Wasp performs roach-brain-surgery to make zombie slave-roaches
"Ampulex compressa is a wasp that has evolved to tackle roaches, insert a stinger into their brains and disable their escape reflexes. This lets the wasp use the roach's antennae to steer the roach to its lair, where it can lay its egg in it.
Seeing a full-grown wasp crawl out of a roach suddenly makes those Alien movies look pretty derivative. "
Via Boing Boing
posted by badlydubbedboy
on Feb 3, 2006 -
The Niagara Fortissimo.
“Mahler was to conduct in Buffalo, New York, and we took advantage of the trip to visit Niagara Falls. We spent hours near and even under the roaring falls... and then with that roar still in his ears Mahler went to conduct Beethoven’s ‘Pastorale’. I was waiting for him as he stepped off the podium. ‘Endlich ein fortissimo!
,’ he said, ‘At last a fortissimo!’” The fortissimo in question is Beethoven's, not Niagara's. The point, as Alma elaborates it in her memoirs
, is that music can offer experiences more overpowering than Nature itself — a kind of extreme aestheticism that Oscar Wilde also propounded in "The Decay of Lying
" when he said that most sunsets are attempts at second-rate Turners. More inside.
posted by matteo
on Jan 18, 2006 -
of wild things. Whales, Eagles, and more. Flash interface, but it's not too bad to navigate. Every time I think I'm getting good at taking pictures, I see something like this and just drool.
posted by pjern
on Dec 31, 2005 -
For the sake of your sanity, for five minutes this week forget the memos, the autopsies, the celebrity verdicts, and the rest. Go outside and look at the full moon, which will hang in the sky at its lowest point in 18 years over the next three nights, says NASA, creating the "summer moon illusion."
If you're a US resident, calculate your local moonrise time here
posted by digaman
on Jun 19, 2005 -
A cuddly new species! Severe neuro-trauma
wound is plainly visible, as is the foreign tentacle, which was found to be grasping the mid-brain area.
posted by kenko
on Jun 9, 2005 -
Nature starts a weblog about the flu pandemic.
Now the virus is in coastal cities on both sides of South America. It hit Europe two weeks ago, ripping through Paris in just 11 days. In the French capital alone, there were 2.5 million cases and 50,000 dead. That's par for the course — infection rate 25% and mortality 2%, similar to the 1918 pandemic. Extrapolate these numbers, and we're going to have over 30 million dead worldwide. In poor and densely populated countries like India, it could be worse.
Where's next, I asked. Based on passenger data — which had to be prised from the airlines — one epidemiologist was willing to make a guess. "Within two weeks, there." He traced his finger from San Diego to Los Angeles, up to San Francisco. Within another three to four weeks, it'll be the turn of the conurbations along the eastern seaboard.
It's fiction but it might become reality soon.
posted by kika
on May 25, 2005 -
Camouflaged and Walking octopuses
Octopus marginatus and Octopus (Abdopus) aculeatus, that walk along the seafloor using two alternating arms and apparently use the remaining six arms for camouflage.
posted by dov3
on Mar 30, 2005 -
Rainbows, pots of gold, and leprechauns
are images that come to mind on St. Paddy’s Day. They are beautiful
to behold, but how much do you really know about rainbows
? Did you know that there are double
, and supernumerary
rainbows, that no two people ever see the same rainbow
, and that rainbows consist of more than just the ROYGBIV colors
? Rainbows permeate mythology
, and sexuality
. Rainbows are a job
for one, a link to the past
for some, and a hope for the future
posted by debralee
on Mar 17, 2005 -
The strange case of the homosexual necrophiliac duck pushed out the boundaries of knowledge in a rather improbable way when it was recorded by Dutch researcher Kees Moeliker.
posted by Shanachie
on Mar 8, 2005 -
To live in a pristine land ... to roam the wilderness ... to choose a site, cut trees, and build a home ... Thousands have had such dreams, but Richard Proenneke lived them.
In 1968, at 51 years of age, Richard Proenneke retired to Upper Twin Lakes, Alaska
and using nothing but hand tools, built a cabin
where he lived for the next 30 or so years. He filmed
the cabin's construction (as well as much of nature's wonder) and kept meticulous notes on the back of wall calendars. In 1973, Sam_Keith
produced a book (One Man's Wilderness: An Alaskan Odyssey)
based on Proenneke's journal entries and photography. In 1999, at the age of 82, Proenneke could no longer endure the harsh winters of Alaska and moved to California to be with his family. He
on Easter Sunday, 2003.
posted by a_day_late
on Feb 10, 2005 -
and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
announced a pilot program to offer wireless Internet service at five Texas state parks... The wireless service will allow park guests while visiting the park to access the Internet to gain park information, send e-mail or pictures, or just surf the Web, without cords having to physically plug into a network."
Shouldn't be camping be more about nature than technology?
posted by Doohickie
on Dec 16, 2004 -