Posts tagged 1880s

Juvenile Secretary Bird - Sagittarius serpentarius
Secretary bird chicks are the cutest! They’re altricial birds, and spend about 40 days being fed by their parents, after which they tear up their own parent-delivered reptiles within the nest. After about 65-80 days, they start to fly (fledge), and are taught by both parents how to hunt soon after that. By the end of their fourth month, they generally live independently of their parents.
Faune de la Sénégambie. Alphonse Tremeau de Rochebrune, 1883-1887.

Juvenile Secretary Bird - Sagittarius serpentarius

Secretary bird chicks are the cutest! They’re altricial birds, and spend about 40 days being fed by their parents, after which they tear up their own parent-delivered reptiles within the nest. After about 65-80 days, they start to fly (fledge), and are taught by both parents how to hunt soon after that. By the end of their fourth month, they generally live independently of their parents.

Faune de la Sénégambie. Alphonse Tremeau de Rochebrune, 1883-1887.

Death by “Marsh Fever” (Malaria)

More people die of malaria every single day than have died of Ebola in the past decade.

During an average year, more people die of influenza every month than have ever even been infected with Ebola.

This is because mosquito and airborne transmission are far more effective than direct bodily-fluid contact. It’s fairly simple to eliminate bodily fluid transmission in countries with ready access to chlorine and water. Mosquito bites and airborne droplets are almost impossible to eliminate - all we can hope to do is control them.

There are much scarier things out there than Ebola.

Malaria" by Giulio Aristide Sartorio, 1905 (top), 1883 (bottom).

Black Ctenosaur (Black Spiny-Tailed Lizard) - Ctenosaura similis

The black Ctenosaur, also known as the black iguana, or black spiny-tail lizard, is thought to be the fastest lizard on earth.

While they’re not the largest Iguanidae, they’re the largest member of their genus, CtenosauraThe adult males can reach almost two meters long. Their herbivorious diet means that their speed is not required to catch prey, but due to large predators in Central America, it can be very useful in not being eaten.

Biologica Centrali-Americana, Mammalia. Edward Alston, 1882.

heaveninawildflower:

Plate from ‘Museo Entomologico. Le Farfalle’ (1885) by Ferdinando Sordelli. Published by Ulrico Hoepli, Milan.
University of Illinois.
archive.org

heaveninawildflower:

Plate from ‘Museo Entomologico. Le Farfalle’ (1885) by Ferdinando Sordelli. Published by Ulrico Hoepli, Milan.

University of Illinois.

archive.org

The Leftvent - Linophryne lucifer
Leftvents are deep-sea anglerfish, who have the symbiotic bacteria and obligate parasitic males common to many of the other anglerfish. 
The genus name Linophryne is Greek, and means “toad that fishes with a net”, and lucifer means, well, "Lucifer". It’s a devil-toad-fish with a net. The whole genus is sometimes called “netdevils”. They’re uncommon enough thatbasically the entire genus is known by that common name.
Proceedings of the General Meetings for Scientific Business of the Zoological Society of London. 1886.

The Leftvent - Linophryne lucifer

Leftvents are deep-sea anglerfish, who have the symbiotic bacteria and obligate parasitic males common to many of the other anglerfish.

The genus name Linophryne is Greek, and means “toad that fishes with a net”, and lucifer means, well, "Lucifer". It’s a devil-toad-fish with a net. The whole genus is sometimes called “netdevils”. They’re uncommon enough thatbasically the entire genus is known by that common name.

Proceedings of the General Meetings for Scientific Business of the Zoological Society of London. 1886.

Cure your brain!

Cure your butt!

Cure your body!

Static electricity can do it all!

Just step right up to the Electric Physician, over at mental_floss!

Ventral (left) and dorsal views of the Australian giant cuttlefish (Sepia apama)

This cuttlefish, the largest in the world, can have a mantle (the “head” or non-tentacle bits) nearly 20 inches (50 cm) long, and weighing up to 23 lb (10.5 kg).

Like all cuttlefish, these guys are rarely this drab sepia color underwater; this is simply how they look after being caught and hauled in. They have bright chromatophores that can express any shade they’re near, and tiny dermal muscles, which allow their skin to assume the texture of any undersea formations they wish to blend in with.

Though cuttlefish die after just one breeding cycle (one year for the Australian giants, two years for some other species), they’ve got instinctual hunting abilities to blow the mind. Sure, lots of animals are innately awesome hunters, but have you ever seen a shark turn into a block of coral?

Check out World’s Deadliest: “Sudden Death” Cuttlefish to see what I mean.

And, just because, check out True Facts About the Cuttlefish.

Natural History of Victoria: Prodromus of the Zoology of Victoria. Decade VI. Frederick McCoy, 1881.

Comparative anatomy of the Bactrian and Dromedary Camels, and the human.

Humans domesticated Bactrian camels (Camelus ferus) over 4500 years ago, and Dromedary camels (Camelus dromedarius) even earlier - around 4000 BCE, or 6000 years ago. Domesticated Dromedary camels are so ancient that even the first dynasties of Egypt were thought to use them, from archaeological remains.

While Dromedary camels have survived relatively unchanged in the wild, Bactrian camels have been significantly altered by domestication. They’re shorter, far more amenable to human interaction, and have been bred to have longer fur and greater milk output. There is over a 3% difference in the genetic code between domestic and wild Bactrian camels - more than exists between humans and chimpanzees.

Comparative anatomy as applied to the purposes of the artist. Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins, 1883.

Diagram of quadruped body (Felis silvestris catus)

Left side: Bones
Right side: Segments of limbs

This simplified diagram of the cat body is surely helpful for zoology students in the anatomy lab, but all I can see is “Catcopter”.

Anatomical Technology as Applied to the Domestic Cat. Burt G. Wilder and Simon H. Gage, 1886.

The Tongue of the Cat

Have you ever wondered why your cat’s tongue is rough and bristly, and feels like sandpaper on your skin?

The papillae that extend from the central region of the tongue are encased by keratin, and form tiny, backward-facing barbs, which help your cat (and all cats!) scrape meat from bones, and comb detritus from fur. The Felidae are obligate carnivores, and in the wild, must get as much nutriment from each fleshy meal as possible; many wild cats have a less than 15% success rate for hunts, so getting as much as possible out of each kill is critical.

Felines also use their tongue for grooming. There are many types of grooming, but one of the primary reasons is obviously to clean themselves. As very few wild cats are the top of their local food chain (or prefer to remain as invisible as possible), obliterating any scent of a previous kill is critical. They also groom to cool off via evaporation, and during stressful situations, as a form of self-comfort or compulsion.

Did you know that your cat can’t taste sweets? Their copies of the genes that create the receptors for sugars are non-functional, and as such they can’t pick up that taste. When cats develop a habit of eating foods that we perceive as sweet, they’re after the underlying taste.

But don’t fret for your cat’s lost taste sensation! Unlike us, and most other mammals, felines can taste ATP! Yes, adenosine triphosphate, the substance that creates energy in all cells. The levels it’s present at are fairly low, even in the most blood-soaked muscles, but kitties can pick it up at miniscule amounts. When they can’t make their own kills, being able to detect the taste of ATP in foods they find is critical!

Anatomical Technology as Applied to the Domestic Cat. Burt G. Wilder and Simon H. Gage, 1886.

Cat Tongue: Science To Life

biomedicalephemera:

Other Types of Hair

Aside from scalp hair, humans have four other primary categories of hair:

Lanugo: This is a thick, downy hair, whose name comes from the Latin “lana”, meaning “wool”. It is present on all fetal humans between approximately 5 and 8 months gestation, and is shed several weeks prior to birth. When a baby is born prematurely, it often has much of its lanugo still on its body. The hair present on the bodies of full-term babies is the much finer and less-insulating vellus hair. Lanugo is also common in the malnourished, making it a key diagnostic in anorexia nervosa.

Vellus Hair: The fine, nearly-invisible, and ubiquitous hair that covers all humans on almost all parts of the body (aside from the lips, palms, and soles of the feet) develops shortly before birth, and continues to cover the parts of the body not covered by androgenic or terminal hair throughout life. Vellus hair is less than 2-4 mm long, and is not connected to a sebaceous gland. This hair also surrounds the scalp hair on the forehead, temples, and neck.

Androgenic Hair: Beginning in puberty, thick, bushy hair begins to develop in place of the vellus hair, in the pubic and axillary (armpit) regions of both genders. In addition, it also develops on the face, chest, and stomach, to varying degrees, depending upon sex and genetics. Androgenic hair follows the same growth cycle as scalp hair, but has a shorter anagen (growth) phase, and much longer telogen (resting) phase.

Terminal Hair: This is the second of the two types of androgen-influenced hair, but it is less “bushy” and dense than what is traditionally considered “androgenic hair”. It’s colloquially known as “body hair”, and develops during puberty, but does not include facial, chest, pubic, or axillary hair.

On the legs, arms, and back, thicker, stronger hair grows beneath the vellus hair of childhood and pushes it out, replacing it completely in some parts of the body, and only partially in other parts. In women, the area covered by terminal hair is much smaller, whereas some men (particularly those with Scandinavian, Mediterranean, or Aboriginal Australian/New Zealand backgrounds) can be up to 70% covered in thick, insulating hair. 

Images:

Triplets with Lanugo - Diseases of Infancy and Childhood. Henry Koplik, 1910.

Young Japanese boy, covered in vellus hair - despite the fact that it’s nearly invisible, each of us is covered with as many hairs per square inch as our apparently-hairier primate cousins! - Scenes From Every Land. Edited by Gilbert Grosvenor for National Geographic, 1907.

German boxer Max Schmeling, displaying highly developed terminal hair on the arms, as well as androgenic hair on the chest. Library of Congress digital archives. Original from 1938.

George F. Bond and Cyril Tuckfield after a rapid buoyant ascent of over 300 feet, after the USS Archerfish bottomed in 1959. Both men have significant terminal hair on the arms and legs.

Mark Twain shirtless, displaying androgenic hair - mustache and chest hair.

Other Types of Hair

Aside from scalp hair, humans have four other primary categories of hair:

Lanugo: This is a thick, downy hair, whose name comes from the Latin “lana”, meaning “wool”. It is present on all fetal humans between approximately 5 and 8 months gestation, and is shed several weeks prior to birth. When a baby is born prematurely, it often has much of its lanugo still on its body. The hair present on the bodies of full-term babies is the much finer and less-insulating vellus hair. Lanugo is also common in the malnourished, making it a key diagnostic in anorexia nervosa.

Vellus Hair: The fine, nearly-invisible, and ubiquitous hair that covers all humans on almost all parts of the body (aside from the lips, palms, and soles of the feet) develops shortly before birth, and continues to cover the parts of the body not covered by androgenic or terminal hair throughout life. Vellus hair is less than 2-4 mm long, and is not connected to a sebaceous gland. This hair also surrounds the scalp hair on the forehead, temples, and neck.

Androgenic Hair: Beginning in puberty, thick, bushy hair begins to develop in place of the vellus hair, in the pubic and axillary (armpit) regions of both genders. In addition, it also develops on the face, chest, and stomach, to varying degrees, depending upon sex and genetics. Androgenic hair follows the same growth cycle as scalp hair, but has a shorter anagen (growth) phase, and much longer telogen (resting) phase.

Terminal Hair: This is the second of the two types of androgen-influenced hair, but it is less “bushy” and dense than what is traditionally considered “androgenic hair”. It’s colloquially known as “body hair”, and develops during puberty, but does not include facial, chest, pubic, or axillary hair.

On the legs, arms, and back, thicker, stronger hair grows beneath the vellus hair of childhood and pushes it out, replacing it completely in some parts of the body, and only partially in other parts. In women, the area covered by terminal hair is much smaller, whereas some men (particularly those with Scandinavian, Mediterranean, or Aboriginal Australian/New Zealand backgrounds) can be up to 70% covered in thick, insulating hair. 

Images:

Triplets with Lanugo - Diseases of Infancy and Childhood. Henry Koplik, 1910.

Young Japanese boy, covered in vellus hair - despite the fact that it’s nearly invisible, each of us is covered with as many hairs per square inch as our apparently-hairier primate cousins! - Scenes From Every Land. Edited by Gilbert Grosvenor for National Geographic, 1907.

German boxer Max Schmeling, displaying highly developed terminal hair on the arms, as well as androgenic hair on the chest. Library of Congress digital archives. Original from 1938.

George F. Bond and Cyril Tuckfield after a rapid buoyant ascent of over 300 feet, after the USS Archerfish bottomed in 1959. Both men have significant terminal hair on the arms and legs.

Mark Twain shirtless, displaying androgenic hair - mustache and chest hair.

Gould’s Monitor/Gould’s Goanna - Varanus gouldii gouldi
Like all monitor lizards, Gould’s goanna (also known as the bungarra) has a relatively high metabolism for a reptile, and requires sustenance much more frequently than other lizards. It also has a snake-like tongue that it flicks about in leaf litter, presumably to gather olfactory clues to the presence of prey in the vicinity. 
The sharp claws and high-set body of the goanna allow for quick movement and effective hunting of anything smaller than itself, including other members of the same species.
Prodromus of the Zoology of Victoria. Frederick McCoy, 1885.

Gould’s Monitor/Gould’s Goanna - Varanus gouldii gouldi

Like all monitor lizards, Gould’s goanna (also known as the bungarra) has a relatively high metabolism for a reptile, and requires sustenance much more frequently than other lizards. It also has a snake-like tongue that it flicks about in leaf litter, presumably to gather olfactory clues to the presence of prey in the vicinity.

The sharp claws and high-set body of the goanna allow for quick movement and effective hunting of anything smaller than itself, including other members of the same species.

Prodromus of the Zoology of Victoria. Frederick McCoy, 1885.

Top left: Hippocampus sp. internal structure
Top right: Short-snouted seahorse - Hippocampus hippocampus
Center: 1. Syngnathus hippocampus [now Hippocampus hippocampus]
2. Pegasus draconis [now Eurypegasus draconis] - the Little Dragonfish (*unrelated to Syngnathidae family*)
3. Syngnathus pelagicus - the Sargassum pipefish
Bottom: Phyllopteryx taeniolatus -the Weedy Sea Dragon

Despite their remarkable appearance, seahorses are true ray-finned bony fishes (class Actinopterygii, infraclass Teleostei), along with bass, mullets, eels, salmon, and lanternfish.

Many people know of the male seahorse incubating the eggs and giving “birth” to 100-1000 offspring after they hatch, but reproduction is similar throughout the order Syngnathidae (including the seahorses, leafy and weedy sea dragons, and pipefish). There’s a persistent myth that seahorses are monogamous, but that’s not strictly true. The majority of species are serially monogamous, and remain together throughout the mating season (until the male births the babies).

Another remarkable thing about seahorses (Hippocampus spp.) is that they’re the only fish with prehensile tails - even their close relatives, the sea dragons and pipefish, don’t have this adaptation. However, since the seahorses are the only ones that swim upright, and they have the poorest locomotive skills, they need to be able to anchor themselves to the sea flora in order to not be swept away. The Guinness Book of World Records has named Hippocampus zosteraethe dwarf seahorse, the slowest fish in the world, moving less than 5 ft [150 cm] an hour.

Aside from the seahorses, the razorfish (Aeoliscus strigatus) is the only other fish to swim “upright”.

Images:
Bulletin of the United States Fish Commission, Vol 1. 1881.
Arcana; or, The Museum of Natural History. George Perry, 1811.

Extreme case of kyphotic lordosis.
Kyphosis: Greek kyphos, ”a hump” - the over-curvature of the thoracic vertebrae in the upper back.
Lordosis: Greek lordos, ”bent backwards” - the inward curvature of a portion of the lumbar and cervical vertebral column. All spines should be lordotic to an extent, but an excessive inward curvature (often caused by anterior pelvic tilt) can cause many orthopedic problems.
Orthopadische Chirurgie. Dr. August Schreiber, 1888.

Extreme case of kyphotic lordosis.

Kyphosis: Greek kyphos, ”a hump” - the over-curvature of the thoracic vertebrae in the upper back.

Lordosis: Greek lordos, ”bent backwards” - the inward curvature of a portion of the lumbar and cervical vertebral column. All spines should be lordotic to an extent, but an excessive inward curvature (often caused by anterior pelvic tilt) can cause many orthopedic problems.

Orthopadische Chirurgie. Dr. August Schreiber, 1888.