The Colossal Nomura Jellyfish

nomura-jellyfish

Nomura jellyfish are colossal in size, weighing up to 450 lbs. and measuring 12’ in circumference. Nomura jellyfish directly follow and stalk their prey just as box jellyfish do, with a single Nomura jellyfish able to consume an entire Olympic swimming pool sized body of water filled with zooplankton within 24 hours. When both male and female Nomura jellyfish are attacked, both instantly release all of their sperm and eggs, producing and scattering millions of possible future offspring. This is why despite being killed in the hundreds and thousands by fisheries on the open seas, Nomura jellyfish continue to thrive and dominate much of the ocean. Currently, it is unclear to scientists where Nomura jellyfish originate from

The Importance of the Diatom to the Earth

diatom

4x thinner than a human hair, the diatom is the secret to the Earth’s oxygen supply. Diatoms utilize silica from ground up rock to create new shells which allow them to reproduce. The population of the diatom doubles every single day during their reproduction cycle. Each diatom can perform the process of photosynthesis and provide the world with oxygen as a byproduct, enough oxygen in fact that 1 out of every 2 breaths taken in by every living human being has been created entirely by diatoms. Diatoms aren’t only vital when they are alive, they’re also incredibly important after their deaths because their carcasses slowly fall to the ocean floor and then carpet the ocean floor in a layer 800 meter thick. This phenomenon is often referred to as “marine snow”

The Connection Between Parrot Fish and Sand

beach-sand

On some beach islands in the Maldives, as much as 70% of all sand comes from the excrement of parrot fish. Parrot fish primarily consume coral which is composed of calcium carbonate and causes their excrement to become white sand. A single parrot fish can eat enough coral to expel 1 tonne of sand within a single year

The Commonality Between Herbivores and Size

elephant-herbivore

The largest land animals on Earth today are all herbivores, but this was also true during the age of the dinosaurs. In descending order, the 5 largest living herbivores are the African elephant, the African bush elephant, the Asian elephant, the white rhinoceros, and the hippopotamus. The only living animals which are larger in size than these creatures are whales. Whales are not herbivores, but being a herbivore within the ocean is actually quite uncommon. The only reason whales are able to become larger than the largest land-dwelling mammals is because of the way that the ocean displaces gravity, therefore providing resistance to the pull which would under normal circumstances cause whales to collapse under their own weight. The primary reason the largest land animals are herbivores is because of food resources. There are a staggering amount of plant resources made abundant for herbivores in comparison to the relatively small amount of protein rich resources available to carnivores. Plant resources are also quickly renewable unlike protein resources. Herbivores are apt to survive predation as they increase in size whilst carnivores actually become hindered as they increase in size due to the fact that they become slower and less agile making their ability to catch prey severely reduced

The Nest of the Edible-Nest Swiflet and its High Economic Value

swiftlet-birds-nest

Birds nests made by edible-nest swiftlets using solidified saliva is highly prized all throughout Asia with a single kilogram selling for over $2000.00. Edible-nest swiftlet nests are believed by those who subscribe to the practice of eastern, more specifically Chinese medicine, to boost the immune system, improve skin complexion, and to fight signs of aging, however none of these claims have been backed up with scientific evidence. Edible-nest swiftlets prefer to create their nests in dark caves, so aside from farming them in specialized dark rooms, acquiring them in nature is incredibly dangerous as steep and sheer cliffs must be scaled to reach the nests which are precariously high above ground level. It takes edible-nest swiftlets 40 days to make a single nest and nests can only be produced during the breeding season which is when the edible-nest swiftlets salivary glands engorge

The Evolution of the Eye

eye

The eye has developed within the animal kingdom for one reason only; to detect the world around the observer. The first evolved eyes were simply an apparatus which had a light sensitive cell referred to as “rhodopsin”. Eventually as time progressed, eyes developed a spherical shape which allowed more light to be captured so that the difference between light and dark was more distinct. Following this, eyes evolved the ability to develop a pupil which acts as a biological aperture which can constrict and dilate letting either more or less light into the eye. This system works in theory but the real world application developed a problem in that when constricting the pupil to focus on an object being looked at, less light is let in which restricts vision. Nature eventually alleviated this issue by placing a lens behind the aperture of the pupil which allowed for precision detail, clarity, and focus. This system was so effective that evolution produced some form of it for nearly every animal and insect on Earth, some being more adept than others, but all using the same principal of light and focus to observe information around them

Herbivore vs. Carnivore Vision

carnivore-vision

Animals which have eyes placed upon the sides of their heads (e.g. squirrels, zebras, frogs etc.) are typically herbivores and prey for carnivores. Herbivores need to have their field of vision constantly focused upon what’s going on around them. Animals which have eyes on the front of their heads (e.g. owls, tigers, human beings etc.) are usually carnivores. Carnivores are predators and because of this they need to constantly be focused upon what is in front of them for activities like chasing down prey in an attempt to capture and eventually kill what they catch. Human beings can demonstrate this difference for themselves by placing one’s hands in front of their eyes as they would binoculars, then crossing their wrists and cupping their hands so that they see only from the sides of their face. This demonstrates the different abilities predator and prey have in respect to what is in focus within a particular classifications field of vision. Panoramic vantage points which herbivore prey have allow for more information to be taken in at once, but binocular vantage points which carnivorous predators have allow for depth perception which most herbivores do not have, and even when they do have it, it’s accuracy is highly limited