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Featured video: The Miracle of Mangroves

Featured video: The Miracle of Mangroves | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it

JANUARY 30, 2013 - MONGABAY

Mangroves are among the most important ecosystems in the world: they provide nurseries for fish, protect coastlines against dangerous tropical storms, mitigate marine erosion, store massive amounts of carbon, and harbor species found no-where else... http://news.mongabay.com/2013/0130-hance-mangroves-video.html


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Gaia Diary
“The more we nurture the planet, the better and more natural a life we'll have.” ― Chris d'Lacey, Icefire
Curated by Mariaschnee
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Carl Sagan - Pale Blue Dot

It is sometimes said that scientists are unromantic, that their passion to figure out robs the world of beauty and mystery. But is it not stirring to understand how the world actually works — that white light is made of colors, that color is the way we perceive the wavelengths of light, that transparent air reflects light, that in so doing it discriminates among the waves, and that the sky is blue for the same reason that the sunset is red? It does no harm to the romance of the sunset to know a little bit about it
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Joni Niemelä's Macro Photographs Capture Carnivorous Plants' Alien-Like Structures

Joni Niemelä's Macro Photographs Capture Carnivorous Plants' Alien-Like Structures | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Joni Niemelä captures the moments within nature often looked over, the extreme details seen best through macro photography and an imaginative eye. One of Niemelä's photographic obsessions is the carnivorous plant Drosera, more commonly known as the "Sundew," a nickname which refer
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Ancient lizards in amber amaze scientists

Ancient lizards in amber amaze scientists | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A community of lizards from the Caribbean, preserved for 20 million years in amber, have been found to be identical to their modern cousins, say researchers.
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Africa's forests may be our last chance to slow climate change

Africa's forests may be our last chance to slow climate change | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Africa needs to step up the protection of its tropical forests.

 

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Deforestation is now the second leading cause of global climate change. Debates on this topic often centre on the Amazon, given the high-profile destruction of its forest biodiversity. However, a troubling rise in deforestation in Central Africa – home to the world’s second largest tropical forest – has received surprisingly little attention.

Two-thirds of Africa’s remaining forests are located in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). These forests span 1.7 million km⊃2;, which is equivalent to one-third of Brazil’s Amazon. They also store 22 billion tonnes of carbon, ranking them among the world’s largest remaining carbon reserves."

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Carbon Dioxide Pools Discovered in Aegean Sea

Carbon Dioxide Pools Discovered in Aegean Sea | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The waters off Greece’s Santorini are the site of newly discovered opalescent pools forming at 250 meters depth. The interconnected series of meandering, iridescent white pools contain high concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) and may hold answers to questions related to deepsea carbon storage as well as provide a means of monitoring the volcano for future eruptions.
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Photos of China's 298-Million-Year-Old Buried Forest

Photos of China's 298-Million-Year-Old Buried Forest | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
These are the first photos of some of the countless treasures found in the extraordinary 298-million-year-old forest discovered under coal mine in Wuda, Inner Mongolia, China. Extraordinary 298-Million-Year-Old Forest Discovered Under Chinese Coal Mine Extraordinary 298-Million-Year-Old Forest Discovered Under Chinese Coal Mine Extraordinary 298-Million-Year-Old Forest Discover American and Chinese scientists are flabbergasted after discovering a giant 298-million-year-old… Read more Read more (
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Extinct volcano cluster discovered off coast of Sydney

Extinct volcano cluster discovered off coast of Sydney | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A cluster of extinct volcanoes likely to be 50 million years old is discovered off the coast of Sydney.
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Watch: #Sharks have been discovered living in an active underwater volcano

Watch: #Sharks have been discovered living in an active underwater volcano | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The places sharks have to go to avoid humans these days... Scientists have discovered a population of sharks living inside an underwater volcano called Kavachi just off the coast of the Solomon Islands and east of Papua New Guinea in the South...
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Carnivorous plants communicate with bats

Carnivorous plants communicate with bats | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
A large, meat-eating pitcher plant in Borneo has evolved a unique way to communicate with bats that it hopes to attract.
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Christian Allié's curator insight, July 14, 4:02 AM

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Suspecting that echolocation was involved, the scientists used an artificial biomimetic bat head that emits and records ultrasounds to test the pitcher plant's acoustic reflectivity from different positions and angles.

The experiments uncovered a strong echo reflection from the plant's back walls, where the shape works perfectly as an effective reflector.

Subsequent behavioural experiments showed that the bats respond to those sounds echoed back to them from the plants.

Bats were better at finding partially hidden pitcher plants when their reflectors were intact than when the reflector had been reduced.

The bats also chose pitcher plants more often as the best places to roost when the reflector had not been reduced.

The study answers a longstanding question about these particular plants: Why don't they feast on many insects versus what other pitcher plants do?

As it turns out, they don't have to, given all of the nutrient-rich bat poo nearby.

The study further adds to the growing body of research showing that plants can solve complex problems without having a brain.

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Ancient fish evolved gills to survive acidic oceans #marine_biology #evolution

Ancient fish evolved gills to survive acidic oceans            #marine_biology #evolution | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Fish gills evolved to balance pH, not breathe, suggests a new study.
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Oceans face massive and irreversible impacts without carbon cuts – study

Oceans face massive and irreversible impacts without carbon cuts – study | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Business-as-usual carbon emissions would cause global warming that brings serious ocean acidification, death of corals and mangroves, scientists say Time is rapidly running out for the world’s oceans and the creatures that live in them as the...
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World’s most inaccessible art found in the heart of the Colombian jungle

World’s most inaccessible art found in the heart of the Colombian jungle | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Prehistoric paintings on vertical rock face in wilderness photographed and filmed for the first time
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Worth saving: landscapes threatened by climate change - gallery

Worth saving: landscapes threatened by climate change - gallery | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
We asked you for photos of places you want to save from rising tides, changing temperatures and natural disasters.
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Vibrant Macro Photographs of Coral by Felix Salazar

Vibrant Macro Photographs of Coral by Felix Salazar | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
LA-based photographer and composer Felix Salazar recently captured some wonderful macro photos of several inhabitants in his salt water aquariums. The shocking variety of color makes the coral look like digital renderings, but Salazar assures me each is a unique photo selected from h
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Iron-age arsonists' leftovers hint at how Earth's poles may flip - New Scientist

Iron-age arsonists' leftovers hint at how Earth's poles may flip - New Scientist | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Magnetic deposits in char from ancient African villages reveal that Earth's magnetic field had weakened before without flipping
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Wild beluga congregate in Canada's Hudson Bay – in pictures

Wild beluga congregate in Canada's Hudson Bay – in pictures | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Explore.org, Polar Bears International and a group of wildlife experts have launched a wild beluga live stream, which will run until 21 August
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Global warming is causing rain to melt the Greenland ice sheet | John Abraham

Global warming is causing rain to melt the Greenland ice sheet | John Abraham | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Higher temperatures are melting Greenland ice directly, but also indirectly via increased rainfall
Greenland, one of the largest ice sheets in the world, is melting. In fact, it is melting ahead of schedule as the world warms.
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Resurrection plants

Resurrection plants | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Will life-forms that can survive a century without water help us develop resilient crops for a drought-ridden future?
The post Resurrection plants appeared first on Aeon Magazine.
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Tiny sea creatures are making clouds over the Southern Ocean

Tiny sea creatures are making clouds over the Southern Ocean | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Phytoplankton make aerosols that become the seeds of clouds over the Southern Ocean
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Does Earth have a shadow biosphere?

Does Earth have a shadow biosphere? | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
In the late 1670s, the Dutch scientist Antonie van Leeuwenhoek looked through a microscope at a drop of water and found a whole world. It was tiny; it was squirmy; it was full of weird body types; and it lived, invisibly, all around us.
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The World's Weirdest Natural Foods (fruits+vegetables)

The World's Weirdest Natural Foods (fruits+vegetables) | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it

 

Looking for some new foods to try? Tired of the same old vegetable rack at your grocery store? Are pineapples passe? If this describes your state of mind, then prepare to get exotic with these outlandish fruits and vegetables from around the globe!

From yardlongs, which grow so fast that you can almost watch them get bigger, to durian, which smells like dirty gym socks but tastes like creamy almond custard, these are the wildest, weirdest foods in the natural world.

 

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NASA Captures North Sea Algae in Full Bloom 

NASA Captures North Sea Algae in Full Bloom  | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Every summer, the population of algae in the North Atlantic reaches a peak, with the blue-green color of the phytoplankton causing the ocean to visibly change, even from space.
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Plants react to the sound of being eaten alive

Plants react to the sound of being eaten alive | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
It's been known for a while that sounds can affect the way plants germinate, and the expression of some of their genes, says Appel. "But just why plants were sensitive to airborne sound was a mystery".

Self-preservation is as good an evolutionary strategy as you get, so the pair set out to test whether plants were able to respond to the miniscule vibrations caused by having their leaves chewed.

With the help of a laser and some reflective tape, Cocroft -- an expert in bioacoustics -- recorded the vibrations made by a caterpillar chewing on leaves of a mustard plant, and then played the soundtrack to other plants of the same type. Control plants were played two hours of silence, in a kind of botanical John Cage tribute.
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VIDEO: A Sea Turtle's Perspective of the Great Barrier Reef

VIDEO: A Sea Turtle's Perspective of the Great Barrier Reef | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
This video is the only way you'll see the Great Barrier Reef through the eyes of a sea turtle. It's also a reminder that the reef is facing serious threats.
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Bizarre lobster ancestor roamed ocean 500 million years ago

Bizarre lobster ancestor roamed ocean 500 million years ago | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
The animals were between 10 and 50 millimetres in length and lived on the floor of the Cambrian oceans
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Stunning Photos Show Off Landscapes Draped In Fog

Stunning Photos Show Off Landscapes Draped In Fog | Gaia Diary | Scoop.it
Fog, in literature and real life, is a force of mystery and magic. It obscures some things to reveal others; and it can transform an already beautiful landscape into something out of a fairy tale.
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