"Science, my lad, is made up of mistakes, but they are mistakes which it is useful to make, because they lead little by little to the truth."
- Jules Verne, Journey to the Center of the Earth (via whats-out-there)

(via asapscience)

abby-howard:

ANOTHER ANATOMY POST! Only three vertebrate groups have successfully evolved flight: Birds, Bats, and Pterosaurs, which are NOT dinosaurs, and are an extremely diverse group of reptiles! Pterodactyl is not the only one. However, birds ARE dinosaurs. Avian dinosaurs!

Wings are not some extra structure you tack on to a creature and somehow the arms go away— they ARE arms. Think about that when you are designing creatures with wings and also giving them arms. That means your creature has six limbs.

Next anatomy post: The anatomy and evolution of DRAGONS. If you guys have any requests, feel free to send them in!

(via science-illustrated)

rhamphotheca:

Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
You may have recently seen images on the internet of a strange siphonophore observed on a Nautilus Live expedition. That specimen, while strikingly purple, was one that is well-known to deep-sea scientists. This animal got its purple color (and more typically black) from the fish that it eats. In fact, earlier this week, scientists on the R/V Western Flyer collected an individual from the same genus. One species in the group has been shown to use bioluminescent lures to attract its prey, and other species are under investigation.  Although the type shown in that viral video is relatively well documented, most of the siphonophore species in the ocean are found in the deep-sea and are poorly known due to the difficulty in sampling these delicate animals from the deep sea. MBARI scientist Steve Haddock and his collaborators study this group because the many remarkable shapes, sizes, colors, and bioluminescence capabilities can help in understanding evolution in the deep-sea, the chemical processes involved in bioluminescence, predator-prey interactions, and biodiversity in the deep midwater. This undescribed physonect, called the galaxy siphonophore by Haddock and his collaborators, is one of the more spectacular of the deep-living species observed this week on the R/V Western Flyer. It is often found in this spiral shape, casting its many tentacles all around like a spider in its web.

rhamphotheca:

Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

You may have recently seen images on the internet of a strange siphonophore observed on a Nautilus Live expedition. That specimen, while strikingly purple, was one that is well-known to deep-sea scientists. This animal got its purple color (and more typically black) from the fish that it eats. In fact, earlier this week, scientists on the R/V Western Flyer collected an individual from the same genus. One species in the group has been shown to use bioluminescent lures to attract its prey, and other species are under investigation.

Although the type shown in that viral video is relatively well documented, most of the siphonophore species in the ocean are found in the deep-sea and are poorly known due to the difficulty in sampling these delicate animals from the deep sea. MBARI scientist Steve Haddock and his collaborators study this group because the many remarkable shapes, sizes, colors, and bioluminescence capabilities can help in understanding evolution in the deep-sea, the chemical processes involved in bioluminescence, predator-prey interactions, and biodiversity in the deep midwater.

This undescribed physonect, called the galaxy siphonophore by Haddock and his collaborators, is one of the more spectacular of the deep-living species observed this week on the R/V Western Flyer. It is often found in this spiral shape, casting its many tentacles all around like a spider in its web.