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


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

Islamic Carpet Design


Carpet weaving is thought to have originated in Central Asia more than 2000 years ago, but it was the Islamic culture which shifted it into an art form. Many Islamic traditions have long frowned upon the depiction of sentient beings depicted in western art and because of this, carpet makers created landscapes of bright colors and complex patterns, with the mark of different tribes and ethnic groups recognized by the various dyes and pattern styles utilized. Patterns are so prevalent in Islamic culture because it is a form of expression which is permitted, unlike many others which go against the direct teachings of the Quran. It’s common for patterns to contain an eye somewhere along the line as a protective measure, or a small script to give thanks and praise to Allah, and sometimes even small depictions of hidden meanings like the head of a bird without the rest of its body. Typically, duplicates of the same Islamic carpet are not created, as the artist who created the original design did so because they felt a particular emotion during the creative process and because the same mood is or was not felt during the next carpet, the design is different to reflect the new mood experienced. The golden age of the Islamic carpet occurred during the 17th century when landscape art worked its way into these carpets causing them to become portable gardens of paradise. The images portrayed were not intended to hold a mirror up to nature, but to reflect what human beings value most of nature

Feathered Dinosaurs


Every single feathered dinosaur ever discovered has been identified as a predatory carnivore. It is suspected by paleontologists that the Tyrannosaurus rex had feathers in various areas of its body. Feathers often serve a purpose for birds dependent of their color, and it has been theorized that this was also the case for dinosaurs. Liaoning Province, China is the world capital for feathered dinosaur fossils, with the first ever feathered fossilized dinosaur remains discovered by a farmer by complete accident as he turned the soil of his field before planting crops. It is suspected by experts that due to the increase of species and therefore competition, reptiles were required to become more and more active which inevitably required a higher metabolism. This newer and further evolved metabolism is theorized to have caused some animals to become warm blooded, which is the primary reason feathers were introduced by evolution. Long necked birds tuck their heads under their feathers to minimize heat loss and proof of this occurring tens of millions of years ago is provided by an incredibly detailed fossil of a small dinosaur in this exact pose which was found in 2004 by American palaeontologist Mark Norell, providing for the first time in the study of paleontology, compelling evidence for dinosaurs having had feathers. It has been posited that dinosaurs may have had feathers for warmth during their early years which were then shed throughout adolescence as they moved into their adult life, with the majority of the feathers which fell out being in areas which were not particularly useful in aiding a visual display to potential predators or mates