"...it’s a world so full of carnal conflicts of interest
and deception that only now are biologists getting to grips with all of its ins and outs, including an understanding of why human sex may be about pleasure rather than pain."[via BBC] [more inside]
The Translucent Jewel Caterpillar
, the Nudibranch
of the Forest. Gorgeous caterpillar covered in break-off gumdrops that may help it escape predators. Turns into a bright orange furry
The significance of the dinosaurs' death has been greatly exaggerated
. This article in Nature discusses how mammalian evolution accelerated independent from the death of dinosaurs. The theory was derived from a "supertree
" [pdf ~ 1mb] of mammals and how common ancestors have branched out. Coolest info-graphic ever.
Birds that rap
and cows with accents
. The big picture is urban adaptation
, which is pretty cool. (...and the egg
Sexual ornaments grow out of all proportion
It seems that men will be men throughout the animal kindom, not just our little lonely corner of of it.
Most body parts grow proportionally with the rest of the body as individuals of a species become larger, although scientists have long known that visual cues of reproductive prowess are a special case.
But is this the case with everyone
As the Pentagon ousts plans to turn insects into cyber war machines
you'd be forgiven for asking the question: Where does the real digital end
and the faked life begin?
Are we simulating life synthetically
? or just speeding up
an entirely natural process
? Technologically engineered life is here to stay
. Its not far fetched to speculate
may become all there is.
Mating Leopard Slugs entwine
- one of the untold wonders of the animal kingdom captured on video....
The BBC gets up close and personal
with Life in the Undergrowth
in their new wildlife documentary. A must see for any animal, insect or
David Attenborough fan...
(If the main vid link doesn't work for you try it from here
- realplayer needed)
Female X chromosome 'cracked'
- "The discovery, by an international consortium of scientists, shows that females are far more variable than previously thought and, when it comes to genes, more complex than men." Nature reports
two new studies; one on the complete sequencing of the X chromosome
for humans, which sheds some light on how sex evolved and how women differ from men, and another on how women express many genes from X chromosomes previously thought dormant
"is the Noah's Ark for the Internet era - the world's centralised digital library of films, photographs and associated recordings of species, accessible to all via the world wide web."