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10 Quirks of Nature that make you scratch your head

Nature is huge, and with everything as big as nature, there will be some crazy quirks. Scientists are working to understand these things with the resources they have, and although they have made fantastic strides in human history, much remains unknown. Even some of the things that scientists have found or documented are still hard to grasp and are outlandish.

If you think of nature, you may see peaceful forests, a sunset in the desert or the African Serengeti. You probably do not think about immortal animals, the secret of the Cambrian explosion, or light columns in nature.

10 Giant Sharks

These plankton-eating sharks are the second largest living fish and usually become 6 to 8 meters long (20-26 feet for them) in length. The longest basking shark ever found was 12 feet long, the heaviest shark was found at 21 tons, and the deepest shark ever seen was 1,981 meters (6,500 feet) deep.

Giant sharks were also called bony sharks, elephant sharks and (my favorite) megamouth sharks. They are usually found in groups, but some travel alone. The scary thing is that these groups they travel to can contain as many as 100 basking sharks. These sharks are actually gentle giants and are dangerous to anything but the plankton they eat to survive. Giant sharks are a target for hunters due to their large liver. These livers are used for a variety of purposes, from use in lamps to the manufacture of cosmetics.

What is so secretive about these sharks? Well, in every female basking shark, only the right ovary works. [1] Even today, biologists do not know why only one ovary works. Rotifers, better known as wheel animals are microscopic animals that often occur in freshwater environments. While some Rotarians are independent, others live in colonies. Rotifers were first observed when early microscopes came into use, and since then, 2,200 species of rotifers have been described. Although these animals are small, they can filter 100,000 times their volume in water per hour and are often used in fish tanks to purify the water to prevent contaminated material from accumulating in the tank.

The secret in this little guy comes from a small organ called the retrocerebral organ, which lies near the brain. The retrocerebral organ consists of a pair of glands on both sides of a sac that drains into a duct. This channel divides into two parts before opening through the pores at the top of the head. Confusing, right? Well, do not worry if you do not understand what's going on. Also, the function of the retrocerebral organ and the process triggered by it baffle the biologists. [2]

8 Loricifera

Loricifera is a seabed proven marine species of the Mediterranean more than 3,000 meters (10,000 ft) deep. Members of this strain are very small or even microscopic animals that live in sediments. The animals are usually found in the interstices between gravel or solid gravel on the bottom of oceans and seas. They are usually built with an outer shell that protects their digestive system, head and mouth. There are two sexes in adult Loricifera, and these small animals can multiply by parthenogenesis. In other words, they can reproduce themselves through virgin births. There are currently over 100 species of this strain, ranging in size from 100 microns to 1 millimeter.

What's strange about these guys? Well, this strain contains the first known animal that exists in an oxygen-free environment. [3] That's right, the area where some Loricifera were found had such a high salt concentration that there was no oxygen. These environments are known as anoxic. There are currently three known species of Loricifera that are found in this type of environment. Homing

Homing is the ability of animals to find their way back to a place. This location extends from an area for breeding to the home area of ​​an animal. There are different types of homing.

Magnetic orientation is when an animal uses the Earth's magnetic field to find his way home. This is useful if you can not see the sun, like molehills returning home through underground passageways. Another type of homing is the alignment of the sky, which is used by marbled pigs, who can only find their way home when the stars are visible. It has also been theorized that racing pigeons use low-frequency sound waves to create a map of their surroundings so that they can find their way home, even if they are miles away. [4]

Some animals use something known as true navigation. This type of navigation uses landmarks such as mountains, rivers and the like to navigate through familiar territory. However, this means that true navigation does not work through unknown territory. Sea turtles are known to use this type of homing.

6 Immortal species

Biologically immortal species are defined as species whose mortality rate does not increase after maturity. A genus of immortal animals is Hydra which in 1998 was first demonstrated by a research team to show no signs of aging. [5] Hydra are tiny freshwater organisms that grow up to ten millimeters in length and eat tiny aquatic animals. These tiny organisms look like a small tube with tentacles protruding from one end. They seem to live forever and do not age.

However, in the wild Hydra should continue to worry about diseases, predators, and contaminated water. All of these things could kill the biologically immortal Hydra which may succumb to other causes of death, though it can not succumb to age. Hydra are notorious for being composed mainly of stem cells, cells that can continuously divide and differentiate into any cell type, giving them impressive regenerative capabilities. These types of cells are found in humans only in the first few days after our conception and disappear afterwards.

5 Cambrian Explosion

The Cambrian explosion, also known as Cambrian radiation, occurred almost 541 million years ago, during a time known as the Cambrian. Over the course of a few million years, an extremely short time from an evolutionary perspective, almost all the major animal tribes appeared in the fossils, forever changing the biosphere. Before this explosion, the earth consisted almost entirely of plankton, bacteria and algae. After the explosion, the emergence of more complex and a greater variety of animals led to a more sophisticated development of the ecosystem. For example, the predation came into the ecosystem due to the Cambrian explosion.

However, we do not know exactly why this explosion happened. Some scientists believe that a slight increase in oxygen was the turning point that led to the species increasing. [6] Oxygen is needed for processes such as the metabolism of food, and oxygen releases more energy than the anaerobic pathways that most species have lived in that time. A sudden increase in oxygen levels would have facilitated the development of more complex and energy-intensive organisms.

4 Sleep

Everyone knows what sleep is, right? The naturally recurring condition, which typically results in altered consciousness, lack of muscle movement, and almost no sensory activity, is a time when people normally spend a third of their entire lives. But that must seem strange, right? In the wild, it seems as if you are completely vulnerable for long periods of time, as if it were a weakness like the thermal exhaust in the Death Star.

In humans, adequate sleep has been associated with improved memory, longer life, less inflammation associated with heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and strokes, increased creativity, better grades, improved alertness, less stress and lower rates of depression. There are so many benefits of sleep that it deserves its own top ten list. However, it is still unclear why we even went to sleep at all. [7] Theories involve forging new neuronal connections to filter out old, unused, and unimportant compounds. All these theories, though compelling, are not always fully supported by empirical evidence.

3 Light pillar

Light posts are an extremely elegant phenomenon in which vertical light bands emanate from a light source. This effect is caused by the interaction of light with ice crystals that are in the atmosphere or floating in the clouds. [8] The prominence of light columns is directly related to the size of the crystals in the atmosphere. In other words, the bigger the crystal, the more pronounced the light rays become. Common sources of light are the sun, the moon and the street lighting. These dazzling eyewear are known to appear during sunrises, sunsets and at night in places like Northern Ontario, Alaska and even Arizona.

Pillars caused by artificial sources such as street lights are often larger than pillars of light by natural sources such as the sun, which creates a phenomenon known as solar columns or solar columns, and the moon. The pillars you see are not really over the lights as they appear, but are optical illusions like halos.

2 Neuroplasticity

Neuroplasticity is defined by neuroscientists as the ability of the brain to change. This property of the brain is fundamental to its development as well as its decline.

How does the brain change exactly? Well, the gray matter thickens or shrinks, forcing, refining, weakening, or severing neural connections. These changes that take place in our brain change our thinking and even our abilities. This process takes place when one learns a new dance step or learns the way to work. It is also forgotten in other, sad things like your mother's name or number. Neuroplasticity is present at any age.

An amazing example of neuroplasticity is London taxi drivers. It has been reported that learning all the streets of London and constantly navigating the streets has changed the structure of taxi drivers' brains. The mind of a novice driver is radically different from that of a seasoned taxi driver. [9]

1 The Origin of Life

Violent theme, is not it? Abiogenesis, also known as the origin of life, is the process of creating life from non-living matter, such as the organic compounds found on Earth. The transition from non-life to life is not a single event but has taken place over billions of years and we are still trying to figure out how it happened.

There are many theories about how this happened. One of these is that when the earth was covered with ice, the ice protected the compounds from the sun, allowing complex interactions between these compounds to come to life. Lightning is another theory. Electricity produces sugars and amino acids from elements in the atmosphere and a lightning strike to a rich volcanic cloud could have brought to life. Sound is another popular theory. Sound could have been an area of ​​concentrated chemical activity that enabled the rise of life as we know it today.

A new theory of physicists states that life is inevitable because a system, when surrounded by energy, would evolve to efficiently dissipate energy, and atoms will organize themselves to accomplish that purpose. This reorganization and increased energy dissipation would eventually lead to life. [10]

Kevin is currently studying computer science and mathematics with a minor in science writing. He is an avid programmer, inventor and technology enthusiast. In his free time he likes to listen to podcasts, plays the piano and paints.

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