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Evolution, You’re Drunk; top 5 Animals That Are a crazy Combinations of Other Animals

Friday, October 31, 2014

Remember the first time you saw a platypus (Platypus; the bird, reptile, mammal animal) as a kid and for a moment refused to believe that nature would really create an animal that looks like a duck had sex with a beaver? Well guess what, the world is actually full of bizarre mashup creatures like that, some of them hilarious and some of them terrifying, all of them looking like the result of a very drunken night of interspecies animal sex.

1-  Piglet Squid = Pig + Squid

Depending on the orientation of this picture when you look at it, this seems like either some cartoony pig without legs or a tiny squid with an inverted snout growing on its forehead. Either way, the creators of Pokemon have clearly run out of ideas by now.


The truth, of course, is that it's a type of squid, just a really freaking weird one. The piglet squid, as it's commonly known, is rarely photographed, since it prefers to lurk far below the surface, and as a result little is known of its behavior, other than its penchant for looking huggable.

 For reasons inexplicable its tentacles approximate a child's curly head of hair, and its skin patterns resemble an innocent smiling face, best seen on its semi-transparent younger form.

2- Colugo = Monkey + Bat

Holy shit, that Wizard of Oz reboot looks terrifying. This looks like a vampire monkey in mid-transformation, but it can't possibly be a real thing, can it? Maybe it's some sort of kite made out of monkey flesh, or an ape in a trench coat flashing us in free fall. Because otherwise, if this is a thing that exists and there's the remotest possibility of it ever swooping down on us, then we're never setting foot in a forest ever again.
Unfortunately for our peace of mind, it's real. It's called the colugo, also known as the flying lemur of Southeast Asia, which is an inaccurate name because its closest relative isn't the lemur, or even the bat -- it's YOU. That's right -- it has recently been established that flying lemurs are our closest non-primate relatives.




3- Saiga = Goat + Elephant  
Quick, somebody hustle this thing out of the cantina before Boba Fett shows up. Seriously, that's some sci-fi shit right there. Whichever concept artist came up with this elephant/goat fusion probably got paid in illegal mushrooms.
But no, this is a real animal known as a saiga that lives in the Mongolian and Russian steppes. Its pink-ribbed, waxy horns have been used in Chinese medicine for centuries, but not in the way the word "horn" suggests. A trunk similar to an elephant's takes in grass and leaves, and highlights another weird thing about it: The saiga can eat plants that are poisonous to other animals.

4- Honduran White Bat = Hamster + Pig

Look at these adorable hamster-like critters cuddling together in their leafy home. Have you ever seen a pig nose on a little fuzzy creature before? Don't you just wanna grab a bunch of them and hug them?

Actually, you'd better not, because that thing is a freaking bat, and it is riddled with diseases. The Ectophylla alba or Honduran white bat is a unique species of fruit-eating "tent" bat, which refers to its ability to cut the leaf off the bush it lives in and fold it over on top of itself, forming a tent, while it clings to the underside. That's right: Rather than just crashing into caves, they actually build their own homes.







5- Bilby = Rabbit + Kangaroo

If, for some reason, you decided to take the hippity-hop stylings of a kangaroo, the big floppy ears of a bunny and the face of a possum, then you'd get this thing -- and before you ask, yes, like so many of God's experiments gone awry, it's from Australia.
These giant mutant rats are called bilbies, and they're members of the bandicoot family. Their large, bunny-like ears allow them to hear when the other animals make fun of them and are also used for thermoregulation in their arid home. Also, like actual kangaroos, bilbies like hopping around and have a pouch where they stash their young'uns.

PLATYPUS ELECTRO-SENSITIVITY; HUNTING WITH ELECTRICITY

Thursday, October 30, 2014


Imagine you’re an aquatic mammal, searching for prey buried in the mud of a stream. You close your eyes, ears and nose, dive underwater, swim down to the bottom, and then what? This is how the platypus hunts. Blind, deaf, and unable to smell anything, it pays attention to something else. Shrimp and other prey are moving around, and each bit of movement could give their position away. All muscle contractions involve electric pulses, and because water conducts electricity those pulses are broadcast out.

The secret weapon of the platypus is its beak, which is covered in mucus glands capable of  sensing electric fields. Each gland has nerves and the mucus transmits the electricity to the nerves. It’s a fearsome arsenal of sensors – each platypus has an estimated 40,000 electro-sensors. It’s also got 60,000 touch sensors on its beak, and it uses the two systems together to search for objects in the mud and then decide whether it might be suitable for dinner.

As the platypus swims along, it sweeps its bill from side to side, and it uses the changing signal from each sweep to work out the direction of the prey. Not only will they swim straight towards a shrimp, they’ll quickly home in on the DC voltage from a buried battery as well. This is highly effective hunting – a platypus finds half its body weight in prey every single night.

SUPER SATELLITES BECOME EARTH’S GUARDIAN ANGELS

Satellite Earth

A new fleet of satellites will monitor Earth and protect it against threats.
693 km above Earth, you will find the Sentinel-1A satellite, which takes extremely detailed photos of our planet, using a 12-m-long radar antenna. At this point, the satellite has already captured melting glaciers and flooding.
The 2.3 tonne satellite was launched on 3 April 2014, and that is only the beginning of what ESA has named the most extensive observation programme ever focusing on the surface of the Earth.
Approaching 2020, a total of five Sentinel missions will be initiated. The satellites will monitor our planet and provide data and high-resolution radar images of anything from pollution, oceans, landscape changes, and flooding to earthquakes.
Image of a transect across the northern
 section of the Antarctic Peninsula
In 2016, the Sentinel-1A will be followed by a twin, the Sentinel-1B. Together, the two of them are capable of collecting data from anywhere on Earth within a period of six days. The special radar aerial of the satellites enables them to take photographs of Earth when it is cloudy or even dark.
These qualities come in handy in connection with emergencies such as flooding, when relief agencies need fast access to data. The future Sentinel satellites will all be assigned a set of unique tasks.

The Sentinel-1A has already sent the first detailed images of ice and mountains in Antarctica.

Source: Science Illustrated Australia

Will gold on your skin kill you?

Thursday, October 23, 2014


In the Bond film Goldfinger, actor Shirley Eaton’s character dies after getting covered in gold paint from head to foot by the baddies. We’re supposed to believe she suffocated, as her skin couldn’t breathe. But would this happen?
Shirley Eaton
















The skin can absorb oxygen, but only for its own use. Humans do not breathe through their skin and consequently will not suffocate after having their skin covered in airtight paint. If a person were plastered with gold paint in real life and died, the cause of death would probably be something else. Gold paint may contain heavy metals,
organic solvents such as turpentine, or other toxins that have a damaging effect on body cells. These substances are readily absorbed through the skin, from where they are taken to all corners of the body by the blood system. A less likely cause of deathcould also be overheating, as the paint retains body heat.
How can body paint be lethal?
Most Likely
Heavy metals: The epidermis absorbs substances from the surroundings such as heavy metals and solvents, which could be lethal in large quantities.
Unlikely
Vitamin D deficiency: The skin's production of vitamin D depends on sunlight. Hence, gold pain could cause lethal vitamin D deficiency over time.
Possible
Overheating: Sweat glands and blood vessels control body temperature. Gold would prevent the body from sweating and shedding body heat - this could be lethal in warm weather.
Source: Science Illustrated

Science fiction come true; Breathe Underwater Without Oxygen Tanks

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Breathe Underwater Without Oxygen Tanks







The ability to breathe underwater without oxygen tanks has long been a dream of humanity. Now it is very likely to become a reality, thanks to so-called Aquaman crystal, created by scientists from the University of Southern Denmark. It is a crystalline material that can absorb oxygen from the environment and store it so that it can be later released when and where required.
The material was synthesized by Professor Christine McKenzie and postdoc Jonas Sundberg, who used X-ray diffraction to study the arrangement of atoms in the material when it wasfilled with oxygen, as well as when it was emptied.
The “Aquaman crystal” owes much of its ability to absorb oxygen from the environment tocobalt, which is the main component of the new material that determines its molecular and electronic structure.
According to the researchers,10 liters of this material are sufficient to absorb all of the oxygen in a room, while one of its most amazing features is the ability to absorb and release oxygen several times without losing its properties. “It is like dipping a sponge in water, squeezing the water out of it and repeating the process over and over again,” notes McKenzie.
Thus, instead of using bulky oxygen tanks, a diver would only need a small amount of the “Aquaman crystal” to be able to breathe underwater. “A few grains contain enough oxygen for one breath and, as the material can absorb oxygen from the water around the diver and supply the diver with it, the diver will not need to bring more than these few grains,” explains prof McKenzie.
The key property of the new material is that it does not react to oxygen while absorbing it in a process called selective chemisorption. It means that it can extract large quantities of oxygen from the environment without being subjected to corrosion and decomposition associated with long exposure to the gas. “The material is both a sensor, and a container for oxygen. We can use it to bind, store and transport oxygen, like a solid artificial hemoglobin.
As for possible uses for the new material beyond diving, it could also contribute to the treatment of respiratory illnesses and help lung patients who need oxygen tanks to breathe properly. “When the substance is saturated with oxygen, it can be compared to an oxygen tank containing pure oxygen under pressure — the difference is that this material can hold three times as much oxygen,” says prof McKenzie.

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