Thursday, January 30, 2014

Forbidden Colors (The Colors We Can't See)

If you listened in elementary school to your art teacher or just have basic common sense you should know that red-blue is called purple (or violet if you're one of those people). Now just imagine red-green...
you can't, it's probably just and ugly shade of brown if anything. 

Well just like red-blue has a color called purple, red-green has a color too...we just can't see it. This color just hits a blind spot in our brains. Frustrating it is, knowing that there is a color out there that just you can't see. Our eyes have these neurons in our retina that tells our brain that we are looking at the color red, same with the color green. Most colors we look at require a mixture of neurons to send a signal so we know what color we are looking at. When we look at the color red and green simultaneously the red light cancels out the green light, so we are never able to see what those two colors look like coming from the same place.
I have been waiting patiently for a chance to use this gif

Well almost everyone isn't able to see that color in their lifetimes...
In the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory a scientist has been working to prove the existence of "forbidden colors". He created striped images that are retinally stabilized(ooh fancy words), basically means that both colors had equal amounts of brightness. When the experiment is done correctly people who were lucky enough to see it said "it was like seeing the color purple for the first time".

Perhaps someday we will be able to see forbidden colors with a cool handheld-color-viewer-device-thing.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Thursday, January 16, 2014

The Sloth.

What hangs upside down from trees and lets beetles live in it's fur?
The Sloth.

Sloth's are creepy.

Sloth's are one of the most amazing animals in the world and they most certainly are not creepy. You know what is creepy? 
The "Aye-Aye"
But we're talking about sloths so back to the subject. 

The Sloth is known for being super lazy and it's true they are very lazy. They move at an average of 6-8 feet per minute, in fact they move so slow algae grows on their fur. This in the end proves to be beneficial to sloths because they mostly stay up in the trees so the greenish tint on their fur is a form of camouflage. The algae also benefits from this symbiotic relationship, since sloth fur is long it absorbs water which the algae can use to grow. Sloth fur is also a popular housing spot for beetles, cockroaches, and ciliates. One study found more than 950 beetles living on a sloth. See I told you they were important. 
Three toed sloth hanging from tree
The main source of nutrition of a sloth is leaves, twigs and fruit, this is mainly the reason why they are so lethargic. Sloth's have a 4 part stomach which digests the food that it eats, it can sometimes take a month before a single meal is digested. The sloth spends as much a 20 hours a day sleeping while hanging or curled up on a tree branch. Sloths only leave the tree to get rid of waste in their body because once they leave the tree they are exposed to many predators and their only form of defense is their long claws. Eagles are even known to snatch up small sloths! Although they are mostly found in trees they are excellent swimmers because of their long arms, they are known to drop from tree branches into water.

Scientist say very long ago the sloth used to be the size of a present day elephant. Can you imagine seeing a sloth that big! That would be so amazing. 

In conclusion sloths are amazing animals that are greatly under appreciated. We should learn more about them and admire their lazy way of life. So instead of saying "sloths are creepy" think again because you're wrong. 

Info Graphics!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Kiwi Nation

Save The Kiwis. Save The Nation

The Apteryx australis better known as the kiwi bird is one of New Zealand's most endangered animals. These birds were named after their distinctive shrill cry "kee-wee kee-wee".The kiwi bird are by far the smallest living ratites and lay the largest egg in relation to their body size of any species of bird in the world. These birds are classified in the phylum chordata and class aves.

The North Island Brown Kiwi, Apteryx australis mantelli is widespread in the northern two-thirds of the North Island and with about 35,000 remaining is the most common kiwi. The Kiwi population of 80 years ago was around 5 million birds. Today they have plummeted to 50,000 - 60,000. Kiwi birds have been called a genetic leftover. Their characteristics seem are very odd probably due to the fact that they haven't evolved much at all. They are suspected to be about 8 million years old. That's 7 million years older than humans. Kiwi are a significant national icon, equally cherished by all cultures in New Zealand. Kiwi are a symbol for the uniqueness of New Zealand wildlife and the value of our natural heritage.

Kiwi Nation is not a real organization sorry

These videos are fake but Kiwis are actually endangered!

REAL ORGANIZATION <--Click here if you want to help Kiwis :)