This tumblr's for all the great men and women of science for whom we owe our current understanding of the natural world; their achievements, their failures, and even their quirks, we celebrate them all.
For Science. For Inquiry. For Humanity.
People, it’s time I tell you about Siphonophores.
They are an order of colonial sea jellies in the class Hydrozoa. Colonial, meaning their bodies, though seemingly one orgamism, are constructed of many miniscule individual organisms. most of ya’ll know the Portuguese Man O’ War, with its iconic bell (the floaty bit, it looks like a helmet) and its reputation for being a scuba-diver-entangling, murderin’ douchebag, but fewer are acquainted with the impressive and creepy (read: cuddly + adorable) Praya dubia. It’s one of the largest invertebrates in the world, it’s bioluminescent, and its sting could paralyse and/or kill you.
Second Cutest Book Ever: ZooBorns Goes Exotic
Pound the Koala: from Dreamworld, Australia, born Nov. 2, 2010, status: least concern (Dreamworld / Koala Country Photographics).
Kenai and Miki the Arctic Foxes: from Aquarium of the Pacific, California, born May 2011, status: least concern (Robin Riggs / Aquarium of the Pacific).
Nakai the Northern White-Cheeked Gibbon: from Perth Zoo, Australia, born April 17, 2011, status: critically endangered (Perth Zoo).
Giant Panda: from Chengdu Panda Base, China, born: September 2010, status: endangered (Jeroen Jacobs, taken at CRBGPB).
Gouda the Harbor Seal: from Alaska SeaLife Center, born May 7, 2011, status: least concern (Alaska SeaLife Center Staff).
South American Coati: from Melbourne Zoo, Australia, born Nov. 25, 2011, status: least concern (Meagan Thomas, Melbourne Zoo).
Capybara: from San Diego Zoo, California, born Nov. 28, 2011, status: least concern (Zoological Society of San Diego).
Kasi the Cheetah: from Busch Gardens, Tampa Bay, Florida, born Jan. 17, 2011, status: vulnerable (©2011 SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment. All rights reserved.).
The Peregrine Falcon is the most geographically diverse bird of prey in the animal kingdom-other than the North and South Polar regions, the only place the Peregrine Falcon is not found naturally is New Zealand, with a presence on every continent but Antarctica. This may be the origin of its name-Peregrine (also peregrin, but the preferred spelling in Modern English drops the final E) arrived fairly early to English, from 1350 to 1400 in the Middle English period from the Latin word peregrinus via the Old French faulcon pelerin. Peregrinus meant foreign in Latin-as it applied to falcons it meant ‘coming from somewhere else’, probably in reference to its far-ranging habitats. The Latin word peregrinus derives from peregre meaning abroad, which is taken by combining the Latin per- meaning through and ager meaning a field, literally beyond the boundary of a field.
The peregrine falcon is a medium size bird, the females considerably larger than the males. Peregrines reach full maturity in one year and are known to mate for life. The peregrine is an amazing predator-it takes prey by dropping in a high speed dive and can achieve speeds of 200 miles per hour, often killing the other bird on impact.
Image of a wild juvenile peregrine falcon taken at Forsythe National Wildlife Management Area (New Jersery) courtesy William Dalton, used with permission.
The Tufted Puffin, also known as Crested Puffin, is a relatively abundant (and also really adorable) medium-sized pelagic seabird in the auk family found throughout the North Pacific Ocean. These photos of puffins from Kolyuchin Island, in the far east Russian Arctic, were taken by Ngaire Lawsom.
The Tara research vessel has recently completed a 70,000-mile journey around the world’s oceans collecting data on plankton biodiversity. The international team of scientists have discovered over one million new species on their voyage and produced amazing images of plankton using groundbreaking technology.
What beautiful wee beasties the ocean possesses!
If you like these, which I’m gonna bet that you do, because you like cool things, then you do not want to miss the spectacular video The Secret Life of Plankton, from TED-Ed.
In the ocean’s biggest coordinated orgy, corals release millions of eggs and sperm simultaneously in response to environmental cues. Such cues can involve temperature change, lunar cycle, day length, and possibly chemical signalling. Mass spawning ensures maximum survival rates as there are not simply enough predators to eat all the eggs.
The most biologically diverse place on earth is probably Madidi National Park in northwest Bolivia.
Thousands of birds, butterflies, hundreds of amphibians and almost a dozen species of primates all live in the park.
The environmental impact the park makes is beyond measure, and the conservation of this resource is essential for the survival of some of these beautiful species.
Peek inside a Leatherback Turtle’s (Dermochelys coriacea) mouth: How to eat jelly fish when your mouth is an exquisitely evolved jellyfish deathbed.
We know turtles like to eat jellyfish, and the Leatherback likes them most of all. However, this is the biggest turtle, consuming a prey that extremely low nutritional value, therefore it has to nom on a lot of them. As it does so, it takes in saltwater as well. The jellies and the saltwater get stored in the esophagus.
What happens next you ask? Is it to do with the horrific looking backwards facing spines that don’t look comfortable in anything’s mouth?
But of course! Because that is the beauty of evolution, the refined logic of adaptation.
The muscles of the esophagus squeeze the seawater out of the mouth and the spines, which get progressively larger down the esophagus, hold the jellyfish in place. Once all the water is gone, the jellies are passed into the stomach.
This is one of the many *awesome* characteristics of the leatherback turtle - trawling for jellyfish on this earth for over 90 million year.
Trawling for fish/shrimp (by humans, not leatherbacks), is one of the reasons Leatherbacks are classified as Critically Endangered by the IUCN Red List.
Source: Evolution FB
Mammoth discovery: 11-year-old boy finds well-preserved Ice Age carcass in Siberia
MOSCOW — A teenage mammoth who once roamed the Siberian tundra in search of fodder and females might have been killed by an Ice Age man on a summer day tens of thousands of years ago, a Russian scientist said Friday.
Prof. Alexei Tikhonov of the Zoology Institute in St. Petersburg announced the finding of the mammoth, which was excavated from the Siberian permafrost in late September near the Sopochnaya Karga cape, 3,500 kilometers northeast of Moscow. (AFP/GettyImages)
Wow, first the Mastodon tooth in California and now this?
Can I get some of this amazing luck too, please!?
Kids are always picking stuff up and messing with it.
“Billy! You put that mastodon tooth down RIGHT NOW, mister! No, don’t lick it!!!”
Oh wait. That’s a good thing. Turn over rocks. You never know what’s under them. Maybe even a mammoth. Although you’d probably need to bring a couple friends to turn that one over.
Say hello to the technicolor dream cadavers of Iori Tomita. By combining classical specimen preservation techniques with meticulous staining methods, the Japanese artists transforms fish, squid, turtles and even chameleons into a menagerie of multi-colored hell beasts.
The examples here all come from a series entitled “shinsekai [toumei hyouhon],” or“New World Transparent Specimens.”