Thursday, December 31, 2009
Today's New Year's Eve..
Friday, December 18, 2009
SYDNEY – Australian scientists have discovered an octopus in Indonesia that collects coconut shells for shelter — unusually sophisticated behavior that the researchers believe is the first evidence of tool use in an invertebrate animal.
The scientists filmed the veined octopus, Amphioctopus marginatus, selecting halved coconut shells from the sea floor, emptying them out, carrying them under their bodies up to 65 feet (20 meters), and assembling two shells together to make a spherical hiding spot.
Julian Finn and Mark Norman of Museum Victoria in Melbourne observed the odd activity in four of the creatures during a series of dive trips to North Sulawesi and Bali in Indonesia between 1998 and 2008. Their findings were published Tuesday in the journal Current Biology.
"I was gobsmacked," said Finn, a research biologist at the museum who specializes in cephalopods. "I mean, I've seen a lot of octopuses hiding in shells, but I've never seen one that grabs it up and jogs across the sea floor. I was trying hard not to laugh."
Octopuses often use foreign objects as shelter. But the scientists found the veined octopus going a step further by preparing the shells, carrying them long distances and reassembling them as shelter elsewhere.
That's an example of tool use, which has never been recorded in invertebrates before, Finn said.
"What makes it different from a hermit crab is this octopus collects shells for later use, so when it's transporting it, it's not getting any protection from it," Finn said. "It's that collecting it to use it later that is unusual."
The researchers think the creatures probably once used shells in the same way. But once humans began cutting coconuts in half and discarding the shells into the ocean, the octopuses discovered an even better kind of shelter, Finn said.
The findings are significant, in that they reveal just how capable the creatures are of complex behavior, said Simon Robson, associate professor of tropical biology at James Cook University in Townsville.
"Octopuses have always stood out as appearing to be particularly intelligent invertebrates," Robson said. "They have a fairly well-developed sense of vision and they have a fairly intelligent brain. So I think it shows the behavioral capabilities that these organisms have."
There is always debate in the scientific community about how to define tool use in the animal kingdom, Robson said. The Australian researchers defined a tool as an object carried or maintained for future use. But other scientists could define it differently, which means it's difficult to say for certain whether this is the first evidence of such behavior in invertebrates, Robson said.
Still, the findings are interesting, he said.
"It's another example where we can think about how similar humans are to the rest of the world," Robson said. "We are just a continuum of the entire planet."
Saturday, December 5, 2009
My fish tank has been in a state of neglect of the past week...
Will have to do major water changes tomorrow!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
While I enjoy eating live oysters....
In the form of the oyster shells used for buffering the tank water!
Saturday, October 10, 2009
If you have noticed, there are some missing pictures in my previous pictures..
Apparently, some server at Shareapic (where my pictures are hosted) has crashed, which explains the missing pictures..
Hope they solve the problem soon!
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
It's really been some time since I updated this blog.... been quite busy recently... but that doesnt mean that I have neglected my fishes!
They are still doing well..
Will grab some pictures and do some updates soon!
Friday, August 28, 2009
It's amazing to see how much new leaves and shoots there are!
And the best thing is that they are growing in indirect light.. with a cling film on the pot!
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
I thought anubias species were supposed to be hardy...
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Just some update on the injured fish...
It pains me to see a fish that I rescued from ending up as feeder fish, turning into a beauty and getting injured..
Get well soon.. little one!
Monday, August 10, 2009
My injured betta seems to be doing better then yesterday...
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Discovered a freak accident just in time...
My betta that I rescued from a bag of feeders was stuck in an ornament...
Managed to help it dislodge from the ornament.
However, part of its body has been torn.. god knows how long it had been submerged without coming to the surface for water...
Thank god it is alive..
Isolating this little guy, hope it gets well.. before I can reintroduce him back to his tank!
Sunday, August 2, 2009
My Cryptocoryne longicauda is having lots of plantlets shoots coming out....
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Amazing new growth from my Crypto Wendtii...
Thursday, July 23, 2009
An update on my cryptos that I have planted emmersed in the pot:
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Wonder if this is due to the Great Singapore Sale!
Got this Oto fish food at just a dollar! Think will be great for the fishes in my planted tank!
Labels: aquarium products
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Noticed that my parrot fish tank seems to be a tinge of red in colour!
Which is weird....
Not sure if its due to the colour coming out from the feed!
Labels: parrot tank updates
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Added these to buffer the water to maintain the pH of the tank!
Labels: aquarium products
Sunday, July 12, 2009
I checked on the status of my newly potted cryptos earlier in the evening...
and noticed that they were indeed starting to dry up.
I guess.. living on a high rise HDB flat, winds are definitely inevitable.
As such, decided to use microwave cling film to spread over the whole pot, hopefully, this will aid in maintaining the humidity levels within the pot, while still allowing light in!
I spent nearly the whole Sunday preparing the planting of my wild cryptos in a pot today...
This post will therefore be a little more picture intensive..
Here are some of the items you will need:
A pot, of course, get one without holes, since crypto will prefer a little water logged environment.
Next added some peat moss to the hydrated sphagnum moss, as it supposedly aids in lowering the pH:
After which, I added a thin layer of activated carbon and charcoal, which supposedly aids adsorption of any toxic stuff:
Next, a layer of lightweight expanded clay aggregate was added, this helps to provide some aeration to the roots area, and also aids in the transport of water from the sphagnum moss area to the soil level at the top:
Final layer, I used a different brand of planting soil mix today, as the usual aquarium shop that I frequent is closed on Sundays, and the neighbouring shop does not stock that brand:
Upon completion, its time to take out the cryptos from their packaging, noticed that some of them have broken leaves, bitten worm hole leaves... signs of really wild cryptos?
The completed pot of wild cryptos... note that there is water filled in the pot.. that the top soil still feels wet, but no dead spots of water, as I do not want to encourage the breeding of mosquitoes!