Neanderthal genes are being removed from the modern human genome by weak but widespread natural selection https://www.ucdavis.edu/news/fate-neanderthal-genes via DuckDuckGo for Android
The linked article by John Rennie in Scientific American was originally published in 2002 but it hasn’t lost any of its actuality nor has it been refuted by creationists. Creationist arguments also haven’t changed significantly since then, demonstrating how they are simply unable to formulate an opposing theory to evolution. I’ve also written some answers to creationists nonsense earlier on this blog and have also explored if creationism is plausible.
New Scientist has an article announcing that a team of the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich has found a plausible way to generate the two purine nucleosides, adenosine and guanosine – A and G in the genetic code. This is a big step to explaining how RNA may have formed spontaneously on the primordial Earth.
RNA molecules are thought to be some of the earliest self-replicators that led to life. Now their building blocks have been made to self-assemble in a lab
Two days ago, I found this little guy curled up on the wall of our hallway with no clue it got there. My guess is he/she hitched a ride on one of us and fell off as we took off our coats. I’ve been trying to identify it with the help of several resources on the Internet but so far I’ve been unsuccessful. I know that it isn’t a caterpillar based on the number of (false) legs. It’s probably the larva of a sawfly but I’m not sure.
I’d like to keep it to show my children what kind of insect will emerge from its cocoon but in order to do that, I need to know what it eats or other needs it might have. I’m hoping that someone on the Internet will be able to help me identify this little creature.
Sorry for the rather poor quality of the photos, I do not own a macro lens.
Help needed to identify this animal!
I like the fall, when the leaves turn from green to beautiful yellows, reds and light browns. Warm afternoons but chilly mornings. Gathering acorns and chestnuts. And course, fall is also the time of spiders. Morning dew makes their webs clearly visible.
During a walk yesterday, I snapped this beautiful spider which I believe to be a female European garden spider or cross spider, araneus diadematus. She was hanging in the afternoon sun light, head down as they usually do. Her legs are almost translucent in this shot and you can clearly make out the cross on her abdomen. You can click the image to see it a in a bigger size.
An interesting article that should serve as a reminder that natural selection is still very much at work on our species, arguments from creationists notwithstanding.
New study shows that taller men in the Netherlands tend to have more children
Scientists find translucent fish in a wedge of water hidden under 740 meters of ice, 850 kilometers from sunlight
An absolutely astonishing find from the web edition of Scientific American. In what has to be one of the most remote and extreme locations on Earth, scientists have not only found microbial life but actually discovered a population of fish. It’s hard to say how long this miniature ecosystem has been cut off from the rest of the world but it’s possible it has been ever since Antarctica has been covered by ice. That would make it about 34 million years!
It’s hard to imagine what these animals have been feeding off of for all that time and the team making the discovery hasn’t been able to answer that question as of yet. It’s possible the ecosystem is sustained by hydrothermal vents.
I was glad to come across this article because just the other day I was watching this documentary about the history of our planet. In it, they showed they explained the Snowball Earth hypothesis, meaning that at least once during it’s 4.5 billion year history, Earth may have been covered by a vast ice sheet for several million years. I couldn’t help wonder at the time of watching how life, which had only just begun, could have survived a period of millions of years on a frozen planet covered in a thick ice sheet blocking out all sunlight and warmth. It seemed somewhat incredibly to me, though I imagine that if some life forms can survive in the harsh environment of outer space, a frozen planet wouldn’t be that much of a stretch.
However, this find shows that not only can microbial life survive trapped underneath the ice, even more complex life forms like small crustaceans and fish can survive under certain conditions. So while Snowball Earth may have looked barren and lifeless from space, life underneath the ice could have hung on and diversified. It’s somehow gratifying to think that we might be the descendants of these extreme survivors!