Jump to content
joigus

Examples of Awesome, Unexpected Beauty in Nature

Recommended Posts

I would like to create a little room here for the wonderfully unexpected, beautiful,... (add your adjective) in Nature. Unexpected and/or beautiful could be interpreted as curious/spectacular, or similar.

I mean to use these examples in order to keep the kids interested in Nature. The youngest ones get bored very easily. Examples could be: a rare animal, plant or protist, an almost unbelievably beautiful geological phenomenon, an amazingly complicated molecule that looks like a tinker-toy assembly, spectacular phenomena in water eddies and such. You get the idea.

My getting-started examples:

Glasswinged butterfly

220px-Greta_oto.jpg

A family of butterflies that eat poisonous leaves when they're caterpillars and grow transparent wings.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greta_oto

Rainbow Eucalyptus tree

220px-Eucalyptus_deglupta-trees.jpg

A species of tree that looks as if somebody had Photoshop-painted them.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eucalyptus_deglupta

Maths are also welcome. Things that look paradoxical like 0.9999999... = 1 would be the idea. I'm sure people will enrich this with possibilities I'm not foreseeing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Look here for the connection to Science.

https://books.google.co.uk/books/about/The_Self_made_Tapestry.html?id=Fz1RAAAAMAAJ&redir_esc=y

or here for the comparison of how Nature does things v how man achieves the same objects.

https://books.google.co.uk/books/about/Cats_Paws_and_Catapults.html?id=fdihsss71tAC&redir_esc=y

 

:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone

 

f9d5779479142f3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
50 minutes ago, iNow said:

Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone

<image>

Thanks a lot. +1 I will adjoin the wikipedia link here, for completeness.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Prismatic_Spring

And a brief explanation of the most outstanding feature:

Quote

The bright, vivid colors in the spring are the result of microbial mats around the edges of the mineral-rich water. The mats produce colors ranging from green to red; the amount of color in the microbial mats depends on the ratio of chlorophyll to carotenoids and on the temperature gradient in the runoff. In the summer, the mats tend to be orange and red, whereas in the winter the mats are usually dark green.[8] The center of the pool is sterile due to extreme heat.

The deep blue color of the water in the center of the pool results from the intrinsic blue color of water. The effect is strongest in the center of the spring, because of its sterility and depth.[9]

 

Edited by joigus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Volcanic lightning is hard to beat.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volcanic_lightning

IMG_5696.thumb.JPG.cdcf0704a2f278faede2e1356a13dd71.JPG

Calbuco, The Awakening.” ... Calbuco Volcano is located in the lakes region south of Santiago, Chile’s capital city and is one of the 10 most dangerous volcanoes in the country. After more than 40 years of inactivity, the day April 23 the volcano erupts, spewing more than 200 million tons of ash

https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/photos/national-geographic-photo-contest-2015/image-gallery/a2afa2087ecd4f4d62475d231b129e31

 

Edited by Curious layman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
53 minutes ago, Curious layman said:

Volcanic lightning is hard to beat.

Absolutely science-spectacular. Thank you. +1

4 hours ago, studiot said:

Look here for the connection to Science.

https://books.google.co.uk/books/about/The_Self_made_Tapestry.html?id=Fz1RAAAAMAAJ&redir_esc=y

or here for the comparison of how Nature does things v how man achieves the same objects.

https://books.google.co.uk/books/about/Cats_Paws_and_Catapults.html?id=fdihsss71tAC&redir_esc=y

 

:)

Thank you, Studiot. +1 Somewhere I had an answer written for you, but I must have lost it.

A bookish answer, as always. :)

Edited by joigus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I found this beauty on the web today:

800px-Pingualuit_aerial_2007.jpg

https://www.freshdaily.ca/travel/2020/01/pingualuit-crater-quebec-canada/

-------------------------------------------------

Some facts from http://craterexplorer.ca/pingualuit-impact-crater/:

Pingualuit Crater Lake, Québec. Pingualuit ᐱᖑᐊᓗᐃᑦ is an Inuit word meaning pimple. Ironically, Pingualuit Crater Lake is said to have the purest freshwater on earth. The crater surrounding the lake was formed by a meteorite over 1.4 million years ago in the Pleistocene Epoch. The meteorite evaporated on impact in an explosion which melted thousands of tons of stone and wiped away all life for hundreds of kilometres around the crater. Local Inuit people consider this unusually calm place to be a site of extreme power, where one comes to revitalize oneself. In order to protect this unique impact crater, Pingualuit National Park was established in 2004. Photo Credit: NASA

--------------------------------------------------

List of lakes that formed as a consequence of meteorite impacts:

https://time.com/4371446/these-tranquil-lakes-are-actually-ancient-impact-craters/#:~:text=Clearwater%20Lakes%20(Lac%20%C3%A0%20l,Eau%20Claire)%2C%20Quebec%2C%20Canada&text=About%20290%20million%20years%20ago,in%20Quebec's%20largest%20national%20park.

If anybody has been there or has anything more to say, I'd be very interested to read about it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The winners of the Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2020 awards have been announced with some truly spectacular images.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/amp/in-pictures-54105085

 


image.png.db708a96bcb301250c36cca6c7f445c2.pngNicolas Lefaudeux: Overall Winner

 

I don't have sufficient permissions to upload all the images but I'd like to give the winners a name check nonetheless...

Nicholas Roemmelt: Aurorae category
Bence Toth: Best New Comer
Alain Paillou: Our Moon category
Alexandra Hart: Our Sun category
Lukasz Sujka: Planets, Comets and Asteroids category
Thomas Kast: Skyscapes category
Peter Ward: Stars and Nebulae category
Alice Fock: Young category
Julie F Hill: Annie Maunder Prize for Image Innovation

Finally, Rafael Schmall: People and Space category (my particular favourite)

image.png.5ac706021a3edf14fcea119fa4bea1c6.png

The star in the centre of the image is the Albireo double star, surrounded by trails of moving satellites.

Edited by Dord

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/23/2020 at 9:16 PM, joigus said:

 Why do they look so metallic?

 


It seems to be pretty awesome looking camouflage...
 

Quote

A team of researchers at the University of Costa Rica has found that the beetles' metallic appearance is created by the unique structural arrangements of many dozens of layers of exo-skeletal chitin in the elytron, a hardened forewing that protects the delicate hindwings that are folded underneath

[ ... ]

"The metallic appearance of these beetles may allow them to be unnoticed, something that helps them against potential predators," says physicist and study leader William E. Vargas. The surface of their elytra "reflects light in a way that they look as bright spots seen from any direction," he explains. "In a tropical rainforest, there are many drops of water suspended from the leaves of trees at ground level, along with wet leaves, and these drops and wet leaves redirect light by refraction and reflection respectively, in different directions. Thus, metallic beetles manage to blend with the environment."
 

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110425120344.htm#:~:text=A team of researchers at,hindwings that are folded underneath.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

iNow, wow, that's amazing for sure.

Edited by jon12MZ

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

image.png.aabba280bcfeb7c29a85010ed4e1e2dc.png

 

Okunikko, Japan: Kegon Falls, in Nikko National Park, are surrounded by Mongolian oak, maple, azalea and other trees, making it a particularly beautiful spot in autumn. 
Ryohei Moriya/The Yomiuri Shimbun/AP
Edited by zapatos

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, zapatos said:

<image>

Okunikko, Japan: Kegon Falls, in Nikko National Park, are surrounded by Mongolian oak, maple, azalea and other trees, making it a particularly beautiful spot in autumn. 
Ryohei Moriya/The Yomiuri Shimbun/AP

Thank you, Zapatos. I've found a little bit more of the geological history on Wikipedia:

Quote

Kegon Falls (華厳滝, Kegon Taki) is located at Lake Chūzenji (source of the Oshiri River) in Nikkō National Park near the city of Nikkō, Tochigi Prefecture, Japan. The falls were formed when the Daiya River was rerouted by lava flows. The main falls had a height of approximately 97 metres (318 ft) and about twelve smaller waterfalls are situated behind and to the sides of Kegon Falls, leaking through the many cracks between the mountain and the lava flows.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kegon_Falls

Quote

Cascading from Lake Chuzenji at a height of 97 meters, Kegon Falls [...] Lush greenery surrounds the area in spring, migratory Asian house martins visit in summer, and the waterfall freezes solid in winter.

From

https://www.visitnikko.jp/en/spots/kegon-falls/

The place is such a tourist magnet that it's kinda difficult to find something more science-oriented about it: Geology, fauna and flora, etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bouddi National Park (New South Wales, Australia.) This Australian National Park features the presence of sandstone, coloured by haloes of chemical change, brought up by differential oxidation of iron minerals in the presence of moisture (Liesegang rings*) as those in Maria Island presented in the previous series of photographs.
----------
(*) Liesengang rings are rings of chemical change that colour the interior of certain rocks. They are formed by oxidation of iron minerals due to moisture penetrating the rocks through their porous structure. Generally that moisture filters through fracture lines in the rocks, thus producing concentric rings towards the centre of the blocks that the fracture lines define.

CREDITS: https://www.facebook.com/Geomorfologia.Para.Todos/posts/4021501111197661 (Translated from Spanish)

(Geomorphology for everyone)

318332,xcitefun-liesegang-rings-at-boudd

318333,xcitefun-liesegang-rings-at-boudd

https://forum.xcitefun.net/bouddi-national-park-australia-t83280.html

Edited by joigus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Treehoppers!!

Quote

Treehoppers (more precisely typical treehoppers to distinguish them from the Aetalionidae) and thorn bugs are members of the family Membracidae, a group of insects related to the cicadas and the leafhoppers. About 3,200 species of treehoppers in over 400 genera are known.[1] They are found on all continents except Antarctica; only five species are known from Europe. Individual treehoppers usually live for only a few months.

(from Wikipedia.)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treehopper

Oak treehopper:

8577969459_49866036ff_b-315x368.jpg

https://insider.si.edu/2017/08/beautiful-bizarre-treehoppers-suck-sap-can-spread-disease/8577969459_49866036ff_b/

48196146046_7149c335ba_o.jpg

 

48152083706_b8d26dd461_o.jpg

 

Quote

[...]

The case of the treehopper helmet isn’t fully closed, though. How wing genes get turned on in pronotum cells, and what—if anything—they have to do with the sheer diversity in the structure’s shape and size remain unresolved. Researchers aren’t even totally sure what purpose the helmets serve, though many suspect the insects are mimicking their surroundings to either blend in or warn predators to stay away (as a wasp-looking helmet might do).

(from Smithsonian Magazine online.)

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/treehoppers-bizarre-wondrous-helmets-use-wing-genes-grow-180973713/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like the photos and links to waterfalls, sandstone landscapes, and starscapes, but please, no more giant pictures of bugs.
I feel itchy all over, like bugs are crawling all over me, after I see those.

Edited by MigL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, MigL said:

I like the photos and links to waterfalls, sandstone landscapes, and starscapes, but please, no more giant pictures of bugs.
I feel itchy all over, like bugs are crawling all over me, after I see those.

I tried to make them smaller or link to thumbnail versions...

I would've thought you'd like them, given how fond you are of science fiction. :D

Edited by joigus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, MigL said:

I like the photos and links to waterfalls, sandstone landscapes, and starscapes, but please, no more giant pictures of bugs.
I feel itchy all over, like bugs are crawling all over me, after I see those.

Never should have shared that!

😂

image.png.a0d67a085d71823c0dc9d88d2179ec97.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've never been so tempted to give somebody a neg rep, Zap :eek: .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, MigL said:

I've never been so tempted to give somebody a neg rep, Zap :eek: .

Neither have I, but it's just because of the lack of information about that lovely fellow.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lovely ??
Your standards for 'lovely' are quite low :D.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, MigL said:

Lovely ??
Your standards for 'lovely' are quite low :D.

That's quite common between men my age. ;)

You just made me a primate, @MigL. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@MigL: Bug free images.

When conditions are right the water from the gentle waves in the lake embeds the stones and vegetation in almost transparent ice bubbles. 

ice1.thumb.jpg.5d9f4ca62af994233d732e43b3b99430.jpg

 ice2.thumb.jpg.6a85ee9b3b9ab1638f94895d64f7cb9e.jpg

 

(Getting into a better position or angle to take the pictures was not worth the risk. Or maybe I was getting too old and lazy)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.