Tag Archives: biology

What Are These Strange Creatures and Why Are They Washing Up On the Shores of Monterey Bay?

Meet the velella velella. These odd creatures, which are often called by-the-wind sailors, are a species of invertebrate closely related to Portuguese Man-o-wars. Basically, they’re jellyfish that spend the entirety of their adult lives on the surface of the water. Their only form of navigation is the sail on their back, which is how they got their nickname. When winds get violent, velella velellas are pretty much at the mercy of the ocean, and are often stranded by the thousands along beaches

What’s A Bobcat In 60 Seconds

Bobcats (Lynx rufus) are a mainly nocturnal animal and like most feline are very elusive, so they aren’t often seen by humans. A mammal part of the cat family “Felidae”, bobcats first appeared around 1.8 million years ago.  Bobcats have adapted to thrive in many different habitats, such as forests, swamps, deserts, and even urbanized areas. They inhabitat regions from southern Canada all the way to northern Mexico and can be found all throughout the United States. There are an estimated 1 million bobcats living

Did You Know You Can Take A Virtual Tour of One of The US’s Coolest Museums!?!

The Smithsonian National Museum Of Natural History located in Washington, D.C. opened in 1910 and is still one of the United State’s most visited and celebrated museums. The museum itself is pretty massive. According to Smithsonian’s website… “The main building on the National Mall contains 1.5 million square feet of space overall and 325,000 square feet of exhibition and public space; altogether the Museum is the size of 18 football fields, and houses over 1000 employees.”   At the heart of

Just How Big Was the Biggest Bird Ever?

25-28 million years ago, a massive seabird known as Pelagornis sandersi dominated the skies. With wingspans reaching up to 24 feet in length, P. sandersi’s wingspan was more than twice as large as the largest living bird capable of flight, the Royal Albatross (which can have a wingspan of up to 11.5 feet). P. sandersi‘s wingspan was also… As big as many World War I fighter jets: Longer than three Yao Mings lined up head to toe: And longer than most adult anacondas: The bird was so

Did You Know… There’s A Plant That Produces Both Tomatoes and Potatoes?

The “TomTato” is a veggie lover’s dream: above ground, it’s a tomato plant; below ground, it’s a potato plant. The idea was the brainchild of the horticultural firm Thompson and Morgan, based in Ipswich, England. Although the concept sounds crazy, the plants are not genetically modified; rather, they are created using grafting. This process involves making matching incisions into two different plants which allows you to connect them. A similar process was recently used by a professor from Syracuse University to create

Celebrating World Elephant Day Through Pictures

Today we celebrate the third annual World Elephant Day. The holiday was created in 2012 by Canadian filmmaker and elephant advocate Patricia Sims, along with the Elephant Reintroduction Foundation in Thailand. The holiday was started to draw awareness to the plight of elephants around the world. Asian elephants are an endangered species, with only about 40,000 left in the wild. In their traditional home of Thailand, only about 4,000 Asian elephants remain today, down from over 100,000 at the beginning of the 1900s.

In This Small Brazilian Town, Dolphins and Fishermen Work Together (Video)

On the Brazilian coast, a couple hundred miles south of São Paulo, lies the small town of Laguna. Laguna is very much like most other small coastal towns in Brazil, with many people relying heavily on fishing to provide both food and income. However, the fishermen of Laguna have a truly remarkable secret weapon: a pod of about 20 bottlenose dolphins. Check it out in this awesome video from the BBC series Human Planet: This interaction is a beautiful example of a

These Guys Were Just Enjoying a Day of Surfing When a Playful Seal Pup Decided to Join (Video)

Matthew and his friend Andrew like to shred a couple waves every now and then. Recently, they were enjoying the waves off the coast of England when they had an unsuspected visitor. Matt describes the event: “Me and my friend Andrew were out enjoying some summer waves when this little guy came along and scared the hell out of Andy because we didn’t know what it was! It nudged his foot from underneath.” The next hour was filled with fun

Villagers Just Caught the Largest Ever Aquatic Insect And It’s Bigger Than Your Hand

Villagers from a village in the Sichuan province of China just collected the largest ever aquatic insect specimen. The bug, a massive dobsonfly, has a wingspan of more than 8 inches. The previous record-holder for the world’s largest aquatic insect was a South American helicopter damselfly, which had a wingspan of 7.5 inches. Though dobsonflies are relatively common (there are over 200 species across Asia, Africa and South America), one of this size had been unheard of until now. Looking at

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