While we're talking about Halloween, this is the Atlantic wolffish (Anarhichas lupus), very appropriately and otherwise known as the ‘devil fish’. The hefty fish grows up to 1.5 metres long and over 20kg, and they’re named for those unmistakable fangs. If they're not scary enough, their throats are also lined with a spattering of small, serrated teeth.
Meet the green jumping spider (Mopsus mormon), Australia’s largest—and perhaps cutest—jumping arachnid. These spiders hunt in the day time, moving fast to attack their prey, and camouflaging against green leaves. If you see one, leave it alone. Although their bite won’t kill you, it’s extremely painful.
The binturong, or bearcat, is a rare species found in Southeast Asia. The females are usually 20% larger than the males, and they communicate amongst themselves using scent glands located on either side of the anus. These scent glands emit an odour that smells exactly like buttered popcorn.
These are the Cuevas de Mármol, or Marble Caves, found on the shores of Lake General Carrera - a remote glacial lake surrounded by the Andes mountain range and spanning the Chile-Argentina border. Formed over 6,200 years as countless waves crashed against a huge peninsula of calcium carbonate, that distinct, swirling pattern reflects the lake's bright blue colours, which can change in intensity and hue depending on the time of year.
This is the Caqueta titi monkey, and its babies purr just like cats when they're happy. It is one of more than 400 new species of animals and plants that have been discovered in the past four years in the Amazon rainforest, along with a vegetarian piranha and a flame-patterned lizard.
This butterfly is half female, half male. It's suffering from bilateral gynandromorphism, which is a rare genetic disorder that afflicts insects, arachnids, crustaceans and birds, and it could be caused when two sperm enter the egg. Humans are not at risk. [ ... ]
Hamish Scott from the UK has invented the Starpath, which is a special luminescent coating for roads and paths. The multi-layered, organic material collects and stores energy from light during the day and releases it as a blueish glow at night that can last for 16 hours. The technology is now being trialled at Christ's Pieces Park in Cambridge, and if successful, could slash electricity bills, plus it's 100% recyclable.
Apes manage their emotions much in the same way as humans do. Socially and emotionally competent young bonobos recover quickly from upsetting experiences and are more likely to comfort other young apes, a new study has shown.
These are the ‘pillownauts,’ and they just got out of bed for the first time in 21 days. The paid volunteers for the European Space Agency laid with their feet up in a medical facility while scientists poked and prodded them to try to understand the effects of spaceflight on astronauts’ bodies.
One of the subjects who took part in this investigation said: “The first days of each session were the worst. The body needs to adapt and I had migraines and backaches."
Well, okay GOLD. Apparently, gold grows on eucalyptus trees. Researchers discovered that the trees are acting as a hydraulic pump, extracting gold from the soil and moving it to their leaves and branches. The ‘nuggets’ are about one-fifth the diameter of human hair, but the leaves may be used in combination with other tools to develop better exploration techniques.
This is the Green vine snake (Ahaetulla nasuta), a slender tree snake found in India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam.
The snake is mildly venomous, and its bite causes swelling and pain. They feed on frogs and lizards. There is a widespread myth in parts of southern India that the species uses its pointed head to blind its human victims!
This stunning creature is the Amazonian leaf-footed bug (Diactor bilenatus), a species that can be found throughout South American, in parts of Central America and on some Caribbean Islands. Although they look beautiful, when threatened the insect releases a bitter, unpleasant odour to scare of potential predators.
With up to one million hairs per square inch of its body, the sea otter has the densest fur in the animal kingdom. (To put this in perspective, you’ve probably only got 100,000 hairs or less on your whole head!) Together with a huge lung capacity, this makes these water-loving creatures extremely buoyant. The pups are born so buoyant, they're incapable of diving underwater, and are often left bobbing on the surface in a sea kelp bed while their mothers hunt for food nearby.
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