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Life's Little Pleasures
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mouse



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 17278
Location: under the bed

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i'm going to put this here, because reading it gave me pleasure, and also since it's a link to the new yorker and i'm not sure everyone can read it, i don't want to upset anyone because they can't read Something Important.

anyway, it turns out dung beetles can use the milky way to navigate at night.

which is a) cool and b) reminded me how fun, and funny, scientists can be.

well, here:
Quote:
To test they idea, they built a circular, wooden table several feet in diameter, with a moat around the edge to catch beetles when they fell off. A high wall around the perimeter, lined with black cloth, blocked the view of trees and other potential landmarks. One by one, a beetle and his dung ball would be placed in the middle of the arena and timed to see how long it took him to reach the edge. This was all done in the dark. “They were completely unobserved,” Byrne said. “It was pretty weird. We’d release them, then you’d hear their footsteps pattering across the woodwork, then they’d fall into the trough with a thump.”


i can hear that so clearly, and imagine both the excitement of the scientists as their prediction was proven, and the annoyance of the poor beetles.

and also:
Quote:
When the scientists put tiny black, cardboard hats on the beetles, to block their overhead view, the insects meandered hopelessly.

Read more: http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2013/01/dung-beetles-dancing-to-the-milky-way.html#ixzz2JapuJPTx


tiny black cardboard hats! on beetles! god, i miss field science.




well, except for the part where you are working literally night and day for weeks out in the kalahari.






i would like to see the milky way from there, though.
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ShadowCell



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
Posts: 6077
Location: California

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that article is the most amazing thing ever

dung beetles! navigating by the light of one of the grandest celestial bodies we know! while rolling along balls of poop! it's sublime
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fritterdonut



Joined: 24 Jul 2012
Posts: 1188
Location: Hedonism

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bees use the earth's magnetic field to navigate, as do homing pigeons. In addition to that, magnetic bones and a magnetosensitive protein have been found in the human nose and eye.

Couple that with the fact that scientists have found the Earth's magnetic field is about 10% weaker than it was when Gauss first began measuring it in the 1840's, and you may have one of the reasons for the disappearance and hive collapse of honeybees lately.

Science (almost) always makes me happy.
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Kitten



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 1614
Location: mil pitos

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 11:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cutest and smelliest story of the year?
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cixelsyD



Joined: 09 Oct 2010
Posts: 1360

PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You know you are a gangster ass beetle when you are kicking around tiger poo.
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Yorick



Joined: 11 Jul 2006
Posts: 12101
Location: In the undersnow

PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 4:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Samsally wrote:
I did my taxes last night before I went to bed and by the time I woke up this morning I had a text saying my federal taxes have already been approved.

Cool!

I did mine in the midday, and the message about being approved arrived right before I went to bed (which was around 1am)
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DeD CHiKn



Joined: 04 Aug 2006
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Location: Baltimore, Maryla*gunshot*

PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fritterdonut wrote:
one of the reasons for the disappearance and hive collapse of honeybees lately.


Gooooood... goooooood....
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mouse



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
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Location: under the bed

PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 9:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

nono, honey bees are _good_.

they really and truly aren't the same as wasps.

really, if you aren't careful, you are going to get a reputation as some sort of hymenopterist.
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fritterdonut



Joined: 24 Jul 2012
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 9:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've always liked bees. They always seem friendly.

Wasps are the devil incarnate, however.
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Falkonn



Joined: 05 Aug 2006
Posts: 307
Location: Beneath the pile of babies~

PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 2:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got to do my first treatment on a patient in my small group class yesterday. Totally incredible experience. It was so cool to see someone walk into the room one way at the beginning of the treatment, and describe themselves as more at peace then they had been in a long time just before they walked out the door. I feel super lucky to get to be a part of this incredibly rewarding work!
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Finnegan



Joined: 01 May 2007
Posts: 1080
Location: in that cool mountain air, on an appalachian trail

PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 3:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

what is it that you do?
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Halen



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 1883
Location: England

PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 3:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Prostitute.
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Falkonn



Joined: 05 Aug 2006
Posts: 307
Location: Beneath the pile of babies~

PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm working on a master's of acupuncture and a master's of oriental medicine right now. The second one will allow me to use chinese herbs in my practice. So basically I had a bunch of the purple drank and I'm a certified hippie or something.
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Finnegan



Joined: 01 May 2007
Posts: 1080
Location: in that cool mountain air, on an appalachian trail

PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cool. unfortunately, I've never had much luck in that area but that's not to say I don't see it as a valid and legitimate therapy technique. it just didn't help with my chronic migraines. I'm search for a crainio-sacral therapist currently. I had it done a few times when I was in Chicago for a month it so last november and it was amazing. can't find anyone locally though.
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hey! rock bottom's not that bad
we've got glow-in-the-dark fish down here that's rad
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Falkonn



Joined: 05 Aug 2006
Posts: 307
Location: Beneath the pile of babies~

PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry to hear that it didn't help with your migraines. I'm glad that you tried it out though because acupuncture does have a pretty good track record with headaches (I know its suggested pretty frequently when western medicine doesn't seem to be helping). Hopefully you find something that does help!

Edit: Also where do you live?
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