Showing posts from July, 2017

Marine invertebrates in close up

This article was originally posted at Marine invertebrates in close up
This video shows tropical marine invertebrates in stunning detail. Time-lapse footage reveals the fascinating behaviour of marine invertebrates.

Video Link

You may also be interested in Sea slug (Nudibranch) eating another sea slug

Fishes singing in chorus recorded; says new research

This article was originally posted at Fishes singing in chorus recorded; says new research
Fish chorus?
Our aquariums feel silent doesn’t mean fishes can’t product sounds. Only thing is, they make sounds that are not audible to human ears. Think of oceans, seems like a quiet place, but filled with lots of noises. Researchers from Exeter University and Curtin University, in Perth, Australia identified distinct choruses over an 18-month period, says a research article published in Bioacoustics.[1]

Fishes can produce lots of calls. Some fish use their swim bladder to produce noises, releasing air through their mouths, while others use their teeth to make clicking sounds. These calls can be signals for location announcement, territorial disputes or mating calls. Nocturnal predatory fishes use calls to stay together to hunt, while fish that are active during the day use sound to defend their territory. When the same calls are repeated over and over by many fishes, they overlap to form a choru…

New ant species discovered from the stomach of a frog!

This article was originally posted at New ant species discovered from the stomach of a frog!
New species of ant
A new species of ant namely, Lenomyrmex hoelldobleri was discovered from the rainforests of Central and South America by a team led by Christian Rabeling, University of Rochester, New York.[1] The ant genus Lenomyrmex is a recently described one with species distributed from mid to high elevation rainforests of Central and South America. Including this new addition, the genus consists of just seven species, which are rarely collected.

The interesting fact is the place at which it was discovered. It was flushed out from the gut contents of an ant-eating dendrobatid poison frog, Oophaga sylvatica. Ant-eating frogs go for hunting in tiny and hard-to-access places. So these can be used as a tool to go where we can’t go. When capturing a wild frog and flushing their stomachs, the amphibians vomit whatever is in their bellies—revealing potential treasures, like the new ant.
The myster…

Stingrays can chew their food, like mammals

This article was originally posted at Stingrays can chew their food, like mammals
Is chewing a unique mammalian feature?
Unlike mammals, other animals usually don’t have the ability to chew their food. Chewing can be defined as the interaction of upper and lower teeth by compressing and shearing food in between. And the peculiarity of mammalian chewing is the opposable motion of upper and lower jaw. Chewing is a very recent evolutionary adaptation. There are a few animals along with mammals to do that. Chewing is estimated to have evolved some 60-70 million years during the diversification of mammals. Some scientists even believed chewing one of the key innovations that allowed mammals to flourish, by dining well on insects, grasses, and other abundant sources of food.

Now, recent findings using high speed videography has given scientific evidence to show that chewing is not just a mammalian adaptation. Recent study[1] reveals that ocellate river stingray (Potamotrygon motoro) also …

Octopus leaping and catching a crab outside water!

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology
Recently at Smiths Beach in Yallingup, Western Australia, a lady named Porsche Indrisie indecently caught a video showing a small octopus bursting out of a tide pool to capture an unsuspecting crab.

Common shallow-water octopuses are all carnivores. They envelop the prey and bite, injecting a neurotoxin. As long as their gills are wet, they can stay out of water for a minute or two without damage. It"s the suckers that often get fouled up if they traverse dry and coarse materials. This type of ambush hunting in tide pools is a common behavior for octopuses. Some species of octopus make this their primary habitat, so they are adapted to staying in tide pools and making very short forays for seconds, out of the water.

Some facts about Chameleon

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology

Why does the consumption of alcohol produce a burning sensation?

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology
Why does drinking alcohol feels like burning?
Everyone ever tasted alcohol knows the burning sensation it produces. But what is actually producing this burning sensation? New research clearly throws some light into it. There was a lot of misconceptions regarding how alcohol is producing this feeling.
These were the old theories:
Alcohol deprives water content out of our mucous epithelium. This drying up of mucous epithelium is producing the burning sensation. Alcohol absorbs water from tissues, but it is not the reason for the burning sensation!
Alcohol expands blood vessels thereby increasing he circulation, which is producing the heat. Just tasting the alcohol won’t increase blood circulation. Only after consumption of alcohol that the circulation to stomach is increased.
It irritates skin and produces the burning feeling. The truth is, it produces a cooling effect when comes in contact with the skin. This cooling effect is produc…

These electron microscopic images of human body will astonish you

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology

Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a a small artery (blood vessel) cut open with RBCs (red coloured) rushing outside.
Blood Clot

Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of red blood cells (erythrocytes) trapped in a fibrin mesh (yellow). The production of fibrin is triggered by cells called platelets, activated when a blood vessel is damaged. The fibrin binds the various blood cells together, forming a solid structure called a blood clot. A blood clot is a normal response, preventing an excessive loss of blood. However, inappropriate clotting is a major cause of heart attacks and strokes.
Red Blood Cells (RBC)

They look like little cinnamon candies here, but they are actually the most common type of blood cell in the human body – red blood cells (RBCs). These biconcave-shaped cells have the tall task of carrying oxygen to our entire body; in women there are about 4 to 5 million RBCs per micro liter (cubic millimete…

Dolphins talk to each other, recorded first time in history!

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology
For the first time in history, scientists have recorded a full-fledged conversation between two bottlenose dolphins. It was known for years that dolphins use very complex language to communicate each other. But it is the first time we get clear evidence to say they are stringing together words to create sentences and even have grammar, a recent study[1] says.
What was the experiment?
Signals produced by dolphins are classified into five different types. Of these, ‘mutually noncoherent pulses’ or ‘NPs’ were considered for the current study. The experiments were performed on two adult Black Sea bottlenose dolphins (Tursіps truncatus), named Yasha (male) and Yana (female), in a closed concrete pool. The speech patterns were recorded using waterproof Hydrophones places in the pool. The recordings of these dolphins were saved and analysed using various techniques.

[caption id="attachment_883" align="alignnone" width=&quo…

How do animals see in the dark?

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology
We humans can’t do anything in dark as we can’t see in dark. But many animals like cats and owls can see in dark, but how? A new TED Ed video created by Anna Stöckl, from Lund University in Sweden explains.
How our eyes work?
Our eyes have a photo receptive area called retina. When light, essentially photos hit retina, it produces electrical signals. These electrical signals are transmitted to the brain and there it is interpreted into an image. When there is more light, more photos arrive at our eye and we can see brighter images. When it is dark, the amount of photos reaching the eye reduces and we see really fuzzy images. So during darkness our eye adjusts itself to capture more light by increasing the size of pupil. Still we are not good at seeing in dark.
How their eyes work?
Animals like Tarsiers have eyes which are large as their brains. Actually, they have the biggest eyes proportional to head size among all of mammals. This lar…

Largest living fish on earth – Whale Shark – Infographic

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology
The whale shark (Rhincodon typus) is the biggest fish in the sea. The largest confirmed individual had a length of 12.65 meters and a weight of about 21.5 tonnes. The whale shark holds many records for sheer size in the animal kingdom, most notably being by far the largest living non-mammalian vertebrate. It is the sole member of the genus Rhincodon and the only extant member of the family, Rhincodontidae, which belongs to the subclass Elasmobranchii in the class Chondrichthyes. The species originated about 60 million years ago.

Historically, very little data on whale sharks has ever been collected because it was not considered commercially viable. In recent years this status has changed with the increasing demand for shark products from the Asian market. There are increasing reports of whale sharks being taken for their fins as other species of shark become less abundant. The whale shark is currently classed as vulnerable to extinct…

Giants in the ocean - Infographic

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology

Size comparison infographic for large ocean animals. Credit: Karl Tate, LiveScience

Which is the biggest single celled organism?

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology
This video lesson from TED Ed shows why a single celled organism can"t grow bigger in size compared to multi cellular organisms. When a single cell tries to increase its size, its volume increases faster than its surface area. Lesser surface area with increased volume leads to clogging of resources to inside and waste materials to outside. Eventually the cell dies. So the ratio of Surface area to volume is very important for a single celled organism. This is the basic idea behind the evolution of multi cellularity. If a single cell could grown large in size, multi cellular organisms would never have evolved.

These microscopic animals lives on your face!

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology
Did your ever realise that microscopic mites live on your face and entire body through out the life time? These mites called Demodex live its entire life in the skin and pores of humans and other mammals.

Of the identified 65 species, two species live on your face, they are Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis. Two species live in slightly different areas, D. folliculorum lives in pores and hair follicles and D. brevis prefers to live deep inside your sebaceous glands. The adult mites are only 0.3–0.4 mm long, with D. brevis slightly shorter than D. folliculorum. These mites are mostly seen associated with the face as the face has larger pores and more sebaceous glands. They are also seen else where in the body including genital area and breasts.

[caption id="attachment_828" align="alignnone" width="590"] Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis are seen in humans.[/caption]

These are not insects but com…

Evolution observed in live action in a lizard species

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology
When a lizard moves from ovipary to vivipary, it can be considered an episode in live evolution.
Ovipary and vivipary are two modes of reproduction seen in squamates (lizards). Oviparous squamates lay eggs while Viviparous ones give birth to full-term young, which have completed embryonic development, but are enclosed in extraembryonic membranes and an eggshell.

Squamate eggs are usually enclosed in a calcium carbonate shell and consists of an inner organic layer. But the viviparous species lacks outer calcium carbonate layer and consists of thinner organic layer. This loss of thick calcium layer is an important character in the evolution of viviparity. As a calcareous layer is absent, embryos of viviparous species obtain calcium through placental transfer. Thus a thinner outer layer leads to the development of placentation. It is also observed that, viviparous species retain egg more time in the body.

A recent study [1]  reveals evolu…

New alien looking jellyfish found in Mariana trench

This article was originally posted at Amazing Zoology
Surprisingly alien looking jellyfish is discovered on April 4, 2016 from Enigma Seamount near Mariana Trench at almost 3700 meters depth. This jellyfish seems photoshopped, but is real. This was discovered by NOAA’s ship Okeanos Explorer while dispatching their remotely operated vehicle Deep Discoverer to the Enigma Seamount.

Scientists identified it to be of the genus Crossota, a group that does not have a sessile polyp stage. You can see two sets of tentacles in this jellyfish, one short and other long. At the beginning of the video, the long tentacles are extended outward and the bell is not moving. This posture suggests that it is an ambush predator. Inside the bell, red coloured radial canals are connecting to yellow coloured objects, mostly gonads.

Video courtesy of the NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, 2016 Deepwater Exploration of the Marianas.

Giraffes in the world is not a single species, but four

Originally posted at
Recent study identified once thought one species of giraffe as four different speceis
Carlous Linnaeus described the first Giraffe (Giraffa Camelopardalis) in his ‘Systema Naturae’ in 1758 using Nubian Giraffe. Linnaeus never had seen a live giraffe, but described it based on 200-year-old reports. Nine giraffe sub species were described over time, between 1758 and 1899. These giraffe groups were distributed in 12 African countries. Sub species were described based on the differences in ossicones (giraffe horns) and coat patterns. But these distinctions were really unreliable.

Now, a study1 published in Current Biology says giraffes consist of four genetically distinct groups. As these groups don’t interbreed, these can we considered as 4 different species.

Over five years, researchers collected and analysed Nuclear DNA from 105 individuals and Mitochondrial DNA from 190 individuals. The results clearly…

Mother birds can prepare unhatched young ones for climate change

Originally posted at
Zebra finch parents detected increasing temperatures and prepared their unhatched young ones to survive in the era of global warming and climate change
Many invertebrate and ectothermic species exhibit maternal influence in growth of embryos. Their parents have the ability to alter the phenotype of offspring through various means. Whether parents in endothermic groups can alter their young ones was unknown until the findings of a recent study by Mariette and Buchanan. [1]

Australian zebra finch (Taeniopygioa guttata), is a bird adapted to live in arid conditions and is commonly found in Central Australia. They exhibit a particular phenomenon called ‘Incubation calling’. This is the production of a particular kind of call during incubation of eggs. Interesting thing is, their unborn enbryos have the ability to hear and respond to these calls.

[caption id="attachment_785"…

Leopard seal fell in love with this photographer!

The Photographer
[caption id="attachment_770" align="alignnone" width="794"] Paul Nicklen is a wildlife and nature photojournalist specializing in the Arctic and Antarctica with an emphasis on climate change.[/caption]
The Assignment
[caption id="attachment_771" align="alignnone" width="800"] Once he was assigned to Antarctica to photograph Leopard Seals.[/caption]
Leopard seal
[caption id="attachment_772" align="alignnone" width="794"] Leopard seal is an active predator and is the second largest seal in Antarctica. In Pauls own words “When you get in the water with a wild animal, you"re essentially giving yourself to that animal because, as humans, we"re quite helpless and vulnerable in the water. You"re at the seal"s mercy. You"re at the predator"s mercy.”[/caption]
Biggest seal
[caption id="attachment_773" align="alignnone" width="794"] Seei…