Saturday, December 6, 2008

Life of the nails

I do not know who created these amazing artworks with such simple day to day objects like nails


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Beautiful fishes from around the world

African Cichlids

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First off, cichlids is pronounced “Sick-Lids”. African Cichlids are fish found in Three lakes in Africa; Malawi, Tanganyika and Victoria. The Victorian Species are less numerous and usually less colorful than the others.These fish usually grow to about six or seven inches long, with the exception of the Frontosoa Species, which grow to about twelve to fourteen inches in length. Fortunately, these fish are freshwater, and easy to raise in a home aquarium, the only requirement being that they have water with a higher pH level and plenty of hiding spots (they can be quite aggressive!). There are also species of Cichlids that live in the Amazon Basin, but these get much larger and are much more aggressive than their African relatives.


Parrotfish

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Named Parrotfish because of their calcareous bird-like beaks. Parrotfish use these beaks to crush and eat the small invertebrates that live in coral. Much of the sand and sea floor of coral reefs are actually remains of meals from the parrotfish, they chew the coral, eat the invertebrates and spit out the leftover calcium. Like Cichlids, There are many individual species of Parrotfish, with varying degrees of color and patterns.


Regal Tang

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Ever since “Finding Nemo” came out, these fish are usually referred to as “Dory Fish” by children. Tangs belong to a family of fish called Surgeonfish, who possess a small, retractable calcareous blade toward their tail fin. This blade is mainly used for defense, they extract it and rub against an attacker, in an effort to fend it off.


Lionfish

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Probably one of my favorite fish of all time, the Lionfish (or Zebrafish) is a fascinating species, and is easy to become mesmerized by one when watching it swim. The spines you see on its back possess a painful and powerful venom. Thankfully the Lionfish is somewhat docile and not a fast swimmer, but all aquarists who own one must take extra care when cleaning their tank.


Mandarinfish

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A lesser-known species, these are probably the single most colorful and vibrant fish I’ve ever seen. There are two varieties, the standard Mandarinfish and the Psychedelic Mandarin. The standard typically has more interesting patterns and colors than the psychedelic, but both are very beautiful fish. These small fish (usually no more than 6 inches full-grown) usually don’t cost more than $20 for a specimen, but the main problem is feeding them. They only eat small micro-invertebrates that live within live rock in coral reefs. In order to sustain one in a home aquarium, one needs a sufficient amount of live rock that has been in the tank for at least a month prior to introducing the fish. As with some of the other species on this list, one really needs to see this fish in person to witness the amazing vibrance of its color.
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Thursday, December 4, 2008

THE DRAGONFLY

The sight of a dragonfly on the wing is one of the more remarkable that nature has to offer. Here,take a look at the life cycle of the dragonfly as well as its remarkable and unusual physiology.

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The gorgeous colors of a dragonfly - these majestic insects of the air have been a source of inspiration - and fear - to people for thousands of years. The order to which they belong is called Odonata. Many people regularly go ‘oding' just as others go birding or butterfly collecting. Their life is cycle as unusual as their looks are striking.

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A pair of Yellow Striped Hunters starts the circle of life with a liaison of gymnastic prowess. With their multi-faceted eyes, a double pair of wings and an athletic and graceful looking elongated body it is no wonder that dragonflies are held in awe by a number of cultures. They are valued by farmers all over the world, as well as those inspired by the beauty of nature, as they help control the numbers of insects that can be harmful to crops.
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Their eyes are made up of several thousand individual units known as photoreceptors. What they see combines the input from their eye units known as ommatidia. These are located on the convex surface of the eye and each points in a slightly different direction to its neighbor. In this way, these compound eyes have an extremely large view angle. This means that the dragonfly is able to detect the movement of its prey incredibly quickly. If humans wanted the same eyesight then we would have to grow compound eyes that were as large as our heads.

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The wings may look fragile to the human eye but they are incredibly strong. They are incredibly fast, versatile and can maneuver in ways that we can only imagine. The control that they have is such that they can seem to change direction in an instant.

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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

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