Monday, 16 April 2012

Cheering Up Bird- Black Heron

Welcome (back) to Weirdbeautiful!

Today's Cheering-up bird is The Black Heron, Egretta ardesiaca: an African species famed for its bizarre "canopy feeding" technique, whereby it creates a patch of shade with its wings; the shade attracts fish and the heron feeds upon them. The picture above was taken to the East of Antannarivo in Madagascar, by Neil Strickland;it was posted to wikipedia [here] and has a creative commons attribution 2.0 license- for details, click [here].

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Pacific Eels, The Fukang Meteorite and Plastic-eating Fungi

Welcome (back) to Weirdbeautiful!

First link-of-the-day today is to an article by Paul Rincon on the discovery of an eel species in Palau, Oceania --> .
 The eel, which has very "primitive features" is called Protoanguilla palau and is the first known member of a new zoological family, genus and species. More details can be found in the article [here ]

 Second link-of-the-day is to this video and article --> 
about two fungi- one of which (Pestalotiopsis microspora) can survive on a diet of polyurethane and therefore play an important role in breaking down plastics in landfill sites. The article and accompanying video also discusses the development of a natural Styrofoam-type material essentially from fungal "roots" (mycelia) and agricultural waste. The comany producing this material is Ecovative- their website is

 Last but not least, link number three is to an article and series of pictures of a huge, weird and beautiful meteorite-

that fell in Fukang, in the Chinese part of the Gobi Desert. The meteroite, which was discovered in 2000 , is described as containing "translucent golden crystals of ... olivine..[gleaming] among a silvery honeycomb of nickel-iron".