Glowing Cockroach Mimics Toxic Beetle. The cockroach species Luchihormetica luckae emits a green glow. A glowing green cockroach would seem much easier to kill than our more familiar kitchen pests, but this particular insect evolved its own set of lights to avoid exactly such predatory attention, according to a new study.Luchihormetica luckae glows to mimic the bioluminescent click beetle, whose glow warns predators of its toxicity.Found in rain forests around an active volcano in Ecuador, the inch-long (2.5-centimeter-long) cockroach is unique for a few reasons, scientists say. For one thing, while many life-forms have evolved their own flashiness, most are found in the deep-sea—making bioluminescence a relatively rare trait on land. But L. luckae is particularly rare, in that it glows to mimic another insect. Other uses of bioluminescence in the insect world, as in the case of the common firefly, are more attuned to attracting mates—lighting up to find love in the dark simply saves time. Unfortunately, it also makes one much more visible to predators. “Bioluminescence is like any evolutionary tool—there is no single use for it. It can attract, deter, or even be used as an invisibility cloak of sorts,” said Olivia Judson, an evolutionary biologist and author of Dr. Tatiana’s Sex Advice to All Creation.
Black Panther – a typical melanistic color of any species of big cats.
In Latin America, a Black Panther is just a melanistic jaguar; in Asia and Africa it’s a black leopard, and in North America it may be black jaguars or pumas. By the way, it has been proven that black cats have a more balanced nervous system and faster response than other colors of cats.
Vampire Squid’s Surprising Diet Revealed despite its ghoulish name and looks, the vampire squid (pictured, an individual in 2004) isn’t a bloodthirsty terror of the deep after all, a new study says.Instead, the nightmarishly named species browses on “marine snow”—dead plankton, algae, fecal matter, goo, shells shed by tiny crustaceans, and other detritus.The squid gather the food particles using two long, hair-lined filaments before wrapping the bits into meal-size mucus balls, according to undersea video footage, live lab observations of captive vampire squid, autopsies, and examination via electron microscope.”Because of its fearsome appearance, and because all other cephalopods living today are predators, it was thought that [vampire squid], too, were hunting for living prey,” said study co-author Henk-Jan Hoving of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) in California.”We have now found the opposite.”
A Jeweled Beetle’s Iridescence
This enlarged image shows a jeweled beetle Chrysina gloriosa. Researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology studied the surface structures on the beetle’s shell and discovered that the iridescent colors are produced from liquid crystalline material that self-assembles into a complex arrangement of polygonal shapes.
Image credit: Gary Meek, Georgia Tech
The Dead Sea‘s salinity of 33.7 percent makes it 8.6 times saltier than the ocean. Bordering Israel, the West Bank and Jordan, it is 423m below sea level, making it the lowest place on land on Earth.
This amazing place is a tourist hotspot, more than 1m visitors a year visit on the Israeli & Palestinian side alone. The view from the shore is one amazing thing, but from the air, the strange salt formations in and around the lake is even more stunning.
The blue monkey or diademed monkey (Cercopithecus mitis) is a species of Old World monkey native to Central and East Africa, ranging from the upper Congo River basin east to the East African Rift and south to northern Angola and Zambia. It sometimes includes the Sykes’, silver, and golden monkey as subspecies.
RAIN OF FIRE !!
Photograph by Josell Mariano
In this apocalyptic photograph by Josell Mariano, we see the results of a long exposure and steel wool lit on fire. Steel wool, also known as wire wool, is a bundle of strands of very fine soft steel filaments, used in finishing and repairing work to polish wood or metal objects, for cleaning household cookware and in this case, light painting.
To get this shot, there was an assistant out of frame standing above the subject spinning the lit steel wool to create the sparks. It was a 30 second exposure and the subject stood very still for the entire shot. Epic!