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Posts Tagged "lichens"

The Artful Amoeba

Were Weirdo Ediacarans Really Lichens, Fungi, and Slime Molds?

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Does these look like lichens to you? According to Gregory Retallack, they should. Yesterday, Nature published an article by Retallack that makes a radical claim: the Ediacaran Biota (635-542 mya) of bizarre creatures that preceded the Cambrian Explosion were not pneumatic semi-mobile marine animals, but instead sessile land-dwelling lichens and protists living high and very [...]

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The Artful Amoeba

Postcards from Rangitoto

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A week and a half ago I stepped off a plane and into the Southern Hemisphere for the first time in my life. In spite of 12 hours of cramped legs and loud children heedless of fellow travelers’ sleep needs, it was an exhilarating feeling. Location: New Zealand. Though David Attenborough ably prepared me for [...]

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The Artful Amoeba

The Christmas Wreath Lichen in the Corkscrew Swamp Wishes You a Happy Holiday

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When I was in Florida a few weeks ago, I visited the Audubon Society’s Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary (highly, HIGHLY recommended should you be in southwest Florida), which features a two and a quarter mile boardwalk through old-growth cypress swamp. Bald and pond cypress towered over a swamp filled with alligators, snowy egret, and white ibis. [...]

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The Artful Amoeba

White Worms and Pixie Cups in Colorado

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A few weeks ago local lichen expert Ann Henson and I scouted out lichens on the flanks of Gray’s Peak in central Colorado. Since my last post was on the awesome power of lichens, I thought I’d share a few photos of some of our amazing locals. Our very first lichen was probably the most [...]

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The Artful Amoeba

Lichens vs. the Almighty Prion

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If you had to choose the world’s most indestructible biological entity, it would be hard to do better than the prion. It’s the Rasputin of biology: cook them, freeze them, disinfect them, pressurize them, irradiate them, douse them with formalin or subject them to protein-cleaving proteases, and yet they live. Well, not literally live. After [...]

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