A scorpionfish (Rhinopias eschmeyeri) in Bali, Indonesia, by Rockford Draper of University of Texas at Dallas.

A scorpionfish (Rhinopias eschmeyeri) in Bali, Indonesia, by Rockford Draper of University of Texas at Dallas.

Weevil in flight, by Maxim Piessen.

Weevil in flight, by Maxim Piessen.

The lenses from the eyes of a colossal squid (Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni). The colossal squid is the largest known invertebrate, which their eyes being appropriately large at up to 27 centimeters across. As the largest eyes in the animal kingdom, their purpose is most likely aid in spotting sperm whales, which pose as their only predators. According to Dan-Eric Nilsson of Lund University in Sweden, the size of the squids pupil could indicate that the squid can detect approaching whales from over 120 meters away, thus giving it plenty of time to take evasive action. (via)

The lenses from the eyes of a colossal squid (Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni). The colossal squid is the largest known invertebrate, which their eyes being appropriately large at up to 27 centimeters across. As the largest eyes in the animal kingdom, their purpose is most likely aid in spotting sperm whales, which pose as their only predators. According to Dan-Eric Nilsson of Lund University in Sweden, the size of the squids pupil could indicate that the squid can detect approaching whales from over 120 meters away, thus giving it plenty of time to take evasive action. (via)

These are Atlantic wolffish, residing off of rocky coasts in depths up to 1,600 feet below the ocean’s surface. They can reach up to five feet long, with crooked teeth highly suited for crushing their prey of mollusks, shellfish, and sea urchins. It’s a face only a mother could love.

(via)

These are Atlantic wolffish, residing off of rocky coasts in depths up to 1,600 feet below the ocean’s surface. They can reach up to five feet long, with crooked teeth highly suited for crushing their prey of mollusks, shellfish, and sea urchins. It’s a face only a mother could love.

(via)

This pram bug, an inch-long, translucent Phronima crustacean, may look cute, but it certainly packs a vicious punch. Upon catching their usual prey of a small marine animals called salps, females feast by utilizing their mouths and claws to devour the salp’s insides and then hollowing out the corpse. To add insult to injury, the female then proceeds to lay her eggs inside the victim’s body cavity to create a mobile, gelatinous nest for her young. (via)

This pram bug, an inch-long, translucent Phronima crustacean, may look cute, but it certainly packs a vicious punch. Upon catching their usual prey of a small marine animals called salps, females feast by utilizing their mouths and claws to devour the salp’s insides and then hollowing out the corpse. To add insult to injury, the female then proceeds to lay her eggs inside the victim’s body cavity to create a mobile, gelatinous nest for her young. (via)

Anglerfish

The anglerfish is so called because of its method of predation. This is the fish that goes fishing. It has a long, modified dorsal fin spine sprouting from the middle of its head that ends in a fleshy growth that can move and wiggle to resemble another animal. In some deep sea anglerfish this deadly bait can even emit light (a characteristic called bioluminescence). Passing predators who think they’ve found an easy meal only need to touch the bait to find out they’re the main course. Having been lured inside the anglerfish’s wide mouth, the long pointed teeth snap shut and the creature is devoured whole. There are more than 300 species of anglerfish worldwide. They are found in open water and on the sea bed. Some of the bottom dwellers have modified fins that let them walk along the ocean floor.

Anglerfish

The anglerfish is so called because of its method of predation. This is the fish that goes fishing. It has a long, modified dorsal fin spine sprouting from the middle of its head that ends in a fleshy growth that can move and wiggle to resemble another animal. In some deep sea anglerfish this deadly bait can even emit light (a characteristic called bioluminescence). Passing predators who think they’ve found an easy meal only need to touch the bait to find out they’re the main course. Having been lured inside the anglerfish’s wide mouth, the long pointed teeth snap shut and the creature is devoured whole. There are more than 300 species of anglerfish worldwide. They are found in open water and on the sea bed. Some of the bottom dwellers have modified fins that let them walk along the ocean floor.

So how exactly is the Gulf of Mexico after the worst oil spill in human history?
According to the National Geographic:

A spill that started with the tragic loss of life soon wrought major environmental devastation over huge region of the Gulf. Disturbing images appeared daily of oiled wildlife, iridescent surface slicks, overwhelmed cleanup workers, fouled beaches, burning oil fires, and blackened wetlands.

The damage from nearly five million barrels of oil was very real, yet many expert predictions missed their marks. Hurricanes didn’t drive enormous quantities of oil ashore, giant dead zones didn’t materialize, and oil didn’t round the tip of Florida to rocket up the East Coast via the Gulf Stream. Fisheries now appear poised to rebound instead of suffering the barren years or decades some feared. And Mother Nature had her own surprises in store, showcasing an ability to fight back against the spill and, later, to bounce back from the damage—at least in the short-term.

However, uncertainty still reigns among those trying to come to grips with the spill’s ultimate legacy. Even the final fate of all that oil is a matter of some debate—though the gooey crude still clings to some shorelines, where it will be visible for years to come.

In the clear Mediterranian waters, this fireworm, or Eurythoe complanata, rests on a coral reef. The seemingly beautiful creature is actually named for the painful sting one recieves upon grazing one of those small, white bristles. (via)

In the clear Mediterranian waters, this fireworm, or Eurythoe complanata, rests on a coral reef. The seemingly beautiful creature is actually named for the painful sting one recieves upon grazing one of those small, white bristles. (via)

Scientists and engineers have been fascinated with spider silk’s amazing and unimaginable capabilities, as it is one of the toughest, yet most delicate materials in existence. The latest use has been in a bow of a violin, enabling musicians to play profoundly soft and versatile melodies.

Pictured here is a pharaoh cuttlefish in the Daymaniyat Islands Nature Reserve. It is releasing its plume of ink in defense due to being stabbed by a diver, since net fishing on these protected coral reefs is prohibited, but other methods are legal, such as fishing with traditional long-handled hooks. (via)

Pictured here is a pharaoh cuttlefish in the Daymaniyat Islands Nature Reserve. It is releasing its plume of ink in defense due to being stabbed by a diver, since net fishing on these protected coral reefs is prohibited, but other methods are legal, such as fishing with traditional long-handled hooks. (via)

While these images may seem like simply a cute photoset of a bear scratching an itch with a rock, it is actually the first observation of a brown bear using a tool. Volker Deecke, a researcher at University of Cumbria, managed to capture several images of this bear using a barnacle-covered rock back in 2010, in Glacier Bay, Alaska. (via)

Despite already being the largest moth in the world with its 10 inch wingspan, this Atlas Moth is seen in its defensive posture, in order to seem even larger. However, it is not only just its apparent size that scares off potential predators, but also the coloring, as it mimics that of the poisonous frogs and wasps from its native south Asia. (via)

Despite already being the largest moth in the world with its 10 inch wingspan, this Atlas Moth is seen in its defensive posture, in order to seem even larger. However, it is not only just its apparent size that scares off potential predators, but also the coloring, as it mimics that of the poisonous frogs and wasps from its native south Asia. (via)

This is the diamond weevil, or Chrysolopus spectabilis. This week, an article in Royal Society journal has shown the true iridescence of the insect’s beautiful wings, as these Dutch and German researchers found that each pit (shown of the top right) is lined with scales (bottom right) with a structure similar to a diamond. This team utilized electron micrographs (middle right) to confirm their previously proposed “photonic crystal” structure (bottom left).  (via)

This sea snake pictured above is a newly-discovered species of highly-venomous sea snake found off of the coast of northern Australia. While this in itself wouldn’t be too newsworthy, the fact that it is covered from heat to tail in very spiny scales is quite fascinating. Here’s a close-up:

Very little is known about this creature, now named Hydrophis donaldi, as of yet, and it is likely to remain that way, as according to Bryan Fry, of University of Queensland:


Field observations are impossible, because the water is very murky and filled with lots of very large bull sharks and saltwater crocodiles, in addition to [highly poisonous] box jellyfish. If we tried to dive there, our life expectancy would be measured in minutes. The only question is which animal would kill us. My money is on the bull sharks.

Read More at National Geographic 
And thanks to xradicald for showing me this article!

This sea snake pictured above is a newly-discovered species of highly-venomous sea snake found off of the coast of northern Australia. While this in itself wouldn’t be too newsworthy, the fact that it is covered from heat to tail in very spiny scales is quite fascinating. Here’s a close-up:

Very little is known about this creature, now named Hydrophis donaldi, as of yet, and it is likely to remain that way, as according to Bryan Fry, of University of Queensland:

Field observations are impossible, because the water is very murky and filled with lots of very large bull sharks and saltwater crocodiles, in addition to [highly poisonous] box jellyfish. If we tried to dive there, our life expectancy would be measured in minutes. The only question is which animal would kill us. My money is on the bull sharks.

Read More at National Geographic 

And thanks to xradicald for showing me this article!