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The Artful Amoeba

The Artful Amoeba

A Blog About the Weird Wonderfulness of Life on Earth

What on Earth Made These Perfect Fossil Rings?

What on Earth Made These Perfect Fossil Rings?

See these annular structures? They are 492 million years old and come from Wisconsin. Here are some more. Was there a severe shortage of beer coasters in Cambrian Wisconsin?

February 18, 2015 — Jennifer Frazer

For These Plants, No Victim is Too Small

The tropical plant Genlisea is a tiny, homely rosette of simple green leaves. If you dig up its roots, you will find what look like an unremarkable bunch long, pale underground roots.

February 6, 2015 — Jennifer Frazer

Two-Billion-Year-Old Fossils Reveal Strange and Puzzling Forms

To a human, two billion years is an unfathomable interval. But that, a team of European, Gabonese, and American scientists now say, is how long ago a recently discovered hoard of fossils suggests Earth’s first big life evolved — large enough to see with the naked eye, and in a spectrum of forms that tease [...]..

January 29, 2015 — Jennifer Frazer

Ocean Giants (Actual Size)

Just how big is a giant squid? Not quite as big, perhaps, as you might think. This fabulous new graphic from the Deep Sea News crew and several other scientists represents *a lot* of research to find out the true largest sizes of 25 ocean creatures of giant repute...

January 13, 2015 — Jennifer Frazer

Bacterial Motors Come in a Dizzying Array of Models

Bacteria propel themselves with corkscrew tails anchored in rotary motors. That may seem surprisingly mechanical for a microbe, but it is a system that has been wildly popular and conserved across billions of years of evolution...

December 16, 2014 — Jennifer Frazer
Parasitic Trypanosomes Contain Nature’s Only Chain Mail DNA

Parasitic Trypanosomes Contain Nature’s Only Chain Mail DNA

The organisms that cause us untold suffering can also be astounding works of art, sculpted by evolution into elegant, deadly packages. Such is the case for the trypanosomes, the protists I discussed last time as the source of Chagas Disease, but which also cause sleeping sickness in Africa...

December 12, 2014 — Jennifer Frazer

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