23 July 2010

Science online, confused jumping spiders edition

Awwww. Photo by coniferconifer.
  • Worth it just for the Journal of Experimental Biology cover image. By selectively covering jumping spiders' four anterior eyes with (removable) paint, behavioral biologists showed that the spiders orient using only the pair on the side of their heads. (Arthropoda)
  • Not extinct after all. The Horton Plains slender loris, that is. (Wired Science)
  • Only criminals will have serpentine. California seems to be prepared to pass a law removing serpentine's status as the State Rock, and, more worryingly, declaring it a carcinogen without any scientific justification. (Summing up by Highly Allochthonous; find out who to call at The Intersection)
  • So did Triceratops use a fake I.D., or what? A new analysis of fossils concludes that the dinosaur formerly known as Torosaurus is actually the adult form of Triceratops. (Dinosaur Tracking)
  • Images Not Suitable for Lunchtime. Culling Tasmanian devils infected with transmissible facial tumors doesn't seem to reduce the prevalence of the tumors in a managed population. (Wild Muse; see also RadioLab's discussion of the tumors.)
  • And then Elijah Wood tries to steal your girlfriend. Electrodes implanted in the hippocampus can induce amnesia. (Neuroskeptic)
This week's video, via Arthropoda, provides scientific proof that jumping spiders are adorable. I love how she wriggles her thorax before she jumps! This video, and the ones on the linked page, are by Thomas Shahan, whose Flickr feed is an entomologist's dream—and all CC licensed.

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