In the interest of promoting insect awareness, I present you with the following…
This definitely falls into the “Yew just cain’t make this stuff up” category…
Yes, those intrepid geeks and nerdlings over at ScienceDaily.com have really come up with the goods this time!
Mating activities are a dangerous business because the attention to other important events in the surroundings is often reduced. Therefore the duration of copulation itself is usually very short. About 100 years ago researchers argued that copulating animals are at a higher risk of being discovered and, consequently, being eaten by a predator. Yet, surprisingly, there are only few observations that support this hypothesis. These examples comprise studies in water-living insects, such as amphipods and water striders, and also in land insects, as investigated in a recent study in Australian plague locusts that are at a higher risk of being eaten as mating pairs compared to single animals.
Apart from decreased attention, a reduced flight response as well as an enhanced conspicuousness induces a higher risk for these winged lovers to be easy prey. Stefan Greif from the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology, and colleagues, have now provided experimental proof for this phenomenon. In a community of house flies and Natterer’s bats in a cowshed near Marburg, Germany, they analysed videotapes of the movements of almost 9000 flies. The researchers found that the flies rarely fly at night and mostly sit or run on the ceiling. Finding the flies by echolocation is nearly impossible for the bats as the faint insect echo is completely masked by the strong background echo which makes them virtually “invisible.”
This scenario completely changes when the male flies find a suitable mating partner. The subsequent copulation is a noisy event because males then produce broadband buzzing sounds that can be heard by the bats. Around five per cent of the fly pairs that engage in copulation were attacked and mostly eaten by the bats (across four observation years, even 26 per cent of the observed copulating pairs were attacked).
In order to provide evidence that it is really the sound that makes the flies detectable for the bats, the researchers mounted dead, noiseless fly pairs on the shed ceiling in a position they usually take during copulation. These exhibits provide a larger reflection area for echolocation of the bats compared to a single fly. However, they were never attacked by the bats. Only when the researchers played back the copulation sounds of the flies, did the bats try to attack the loudspeakers. Accordingly Stefan Greif summarizes the results of the study in a simplistic way: “sex kills.”
How fast is lightning?
Lightning, in fact, moves not only too fast for humans to see, but so fast that humans can’t even tell which direction it is moving.
The above lightning stroke did not move too fast, however, for this extremely high time resolution video to resolve.
Tracking at an incredible 7,207 frames per second, actual time can be seen progressing at the video bottom.
The above lightning bolt starts with many simultaneously creating ionized channels branching out from an negatively charged pool of electrons and ions that has somehow been created by drafts and collisions in a rain cloud. About 0.015 seconds after appearing — which takes about 3 seconds in the above time-lapse video — one of the meandering charge leaders makes contact with a suddenly appearing positive spike moving up from the ground and an ionized channel of air is created that instantly acts like a wire. Immediately afterwards, this hot channel pulses with a tremendous amount of charges shooting back and forth between the cloud and the ground, creating a dangerous explosion that is later heard as thunder.
Much remains unknown about lightning, however, including details of the mechanism that separates charges.
WARNING: DISTURBING CONTENT!
There is a kind of macabre style of photography where girls are seen either in fetal positions in odd places – or worse, curled up, boxed and almost ‘packaged.’
There’s no sense of these girls somehow falling asleep in a bizarre setting. Rather, there is an over-riding feeling that these girls have been placed, however temporarily, in this position.
I get the uncomfortable feeling that the subjects of the photographs have been or are about to be disposed.
The bodies that once held the girls’ spirits are now shells to be discarded.
Clearly, it is not the girls themselves who are creepy… but rather where they are, how they are ‘discovered’ and under what circumstances.
Is this how serial killers view their victims? Do the girls somehow become twisted works of art in the mind of the psychopath or sociopath?
I remember watching the television series Dexter and thinking the same thing.
Many years ago, there was a movie called The Eyes of Laura Mars where death and art came together.
In many books and movies, deranged killers have the bodies of their victims arranged in a kind of tableau.
Whenever I am presented with such photos, my immediate reaction is actually more of a non-reaction.
Words escape me. I just stare, unable to express myself.
They are awful, terrible… and yet, it’s like driving by a horrific car crash.
You know you shouldn’t look. You know you shouldn’t have a sick curiosity about it.
And yet… you just can’t take your eyes away.
Just when you thought parasitic insects couldn’t get more gross…
The entomology geeks and nerdlings over at LiveScience.com give us more fodder for our nightmares!
In a recent article, LiveScience staff writer Jennifer Welsh reports that a new fly discovered in Thailand is the world’s smallest. It is five times smaller than a fruit fly and tinier than a grain of salt (0.4 millimeters) in length — half the size of the smallest “no see-ums.” 
It probably also feeds on tiny ants, likely decapitating them and using their head casings as its home.
“It’s so small you can barely see it with the naked eye on a microscope slide. It’s smaller than a flake of pepper,” said Brian Brown, of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, who identified the fly as a new species. “The housefly looks like a Godzilla fly beside it.”
The tiny finding is detailed in the July 2012 issue of the journal Annals of the Entomological Society of America.
Picked up by the Thailand Inventory Group for Entomological Research in Kaeng Krachan National Park, the tiny fly is the first of its kind discovered in Asia. The researchers named the new fly Euryplatea nanaknihali.
The flies lay their eggs in the body of the ant; the eggs develop and migrate to the ant’s head where they feed on the huge muscles used to open and close the ant’s mouthparts. They eventually devour the ant’s brain as well, causing it to wander aimlessly for two weeks. The head then falls off after the fly larva dissolve the membrane that keeps it attached.
The fly then takes up residence in the decapitated ant head for another two weeks, before hatching out as a full-grown adult.
I don’t know about you but I have enough nightmare material to last me the whole weekend!
 While this is the world’s smallest fly, it is by no means the world’s smallest insect. That title belongs a species of fairy wasp, coming in at 0.14 millimeters in length, about the size of a human egg cell
I recently posted a blog article about some young teenage girls and their unfortunate habit of dressing for a body type other than their own.
Today I get to take a swing at the guys.
I’d like to set my sights on an equally repellent aspect that some men have, namely decking themselves out in a way that causes right-thinking members of society to want to claw their eyes out.
Young or old, middle class or poor, there is something about a guy who seems to be completely oblivious as to what he really looks like.
They can’t possibly leave the house knowing that they look the way they do!
And no normal self-respecting woman I know would ever let their guy leave the house looking like that!
And yet… there they are, infesting the aisles of the local Walmarts!
Each and every one of these clowns left the house thinking they look gooood!
They soooo don’t!
So guys… for the love of all that’s good and decent in the world…
JUST… STOP IT!
Important fashion tip for my damsels in distress ...
Ladies , I cannot over-state the importance of this little aphorism.
You may think you look scorchingly hot in that skimpy, sexy little outfit you squeezed into this morning. But unless you are anything other than slender… dare I say ‘willowy’… you (and perhaps a road crew) aren’t going to pull it off.
Be realistic. And I am not saying that anyone other than fashion models deserve to dress well. Heaven forfend.
BUT… if you are trying to dress like the runway models at New York Fashion Week and you kinda don’t look like them to start off with… you might want to lower your expectations just a titch.
Sadly, however, the young ladies with whom I usually deal do not aspire to haute couture. Far from it. From where I sit, it seems that some of them are in a fashion ‘race to the bottom.’
I’m not sure when ‘skanky’ became a ‘serious’ fashion choice but for heaven’s sake girls… knock it off. 
Yes, we all know you recently discovered that you have both the drive and the equipment. Congratulations. You’re right up there with… Every Other Girl.
As Spiderman said, “With great power comes great responsibility.” Put another way, ‘your body is a temple… not an amusement park.’
And that includes dressing realistically. If you are tall, slender, perfectly proportioned with a pretty face and a great smile, ignore everything I just said. This article is not directed at you.
For the 99.9% of you who are not blessed with such award-winning genes, work with what you have… not what you wish you had.
You’ll look and feel so much better. And right-thinking members of society will thank you.
 As many of you know, I am a criminal defence lawyer in my ‘other’ (i.e. non-blogging, non-writing) life. As such, I am exposed to all manner of fashion disasters and couture tragedies. Usually I hold my tongue. Sometimes, I simply must speak out!
 Trust me… guys have this problem as well. More so in a later blog article!
 The entire subject of ‘slutty clothing’ will also be dealt with in another blog article. Girls who choose to dress modestly often get smart-ass remarks from the skankily-dressed set. An Orthodox Jewish high school girl I know was once asked why she dressed like someone just died. As Wednesday Addams would reply, “Wait.”
Related to the macabre photos of girls in unusual places are the pictures of girls out in the middle of nowhere.
Your mind can’t help but ask, “What the heck is she doing out there?”
Depending on the photo, it can be very unsettling.
Isolated, no one around to help. Is she lost? Is she in trouble?
Throw in a totally unexpected element (e.g. a ladder or some chairs) and you increase the weird/creepy factor.
I love it!
“The key to success is sincerity. One you can fake that, you got it made!”
French dramatist Jean Giraudoux was really onto something, at least when it comes to matters of the heart.
A recent MedicalDaily.com article reports, “Pretending that you find someone attractive increases your susceptibility to their charms and heightens your chances of truly falling in love with them, according to new relationship research.”
The latest findings  suggest that behavior can lead to certain emotions just as much as emotions can lead to behavior, and may offer explanations for the relative success of arranged marriages compared to conventional marriages.
Past research has shown that those in arranged marriages or those who have had their partner chosen for them by a parent or matchmaker, tend to feel more in love over time compared to those in regular marriages who feel less in love as time passes.
Lead researcher psychologist Richard Wiseman tested the theory of the “positive action” technique, which he believes could be used to not only accelerate feelings in new relationships but also rekindle them in older ones, by holding a speed dating night where some of the prospective partners were instructed to act as if they were already in love with each other.
“Just as people feel happier when they force their face into a smile, so pairs of people behaving as if they find one another attractive became emotionally close,” he said. “The assumption was that the emotion leads to the action or behavior but this shows it can happen the other way around, action can lead to emotions.”
“Behaving like you are in love can lead to actually falling in love. People are always going about positive thinking when this suggest positive action is just as valid,” Wiseman said. “We actually had a problem stopping people. We had go around pulling couples apart.”
“Actions are the quickest, easiest and most powerful way to instantly change how you think and feel,” he said.
 The findings are published in the professor’s new book Rip It Up, which is described as ‘ripping up the rule book, where Wiseman will present radical new insights into ways to improve your body and brain.
I was perusing the cyberpages over at NationalGeographic.com when I just about fell off my chair at these photos…
Scientists spotted the creature—and many others—during a three-week expedition this spring throughout four deep-sea regions in the volcano-rich Kermadec Ridge area off northern New Zealand.
The squat lobster of the Uroptychus genus isn’t the first known specimen of its kind, but its species hasn’t yet been formally recognized
Scientists located the small hairy crab Trichopeltarion janetae amid rocks on the summit of the 3,000-foot-deep (900-meter-deep) Tangaroa Seamount.
The Tangaroa Seamount offered up a new species of tonguefish in the Symphurus genus.
NationalGeographic.com also offered new photos of disturbingly huge shrimp!
The largest amphipod measured in at 11 inches long (28 centimeters)—nearly three times larger than the previous record-holder—and was captured at a depth of about 4.35 miles (7 kilometers).
While the other critters pictured were from the Kermadec Ridge, the super-jumbo-giant-colossal-humungo-mega-shrimp were from down on the floor of the Kermadec Trench, an abysmal rift in the seafloor that sinks down 6.2 miles (10 kilometers).
It’s not yet clear whether the newfound giants represent a new species or just especially big supergiant amphipods.
I am SO going to have the heebie-jeebies  in bed tonight thinking of these things!
 Heebie-jeebies or heebie jeebies is an American English idiom often used to describe intense anxiety. This can be a particular type of anxiety usually related to a certain person, thing or place. For example, “He gives me the heebie jeebies”, meaning “He makes me uncomfortably nervous”. It can also refer to a particular form of intense apprehension, verging on horror.