Interesting Science Picture XVIII: Spiders Eat Bats

Call me disturbed.

Spiders Eat Bats (Source)

Figure 2. Bats caught by spiders. A – Adult female Avicularia urticans feeding on a Greater Sac-winged Bat (Saccopteryx bilineata) on the side of a palm tree near the Rio Yarapa, Peru (photo by Rick West, Victoria, Canada; report # 1). B – Adult Proboscis Bat (Rhynchonycteris naso) entangled in a web of Argiope savignyi at the La Selva Biological Station, northern Costa Rica (photo by Mirjam Kno¨ rnschild, Ulm, Germany; report # 14). C – Dead bat (presumably Centronycteris centralis) entangled in an orb-web in Belize (photo by Carol Farneti-Foster, Belice City, Belize; report # 12). D – Dead bat (Myotis sp.) entangled in a web of Nephila clavipes in La Sirena, Corcovado National Park, Costa Rica (photo by Harald & Gisela Unger, Ko¨ ln, Germany; report # 17). E – A bat caught in the web of an araneid spider (possibly Eriophora sp.) in Tortuguero National Park, Costa Rica (photo by Cassidy Metcalf, USA; report # 18). F – Live bat trapped in web of Nephilengys cruentata in a thatch roof at Nisela Lodge, Swaziland (photo by Donald Schultz, Hollywood, USA; report # 47). G – Volant juvenile Proboscis Bat (Rhynchonycteris naso) entangled in web of Nephila clavipes photographed in a palm swamp forest near Madre de Dios, Peru (photo by Sam Barnard, Colorado Springs, USA; report # 7). H – Dead bat entangled in web of a female Nephila clavipes in tropical rainforest in the middle of the Rio Dulce River Canyon near Livingston, Guatemala (photo by Sam & Samantha Bloomquist, Indianapolis, USA; report # 11). I – Dead bat (Rhinolophus cornutus orii) caught in the web of a female Nephila pilipes on Amami-Oshima Island, Japan (photo by Yasunori Maezono, Kyoto University, Japan; report # 35). J, K – A small bat (superfamily Rhinolophoidea) entangled in web of Nephila pilipes at the top of the Cockatoo Hill near Cape Tribulation, Queensland, Australia (photo by Carmen Fabro, Cockatoo Hill, Australia; report # 39). The spider pressed its mouth against the dead, wrapped bat, indicating that it was feeding on it. A Nephila pilipes male also present in the web (K) may have been feeding on the bat as well. L – Dead vespertilionid bat entangled in the web of a female Nephila pilipes in the Aberdeen Country Park, Hong Kong (photo by Carol S.K. Liu from AFCD Hong Kong, China; report # 32).

Shark Bites Whale

Phys.Org mentions an interesting article published in the International Journal of Osteoarchaeology. The article concerns a fragment of a whale rib, dating to the Pliocene, that shows evidence of a shark bite. In this case the rib also displays evidence of having survived the attack. From Phys.Org: Continue reading

New Zoo Baby

Below is a picture of the newest resident at the St. Louis Zoo:

Black rhino born at St. Louis Zoo.

It is a male black rhino born on January 14th.

Lions, and Tigers, and Bears! Oh My!

Okay it’s none of the above, it’s a mountain lion spotted in St. Louis County. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch

The question is: What’s it doing in Chesterfield?

The Missouri Department of Conservation isn’t quite sure, but most likely the mountain lion was just passing through in search of territory or a mate.

The pictures taken Jan. 12 from a stationary wildlife camera mark the first confirmed sighting in St. Louis County since 1994, and the 13th in the state.

The department hasn’t ruled out that the cougar might belong to one of the 32 people in the state who have permits to keep captive mountain lions. It’s checking with them, conservation spokesman Joe Jerek said.

If it is a wild animal that would be really cool. Interestingly enough the area in St. Louis County where it was spotted is known for having a large deer population – but that is another story.

Brain Size, Body Size, and Longevity

Science Daily mentions an interesting paper on the relationship between brain size, body, and longevity in mammals. From Science
Daily: Continue reading

Fossil Raccoon Dog From The Awash

Zeray Alemseged and company will be publishing a paper in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology announcing the discovery of a new species of (extinct) raccoon dog. The new species, Nyctereutes lockwoodi – named, I’m guessing, after the late Charles Lockwood – dates to about 3.3 MYA. The new species is based on a nearly complete skull as well as fragments of other skulls…

Naked Mole Rats In The News

Science Daily has an interesting story on naked mole rats (and how could a story on naked mole rats be anything other than interesting I ask):

Continue reading

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