Thursday, 28 August 2008

Camel Spider Hysteria

Today's Metro features an article about a Camel Spider that apparently lives in somebody's house and killed their dog. This is a good example of how poor journalist coverage of science topics can be. First of all, Camel Spiders aren't spiders, they belong to a different order of arachnids, the Solifugae (Latin, to flee from the sun). Stories of these arachnids chasing humans are due to the fact that they want to stay in their shadow!

Camel Spiders are not venomous, and normal prey includes other invertebrates and small lizards.

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Some Bug Art

This is taken from the Rogue Entomologist, the website of artist Judith Klausner. There are also some depictions of beheading featuring mantids.

New Species Found in eBay Amber

A new species of aphid, Mindarus harringtoni, has been found in a piece of amber purchased form the auctions website eBay.

Before you all go off and buy as much amber as you can from the site though, remember that there are a lot of fakes for sale there too.

Read the BBC article here.

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

New to Britain snails found in Cliveden House

If you thought that Cliveden House was most famous for orgies involving Noel Coward or that infamous scene in Scandal then think again!

The centimetre long Mediterranean snail Papillifera papillaris has been found, that could have lived unnoticed for 100 years.

The BBC report is here.

My local paper picked up on this story, and made a few mistakes - for most people they probably wouldn't be a huge issue, but they annoy me! Will comment on them very soon.

Some excellent photos

I found this over at Zooillogix, original photos by Martin Amm are here.