as-biology

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The Future Is Finally Here: The Hoverboard.

Built and flown by Catalin Alexandru Duru, the board is controlled by only the movement of the pilots feet and is believed to be a viable transport method in the not too distant future. 

New plans for prototypes are underway, flying up to 1.5 meters above the ground with definite hopes of eventually creating a market to sell these hoverboards.

Catalin Alexandru Duru has achieved the farthest hoverboard flight ever, with a total of 275.9 m.

(Thenextweb)

Better fine motor skills with delayed cord clamping

The importance of the umbilical cord not only for the fetus but for newborn infants too was shown by Swedish researchers several years ago, in a study that received great international acclaim. In a follow-up study in the journal JAMA Pediatrics they have now been able to show an association between delayed cord clamping (DCC) and children’s fine motor skills at the age of four years, especially in boys.

Several years ago, in a clinical study comprising 400 newborns, Dr. Ola Andersson and colleagues demonstrated that the risk of iron deficiency at the age of four months was considerably lower in infants whose umbilical cords were clamped and cut three minutes after birth (‘delayed cord clamping’, DCC) than in those whose cords were removed within 10 seconds ('early cord clamping’, ECC). The newborns in the study were well-nourished babies born after full-term pregnancies to healthy mothers.

'If the cord is left in place for three minutes, the blood continues to flow into the newborn’s circulation. The baby receives about a deciliter of extra blood, which corresponds to two liters in an adult,’ says Dr. Andersson, a researcher at Uppsala University and pediatrician in Halmstad.

Image Source

Obi Island Birdwing (Ornithoptera aesacus)

The Obi Island Birdwing is a rare species of birdwing butterfly, endemic to the island of Obira (formerly Obi), Indonesia. It inhabits tropical rainforest. Due to extensive logging on the island the conservation of the species is a concern, and has been classified as ’Vulnerable’ by the IUCN.

photo credits: Anaxibia

anonymous asked:

what do you think about remoraid and octilliery did someone ask about this?

Sit yourself down anon, because ol’ ommanyte here is about to get a bit ranty.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Octillery. Cephalopods are like my favourite animal group. And hey, remoraid is a pretty cool guy too, remoras are awesome. But the fallacy, the fucking insinuation, that a fish ‘evolves’ into an octopus rustles all 700 of my biology jimmies.

We’re not only taking about this bizzare vertebrate to invertebrate cross , but a split even further back on the evolutionary tree, in relation to embryological development (molluscs are protostomes, i.e. when the gut forms in the embryo, the first hole that forms becomes the mouth, where as in us and echinoderms (starfish etc), the deuterostomes, the first hole becomes the anus lol) 

And this isn’t the only instance of such biological blasphemy in the pokemon world. Clamperl, again a mollusc, is supposed to ‘evolve’ into one of two fish, again an invertebrate/vertebrate cross.

Do I have an explanation for this? Maybe. Perhaps scientists in the pokemon world are actually a bit shit, and perhaps we are just exposed to psuedoscience and myths a lot because we literally play the games from the perspectives of children… but I think these ‘evolutions’ so to speak could be explained by a mixture of poor observation and folklore.

Here is my real world example. Meet the Barnacle Goose (Branta leucopsis) and the Goose Barnacle (Pollicipes pollicipes)

Back in the day, people thought that the geese literally grew and were born from these barnacles

Haha what idiots right? Birds hatching from barnacles lol. But don’t be too quick to judge. Barnacle geese are migratory, flying to the arctic circle from temperate latitudes, such as  the british isles every summer to breed and raise their young. Europeans at the time would never actually witness the geese breeding and rearing chicks  the old fashioned eggy bird way, but just manifesting in large numbers to do goose stuff every winter. Perhaps they grew and matured under the sea as barnacles during the summer, and hatch and flock as geese when winter approached. The barnacles do look like geese heads, and for lack of a better explanation for all these birds materialising, the connection was made and stuck fast, forming the folklore that gives both the geese and the barnacles their names today. 

So, we have here a  real life example of people thinking invertebrates could grow into vertebrates. Could the case of Remoroid -> Octillery, and Clamperl -> Gorebyss/Huntail be a similar case of association and lack of observation? Perhaps Remoraid are migratory, and move away from coastal habitats just when Octillery juveniles hatch and appear. Maybe Octillery predate on mature remoraid. Both instances could result in remoraid being there in one moment, but not the next. If an octillery is there in the habitat to take it’s place then perhaps the connection could be made between the two.

And what of Clamperl? I always thought that the pink ‘pearl’ could in fact be a fish egg, with the bivalve clam pokemon a separate entity (perhaps the blue stuff?) Both huntail and gorebyss could lay their eggs within the clam, and upon maturation of the eggs  it appears that the clam itself has turned into the respective fish pokemon (both gorebyss and huntail could lay eggs in the same clam, but pheromones from adult conspecifics, i.e. from the deep sea scale/tooth are needed for the specific fish pokemon species to hatch? I dunno, that’s a story for another time lol) 

It could be that these evolutionary stories perpetuate in the pokemon world because biologists are actually terrible at making observations of pokemon life histories (well like they did think that there were only 150 pokemon and now there are like over 700, or the relatively recent discovery of baby pokemon - I know this is all game mechanic stuff, but still), or maybe, as a ten year old, you still believe that remoraid grow into octillery because your grandmother told you such stories when you were a tot, but in my head anyway, these associative myths can explain these ‘evolutions’.

(I know it doesn’t explain trainers who raise these pokemon in isolation from the wild but shhhhhh) 

Female Velvet Ant (Mutillidae, Hymenoptera)

Easily mistaken for a colourful ant by appearance and name, this is in fact a wasp of the family Mutillidae. The females are wingless and hence the common name of velvet ant, in conjunction with the thick usually brightly coloured pile of hair many species bear. The male is typically wasp-like in appearance.

Females lay their eggs in the nests of other insects, typically a ground-nesting bee such as a bumblebee or wasp nest. Her young then develop as idiobiont ectoparasitoids, eventually killing their immobile larval/ pupal hosts.

As in all Hymenoptera, only the female is capable of inflicting a sting, but in the case of the Mutillidae, that sting is reputed to be intensely painful. This unenviable feature has earned them the colloquial name of “cow killers” or cow ants.



by Sinobug (itchydogimages) on Flickr.
Pu'er, Yunnan, China

See more Chinese Hymenopterans (wasps, hornets, bees, ants and sawflies) on my Flickr site HERE…..

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Ankle Fusion Surgery (Arthrodesis)

This 3D medical video depicts the anatomy and function of the ankle joint, as well as the common reasons for having an ankle fusion surgical procedure. A brief overview of what happens in an anterior ankle fusion surgical procedure is shown.

By: Nucleus Medical Media.

Phragmites

I’m 171 cm tall, for size reference: so that’s well over 3 metres of water reed! What’s more amazing is that in better conditions, these reeds can grow to twice that height.

With different parts of this plant, I could make flour, paper, baskets, flutes, fishing poles, spears, rope, pen nibs, and a marshmallow-like confection. [x, x]

These huge marsh grasses dominate the local biome, providing a habitat for birds (who nest among them) and insects (who nest inside them). [x]

A reed bed: behind is an out-of-focus is a heron eating a rodent, sheltered from my prying lens.

Drinker moth caterpillar (Euthrix potatoria), which eats phragmites.

Phragmites in my insect hotels

They spread rhizomatically, with a clonal patch being able to persist for over 1000 years.

Phragmites have some unique ecological properties that make them a keystone species in Eurasian marsh biomes

Here in Eurasia at least, the only habitats to which they are disruptive are those that have been traditionally grazed, but are no longer: they are one of many plants that can be effectively suppressed through conservation grazing.

These grasses have traditionally been used here in Scandinavia for making thatch roofs; however, their use is giving way to farmed Japanese Miscanthus species, but either kind of grass will make a roof that lasts several decades. [x]

Thatch-roofed house in Mölle, Sweden.

In essence, they are valuable plants that have fallen out of vogue in favour of machine-harvestable crops, but they have both historical and potential uses in sustainable building, locavore eating, and conserving habitat.

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Joints: Crash Course A&P #20 By Crashcourse

We continue our look at your bones and skeletal system, skipping over the silly kid’s song in favor of a more detailed look at your your axial and appendicular skeleton. This episode also talks about the structural and functional classifications of your joints and the major types of body movement that they facilitate.

Table of Contents
Basic Structure of Your Skeletal System 1:50
Axial and the Appendicular Skeleton 2:02
Structural and Functional Classifications of Joints 3:41
Major Types of Body Movement 6:02

Archaeornithoides deinosauriscus

Source: http://karkemish00.deviantart.com/art/Archaeornithoides-deinosaurisc-149624477

Name: Archaeornithoides deinosauriscus

Name Meaning: Shaped like an ancient bird

First Described: 1992

Described By: Elzanowksi and Wellnhofer 

ClassificationDinosauria, Saurischia, Eusaurischia, Theropoda, Neotheropoda, Averostra, Tetanurae, Orionides, Avetheropoda, Coelurosauria, Tyrannoraptora, Maniraptoriformes, Maniraptora, Pennaraptora, Paraves, Eumaniraptora, Averaptora, Troodontidae

Archaeornithoides was a maniraptoran of questionable rank (the troodontid bit is under debates) from the Djadokhta Formation beds in Mongolia, dating back to the Campanian age of the Late Cretaceous, about 75 million years ago. There aren’t a lot of remains of this animal, though the skull was only about 5 centimeters long, indicating that the body would have been about 50 to 60 centimeters long, making it one of the smallest non-avian dinosaurs. It was very birdlike, and it may be a juvenile of an already described genus, but it is unlike anything else and thus may be a valid genus. The rear portion of the skull showed damage from the teeth of a mammal, indicating that it was fed on by a mammal, though it could have been actively hunted or scavenged on. 

Sources: 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archaeornithoides

http://www.prehistoric-wildlife.com/species/a/archaeornithoides.html

Shout out goes to ambiguousinterface!

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Despite the minimun of light, at depth of 166 m below ocean surface is possible to find live algaes.

In 2011 scientists interested in mapping the seabed habitats, using cameras in the cold waters of a glacial fjord in the Norwegian Svalbard archipelago in the Arctic Ocean, they found what they believe is a brown (Phaeophyceae) or red alga (Rhodophyta). 

Unfortunately, in the absence of voucher specimens, it is impossible to say with absolute certainty that the observed organisms are not in fact something else, such as a hydrozoan, but in every respect, the organisms certainly appear algal in nature. Superficially, is similar in shape to Desmarestia aculeata.

This report is not the deepest record of macroalgal presence in the world (there is a crustose coralline algae living at 189-268 m, in a seamount off San Salvador), but it may very well be the deepest macroalgal record to date for the high Arctic

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Golden Rice and Why You Should Not Fund Greenpeace

Without a doubt, Greenpeace has previously been a force for good. Helping to convince governments and the population as a whole the importance of protecting the rainforests and biodiversity, to stress the need for renewable energy, and to condemn the gruesome act of whale hunting – to name just a few things they’ve done. However, is that what they are going to be remembered for?

Video based on ‘Gold vs. Green’

By: Myles Power.
Support at: http://patreon.com/powerm1985