Αύγουστος 26, 2021

An Animal Will Eat What It Can Eat (say that 10 times fast): A Scientific Consideration

Sometimes one will find an oceanic whitetip shark devouring some fish and squid in the ocean, or a whale shark scooping up krill. You may say that these are selective choices.
How, then, did these animals make those choices?
That can be hard to piece together. For sure! (those of you who have an answer, I want to hear it)
It may have to do with preferences, or something similar.
But why isn't the anteater going after flies and the whale shark after fish?
Because, the anteater can't catch the flies. It sees the flies, sure, and would like to catch them, but settles on what it CAN catch. Over time, the species may stop looking at them and evolve to GET THE MOST out of the ants and termites.
What, then, is evolution?
Evolution may be a concept (for me) hard to grasp, but it is little by little. I'm still having trouble understanding brain movements (as I heard in a recent live call-in show about evolving bird brains), but I can understand and help you understand it as I think about it philosophically and scientifically every day.
Mutations in the below-understanding level atoms lead to new species, and our bodies begin to shift with our daily activity. We develop shortcuts and so much more. After running in the long term, you become used to it and develop better muscles. Think about that yourself.

Αναρτήθηκε στις Αύγουστος 26, 2021 0818 ΜΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Contribute to ending climate change! Repost

Hello iNaturalists,
By observing, you are making a change. You're contributing to ideas of biodiversity and ideas of populations. You help scientists gain ideas and make change. You are all scientists. We could lose our earth without you.
But you can make a difference in other ways, too!
Join the Drawdown EcoChallenge which looks for amazing solutions to climate change.
Want to join?
Join at drawdown.ecochallenge.org
This ends on December 28th, 2021.
Thanks for your time and consideration!

Αναρτήθηκε στις Αύγουστος 26, 2021 0804 ΜΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Αύγουστος 21, 2021

World Honeybee Day!

Thanks to all the observers who've gotten all the observations of honeybees across the world. Being in the US, I've gotten many observations of the non-native Western Honeybee, which is doing well, although I've seen it come to the ground apparently in search of water, according to other iNaturalists (thank you!), in really hot times. Right now it's doing a rare rain and I'm seeing less bees in my yard...except of course, some honeybees are still here.
Tell me about your memorable honeybee experiences!
What I remember has to do with community. We had a long discussion in the comments of one of my honeybee observations about what the bees are doing on the ground, concluding that they're looking for water, and that you should give them a place to land if you set water out for them (which is a nice idea!). But then someone else joined in and said that this would be encouraging invasive species, which is something I hadn't thought about before. So thanks to everyone who helped with that!
And another time I talked about honeybees with the community is when I saw some bees come to the flowers (many native) in my yard and they seemed to fly or look a bit different than the other honeybees which I had gotten used to. So I thought, these are different. But two more people told me that the only honeybee in the Western hemisphere is...the western honeybee. They also gave me some recommended reading. As you can see, I'm not the most experienced, but I'd love to learn.
Let's give it up for World Honeybee Day!
Just one more thing: those outside the western hemisphere, I would love to find out about what honeybees you've seen. I'm very interested in this!
Have a great World Honeybee Day.
Explore more: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?taxon_id=538904

Αναρτήθηκε στις Αύγουστος 21, 2021 0703 ΜΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 1 παρατήρηση | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Αύγουστος 20, 2021

World Photo Day

Hey everyone! Today is World Photo Day, according to holidayscalendar.com so let's give it up for the iNaturalists all over who are taking photos all the time to support science.
What was your latest observation? Mine was a green lacewing that I saw while eating dinner. It was on my window, like some flies and other similar creatures that come there. Something I'm wondering about.
But what was your probably-best photo or most spectacular observation? Share that, too. Looking through all my observations, which I'm adding here, a cabbage white which some delightfully helpful naturalist told me was mating. And a gray bird grasshopper juvenile, a shot that I think was one of my best. I can also see it as it was very close up and recent. I saw the adult in my yard for a while, and saw a bunch of these on my pepper plant. And I can see these in the yard sometimes. I hope I'll find adults again as they grow up...and lay eggs again...
My most spectacular, though? Has to be an urbane digger bee that keeps coming to visit me. What a magical bee when I thought there was only one species I could see in my backyard.
I want to hear what YOURS are on this World Photo Day.
And I want to hear from iNaturalists who DO NOT use photos, what it's like and how they do it.
Happy World Photo Day, friends!

Αναρτήθηκε στις Αύγουστος 20, 2021 0110 ΠΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 5 παρατηρήσεις | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Αύγουστος 09, 2021

Contribute to ending climate change!

Hello iNaturalists,
By observing, you are making a change. You're contributing to ideas of biodiversity and ideas of populations. You help scientists gain ideas and make change. You are all scientists. We could lose our earth without you.
But you can make a difference in other ways, too!
Join the Drawdown EcoChallenge which looks for amazing solutions to climate change.
Want to join?
Join at drawdown.ecochallenge.org
This ends on December 28th, 2021.
Thanks for your time and consideration!

Αναρτήθηκε στις Αύγουστος 09, 2021 0558 ΜΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Ιούλιος 26, 2021

Take a Look: Spurges vs Purslane

While spurges and purslane are not in the same classification, it may be hard to tell them apart by a photo or when you see them out on the street. Here's this guide to distinguish spurges and purslane.

GROUND COVER: Spurges tend to spread out among the ground, while purslane typically grows in clumps, for lack of a better word. However, sometimes it does come along the ground, and it never grows like a tree, so keep your eye out and use the rest of this guide.

MANY COLORS: Spurges come in quite a few varieties, from dark green-pinkish to a light sprout green, while purslane comes in usually one shade of green with a touch of pink-red.

FLESHY LEAVES: Purslane has fleshier, juicier leaves while spurges have flat leaves.

Can you tell the difference between the spurge and purslane in these two observations below?

Αναρτήθηκε στις Ιούλιος 26, 2021 0500 ΜΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 2 παρατηρήσεις | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Ιούλιος 24, 2021

Digger bees

This observation below of an Urbane digger bee is one of my favorite species to see. I admire their coloring, their body shape, how fast they are, and their huge stinger, to name a few. One of them visits the yard often. is it likely that it is just this one digger bee?
Weird behavior sighting: a digger bee went over to a stem and rubbed its rear end and legs. it shook them as well. What could be happening?

Αναρτήθηκε στις Ιούλιος 24, 2021 1108 ΜΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 1 παρατήρηση | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Look at this interesting find!

I like to say, those who observe diligently will be rewarded :)

Αναρτήθηκε στις Ιούλιος 24, 2021 1101 ΜΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 1 παρατήρηση

Ιούλιος 19, 2021

Into the spirit of NATIONAL MOTH WEEK

Welcome back to National Moth Week on iNaturalist! We're hoping that you can help us catalog many moths and other Lepidoptera. Moths are an amazing and diverse group of animals that you may have seen. Your observations help with moth and other research throughout the world! They can influence important decisions.
Here's a personal story for National Moth Week. I'm surrounded by caterpillars. Next door I have generations of monarchs (provide host milkweed plants, native not tropical!) But those are butterflies! I have seen geometer moth caterpillars (aka inchworms). But one day, on my native salvia plant I noticed two or three caterpillars and some evidence of others–something I believe is caterpillar poop. These were pale yellow with black dots. I had no idea what they were! So I added an observation to iNaturalist. No idea what it was, so I just added it as Lepidoptera. Perhaps a month went by and there were no other ideas for what this was. Today I decided to take matters into my own hands. I searched online for "yellow caterpillar with black dots". Unfortunately I only found wooly caterpillars and similar results. After a few guides yielded no results, I searched "caterpillar on salvia plant". I clicked on the first article. And I found that it talked about the Southern Pink Moth (aka the inornate pyrausta moth). Looking back, I remembered seeing this on my salvia the day before. COULD IT BE? And the caterpillar photo matched mine. I had found my observation! https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/86490935
Make your own moth observations and share your story!
Learn all about National Moth Week: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/city-nature-challenge-2021-toronto-and-gta/journal/54413-national-moth-week-july-17-25-2021
And be a part of the competition: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/moths-of-sri-lanka/journal/54414-update-on-moth-week-competition-2021-07-19

Αναρτήθηκε στις Ιούλιος 19, 2021 0417 ΜΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 1 παρατήρηση | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Ιούλιος 09, 2021

You Can Know Everything! A Scientific Consideration

What if you could figure out nearly every single thing you wanted to know about nature. As a scientist, you could, and you can in fact become a scientist.
Overnight, actually! How is that? Many people forget that a scientist isn't someone who has multiple degrees and beakers. It's actually someone who observes nature and asks questions about what they see. I've recently been prattling on and on about this (inaturalist.org/journal/iamsharkgirl) but it's true! In fact, these chemists use it, too. We just forget, and maybe they do, too. They observe the chemical reactions of the earth and ask why that happens. If they didn't ask, they would be out of their job, maybe bakers or builders or something else. But I dedicated a whole other post to this, so I'm going to get right into it… You can figure everything out that you want to know about nature!
I'm going to use an example question for this, then. Here's a story where you'll see that you can answer anything...and how.
I'll use the character Julie in this, although she is not a real-life person.

Julie and her five-year-old son are doing a summer science experiment that she found online when searching for ocean lessons before they went on their beach trip. It's all about dissolving seashells. When put in a mixture of water and salt (seawater! artificial seawater!), a seashell doesn't do anything, but in the vinegar, it eventually dissolves. Julie's son loves this experiment and finds it so fascinating. He can't wait for the next one.
Julie gets her National Geographic for that month and reads all about ocean acidification and what issues it's causing for the ocean animals and plants. One says that it's dissolving the shells of invertebrates. Julie remembers the experiment her son did dissolving seashells. The two events are similar. Now Julie has a QUESTION: can ocean acidification or the dissolving of seashells in vinegar, can they be reversed or stopped? She decides to find out.
Julie wants to turn this into another experiment. She thinks as her HYPOTHESIS that it can't be reversed, but that if we start now, the biggest damage can be prevented.
First, Julie turns online for research. After the search bar loads, the first thing that pops up says, "Researchers are finding that kelp, eelgrass, and other vegetation can effectively absorb CO2 and reduce acidity in the ocean. Growing these plants in local waters, scientists say, could help mitigate the damaging impacts of acidification on marine life." She's glad that ocean algae and plants are helping, but she can't really get that for her experiment. She writes it in her notes just in case, and keeps looking.
Another article Julie sees says, "When seawater absorbs carbon dioxide, chemical reactions reduce the ocean's pH, making it more acidic." She thinks that is interesting. How could it work? She clicks on the article. "Pumping lime into the ocean would balance out anthropogenic emissions, akin to how a Tums tablet settles a sour stomach. But there is a catch: all the Tums on Earth would not be enough." it says when she scans it quickly. Julie doesn't think we can actually do that, and there wouldn't be enough supplies to do that. She keeps looking.
On a clip to another article, it says, "The most effective way to limit ocean acidification is to act on climate change, implementing solutions to dramatically reduce the use of fossil fuels. If we dramatically cut our global warming emissions, and we limit future warming, we can significantly reduce the harm to marine ecosystems." Julie thinks that's interesting. First, she notes it, and wonders if she could represent that in her experiment. How could she represent that pollution? But she'll consider that later when she's done. She clicks on the article. She wants to learn more. The article tells her what ocean acidification actually is–when carbon dioxide enters the ocean and dissolves into an acid, which is actually really bad.
Julie thinks that the way to represent pollution, now that she knows how ocean acidification actually works, is by adding more vinegar to her experiment, but she's not sure if it will actually make it go faster or not. She decides to try it out just in case.
But before that, she does a little more research and finds out that anything with sugar in it can reverse vinegar. She's not sure if it will work in this case, but she thinks she'll try it out. She adds it to her notes.
Then Julie wants to know how plants draw in carbon dioxide. It might help her with her demonstration.
Before she researches, though, she prepares some more parts of her experiment. She lets her son help and he's enthusiastic about doing it. They're watching their seashells from yesterday that went in the vinegar. They aren't completely dissolved, but are definitely changed and more delicate. In one of their new bowls, Julie represents pollution and increased acidification by adding another cup of vinegar to their usual 1 cup. Maybe it will take less time to dissolve the seashells. In another bowl, they use 1 cup of vinegar and put some leaves from weeds in the bowl. Will they make dissolving slower? She will research later if she can represent it better. And in the other, Julie also adds some sugar to the 1 cup of vinegar. Will THAT make dissolving slower? She'll research more on that, too. Her son puts a seashell in each bowl. She adds these steps of her PROCEDURE and what MATERIALS she used to her notes.
Julie spends the rest of the day doing her at-home computer work, but she doesn't forget her experiment. The next day, she checks in on everything. Her first experiment's shell is still there, but more delicate than ever. The bowl with more vinegar in its shell is very, very delicate in less than 24 hours, when the first test took over 24 hours. The bowl with the leaves in it has a surprising change–there's hardly any shell left. THIS is definitely also most delicate. Julie hasn't expected this. And the leaves are a brownish or gray-green color instead of their earlier vibrant light green. She isn't sure what happened here. One guess she made is that the decomposed (if it is) or dead plant matter added to the acidity. But she's not sure. Maybe she'll research later, although she will likely not get very many results. Or maybe she'll do the same thing and see if she'll get similar results. She adds these ideas to her notebook and checks out the last bowl, with cane sugar added. There are hardly any changes here! She finds this interesting.
Julie takes her son to the park before it gets too hot. Then they read a book together and do a puzzle. She plans their experiment for the afternoon, which will be about how blubber keeps whales warm. Then she turns to her research. The first site she sees says, "For photosynthesis green plants take carbon dioxide from the air. The carbon dioxide enters the leaves of the plant through the stomata present on their surface. Each stomatal pore is surrounded by a pair of guard cells. ... During photosynthesis, the oxygen gas produces goes out through the leaves of the stomatal pores." This is interesting and complex, but doesn't help her with what she's actually looking for. She thinks that she would need plants, but she knows they don't do well in vinegar. Maybe she will try to put another test in the garden. Will it make a difference?
Then Julie researches more: are there any sugary components in the ocean like what she used in her experiment? First, she brainstorms. What defines sugar? She thinks that it is something high in the sweet components sugar has with the same nutrients. There might be sugary components in the soil or in decomposed animals and plants. She's about to research, but then remembers the importance of answering the question yourself. She'll research later. Right now, she'll test to see if sugar is present in the soil that her garden has. She wants to try plant matter again as well. She knows that they make sugar.
But what Julie REALLY wants to know is if anything can make the already-dissolved seashell come back into its visible form. She decides to take the not-yet-dissolved seashell out of the first experiment and add some sugar to see. What else could she try? She thinks that she will try, in another bowl, baking soda.
Later, she doesn't really find any results. Maybe another time, she'll try putting a bowl out into the sun. But for right now, she thinks it is time to review her question and create her conclusion.
Question: Does anything reverse the effects of vinegar dissolving calcium carbonate shells when it is already dissolved?
Conclusion: So far, baking soda, plants, and sugar don't reverse the effects in pure vinegar, but sugar can really stop the reaction. And the related ocean acidification can be helped by kelp and seagrass. There is hope.
And remember–you can learn anything!

Αναρτήθηκε στις Ιούλιος 09, 2021 0730 ΜΜ από iamsharkgirl iamsharkgirl | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

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