Can’t get enough #Nepenthes (this is Nepenthes bicalcarata)
Oh god I’ve been up since 8am (it’s now 3amnext day) and I’m about to get in a car for 6ish hours then a boat ride and then a few more hours of waiting before I can rest. Fuuuuucckkkkkk
The Tacca chantrieri is blooming at the Conservatory of Flowers right now! They’re much bigger than I thought they could get.
For decades, flower hat jellyfish managed to keep their early lives a secret.
In adulthood, the jellyfish are striking, with a nest of fluorescent tentacles that look like party streamers, but pack a nasty sting. In infancy, well, scientists didn’t know. Aquarists tried, unsuccessfully, to raise the animals in tanks to understand what happens before the jellyfish are fully grown.
"They just aren’t like other jellies," said Wyatt Patry, senior aquarist at the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California.
Now, Patry and colleagues report they’ve finally raised the jellyfish in captivity. In a new paper, the researchers describe the elusive species’ life cycle, from egg to larva to single-tentacled polyp to juvenile to adult.
Scientists at the aquarium first bought a group of flower hat jellies back from Japan in 2002 for an exhibit on jellyfish. At the time, aquarists tried to mate and culture the species (scientifically named Olindias formosus), but they just couldn’t seem to get the jellies to release any sperm or eggs.
Patry said the researchers tried performing in vitro fertilization and exposing the jellies to stresses that might make them release sex cells. The creatures produced some larvae, but they didn’t grow much larger than that stage. Ultimately, it seemed that the scientists were missing some cue the jellyfish needed for reproduction.
When it came time for another jellyfish show in 2012, the team tried again. They kept groups of flower hat jellies in small tanks with mesh netting to keep the creatures off the bottom, where detritus and rotting pieces of half-eaten fish settled. The scientists don’t exactly know what they did right the second time around, but during routine maintenance, they discovered fluorescent jellyfish polyps attached to the wire mesh and glowing under a blue light.
Jellyfish larvae attach themselves to a solid surface and become stalklike polyps, which then bud into juvenile “medusae” — what jellyfish are called when they reach their most recognizable, umbrella-shaped form. Jellyfish polyps persist for an unknown amount of time. The polyps of flower hat jellies were unusual in that they had a single, highly active tentacle.
"They just look like little sea anemones," Patry told Live Science. "They seem to use the tentacle to sweep around their position to capture food."
Patry hopes the new information might help scientists and wildlife managers look for the species in the wild — and predict when and where “blooms” of the jellyfish could affect beachgoers.
Flower hat jellies kill and eat entire fish, and their venom is powerful enough to inflict a painful rash on humans. The mark looks like a burn, said Patry. (Take it from him. He said he usually gets stung a couple of times a year.) A 2007 review of jellyfish incidents recorded around the world found one death associated with flower hat jellies, in Japan in the 1970s.
The findings on young flower hat jellies were published in June in the Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom.
As promised, here are some pictures of Lyalya’s first walk outside! Look at the bushy little squirrel tail :D the sandpit was her favorite spot! She was extremely excited and threw sand all over the place
…I thought this was a squirrel with a cat’s head photoshopped on it at first.
This is kind of a goofy picture of me but look at all the Nepenthes!
our permaculture farming enterprise, located within our small upper midwest community’s city limits, will offer produce from “niche” crops… enticing consumers to try something new!
s c r e a m i n g
Beneficial Bug of the Day: The Earwig (Order Dermaptera)
Sometimes call “Pincher Bugs” these little uglies are harmless to us and even beneficial to a balanced garden. Their favorite food is dead matter, they eat dead plants and create nutritious mulch for the rest of the garden. If you have a well balanced garden, they will rarely eat healthy plants. Some species are even predatory, eating snail eggs and aphids! Bonus!
The name Earwig came from the belief that these insects would burrow into peoples’ brains through their ears.. that is so silly and very not true!
Earwigs are also very good moms! They are one of the few insects that care for their young. They guard the nest and feed the babies until they can fend for themselves.
Ask before you smush!
Mama earwig with a nest!
Also, see that little rucksack on her back? It contains her wings, all neatly folded up. They can fly, although not that well, and use their ‘pincers’ to fold the wings back under the covers.
The Extravagant Black Bat flower
The unusual Black Bat flower, Tacca chantrieri (Dioscoreales - Dioscoreaceae), is quite distinctive by the strange, unique, near black flowers. The flowers, which can grow up to 25 cm long, have four large, dark-purple bracts and long bracteoles, giving the inflorescence a striking appearance that superficially resemble a flying bat, a sinister face, or a mean tiger with whiskers.
Tacca chantrieri is an endangered species that occurs in tropical regions of SE Asia including Thailand, Malaysia, and southern China, particularly Yunnan Province.
The features of these flowers have been assumed to function as a ‘‘deceit syndrome’’ in which reproductive structures resemble decaying organic material attracting flies that facilitate cross-pollination (sapromyiophily). However, a study on pollination and mating in Tacca chantrieri populations from SW China, has shown that despite considerable investment in extravagant display, populations of this species are predominantly selfing and that flowers have several traits that promote autonomous self-pollination.
Photo credit: ©Stephanie Lichlyter
Locality: Cultivated (Conservatory of Flowers, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, California, US)
This is actually a test showing how sponges pump water through themselves for filter feeding!
They simply colored the water around them so you could easily see the process :D
'Columbine.' Plate from ‘Wild Fruits of the Country-side’ figured and described by F. Edward Hulme.
Published 1902 by Hutchinson in London
Today I went to the second geneticist I had scheduled months ago, and he confirmed without a doubt that I have EDS type III, he will sign the application for accessible parking (!!!) and gave me a straightforward paper diagnosis (useful as doctors aren’t usually this accommodating or helpful). Tomorrow is my mom’s birthday and I’m taking her to the flower conservatory (carnivorous plant exhibit!!! Expect photos.) and the California Academy of sciences (skull exhibit!).