Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Coffee and Provocation

Catch and Release Rat Trapping
The Great Hanoi Rat Massacre went horribly wrong. It seems a french bureaucrat laid over miles of sewage pipe beneath Hanoi in 1902, inadvertently creating a rodent paradise where they could breed without fear of predators and migrate to the richest part of town where the French lived. Vietnamese rat hunters were hired to go into the sewers and were paid paid on a piece-rate basis bases on collected tails. But then there people started seeing something odd: rats, alive and healthy, running around town without their tails. Later, pop-up farming operations dedicated to breeding rats were discovered outside Hanoi. Capitalism had come to Vietnam!

Darwin and the Hot Dude
Darwin thought that hot dudes were important. That observation has generated a book and an article in The New York Times.  The bottom line is that choice drives natural selection, and choice means critters are choosing based on something.  Often, it's beauty, and often it's the female doing the choosing of a good-looking male.  Richard Gilbert has written a nice piece on all this over on his blog.

Pass It On To Forever 
The Save the Redwoods League is buying an 11,178-acre conservation easement from Larry Mailliard and family for almost $13 million and has plans to acquire an easement for the remainder once it raises an additional $7 million. The 14,898 acre property includes 1,000 acres of old-growth redwood forest and 28 miles of salmon- and steelhead-bearing streams. It is the largest remaining family-owned redwood forest in the world. (Thanks Marge W.!)

Just Say No
Repeat after me: there are no feathered T-Rex's.

Chip Envy
The "security chips" on Congressional staff members' identification badges are fake; they're just a picture of a chip put there to "to prevent chip envy."

The Crisis of Communication Starts at the Top
Spicer declares Trump tweets To Be “Official Statements” after Conway chides media for taking tweets so seriously.

Horse Bands May Not Be Stallion-Centered
It turn out that mares pull a lot of the strings.

Are You Enlichened?
Ways of Enlichenment is an excellent web site devoted to North American lichen. There's more to learn here that you imagine, and it's written well and will get you thinking! (Thanks Walter!)

India Moves Beyond Coal
India has cancelled plans to build nearly 14 gigawatts of coal-fired power stations (about the total amount used in the UK) as solar electricity prices “free fall”.

No comments: