mens black doc martens Deep sea creatures creature their own glow

Over the decades, biologists learned that the creatures of the deep sea use light much as animals on land use sound to lure, intimidate, stun, mislead and find mates. Now, scientists have succeeded in gauging the actual extent of bioluminescence living light in the deep ocean. During 240 research dives in the Pacific, they recorded every occurrence and kind of glowing sea creature more than 500 types living down as deep as 2 miles. Then, the researchers merged the results into a comprehensive survey. The result? Most of the creatures a stunning 76 percent made their own light, vastly outnumbering the ranks of the unlit, such as dolphins. Haddock, both of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute in California. Scientists have now traced the evolutionary roots of the living oceanic lights to primal seas hundreds of millions of years ago, long before the age of dinosaurs.

William J. Broad, New York Times

Do any animals overeat in the wild? A wild animal’s food consumption is determined as much by the availability of food as it is by appetite. What might appear to be gross overconsumption sometimes turns out to be a useful adaptation for survival.

For most species, eating a quarter of one’s body weight might be considered overeating, but wild lions often do so. A mature male lion can easily consume as much as 90 pounds at one feeding. Normal weight for a lion ranges from about 330 to 575 pounds.

This apparent excess must be seen in light of the likelihood that the lion’s next big hunting and feeding opportunity may be days or a week away. The lion has simply stocked up on protein for a long period of abstinence, and the ability to do so is a valuable evolutionary trait.

Similar feast or famine gorging behaviors are seen in species like migratory birds preparing for a long ocean crossing, and bears in autumn getting ready to hibernate.

C. Claiborne Ray, New York Times

Learning a second language as an adult is difficult. But the process may be eased if you exercise while learning. A new study in PLOS One reports that working out during a language class amplifies people’s ability to memorize, retain and understand new vocabulary. The findings provide more evidence that to engage our minds, we should move our bodies.

In recent years, a wealth of studies in both animals and people have shown that we learn differently if we also exercise. Lab rodents given access to running wheels create and maintain memories better than animals that are sedentary, for instance. And students consistently perform better on academic tests if they participate in some kind of physical activity during the school day.

Many scientists suspect that exercise alters the biology of the brain in ways that make it more malleable and receptive to new information, a process that scientists refer to as plasticity.

But many questions have remained unanswered about movement and learning, including whether exercise is most beneficial before, during or after instruction and how much and what types of exercise might be best.

Gretchen Reynolds, New York Times

Suicide rates are higher in rural counties, according to a new study, and the reason is firearm use by men.

The report, in the American Journal of Public Health, used data on 6,196 suicides of Maryland residents over age 15. They found that the rate of firearm suicides was 66 percent higher in the most thinly populated counties than in metropolitan areas with populations greater than 1 million. Non firearm suicide rates in rural and urban counties were roughly the same.

Rates of firearm suicide by women were no different in rural and urban areas, but total suicides by women were 37 percent greater in urban areas.

Men accounted for about 80 percent of all suicides, and nearly 90 percent of gun suicides.

Nicholas Bakalar, New York Times

There is a story in the Hebrew Bible that tells of God’s call for the annihilation of the Canaanites, who lived thousands of years ago in what are now Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Israel and the Palestinian territories.

The ancient population survived the divine call for their extinction: Their descendants live in modern Lebanon, according to a genetic analysis just published.

An international team recovered ancient DNA from the bones of five Canaanites 3,650 to 3,750 years old discovered at an excavation site in Sidon, Lebanon, left.

The team then compared the ancient DNA with the genomes of 99 living people from Lebanon, finding that the modern Lebanese people shared about 93 percent of their ancestry with the ancient Canaanites.

Nicholas St. Fleur, New York Times

Scientists hack a chrysanthemum, broadening its palette

A blue human is a cold, dead or sad human. We don’t want to be blue. And flowers don’t appear to either.

Less than 10 percent of 400,000 floral species bear blue flowers. Scientists and horticulturalists have tried to force blueness upon petals, but breeding and genetic engineering haven’t worked out.

Now Japanese scientists have finally created a true blue chrysanthemum one that passes the strict color standards of the Royal Horticulturalist Society.

Naonobu Noda, a plant biologist at the National Agriculture and Food Research Organization in Japan, and his colleagues spliced genes from Canterbury bells and the butterfly pea into the chrysanthemum genome, shifting the plant’s pH and altering its color. The researchers confirmed the color as blue by testing its wavelengths in the lab.
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