Ducks and Horses:


  In an online Q&A session back in August, President Obama was asked, “Would you rather fight 100 duck-sized horses or one horse-sized duck?”


This question as answered by someone who actually knows the answer:


  I feel it’s rather a shame Obama staffers neglected to consult me, as that question was, in essence, my PhD topic; I could have given the President better advice, and explained why his intuition—that a single giant duck would be an easier fight—is wrong, wrong, wrong.


It’s all about the allometry …

Ducks and Horses:

In an online Q&A session back in August, President Obama was asked, “Would you rather fight 100 duck-sized horses or one horse-sized duck?”

This question as answered by someone who actually knows the answer:

I feel it’s rather a shame Obama staffers neglected to consult me, as that question was, in essence, my PhD topic; I could have given the President better advice, and explained why his intuition—that a single giant duck would be an easier fight—is wrong, wrong, wrong.

It’s all about the allometry …

maxistentialist:

Discovery:

So-called zombie worms — and yes, they actually exist — like to munch on whale bones for dinner. The creatures also use the bones for shelter. Spread throughout the world’s oceans, zombie worms are quite adept at making the bones of whales and other large marine animals look like Swiss cheese.    
But these worms don’t have any mouthparts with which to gnaw the holes. So how do they do it? A study published in the May 1 online edition of the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B found that rather than being “bone-drilling” worms, they’re actually “bone-dissolving” worms: The worms’ skin produces acid in large quantities to break down bones.
[…]

Even stranger is that the worms lack digestive systems. The study suggests the acid the worms produce frees collagen and other proteins from the whale bones, but how they are broken down and absorbed by the worms is unclear. Tresguerres, along with co-authors Sigrid Katz and Greg Rouse, think that symbiotic bacteria help the animals digest the food.


The headline of this article, Zombie Worms Drill Whale Bones with Acid, is up there with Buddhist ‘Iron Man’ found by Nazis is from space.
(via thevowel)

maxistentialist:

Discovery:

So-called zombie worms — and yes, they actually exist — like to munch on whale bones for dinner. The creatures also use the bones for shelter. Spread throughout the world’s oceans, zombie worms are quite adept at making the bones of whales and other large marine animals look like Swiss cheese.    

But these worms don’t have any mouthparts with which to gnaw the holes. So how do they do it? A study published in the May 1 online edition of the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B found that rather than being “bone-drilling” worms, they’re actually “bone-dissolving” worms: The worms’ skin produces acid in large quantities to break down bones.

[…]

Even stranger is that the worms lack digestive systems. The study suggests the acid the worms produce frees collagen and other proteins from the whale bones, but how they are broken down and absorbed by the worms is unclear. Tresguerres, along with co-authors Sigrid Katz and Greg Rouse, think that symbiotic bacteria help the animals digest the food.

The headline of this article, Zombie Worms Drill Whale Bones with Acid, is up there with Buddhist ‘Iron Man’ found by Nazis is from space.

(via thevowel)