Monthly Archives: October 2012

Squeeee – Quito the baby Tamandua

That is so adorable

Why Evolution Is True

by Matthew Cobb

At Reid Park Zoo in Tucson, Quito the baby Southern Tamandua (aka a lesser anteater) is weighed in a routine procedure. He’s less than two weeks old… To keep him happy, the zookeepers give him this teddy bear to cling onto (photos and info from www.zooborns.com):

Here’s a close-up of him being held by keeper Leslie:

And here he is, his arms around his bear pal, on the scales:

Southern Tamanduas, Tamanduatetradactyla, are found in scrubland in South America east of the Andes. The BBC website says it is:

An anteater with strong claws and a long, powerful, prehensile tail. Its coat is fawn to dark brown, and in some individuals from the south-eastern part of its range there is a black or dark brown ‘collar’ running from the shoulders to the rump. The nose and tail only have very short, sparse fur. As…

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Do crows, like humans, have a concept of “hidden causal agents”?

Birds are clever too! Wow.

Why Evolution Is True

It would obviously be adaptive for some animals to be able to distinguish between natural phenomena, like wind, and phenomena that have similar effects but are caused by hidden agents like predators.  One example (used in the paper below) is the rustling of trees in a tropical forest canopy.  We know how to distinguish between the rustling caused by wind, which is general, and the rustling that is localized and moves slowly, like that caused by a troop of monkeys moving through the trees. (I experienced this myself on a recent trip to Costa Rica). If you’re liable to be disturbed (or eaten) by monkeys you need to pay attention to avoid the troop, but in the case of wind you don’t want to waste valuable foraging time looking up and getting nervous every time a leaf rustles.

This notion of “hidden causal agency,” of course, has been suggested as…

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Amazing paper sculptures of animals

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wow!!

Why Evolution Is True

Artist Calvin Nicholls makes stunning sculptures of animals entirely out of paper. You can see more of them at Beautiful Lifewhich also supplies this information:

Canadian artist Calvin Nicholls creates the following amazingly beautiful sculptures using sheets of paper. “Calvin has been creating his paper sculptures since 1986 from his studio north of Toronto Ontario, Canada. Working with sheets of paper and a scalpel, he cuts the component pieces to fit the final drawing and assembles the low relief artwork under studio lighting. When the sculpture is complete the lighting is adjusted to bring out the subtle form and texture. A large format camera is used to capture the detail on 8×10 film prior to scanning for print applications or art prints.”

h/t: Su

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Henri parle de la politique

that is amazing.

Why Evolution Is True

by Matthew Cobb

Henri, le chat philosophe, gives us his views on extending suffrage to felids, touching in the final section on the fundamental revolutionary slogan: no castration without representation. But is this a slippery slope? By what logic could we give the vote to cats, but keep it from dogs, or *shudder* cephalopods?

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