Created using images of real human tissues, these bone china histology dessert plates are 8” diameter and available in 4 different human tissue designs:
Medical illustrator and artist, Emily Evans, made these gorgeous plates from original slides of various human tissues provided by Michelle Spear, Clinical Anatomist at Cambridge University. The plates were then fired by ceramic artist, Emma Smith.
Gorillas dismantle Rwandan poacher traps, because fuck poachers
Gorillas and chimps and orangutans are pretty damn smart. Not as smart as the likes of you or I, but they’re pretty damn smart. Smart enough, that a group of gorillas in Rwanda have learned to identify and spot poacher traps so they can disarm them.
In case you were wondering, this is what a drop of snake venom does to your blood
Snake venom has a variety of effects on a body, depending on the kind of snake, but in this demonstration, just a single drop of venom from a Russell’s viper turns human blood into a thick goo. The kind of consistency that would kill you dead with a quickness.
Call someone a baboon, and you might have to prepare for a fight. But if you called Homo erectus a baboon—and if one were alive today—he or she might say, “Yep.”
That’s because H. erectus probably lived in complex, multilevel societies similar to those of modern hamadryas baboons. At least, that’s the case anthropologists Larissa Swedell and Thomas Plummer, both at Queens College, City University of New York, make in the International Journal of Primatology. Swedell and Plummer argue that a dry environment led both species to evolve intricate social structures.
Anthropologist finds explanation for hominin brain evolution in famous fossil
(Phys.org) — One of the world’s most important fossils has a story to tell about the brain evolution of modern humans and their ancestors, according to Florida State University evolutionary anthropologist Dean Falk.
The Taung fossil — the first australopithecine ever discovered — has two significant features that were analyzed by Falk and a group of anthropological researchers. Their findings, which suggest brain evolution was a result of a complex set of interrelated dynamics in childbirth among new bipeds, were published May 7 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
“These findings are significant because they provide a highly plausible explanation as to why the hominin brain might grow larger and more complex,” Falk said.
Mounted specimen on display at the America Museum of Natural History, NYC
Reconstruction by Charles Knight.
When: Miocene to Pliocene (~12 - 3.5 million years ago)
Where: North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa
What: Gomphotheirum is a four tusked extinct proboscidean. Unlike modern elephants which only have enlarged upper incisors as their tusks, Gomphotheirum and its kin had enlarged upper and lower incisors. Neither set of tusks grew as large as living elephants, but the lower jaw was heavily modified and elongated to support the lower tusks. If you look at the photograph of the mounted specimen above, you can see that the actual bone of the mandible extends to almost the tip of the upper tusk. Based on the structure of the skull of Gomphotheirum it is thought the animal had a trunk, though again not one as log as the living species of elephants. Gomphotheirum is on the small side compared to the mammoth and mastodon in the photo with it, and also is a bit smaller than the living african elephant, but about the same size as the asian elephant - standing about 10 ft (3.2 meters) tall at the shoulder. These fourtuskers were proportioned very differently from the asian elephant, however. Their legs were much shorter in proportion to their body. The genus Gomphotheirum originated in North America, but spread throughout most of the world before going extinct in the Pliocene.
Gomphotheirum in the group Gomphotheriidae (shocking I know). Gomphotheres ranged almost world-wide for over ten million years, and it is possible the last one died less than 10,000 years ago. I say only possible as relationships of gomphotheres, and really proboscideans as a whole, are really not well understood. Gomphotheriidae may be a paraphyletic series of taxa (not a ‘real’ group), with some taxa more closely related to the living species than others. Basically if you are interested in paleontology the study of proboscideans is an area that desperately needs more people in it. You also get to look at other cool extinct forms like Deinotherium!
The maned wolf is the largest canid in South America. It is also the tallest wild canid in the world, its stilt-like legs a useful adaptation for spying prey over the tall grasslands where it lives. Despite its name, the maned wolf is not a wolf at all, nor is it a fox, coyote, or dog. It is the only member of the Chrysocyon genus, making it a truly unique animal, not closely related to any other living canid. One hypothesis for this is that the maned wolf is the last surviving species of the Pleistocene Extinction, which wiped out all other large canids from the continent.
Smithsonian.com - Rob Dunn
Natural selection acts by winnowing the individuals of each generation, sometimes clumsily, as old parts and genes are co-opted for new roles. As a result, all species inhabit bodies imperfect for the lives they live. Our own bodies are worse off than most simply…
Sometimes evolution can be a pain.
Creationists Accidentally Validate Human Evolution
The above table summarizes the conclusions of about a dozen creationist essays, classifying hominid fossils as either humans or apes. If, as creationists claim, the ape and humans species were created spontaneously and distinctly, there should be no issue grouping a fossil in one group or the other. As shown above, creationists can’t even agree among themselves which species each fossil corresponds to, inadvertently supporting the evolutionary theory of human origins.
Nice, reminds me of this:
Dolphins heal from seemingly fatal injuries with ease
Michael Zasloff, a researcher at the Georgetown University Medical Center, has discovered that bottlenose dolphins have “miraculous” healing powers: within several weeks they can heal from basketball-sized injuries, without any lasting disfigurements. Moreover, the injuries, presumably from clashes with sharks, don’t seem to cause the animals any apparent pain and don’t become visibly infected. Several abilities seem to be working together to promote healing; for example, Zasloff hypothesizes that bottlenose dolphins prevent bleeding to death by restricting blood flow to certain areas of their bodies, giving large gashes time to clot.
What is this thing, and how old is it?
The answer to the first question is easy. It’s an explosive lance tip, used to harpoon whales.
The second question is pretty easy too. The lance, which was patented in 1879, is over 100 years old. It has been safe and snug for that whole time, as it was embedded in the head of a bowhead whale until 2007, when it was found during a dissection.
Whales are very difficult to age (we currently age them by measuring proportions of proteins in the eye lens), but this piece of evidence is the latest and most direct for the astounding age of whales. They’re believed to live up to 200 years.
200 years?? Wow!
Modern evolutionary biologists believe that, at the genetic level, natural selection is more complex than just a single mutation leading to a single new trait. Most believe that lots of small, sometimes imperceptible changes in the gene pool of a population lead to aggregate changes over time,…