Wednesday, 13 June 2007

Monster Pig Debuked!

Apparently this 'Monster Pig' shot by an 11-year old boy in rural Alabama is a fake (big surprise) Check out the full story of photo manipulation here.

Tuesday, 12 June 2007

The cat with 26 toes

Thanks to Janine for sending in this story about a VERY polydactyl cat. Last month I wrote about the evolution of five fingers and toes and the constraints on this arrangement. Though loss of digits is not an uncommon evolutionary change, gaining digits is very rare. It is a phenomenon seen in polydacyl cats; however, I don't think anyone understands why cats are able to increase the number of their digits without 'repercussions' to the rest of their patterning. Anyway, click here to read about the polydactyl cat who has 26 fingers and toes!

Monday, 11 June 2007

Cretaion Museum reveals Adam's sordid past

I took a long weekend so I guess this story is a few days old but I had to rely it because it is so funny! Thanks to Hank Campbell who organizes Scientific Blogging for sending it along.

The Creation Museum of Petersburg, Kansas has been wrought with criticism since before it even opened, but most recently, they have been embroiled in a ‘moral scandal’ by an employ hired to tell the story of the fall of man.

A variety of actors were hired to play out scenes from the bible and the man chosen to play God’s golden boy, Adam, has now been revealed to have a ‘sordid’ history. Eric Linden, owns a website called Bedroom Acrobat, on which he is (allegedly -I cannot say this myself as the site has apparently crashed due to traffic overload) pictured. Linden, a graphic designer, model and actor purchased the domain name for this site which mostly sells clothing.

Museum administrators were swift in removing the 40-second video in which he appeared from the display. “We are currently investigating the veracity of these serious claims of his participation in projects that don’t align with the biblical standards and moral code upon which the ministry was founded,” Answers for Genesis spokesman Mark Looy said in an electronic statement.

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

T. rex didn't turn on a dime

Tyrannosaurus SkeletonScientists now say that the "Terror of the Cretaceous" may not have been that bad after all. A new study indicates that T. rex had a hard time getting its jaws into fast, agile prey.

An American team of palaeontologists have used detailed computer models to work out the weight of a typical Tyrannosaurus and determine how it ran and turned. The results indicate a 6 to 8-tonne T. rex was unlikely to have topped 40km/h (25mph) and would have taken a few seconds to swivel 45 degrees.

The computer model estimated that a high center of mass and large inertia would have had been responsible for the slow movement and that T. rex could have been out-maneuvered by agile prey.

Dr Paul Barrett, of London's Natural History Museum, commented, "This is another finding that undermines the kind of idea of T. rex as a super-predator. But it has this huge mouth filled with 60-odd, 30cm-long teeth, so it was still a formidable animal."

The research was published in the Journal of Theoretical Biology.

Monday, 4 June 2007

The Starbucker Meme!

I have been Memed from PetLvr, who asks:

1) How full is your glass?
2) What kind of glass is it?
3) What’s in the glass?
4) Reasons for #1, #2, and #3

I admit, I am a slave to the large capitalist evil known as Starbucks. Did you know they actually have a Starbucks inside the Forbidden City in Beijing?!?!?

Well my glass is always full on account of me buying venti lattes which take me a while to drink. I get gingerbread lattes, a seasonal drink which Starbucks typically only does around Christmas but the cafe I go to still has ingredients left (Thank God for preservatives!)

If you are a Starbucks lover, consider yourself memed and pass it on!

Friday, 1 June 2007

(Re)burying Dinosaur Tracks in Pinon Canyon, Colorado

Dustin on Dysfunctional Analysis posted today about the Pinon Canyon development in Colorado.

The Pinon Canyon training ground is a military facility that will soon be extended, engulfing several townships and ranches. It is also the largest dinosaur track site in North America and the site contains ruins of the Dolores Mission, an old graveyard, and Native American petroglyphs. The historical and scientific value of the canyon is incredible.