DailyDirt: Biological Curiosities
from the urls-we-dig-up dept
Biology always seems like the messy and gooey branch of science. Biology contains a bunch of strange phenomena that seemingly exist just because they’re possible. Here are just a few quirky biological discoveries.
- Asteroids could have been the original source of chirality in our biological history. Some carbon-rich meteorites seem to have an excess of L-isovaline (a chiral isomer of the biologically important amino acid, L-valine), but the reason why the excess exists is still a mystery. [url]
- There’s a type of slime mold that has been dubbed the ‘smallest farmer’ — since it can store and grow its own food. The single-celled amoeba eats bacteria and carries around its favorite food just in case local supplies run out. When it eats up all the bacteria in its neighborhood, it moves on and grows bacteria where it settles down next. [url]
- Japanese researchers have created a genetically engineered mouse that tweets like a bird. The research is supposed to investigate the origins of animal language, and it’ll be really amazing when they grow a mouse that can tweet… on Twitter. [url]
- To discover more interesting biological curiosities, check out what’s currently floating around the StumbleUpon universe. [url]
By the way, StumbleUpon can recommend some good Techdirt articles, too.
Comments on “DailyDirt: Biological Curiosities”
I just don’t see how they expect engineering a mouse to be evidence of evolution. If anything, wouldn’t it be evidence of design? It’s like saying
Engineers have engineered a car in hopes that we can figure out how it evolved on its own.
You didn’t read the article did you?
Oh, like Mike.
Actually, here is how it sounds.
Its still a mouse...
All they are showing is an example of natural selection, not evolution. The mouse is still a mouse. Through natural selection, a CHARACTERISTIC of the mouse changed, but at its core, it is still a mouse. That is like pointing out how people closer to the equator have darker skin as opposed to those in more temperate climates. They are adapted to their environments, but it doesn’t make any of them any less human. No REAL mutation can add any information (like changing a mouse into a newt). It has been shown time and time again that mutations of this sort are degenerate (and therefor would cause the organism in question to cease to exist). Evolution requires millions of years of coincidental POSITIVE mutations to occur in order to achieve complex organisms… right. At the end of the day, its still just a mouse with a different characteristic due to natural selection (or in this case humans making the selection which would actually be by design).
Creationists view of natural selection (ie natural selection is a biblical concept):
Creationists emphasize ‘kinds’ that adapt (but inherently still of that kind). For example: a poodle, a collie, and a german sheperd are all dogs which have different characteristics, but doesnt make them any less dogs. These different dogs all have a common ancestor, which also, not coincidentally, was a dog. Due to natural selection and the conditions of their environments, the different dogs adapted to survive.
From the above link I want to quote in particular:
For years, creationists have emphasized a ?kinds? model of biology (and thereby established the field of baraminology). This model starts with the Bible?s description of God creating unique ?kinds? of plants and animals (and man as distinct from any animal kind), then applies what we know about natural selection and various genetic processes to understand the biological diversity we observe today. Rather than all creatures descending from the same original organism?a ?tree? model of life?all creatures descend from the progenitors of their kind?an ?orchard? model. Thus, the whole range of canids, from domesticated dogs to wolves to jackals and beyond, constitutes the diversified members of the original ?dog? kind. And the confusion over the taxonomic placement of the Egyptian jackal reminds us of this biological reality.