The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Lighthawk » Thu Apr 01, 2010 10:24 pm

Inspired by Tyyr's monster fish tongue parasite, I hereby dedicate this thread to the bizarre and/or amazing creatures we share this planet with.

So to start things off, the electric eel, which actually isn't an eel, but a type of knife fish. While no where near as obscure as the tongue usurper, is still a damn amazing bit of evolution. It can generate up to 500 watts of electric energy, enough to be potentially fatal to a human being. And it does so using an organ filled with positively charged sodium to create a charge through several thousand tiny stacked electrical platelets. And it can fire off these electrical pulses for well over an hour if agitated.

Interesting side note: Some scientists are researching the electrical generating cells and organs of this and other electric generating fish to create artificial bio-batteries that could be used to power implanted devices in people, such as a fake hand for example.
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Sionnach Glic » Thu Apr 01, 2010 10:36 pm

A cookie to the first to correctly name this interesting little guy:

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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Captain Seafort » Thu Apr 01, 2010 10:38 pm

Condylura cristata, aka the star-nosed mole.
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Mikey » Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:51 pm

Beat me to it.

For my own humble submission, I give you the barreleye:
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The eyes are the green spheres under the top of the forehead, not the pores in front. They are contained in the transparent head; as a deep-sea fish, the barreleye's eyes actually normally point upwards; but when foraging, the entire eyeball assembly (which is tubular) may rotate to face forward.
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Angharrad » Fri Apr 02, 2010 12:07 am

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Maybe not so strange, but I love these birds.
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Angharrad » Fri Apr 02, 2010 12:07 am

Sionnach Glic wrote:A cookie to the first to correctly name this interesting little guy:

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And I love these guys too! So cute.
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Lighthawk » Fri Apr 02, 2010 12:17 am

Mikey wrote:Beat me to it.

For my own humble submission, I give you the barreleye:
Image

The eyes are the green spheres under the top of the forehead, not the pores in front. They are contained in the transparent head; as a deep-sea fish, the barreleye's eyes actually normally point upwards; but when foraging, the entire eyeball assembly (which is tubular) may rotate to face forward.


That is really awesome
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Tyyr » Fri Apr 02, 2010 2:51 pm

Why do we insist on killing off the tasty or cute animals? Why can't we arrange a little genocide for these freaks?
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Captain Seafort » Fri Apr 02, 2010 3:01 pm

Tyyr wrote:Why do we insist on killing off the tasty or cute animals? Why can't we arrange a little genocide for these freaks?


Because there's not much point in putting inedible shit on your plate, or hanging some ugly brute's head on the wall.
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Mikey » Fri Apr 02, 2010 4:11 pm

Tyyr wrote:Why do we insist on killing off the tasty or cute animals?


We kill the tasty ones because... well, because they're tasty, and most often they're tastier when killed and cooked. The cute ones, not so much. We have a fair bias toward the cute ones. Everyone's worried about dolphins killed while harvesting tuna; while in fact, there are far more tuna killed in the harvesting of tuna than dolphins.

Tyyr wrote:Why can't we arrange a little genocide for these freaks?


Why bother?
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Graham Kennedy » Sat Apr 03, 2010 1:41 pm

The Blobfish :

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The blobfish (Psychrolutes marcidus) is a fish that inhabits the deep waters off the coasts of Australia and Tasmania. Due to the inaccessibility of its habitat, it is rarely seen by humans.

Blobfish are found at depths where the pressure is several dozens of times higher than at sea level, which would likely make gas bladders inefficient. To remain buoyant, the flesh of the blobfish is primarily a gelatinous mass with a density slightly less than water; this allows the fish to float above the sea floor without expending energy on swimming. The relative lack of muscle is not a disadvantage as it primarily swallows edible matter that floats by in front it.
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Captain Seafort » Sat Apr 03, 2010 1:49 pm

GrahamKennedy wrote:Image


Wot, no fins? :wink:
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Tsukiyumi » Sat Apr 03, 2010 4:47 pm

It looks like someone melted Ziggy. :lol:
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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Lighthawk » Sat Apr 03, 2010 9:06 pm

Any guesses as to what type of critter this is?

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Re: The weird, wild, and amazing natural world

Postby Tyyr » Sat Apr 03, 2010 9:13 pm

I think it used to be a cat.
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