Tentacled, Carnivorous Plants Catapult Prey Into Traps

September 28, 2012

Drosera glanduligera, a rare type of sundew, has long been a puzzle to scientists because, it has two types of leaf protrusions that radiate outward. Both these leaves have different functions. one of the leaves, the sticky, bug-ensnaring tentacle, is a common evolutionary aspect in carnivorous plants. But the second type of leaf, a sort of snapping tentacle, has no glue and makes jerky movements when touched–which for a long time couldn’t be explained.

An experiment was done to find out the function of this strange leaf, and scientists then realized that it acted as a sort of catapult, flinging the insects directly into the glue tentacles around the plant’s center, where the bug can be digested. 

What interested the scientists even more about this phenomena, is that this catapult system is actually very effective. The insect hardly ever escapes once its been catapulted.   

A carnivorous plant.

 

 


Mars and Water

September 27, 2012

Its happened! Curiosity  found what looks like an old riverbed on mar’s surface. They say that the water was there from anywhere to one thousand to one million years and was anywhere from ankle to hip deep. I find this very interesting and am curious to what else the rover might find on its two year journey.


Project progress

September 26, 2012

So my Paper project is going ok.

I am currently on the process of researching the different Universities that have transferred to recycled paper.

Once I feel I have a good basis of research I hope to talk to Sean to see what else he suggests I do in order to finally propose the change to the university.

I want to have as much research as possible to that any problems the University has with it can be answered with a simple solution!


Nature

September 26, 2012

Peter Coates brings interesting questions on his book “Nature”.

We have already discussed in class, Nature has been redefined over generations. Nature was originally described as dangerous and wild, this nature is a place where humans are not present and do  not coexist with nature. Humans have attempted to conquer nature yet it comes back unable of being conquered.

The author discusses the four main ways in which nature can be used.  Nature can be used to describe a place where human have not/do not utilize,  to describe to whole of the universe and it’s living things, to describe  “higher being” than humans and therefore perhaps has control over humans and Nature can describe the “wild” where nothing can be controlled and “the opposite of culture”.

Coates discusses how Nature has been an inspiration in art, even though art produces an “imperfect nature”, and how Romantic poets viewed nature as as a higher power than any law put on man:

“The Romantics Chose wild nature not only over its tamer aspects but also above the finest charms and accomplishments in the human mind.”(pg127)

 


project update

September 26, 2012

trying to do the solar power thing with Sean he as a meeting Oct 10, waiting to hear back from him

still think it would be really cool to do a living wall or a tree in the middle of the science center. maybe a senior gift?

http://www.plantcare.co.uk/flowers-trees.php#tree


First Fluorine Gas Found in Nature

September 26, 2012

Researchers in Munich have evidence to prove that fluorine gas (F2) which is so reactive that chemists have assumed it does not exist in nature exists naturally, found trapped inside a dark purple fluorite mineral called antozonite. F2, along with Cl2, I2 and ozone have been suspected as the smelly components in antozonie which made miners in Bavaria sick to their stomachs. Flourian Kraus and collaborators at the Technical University of Munich, after analyzing pea-sized chunks with solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometry, were able to detect fluorine gas inside the rock. Researchers propose that natural uranium deposited in the mineral reacts with fluorite as it decays, generating species that combine to form fluorine gas, which is trapped in the mineral matrix.

Source: http://cen.acs.org/articles/90/i29/First-Fluorine-Gas-Found-Nature.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+cen_latestnews+%28Chemical+%26+Engineering+News%3A+Latest+News%29


NATURE

September 26, 2012

First google result for ‘nature’

Reflections, thoughts, and questions on Peter Coates Nature :

  • Why is nature deemed good? How do we as an American society define good and decide what is or isn’t good for us…and do we ever know if we’re right?
  • The way we define nature as a people is shaped through our American history and experiences. Our personal definition and relationship with nature differs greatly from people living in other places around the world, much due to our different settings and past interactions with the environment.
  • The chapter of The Greeks and Romans was interesting- it’s easy to fantasize about the harmonious interactions of humans with nature in history when they were having a lot of problems coexisting without major impact.
  • Europeans looked upon Native Americans as savages who lived as a part of the landscape- this romanticized view of the natives is a big part of what I feel is the American attitude toward nature.
  • A scientific approach to the ‘natural world’ allows us to learn more and be able to interact in better ways with nature. But this also furthers the nature/ civilization binary as nature being something we study.