A Very Scary Halloween To One And All!

Happy Halloween 2010!

Image via Pumpkinrot.


More from Inside Nature’s Giants

Two more episodes from the excellent television series Inside Natures Giants are now available for viewing on YouTube. As I wrote in a previous post, this is a fascinating zoology program wherein the bodies of various large animals are dissected to demonstrate the details of their anatomy. This is combined with discussions of the living animals and their natural history with occasional incites from Richard Dawkins about evolutionary biology.

First of the newly available episodes is a two for one in which both a lion and tiger are examined, contrasted and compared. Here is part one of four:

A play list for the rest of the parts can be found here.

In my previous posting on this series I wished for them to focus an episode on something like a giant squid so as to show something on invertebrate anatomy and my wish has come true. Here is part one of five:

I couldn’t find a play list for this episode so here are individual links to the different segments: part 2, part 3, part 4, and part 5.

As before I really cannot speak more highly of this program. It is fascinating television for anyone with even the slightest curiosity about the natural world and a absolute must see for anyone interested in biology, zoology and evolution.

Gush, gush, gush!

[Thanks to P.Z. (squee) Myers over at Pharyngula for the heads up on the squid episode and to the WhyEvolutionisTrue YouTube channel for hosting the videos!]

New acquisitions for the Britain Research Library

Thanks in part to an anonymous donor the Britain Research Library has recently made a number of new acquisitions in its science, pseudoscience, and political collections.


Arthur, Wallace (1997) The Origin of Animal Body Plans: A study in evolutionary developmental biology, Cambridge University Press, XII + 338

Ayala, Francisco J. (2010) Am I A Monkey?: Six big questions about evolution, John Hopkins University Press, XIII + 83

Keynes, Randal (2009) Creation: The true story of Charles Darwin, Riverhead Books, XVII + 430

Kurtén, Björn (1972) Not From The Apes, Pantheon Books, New York, NY, VIII + 183

Levinton, Jeffrey S. (2001) Genetics, Paleontology, and Macroevolution (2nd edition), Cambridge University Press, XV + 617

Newman, Horatio Hackett (1926) The Gist of Evolution, The MacMillan Company, IX + 154


Gibbons, William J. & Hovind, Kent (1999) Claws, Jaws, & Dinosaurs, CSE Publications, 72

Walsh, Robert E. (editor) (1994) Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Creationism, Creation Life Fellowship, Inc. VII + 645


Hayek, F. A. (Caldwell, Bruce – Editor) (2007) The Road To Serfdom: Text and documents, The University of Chicago Press XI + 283

Thanks to whomever it was!



The Rush to ignorance tour continues

Oh boy, Limbaugh was talking about biology again on his show yesterday (Oct. 6th 2010,  audio available here):

RUSH: You know, ladies and gentlemen, just as the elitists, the wannabe ruling class people on our side are a little full of it, so are scientists.  Many scientists don’t know diddly-squat.  In fact, these next two stories are from the “scientists don’t know excrement and God is amazing file.”  Two stories, one from Bangkok: “Dracula fish, a bald songbird and a seven-meter (23 feet) tall carnivorous plant are among several unusual new species found in the Greater Mekong region last year, researchers said Wednesday.  Other new finds among the 145 new species include a frog that sounds like a cricket and a ‘sucker fish’, which uses its body to stick to rocks in fast flowing waters to move upstream, according to conservation group WWF.  With fangs at the front of each jaw, the ‘dracula minnow’ is one of the more bizarre new species found in 2009 in the Mekong River region, which comprises Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and China’s Yunnan Province.”

Second story: “Scientists Find 200 New Species in Papua New Guinea — Scientists on Wednesday unveiled a spectacular array of more than 200 new species discovered in the Pacific islands of Papua New Guinea, including a white-tailed mouse and a tiny, long-snouted frog.”  How many of you remember, along with me, the horror stories of how many species we are wiping out every year because of global warming.  I always said, “How do we know we’re wiping them out?  Do we really know there aren’t any more X’s left?  Have we scoured every acre of the earth, there really aren’t any more of those?”  And how do we know that these are actually new?  Were they just created yesterday, the day we found them? How long have these new species been around?  And how can they be new if we’re destroying them? And yet, ladies and gentlemen, we will tell a farmer he can’t use his land because a snail darter is threatened. We’re being governed by a bunch of stupid idiot jackasses. [Emphasis mine]

Wait, what..? Did he actually just say…?  Arrrrgh!

These newly discovered species are new to science Rush, not the planet. Anyone with an IQ higher than that of a stock of broccoli should have understood this.

Of course the real hilarity here is that he is making such mind bogglingly stupid statements in in the context of claiming that it is really scientists who “don’t know excrement”.

Ah, the arrogance of ignorance.