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Sea Purslane or Shoreline Seapurslane (Sesuvium portulacastrum). Found in salt marshes, tidal flats, sandy clay and coastal areas including beaches and dunes. Like some other shore plants they have a waxy hard outer layer to protect against moisture loss. Photos by Josh*m & Andres

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Walking fish reveal how our ancestors evolved onto land

Researchers at McGill University published in the journal Nature, turned to a living fish, called Polypterus, to help show what might have happened when fish first attempted to walk out of the water. Polypterus is an African fish that can breathe air, ‘walk’ on land, and looks much like those ancient fishes that evolved into tetrapods. The team of researchers raised juvenile Polypterus on land for nearly a year, with an aim to revealing how these ‘terrestrialized’ fish looked and moved differently.
 
“Stressful environmental conditions can often reveal otherwise cryptic anatomical and behavioural variation, a form of developmental plasticity”, says Emily Standen, a former McGill post-doctoral student who led the project, now at the University of Ottawa. “We wanted to use this mechanism to see what new anatomies and behaviours we could trigger in these fish and see if they match what we know of the fossil record.”

(Source: youtube.com)

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Photoset

Dogbane or Indian-hemp (Apocynum androsaemifolium). Lovely small flowers, but poisonous to pets and humans. Pictures by Stephen Durrenberger & Tony Frates

Photoset

Marvelous Spatuletail hummingbird (Loddigesia mirabilis). Spatuletail are endangered birds found only in a small area of Peru. Both pictures are of males with their distinctive disc tail feathers, both of which can be moved independently. Photo credits Max Waugh & Bernardo Roca-Rey Ross. Max sells high quality print.

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danielhoshizaki:

Foothills. Daniel Hoshizaki
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Low tide

Low tide

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Flowers in cracked earth, Guy Tal Photography

Flowers in cracked earth, Guy Tal Photography

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mypubliclands:

The Sonoran Desert National Monument contains more than 487,000 acres of Sonoran Desert landscape. The Sonoran Desert is the most biologically diverse of the North American deserts, and the monument exemplifies this desert setting. The most striking aspect of the plant community within the monument is the extensive saguaro cactus forest. The monument contains three distinct mountain ranges, the Maricopa, Sand Tank and Table Top Mountains, as well as the Booth and White Hills, all separated by wide valleys. The monument is also home to three congressionally designated wilderness areas, many significant archaeological and historic sites, and remnants of several important historic trails.  
Learn more: http://on.doi.gov/1cZm05i
Photo: Bob Wick, BLM

mypubliclands:

The Sonoran Desert National Monument contains more than 487,000 acres of Sonoran Desert landscape. The Sonoran Desert is the most biologically diverse of the North American deserts, and the monument exemplifies this desert setting. The most striking aspect of the plant community within the monument is the extensive saguaro cactus forest. The monument contains three distinct mountain ranges, the Maricopa, Sand Tank and Table Top Mountains, as well as the Booth and White Hills, all separated by wide valleys. The monument is also home to three congressionally designated wilderness areas, many significant archaeological and historic sites, and remnants of several important historic trails.  

Learn more: http://on.doi.gov/1cZm05i

Photo: Bob Wick, BLM

(Source: Flickr / mypubliclands)

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irecyclart:

Oh, Deer! Deer created by James Osteen, made from old D ring shovel handles, an oak log and a garden hoe head.
http://bit.ly/1ppr3nd

irecyclart:

Oh, Deer!
Deer created by James Osteen, made from old D ring shovel handles, an oak log and a garden hoe head.

http://bit.ly/1ppr3nd