Friday, July 25, 2014

Has the Sixth Mass Extinction on Planet Earth Already Begun?

Though it is well known that many species are currently facing endangerment, the seriousness and extent of the issue aren’t as well known.  Judging by the great drops in the numbers of many species around the world, the familiar processes, and the beginning of drastic changes in the ecosystem, scientists worry that the sixth mass extinction on planet earth is soon to begin.


The biodiversity on planet earth has continuously increased over its billions of years in existence, and currently is at the height of it.


Scientists explain that the sixth mass extinction can be directly contributed to human behavior.  While the five other previous extinctions can be attributed instances such as natural planetary changes or interference by catastrophic asteroid strikes, the current one, that many scientists believe is already in its early stages, only leaves us to blame.


earth in hands


WIth the increase of human population and expansion, the decrease of many other species has followed.  A devastating and predictive fact in the matter is that since the human population has doubled in the past 35 years, the number of invertebrate species, which includes butterflies, beetles, spiders and words has plummeted to an astounding 55% of their populations in the same time period.


article-2706026-1A11717B000005DC-374_634x442


The ecosystem is tightly interdependent, so while certain species seem to flourish, others will suffer, and the suffering will eventually spread.  With the destruction of the habitats of animals, the disruption in the global climate, and disintegration of many species already happening, it is not hard to imagine that these occurrences will eventually have a percolating effect up the ecosystem.


Not only have many invertebrates began to severely decrease, but species in the megafauna class, such as the elephant, polar bear, rhinoceros, and countless others are currently facing extreme endangerment.  What is crucial to the success of these populations is the success of their habitats, their food supply (which is sustained by other creatures in the ecosystem below them, such as the invertebrates to the megafauna) and noninterference by humans.


Due to the megafauna species often being hunting by humans, their long gestational periods and lack of habitats and food, it is becoming increasingly more difficult for these declining species to get ahead.


elephant mother and baby


Without extreme changes from the current practices that are happening on planet Earth, the detriment of the ecosystem is sure to continue.


elephant in habitatgiraffes and cars ecosystem chart



Has the Sixth Mass Extinction on Planet Earth Already Begun?

Creepy Insect Species Discovered

The biggest aquatic insect on earth was discovered in China’s Sichuan province about 2 weeks ago. This scary looking insect is something straight out of your nightmares.


With huge pincers and a large wing span I couldn’t imagine what kind of horror it would bring if it was the size of a F-150 pick up truck!


Largest Aquatic Insect Species Found in China




This unique specimen doesn’t officially have a name yet although many commenters have come up with some pretty interesting ones so far.


flying-giant-insect-bite


massive-wingspan-China-species-2014


Chengdu, China


giant-monster-insect-caught


largest-aquatic-insect-world-china


world's-scariest-bugs



Creepy Insect Species Discovered

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Amazing Photographs From a Very Deadly Encounter

Though most common seals appear cute and cuddly, this can be quite deceiving.  There are species of seals that are deadly, and if one is found within a close proximity of the creature, faces severe danger.


The Leopard Seal, that resides in the arctic, has been labeled as one of the most vicious and deadly predators in Antarctica.  WIth its huge, sharp teeth, intensely powerful jaws and enormous eleven-foot body, it was made to be.


Recently, a photographer for National Geographic unexpectedly came into close contact with one of these predators.  Though initially, he was terrified, didn’t know what to expect and was fearful for his life, the encounter ended beautifully.


threat show by leopard seal


As the photographer first noticed the seal drop the dead penguin in its mouth and begin to head over in his direction, he was struck with fear.  As the beast came within a few feet of him, when they were face to face, the seal opened its mouth wide.


At this moment, the photographer says that he had extreme dry-mouth and was trembling.  He didn’t know what to expect, but the worst, and was surprised by the what happened next.


The mouth-opening was a what is known as a threat display.  The seal did it to show dominance over the photographer as another predator.


Though soon after this, the seal returned to the photographer with a penguin to offer him.  The seal, after initially trying to threaten the photographer, came to the assumption that he was useless as a predator and needed help.  She wanted to ensure that the photographer, a weak predator in her mind, would not starve to death.


penguin


For days as the photographer remained in the area, the interactions between him and the deadly seal continued, and she offered him many penguins throughout this time.


Through this experience, which the photographer says was one of the most incredible of his life, he learned how to survive as a predator in the ocean, formed a relationship with a dangerous predator, and got amazing, one-in-a-lifetime photographs.


leopard seal and camera man


leopard seal hanging outleopard seal on land



Amazing Photographs From a Very Deadly Encounter

Biggest Bat in the World

The honor of being the largest bat on planet earth goes to the one and only Australian flying fox. This giant bat looks like some monster straight out of an 80′s horror movie!


Their wing span average over 1 meter in length and look a lot like a fox, hence the name “Grey-Headed Flying Fox”.


Meet the Australian Flying Fox




Amazingly, the Australian flying fox has a very unique and sophisticated vocal communication between each other with over 30 very specific calls that are known.

Unfortunately for theses beautiful large bats, their numbers are dwindling in the wild as their population has went from millions down to only a few hundred thousand over the last 200 years.


monster-batGreyHeadedFlyingFoxWingspanLittle_Red_Flying_FoxesBlack_Flying_Fox_(Pteropus_alecto)flying-fox



Biggest Bat in the World

Squid Found with Human Teeth?

An extremely rare species of squid was discovered in 2007 and unfortunately, it’s the only one that has ever been seen since.


This bizarre looking creature comes from the deep sea and very little is known about it.


Rarest Known Squid Species



One thing that is interesting is the fact that it looks like it has human teeth! Very creepy looking indeed. However, as the video explains, they are not really teeth at all, but an adaptation of gums that just happen to look a like like a person’s overbite.


Island in Atlantic Ocean

Tristan da Cunha Island in Atlantic Ocean


deep sea animal 2014


human teeth fish



Squid Found with Human Teeth?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Awesome Green Frog

beautiful green frog



Awesome Green Frog

Are You Putting Your Dog's Health at RIsk?

While many people like to believe that their dogs possess a great intelligence, it is simply not true.  Though some breeds are more evolved than others, most dogs do not have a great mental capacity.  Their intelligence is limited to not much more than basic survival.  Whether dogs can interpret the concept of cause and effect is even questionable.


Because of their lack of intelligence, dogs act without sense.  They sometimes do not have any reasoning or intellect for their actions.  Many pet owners face issues because they do not know this, and one of the most detrimental results of this ignorance is dogs eating too much or eating the wrong things.


The truth is that a dog digging through trash or hunting for food is not because it is hungry or needs it, but rather an instinct or wanton desire.


dog with cucumber


Leaving food out or accessible to dogs can be hazardous to their health.  They can eat too much, making themselves sick, or eat things that are unhealthy to them, which are many of the foods humans eat.


The food humans eat is not always healthy to dogs.  Many people assume that it is good to feed them more than just dog food.  This is not objectionable, but feeding them the right things, and knowing what to steer clear of is important.


Dogs’ digestive systems are not equipped to handle many of the foods that humans eat, so feeding them the leftovers from dinner, as many people do, or not properly stowing it from them, can be harmful to dogs.


feast


Recent studies do not say that all human food is bad for dogs, but just that a sizable percentage of it is, and that education on the subject should be attained before feeding leftovers or human food to dogs.


Selective foods, that are present in many of today’s dishes, can surprisingly be quite hazardous to a dog’s health.  One such food is onions.  Though most fruits and vegetables are not considered a danger to a dog’s health, onions and leeks are because they contain a chemical that can potentially damage a dog’s red blood cells, causing anemia, weakness and breathing difficulties.


To keep a healthy, happy dog it is necessary to monitor and control what they eat and how much they eat.


Kristina Johansen, a canine dietician, promotes the use of an app recently released by Elmo’s Kitchen.   Johansen says that she is “sure that if more people knew what harm they were actually doing to their dogs they would pay more attention to the foods they feed them, and so having an app you can check at all times makes it much easier.”  


two dogs happy dogwhite puppy



Are You Putting Your Dog's Health at RIsk?