Behold this glorious underwater waterfall off Mauritius

Le Morne Brabant on the southwest coast of Mauritius has a cool optical illusion offshore: water flowing between two reefs pulls sand out to sea, giving the appearance of an underwater waterfall.

YouTuber RubenMRU says:

So the day after my birthday this year saw one of my dreams come true... Vassen Kauppaymuthoo of Delphinium Ltd took me out on a boat trip to the south west coast of Mauritius and we've captured the now famous Underwater waterfall of Mauritius... Now it's not really a waterfall, it only appears to be one from above - this illusion is caused by the trails of sand on the sea floor, being dragged away by water going between the opening in the reefs

Earthporn has some other lovely images:

Some good ones on Instagram, too:

discovered the underwater "waterfall" is real.. i still can't comprehend how places like this exist

A post shared by P A R I S ᝰ ᴛʀᴀᴠᴇʟ ᴡɪᴛʜ ᴍᴇ (@parisverra) on Sep 10, 2017 at 6:28pm PDT

2018-06-12 - Mauritius's Underwater Waterfall (YouTube / ReubenMRU) Read the rest

The tiny fern that could take a big bite out of greenhouse gases

The little pink-edged ferns above are Azolla filiculoides, and they're smaller than a fingernail. Scientists just made it the first fern to get its genome sequenced because of its potential for fertilizing and even cooling the planet. Fifty million years ago, it was so abundant as ocean blooms that it helped cool the earth's atmosphere. Via Quartz:

This great Azolla boom was so successful that it lasted for 800,000 years, and is now known to paleobotanists as the “Azolla event.” Green plants suck up carbon dioxide; Azolla is particularly good at doing so. Over that period, researchers believe it sequestered about 10 trillion tons of carbon dioxide from the Earth’s atmosphere, or well over 200 times the total amount of carbon dioxide humans currently release into the atmosphere every year.

During the Azolla boom, global temperatures plummeted, suggesting the diminutive fern “played a key role in transitioning Earth from a hot house to the cool place it is today,” Fay-Wei Li, a plant evolutionary biologist at Cornell University, said in a press release. As Yale’s E360 pointed out, scientists have wondered for years if Azolla could be harnessed to cool the planet again.

#Azollafiliculoides#misquitofern#tinyplants#fern#aquatic

A post shared by Dejanique (@dejaniqueelectropop) on Jul 11, 2015 at 12:21am PDT

This teeny tiny fern may hold a key to lowering global temperatures (Quartz) Read the rest

Enjoy some flowery fireworks with these timelapses of cactus blooms

Echinopsis cactus flowers explode in a riot of colors in this beautiful timelapse work by YouTuber EchinopsisFreak. In the example above, blooms somehow synchronize their brief appearance to maximize the chance of pollination. Read the rest

Photographer completes global journey to compile perfect shots of trees

Landscape photographer Michael Kenna just had a big retrospective of his tree photography, prompting renewed interest in how he got so many amazing images. Read the rest

Beautiful film on the colorful diversity of nudibranchs

Sea slugs, aka nudibranchs, are weird and wonderful psychedelic sea creatures. Earth Touch caught a frisky couple kissing beneath the waves. Read the rest

Watch the best shots of amphibians eating fireflies

Sometimes a toad or frog just wants a light snack. Read the rest

Watch how timelapse footage revealed the secrets of penguin huddling

Penguins huddle in frigid temperatures, but rather than stay in one place, timelapse footage shows that when one occasionally takes a step, others follow suit, creating a low-moving wave and allowing those on outer edges to move in over time. Read the rest

Cool satellite view of dozens of oxbow lakes formed when a river changed course

When a river changes course on its flood plain, it can leave an entire bend of the river cut off from the new flow, forming an oxbow lake. Seen in bright blue in this shot of the Songhua River in northeast China, they are usually narrow crescents. Read the rest

Guy captures the moment a river cuts a new channel to the ocean

Wayne Easton braved the elements to capture an interesting natural phenomenon: the Mahlongwa River in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa breaching its bank and cutting a channel to the Indian Ocean. Part two is below: Read the rest

Standing waves in lava on Kīlauea

From Kīlauea, where the eruption continues, now with "lava flowing unabated with standing waves."

You can see them to the left of the photo here, taken by a USGS drone over the flow, and in this video:

Read the rest

Watch 3,000 insect specimen photos turned into a stunning animation

In 2004, Paul Bush released When Darwin Sleeps, 3,000 digital stills of insects in the Walter Linsenmaier in the Lucerne Nature Museum. They flash by so quickly they feel animated, or as if evolution itself is happening on screen. Now he's released a better quality copy than has been previously available online. Read the rest

Delightful creatures frolicking in the waves

Swimming pigs, splashing horses, and diving bulls await in this lovely roundup of animals swimming, some of whom are a bit surprising to see taking to water so eagerly. Read the rest

Watch a kajillion clams make a sudden choreographed appearance

Coquina clams are so attuned to life in the foreshore that they all know exactly when to dig into the sand and exactly when to pop up. Read the rest

Turns out that python eggs stick to each other for a bunch of good reasons

YouTuber Retic over at Prehistoric Pets TV has a huge collection of pythons and other ancient creatures. Here he shows how and why a clutch of python eggs can be lifted up in giant sticky clumps. Read the rest

Thanks for the wine, beer, bread, and yeast infections, China

Yeast has brought a lot of joy into the world, but its evolutionary origins were unclear until scientists did a worldwide genomic survey of the humble organism. Based on the genetic diversity of strains found in China, they concluded that its origin is almost certainly in that part of the world. Read the rest

Howler Monkeys are coming for your soul

Beautiful beaches. Lush jungles that thrive in volcanic soil. Friendly people and amazing local cuisine. You can keep 'em all. One of the things I enjoyed most about my last trip to Costa Rica were the calls of local howler monkeys. It didn't matter that I knew what was making their horrific calls. Hearing their low, simmering rage-filled grunts and screams never failed to make the lizard bits of my brain insist that my face was about to be eaten and that I would soon be dead.

  Read the rest

Watch this landscape photographer's video tour of Greenland

Daniel Kordan is a great photographer who travels to distant lands for stunning astrophotographs among other. Some of his stills are below, but his video of a trip to Greenland has his same eye for natural beauty. Read the rest

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