大艷青尺蛾 - Agathia magnificentia inoue, family Geometridae
- Tianone (1100m), Ilan County, Taiwan
(photo: Shipher Wu)
Glowing deep-sea discoveries
Scientists have discovered a further two species of colourful deep-sea dwelling worms. This image shows the bright yellow kidneys and purple mouth of the transparent “shining bomber” (Swima fulgida), discovered off the coast of California, US. The findings are published in the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society.
Swima worms can measure up to 3cm (1.2 inches) long and use fan-like bristles to swim through the water at depths of more than 2,700 metres. They are also bioluminescent: producing light in the gloomy depths of the ocean through a chemical reaction in their bodies.
Researchers collected specimens of the worms to study them in a lab. Under blue light, they were able to identify the bioluminescent structures of the worms. In this light the chemicals responsible for bioluminescence show up as bright, fluorescent green.
The worms are named bombers for the tiny “bombs” they can release to distract predators - visible here as two green capsules on the left side of the “green bomber’s” head. When startled the worm can drop the glowing decoys and swim away from the threat.
The other new species, the “orange bomber” (Swima tawitawiensis) was discovered off the Philippines by an international research group led by Larry Madin of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Unlike the species found off the US west coast, it has orange instead of green blood.
Northern Cardinal, House Sparrow, American Goldfinches
yeah that’s right i’m boss
violet-green swallow, tree swallow, and rough-winged swallow
photo by tracey norris
A Persian leopard caught on tape, thought to be locally extinct in Afghanistan, is captured on film by the Wildlife Conservation Society — and it ain’t happy. Probably because the WCS’s camera also caught poachers in action. (Photos via National Geographic; h/t Neatorama) “The presence of leopards and lynxes in Afghanistan tells us that these big cats are finding enough prey to survive,” said Ghani Ghuriani, Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock. Peter Zahler, Deputy Director of WCS’s Asia Program, said: “We are thrilled by these images and the story of survival that they tell, but we were sobered by the fact that the cameras also took photographs of local people walking past with guns. Poaching is still a very real threat, and WCS is committed to helping the Afghan government and local communities protect these rare and beautiful animals.”
Sitatunga newborn (Tragelaphus spekii)