i bet my tongue is stronger than yours wanna find out
Daily #492! Some days may even be a bit of both.
- by John R. Hutchinson, Professor of Evolutionary Biomechanics
“Only two decades ago, when I was starting my PhD studies at the University of California in Berkeley, there was talk about the death of anatomy as a research subject. That hasn’t happened. Instead the science of anatomy has undergone a renaissance lately, sparking renewed interest not just among researchers but also the public.
I may be biased, but examples from my own work, which is a small part of anatomical research, might showcase what I mean. In 2011, my team found out found why elephants have a false “sixth toe”, which had remained a mystery since it was first mentioned in 1710. Last year, with University of Utah researchers, I helped reveal that crocodiles have “bird-like” lungs in which air flows in a one-way loop rather than tidally back and forth as in mammalian lungs. Subsequent work by those colleagues has shown that monitor lizards do this, too.
Researchers have also solved the mystery of how monitor lizards got venom glands. They have discovered that lunge-feeding whales have a special sense organ in their chin that helps them engulf vast amounts of food. And like the whales, it seems crocodiles have sense organs in their jaws, which can detect vibrations in the water. Anatomy has even found gears in nature. Turns out that leafhopper insects have tiny gears in their legs that help in making astounding and precise leaps.
If the scientific examples weren’t enough, there are many from popular TV. British viewers have had the delights of anatomy served to them in a BBC TV series called Secrets of Bones, which concluded in March. American viewers are getting anatomical insights in Your Inner Fish, an ongoing TV series on PBS.
Anatomy’s highs and lows
Apart from an anomalous period in the 20th century, such discoveries have always captivated scientists and the public. From the 16th century until the 19th century, human anatomy was one of the top research fields. Anatomist Jean Francois Fernel, who invented the word “physiology”, wrote in 1542:
Anatomy is to physiology as geography is to history; it describes the theatre of events.
This analogy justified the study of anatomy for many early scientists, some of whom also sought to understand it to bring them closer to understanding the nature of God. Anatomy gained impetus, even catapulting scientists such as Thomas Henry Huxley (“Darwin’s bulldog”) into celebrity status, from the realisation that organisms had a common evolutionary history and thus their anatomy did too. Comparative anatomy became a central focus of evolutionary biology” (read more).
***A fun read.
(Source: The Conversation)
welp, I was gonna color this but I’m bored of it now. And really the only point was to draw them with big wide open kitty mouths so mission accomplished.
looking at your old artwork
using nothing more than newton’s laws of gravitation, we astronomers can confidently predict that several billion years from now our home galaxy, the milky way, will merge with our neighbouring galaxy, andromeda. because the distances between the stars are so great compared to their sizes, few if any stars in either galaxy will actually collide.
any life on the worlds of that far off future should be safe, but they will be treated to an amazing billion-year-long lightshow.
a dance of a half a trillion stars, to music first heard on one little world, by a man who had but one true friend.