Royal Society's remarkable 2016 nature photo finalists

tane-sinclair-taylor

Tane Sinclair-Taylor's image of a clownfish and a bleached anemone is one of the many remarkable biological photographs chosen as finalists and winners in Royal Society Publishing's 2016 contest. Read the rest

Warning: viewing these baby animals in cute outfits may kill you

zooportraits

Brace yourself for a level of cuteness that could have lasting effects. Zoo Portraits by Barcelona-based Yago Partal include interesting information about each species. That cute otter could grow to 99 pounds, the heaviest of the weasel family. Read the rest

Vandals filmed destroying famous sandstone pedestal

kiwanda-pedestaljpg-8a5c868e144afb93-1jpg-d8b4a1ea0ca8934d

The Cape Kiwanda sandstone pedestal, a feature of the Oregon coastline known to locals as the duckbill, was "toppled intentionally" by tourists. Video captured at a distance by visitor David Kalas of Hillsboro shows a group of people heaving and pushing the rock until it falls to the ground and collapses: "Got it!" one shouts. Read the rest

Video explores a pristine slot canyon in the Cascades

20150604_Valhalla_Hells_Canyon_UTS_l6uv9l

"What would a secret and remarkably pristine slot canyon hidden in the wilderness of the Oregon Cascades have to say to those who first step foot into its halls?" This serene video imagines those words of wisdom. Read the rest

It's salmon season on this live Alaskan bear cam

A snapshot from the explore.org bear-cam

Explore.org has a very relaxing live feed of bears feeding on salmon at Brooks Falls in Katmai National Park, Alaska. At night, they run a highlight reel. Great for having on as you work. Read the rest

Seal leaps onto boat to escape orcas

killer-whale-seal

SER DAVOS: Well, hello there, little fellow? Who's that behind you? Read the rest

Amazing, horizontal lightning bolt

050 056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8e96df290c5-1020x1186

If this was a special effect, we'd call it fakey looking, but apparently it's real lightning, captured in Tampa and posted to Reddit by UnobtrusiveElephant. Read the rest

Watch a rare "Corpse Flower" bloom while far away from the smell of death

Corpse_Flower

Amorphophallus titanum is known as the "Corpse Flower" because it smells like rotten flesh. The infamous stink attracts flies and beetles that helps it get pollinated. Native to Sumatra, the plant rarely flowers and can take as long as a decade to bloom if it does. The New York Botanical Garden has cultivated a fine Corpse Flower and you can livestream it blooming any time now. Watch the video stream above but don't blink or you may miss it. If only Smell-O-Vision had caught on...

From the NYBG:

Each day of careful tending and feeding has led up to this moment: a brief yet glorious window in which the enormous plant (up to eight feet high) will unfurl, displaying the striking red interior and uncanny scent to which it owes its name. This is the first time that a blooming titan-arum has been put on display at the Garden since 1939, and this unique plant is unpredictable—it may be in flower for only one or two days.

The Corpse Flower (NYBG)

Read the rest

Why are scientists drawing eyes on cows' asses?

ben_yexley3_lr_1

In Botswana, conservation scientists from the University of New South Wales are painting eyes on the rear ends of cattle in an effort to deter lions from eating them. As the lions' protected habitats shrink, they move closer to human settlements. In Botswana, the lions attack the livestock that the subsistence farmers count on. That leads the farmers to kill the African lions, further endangering the species.

(UNSW conservation biologist Neil Jordan’s idea of painting eyes onto cattle rumps came about after two lionesses were killed near the village in Botswana where he was based. While watching a lion hunt an impala, he noticed something interesting: “Lions are ambush hunters, so they creep up on their prey, get close and jump on them unseen. But in this case, the impala noticed the lion. And when the lion realised it had been spotted, it gave up on the hunt,” he says.

In nature, being ‘seen’ can deter predation. For example, patterns resembling eyes on butterfly wings are known to deter birds. In India, woodcutters in the forest have long worn masks on the back of their heads to ward-off man-eating tigers.

Jordan’s idea was to “hijack this mechanism” of psychological trickery. Last year, he collaborated with the BPCT and a local farmer to trial the innovative strategy, which he’s dubbed “iCow”.

"Eye-opening conservation strategy could save African lions" (UNSW) Read the rest

Watch this osprey catch a trout in super slo-mo

osprey-01

From the BBC series The Highlands, narrated by Ewan McGregor. From their site: Read the rest

Extreme closeups of animal eyes

546

Photographer Suren Manvelyan continued his series of stunning closeups of eyes by focusing on non-humans. Above: Red-eared turtle. Below, a Fennec fox and a raven. Read the rest

Mount Washington Observatory shares video of man being blown away by 109-mph winds

maxresdefault

The Mount Washington Observatory published this insane video from weather observers Mike Dorfman and Tom Padham demonstrating the effects of strong winds on top of a New Hampshire mountain.

Read the rest

Yellowstone bison calf killed by park rangers after tourists placed it in their rental car trunk

20160516__photo2-p1

This is why we can't have nice things.

Some really stupid visitors to Yellowstone National Park decided that a baby bison they'd seen was "too cold," so they put it in their rental car trunk to warm it up, and drove it around for a while.

After the herd rejected the calf, the National Park Service decided to kill (or if you prefer, “euthanize”) the calf, and warned tourists not to interact with animals. For, like, the billionth time.

National Park Service officials want everyone who visits Yellowstone to know that adult animals, like this calf's mom and dad, can become aggressive when they're trying to protect their young. Mothers sometimes reject offspring that have interacted with humans.

Bison grazing in Yellowstone park, 2011. Photo: Xeni Jardin.

As Mark wrote here, the father and son tourists visiting the park in Wyoming received a ticket from Park Rangers for putting the bison calf in their rental car.

As dumb as these tourists were, they're not alone. There have been several similar incidents this year in the park, shared on social media in which visitors ignore the rules, get too close to animals, and pose for selfies. In 2015, Bison seriously injured five park visitors, which makes them more dangerous by the statistics than any other animal, including predators like bear, wolves, or big cats.

From the Denver Post:

The newborn bison calf that visitors to Yellowstone National Park last week inadvisedly tried to rescue from the cold has been euthanized after efforts to reunite it with the herd were rejected, according to the National Park Service.

Read the rest

Canada's Fort McMurray wildfire is so massive, you can see it from space

On May 8, 2016, the MODIS instrument on the Terra satellite captured this image of Ft. McMurray Fire in Alberta, Canada.
[NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team]

The massive wildfire that continues to burn in the Fort McMurray area of Alberta, Canada has been captured from space by NASA imaging satellites.

Read the rest

Patterns in Nature – The most magnificent designs come from math and nature, not human beings

tumblr_o5hen7hfHM1t3i99fo1_1280

See sample pages from this book at Wink.

Step outside, look in any direction, and you’re sure to spot some exquisite designs in nature: the vivid jewel-like symmetry found on the wings of a butterfly, the fractal branching of trees, the pointillist patterns sported by a snake, or the hexagonal nest of a wasp, just to name a few. And science writer Philip Ball has captured some of this beauty with over 300 stunning photographs that he includes in his latest book, Patterns in Nature.

Categorized in chapters such as Symmetry, Fractals, Spirals, Cracks, and Flow and Chaos, Ball explains with both images and an accessible narrative how the most magnificent designs on the planet come from math, physics and chemistry, not human beings. He describes the various mathematics that create various patterns, and also points out parallels between similar patterns with seemingly unrelated sources. For example, the spots on a butterfly mimic the face of an owl. The “spots” on a giraffe look similar to cracked mud. Ball turns complex science into a fascinating read, and his gorgeous coffee table book is perfect for both the science and art minded alike.

Read the rest

Watch Jurassic Park, the delightful nature documentary

A feel-good film for the whole family. (Mashable)

Read the rest

Gorgeous photos show blue colored ice stacks on Great Lakes in Mackinaw City, MI

01

Photographer Kelly Alvesteffer shared photos on Facebook of the ice below the Mackinac Bridge over the weekend.

View the entire gallery here. An interview with the photographer is here.

Read the rest

More posts