January 2009

Deep Sea Confusion

Using a comparative anatomy study and recent DNA samples, deep sea ichthyology researchers have determined that what was once thought to be three separate fish species is actually one species, at different growth stages and genders. The larval stage of the Cetomimidae, a species colloquially known as "flabby whalefish," was once called Mirapinnidae, or tapetails.

Snowbird

Every now and then one of those emails that get forwarded from friends who received it from their friends has something amazing.

Zoos Save the Partula Snail

The Partula snail is native to the South Pacific, where once upon a time it spent its days in languid island comfort, gliding slowly along the leaves and stalks of trees in high-altitude forests on the slopes of volcanoes. In a "cane toad" style chain of events, many species of Partula snail are now extinct in the wild. Partula snails may not be particularly interesting to the layperson. They are about half an inch long, and come in various shades of brown. The Partula is the only snail that gives birth to live, fully-shelled babies.