

Pretty cool, pretty cool. Two hours of Fortean fun.

I must say that the causes found for a few of of these incidents are nearly as odd as the events themselves. That’s always nice. They do give the “standard ‘excuse’” for the fabulously Fortean fish falls, though, defaulting to waterspouts, which I suppose is to be expected, but I must note that it is in fact a plausible cause for at least some of them. For one such event that is mentioned, though, I think you’d agree that… it would be a stretch.

The most interesting segment to me is the examination of the behavior of crows in episode 1 within the exploding toad story. It is really amazing to learn just how intelligent these birds really are. I am seriously impressed and I assure you that you will be, too.

There’s a nice piece on glows  coming from the sea, or milky seas, and although it is simple bioluminescence, the scale is just astounding and you’ll find the end result of the work of a scientific team quite fascinating.

A few of the events are a little mundane looking at them now from afar, but they did cause a stir and a couple did the rounds on the internet, but if you were there they’d be mighty impressive. They’re all worth a watch. Mother Nature is always good for a shocker…

Peace.

Uploaded by on Apr 30, 2007

Pistol shrimp blowing a blast of water a speed of 100km/h with temp 4700C.

Now this is cool. Nature always delivers the most fascinating designs. A gun built into your arm, with an endless supply of bullets…

From this creature’s Wikipedia page:
(Sorry about using Wiki as they are
such a tool of the wrong people, but I’m lazy today and for this sort of thing they’re truthful…)

I find the first paragraph pretty darn interesting…

Pistol shrimp have also been noted for their ability to reverse claws. When the snapping claw is lost the missing limb will regenerate into a smaller claw and the original smaller appendage will grow into a new snapping claw. Laboratory research has shown that severing the nerve of the snapping claw induces the conversion of the smaller limb into a second snapping claw. This phenomenon of claw symmetry in snapping shrimp has only been documented once in nature.[10]

Snapping effect

The snapping shrimp competes with much larger animals like the Sperm Whale and Beluga Whale for the title of ‘loudest animal in the sea.’ The animal snaps a specialized claw shut to create a cavitation bubble that generates acoustic pressures of up to 80 kPa at a distance of 4 cm from the claw. As it extends out from the claw, the bubble reaches speeds of 60 miles per hour (97 km/h) and releases a sound reaching 218 decibels.[11] The pressure is strong enough to kill small fish.[12] It corresponds to a zero to peak pressure level of 218 decibels relative to one micropascal (dB re 1 μPa), equivalent to a zero to peak source level of 190 dB re 1 μPa at the standard reference distance of 1 m. Au and Banks measured peak to peak source levels between 185 and 190 dB re 1 μPa at 1 m, depending on the size of the claw.[13] Similar values are reported by Ferguson and Cleary.[14] The duration of the click is less than 1 millisecond.

The snap can also produce sonoluminescence from the collapsing cavitation bubble. As it collapses, the cavitation bubble reaches temperatures of over 5,000 K (4,700 °C).[15] In comparison, the surface temperature of the sun is estimated to be around 5,800 K (5,500 °C). The light is of lower intensity than the light produced by typical sonoluminescence and is not visible to the naked eye. It is most likely a by-product of the shock wave with no biological significance. However, it was the first known instance of an animal producing light by this effect. It has subsequently been discovered that another group of crustaceans, the mantis shrimp, contains species whose club-like forelimbs can strike so quickly and with such force as to induce sonoluminescent cavitation bubbles upon impact.[16]

The snapping is used for hunting (hence the alternative name “pistol shrimp”), as well as for communication.

Jebus! What will Mother come up with next? Ha! Okay, how about this guy…?

Uploaded by on Dec 27, 2006

Animal Olympians: Featherweight boxing. A maritime creature that is 4 inches long and more powerful than a point 22 calibre pistol. Big things certainly do come in small packages!

Good gracious!

From this creature’s Wikipedia page:

Mantis shrimp or stomatopods are marine crustaceans, the members of the order Stomatopoda. They are neither shrimp nor mantids, but receive their name purely from the physical resemblance to both the terrestrial praying mantis and the shrimp. They may reach 30 centimetres (12 in) in length, although exceptional cases of up to 38 cm (15 in) have been recorded.[2] The carapace of mantis shrimp covers only the rear part of the head and the first four segments of the thorax. Mantis shrimp appear in a variety of colours, from shades of browns to bright neon colours. Although they are common animals and among the most important predators in many shallow, tropical and sub-tropical marine habitats they are poorly understood as many species spend most of their life tucked away in burrows and holes.[3]

Called “sea locusts” by ancient Assyrians, “prawn killers” in Australia and now sometimes referred to as “thumb splitters” — because of the animal’s ability to inflict painful gashes if handled incautiously[4] — mantis shrimp sport powerful claws that they use to attack and kill prey by spearing, stunning or dismemberment. Although it happens rarely, some larger species of mantis shrimp are capable of breaking through aquarium glass with a single strike from this weapon.[5]

Did you catch that last sentence? Yikes!

I am impressed by this next video… burrow too confining? No worries, mate, I’ll fix it!

Uploaded by on Aug 27, 2010

at about 23 seconds, manty makes more room for him/herself
rip manty

The ocean fascinates me endlessly because it is just as exciting as space, maybe even more so, as it is nearly totally (98%) unexplored and it is right here! It is said we know more about the moon than our oceans. This is quite true.

Just think what would discover if the monies used for war were used to explore the wonderful planet we live on.

Peace.