(Thanks to “Unknowable” for the news tip)
Well, well! Somebody finally caught a frilled shark and took pictures of it. (http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2017/11/14/demon-shark-with-snakes-head-caught-for-first-time.html)
Okay, I’m Mr. Nature so I knew what a frilled shark is, although I never saw anything but line drawings of it. “Demon shark with snake’s head” is laying it on a bit thick, but it certainly is a unique shark. They caught it deep in the waters off Portugal.
If you link to the news article, look closely at the pictures. See those teeth? They have a very odd shape; you wouldn’t be likely to mistake them for anything else. (Well, for some weird kind of pasta, maybe.) I found quite a few teeth like that, fossil-hunting around the Jersey shore, suggesting that sharks like this were more common, once upon a time. Lots and lots of shark teeth, all different shapes and sizes, in the Navesink Formation.
The frilled shark is still here, even if some of the seas it used to swim in aren’t. God has created many variations on the basic shark body plan, and this one is one of the strangest.
Great white shark–how long does it live?
Hi, Mr. Nature here, pleading ignorance–’cause I don’t know how long sharks live in the wild and I’m not sure how you’d find out.
Some sharks do well in captivity, but some don’t. It’s not a natural environment, no matter how large the aquarium. They say the humble spiny dogfish has a lifespan of 100 years or more (http://www.sharks-world.com/how_long_do_sharks_live/). They think the Great White tops out at 30 or 40, based on counting growth rings in shark vertebrae. But I don’t know how reliable that method of calculation can be, given the small number of actual specimens in the sample.
How many fish in the sea die of natural causes? I would guess, not many. There’s always a bigger, faster fish looking to eat you, parasites galore, and storms that can wash you up on land: all sorts of hazards. Who can observe the whole life of a fish? Pet goldfish, if you aren’t careful about how you take care of them, die in a year or so. But if you know what you’re doing, they can live 20 or 30 years. But who knows what happens to a fish in the wild, throughout its life?
This is nature, this is God’s stuff–an inexhaustible supply of fascination: and a reminder that no, we certainly do not know everything.
Patagonia, in South America, used to be known for extraordinarily big men. Now it’s known for extraordinarily big dinosaurs.
The newest contender for the crown, Patagotitan, was discovered in 2012 and only presented to the world this year. Scientists calculate it as being roughly the size of eleven elephants, and some 120 feet long.
Bob Bakker, the paleontologist who did more than anyone to change the public perception of dinosaurs, once told me he thought God must have taken real delight in creating these giants. Who am I to disagree?
Now that they’re looking for them in the Southern Hemisphere, scientists keep discovering bigger and cooler dinosaurs–it’s hard to keep track of them all. We needn’t take the Darwinian spiel seriously, and we do have to allow for normal human error in reconstructing the whole animal from an incomplete set of bones: but we can certainly step back and admire God’s handiwork.
Any animal this size really ought to make us humble. And this is Mr. Nature, with more of God’s stuff, signing off.
Hi, Mr. Nature here, with a cat you never heard of: the wild Manul of Central Asia, also known as Pallas’ Cat. Scientists consider it a kind of living fossil. It’s about the size of a regular domestic cat, looking much fatter because of its thick fur.
The Manul looks cute and cuddly, but zookeepers–and there aren’t many of these critters in the zoos of the world–say it’s very difficult to tame. It seems the Manul has a short fuse. But we’ve all known cats like that, and at least the Manul has good looks going for it.
God took the basic cat template and created all kinds of variations on the theme. That’s what makes the music of Creation such a complicated symphony, and one that never runs out of surprises.
Just to remind ourselves that humans are made in the image of God, and therefor capable to love and mercy and grace, here’s somebody who repairs the broken wings of butterflies. I don’t know about you, but to me it seems a saintly thing to do. Good for the butterfly, and good for your soul.
Maybe if we can learn how to be kind to these humble creatures, we can learn how to be kind to one another.
Hi, Mr. Nature here–with the friendliest chameleon that I ever saw. You’d swear this lizard loves its owner! And is totally at ease with him.
Many years ago, we had a gorgeous pair of Jackson’s chameleons. The male of that species has three long horns on his head: most impressive. They were bursting with good health when we got them, ate crickets dusted with vitamin powder, zapping them at long range with their tongues… and in a few months, sickened and pined away. We then learned that was the experience most people had with pet chameleons. But much has been learned since then about keeping chameleons healthy, and now a lot of folks can manage it.
Meanwhile, dig those colors! I never saw a chameleon put on quite as gaudy a display as that. I wonder if selective breeding played a part: even years ago, chameleons bred readily in captivity.
When my Jacksons crawled up my forearm, their grip was very, very powerful and it sort of hurt. My iguana, who in other respects was quite friendly to them, hit the ceiling when the male tried to use his back as a ladder. Apparently the chameleon in this video has a gentler touch.
Chameleons never fail to fascinate me–another little bit of God’s stuff that He must have very much enjoyed creating!
One of “the” Things i hat abote this hear stopid blog is that Biggit “Mr. Nature” that stopid lee lets “come in” hear and rite abote aminals “and” stuff! Yiu see “whatt” a big dum Idjit thay is, he dont evin know “how” To spel Natchure!!!
Thay shuld ouhght To boath be Put “in” jale for Evilution Denile and al the Time talkin abote God like God he is reel or somthing!! Yiu can eesly see that thay Are boath not Interllecturals lee he sayes he wented to Collidge but i dont beleave him and evin iff he “did” thay shuldnt give No boddy no collidge degreee if thay dont Beleave in Evilution!
and Like iff that is nott Bad enouhgh i bet haff the Animales he rites “abote” thay isnt evin reel! i hate al them stopid Catt vidios tooo!
If yiu can “see That’ pitctre up thare it is a pitcure i seen “this Moarning” it is caled A Cat Sharck and it is reeler than Al them stopid made Up annamals thay put on This dum blogg it livves in the Spacific Ocen arond Newark or somwear and it Evolvved becose of Trans Fobbia! that is waht ical Reel Natchure!!
I amb so sick of tham sayin ‘”Gods Stuf'” al the time and i dont know How “thay” get aweiy whith it! Dont the Consattutin it say yiu cant Never say “god” or other religgin stufff?? Becose if yiu “say” that it menes yiu are Aunti-Sciance!!!
Jist yiu weit till Hillery she is Pressadint!! i seen her book tooo and She is actrually getting Yonger! That is becose she “is” Evolvving tooo! Anyhow she “wil” putt a Stop to al this Aunti-Sciance talk and hat speach!!!
No,it’s not an animated pine cone. It’s an animal some of you have never heard of–the pangolin.
Hi, Mr. Nature here, with a look away from the news–basta, basta! as they say in Italy–and toward some more of God’s cool stuff. Pangolins live in Asia and Africa, eat insects, and are protected by an armor of keratin scales. Keratin is the stuff your hair and fingernails are made of. The pangolin is the only animal in the world that has such scales.
The pangolin in this video is a pet enjoying a nice mud bath. In the background you can hear the owner muttering about what a job it’s going to be to clean him. Ah, well, it’s one of the things we do for our pets. Because we love them, and then love us, and the Lord Our God loves both them and us.
Is this a cool animal, or what–a sloth that lives and feeds underwater?
Hi, Mr. Nature here, with another retro critter whose like seems to have vanished from the earth–the marine sloth. It’s even kind of hard to imagine such a creature.
Please ignore the heavy-handed Evolution fairy tale, this being the only marine sloth video I could find. They always wind up talking about acquired traits, ignoring their own findings that DNA is terribly conservative and doesn’t work that way. Just enjoy the animal for what it is, or was–another example of God’s creative work.