Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Get The FACTS On Jellyfish?
Even Though One Actually Stung Me...

 I have to say ....even though I was actually stung by a real live Jellyfish in August of this year I am still totally curious about these weird little ghostly animals. Did you know they are immortal? Check out these cool facts!

Let’s take a look at a few interesting jellyfish facts. Now, I know exactly what you’re thinking. You want to know why would I want to talk about jellyfish facts. To be honest, I’ve been really into this whole life below the surface of the sea lately and started working towards getting some scuba diving experience so I can get to know these sea creatures from up close and personal, in their own, native environment. Back to one of the most fascinating sea creatures, the jellyfish:

Jellyfish Fact #1: Jellyfish to Rule the Oceans

Because we the dumb humans keep over fishing the oceans, giant jellyfish such as the Echizen Jellyfish seen in picture above are taking over parts of the oceans, especially around South East Asia, The Gulf of Mexico, The Black Sea and The North Sea. Jellyfish strive because overfishing and climate change result in fewer fish in the seas giving more room to jellyfish to reproduce unhindered. It’s gotten far enough for researchers to believe that “jellyfish stable state”, a state in which jellyfish will rule the oceans is near.

Jellyfish Fact #2: Immortal Jellyfish

Yet another reason why numbers of jellyfish in the oceans seem to be growing rapidly as of late is the fact that certain species of jellyfish don’t have to die. Marine biologists discovered that Turritopsis Nutricula is the only animal known as hydrozoan, which means it can revert itself entirely to the state when it was young. This type of jellyfish somehow developed the ability to transdifferentiate. Transdifferentiation is the process of cell development in which the cell grows younger, not older. Scientists say that this jellyfish can repeat the process of transdifferentiation indefinitely which renders the creature potentially immortal. Observed Turritopsis Nutricula jellyfish, which are mere 5 millimetres long returned themselves repeatedly to a polyp state.

Jellyfish Fact #3: Jellyfish as Malaria and Dengue Fever Solution

While millions of dollars and years of research have been invested into a solution which could assist with desperate malaria and dengue fever infections situation in some parts of the world, so far there have been no help for endemic areas. Yet there is simple solution – white jellyfish love mosquito larvae. There is at least one biologists who sees that as a solution. Dr. Lisa Gershwin from Launceston in Australian Tasmania believes that Craspedacusta Sowerbyi, one of fresh water jellyfish which can strive in small bodies of water and loves mosquito larvae could easily turn into a natural mosquito eliminator. Since introduction of other mosquito predators, such as spiders or bats have not resulted in significant drop in mosquito infestations, perhaps attacking mosquito larvae with white jellyfish could yield better results.

Jellyfish Fact #4: Jellyfish 

Jellyfish Trivia: Did you know that jellyfish’s mouth and jellyfish’s anus are one and the same? It’s true. Jellyfish have one digestive cavity which serves the purpose of gullet, intestine and stomach all in one. What jellyfish eats goes in through the same opening as what jellyfish poops out. While jellyfish do have a mouth and an anus, they don’t have bones, brain or heart. 98% of jellyfish’s body is made of water. No wonder they near disappear when they are washed up on the shore.
More interestingly, jellyfish are radially symmetrical. That means if you could cut one jellyfish exactly in half, you would get two identical jellyfish halves.

Jellyfish Video

Check out this video by National Geographics (I love National Geographics) which will get you introduced to our #1 jellyfish fact – jellyfish invasion (warning – crazy Aussie accent in the video):

Monday, September 27, 2010

How to Train Your Pet Mouse...Say What??

I decided to start my blog by sharing an artical about training your mouse. I have a pet mouse named Mickey and I am wondering if it's possible to train him to do tricks. I found this story about training mice. People out there that have pet mice, please read this artical I found.

While it is typically rats that are trained, it is also quite possible to train your pet mouse. In fact, these little creatures can be some of the most fun pets once they are trained. You can get them to do things such as sit in a shirt pocket or on your shoulder as you move around doing your ordinary activities. It is not all that difficult to train a mouse but you will need a great deal of patience.
To begin with, understand that your mouse is going to be motivated by treats as its reward for being smart. So your first step when you want to train your pet mouse is to buy an assortment of its' favorite treats. Have them handy where you can reach them easily.

The next step is to build trust between you and your pet mouse. This is the part where you are going to need a great deal of patience because it usually takes awhile before you see that first result. Put a treat in your hand and place your hand into the mouse's cage. Now sit back, read a book or magazine, and wait. Eventually, your mouse is going to crawl into your hand to take that treat from you. When that happens, replace the treat with another one and repeat the process.

Establishing familiarity is vital when you decide to train your pet mouse. If your mouse knows you and begins to form a bond of trust with you, the rest of the tricks will come easily. Once you get it to hop into your hand the first time, you will be able to build on that. Soon, it will be hurrying to climb into your hand because it has been taught to believe that there will be tasty treats there all the time.

Take this a step further. Move the treat about halfway up your arm. Your mouse will start to crawl there to retrieve it. Before you know it, you will have the mouse scurrying up your arm to find the treat that is waiting on your shoulder. This is how you can train your pet mouse to sit on your shoulder. It is all very easy to accomplish as long as you have patience and treats.