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  • guest - Mercoledì 25 Aprile 2012 10:25
  • Destiny - Mercoledì 18 Aprile 2012 06:15
    While [begrudgingly] conceding biobob’s point about the dangers of over-interpreting the fossil record, it is interesting that the earliest fossil records for most crown group arachnids cluster between 430 and 390 Mya (Silurian/Devonian) (see Dunlop and Selden 2009 for a recent review DOI:10.1007/s10493-009-9247-1). Most of these fossils possess synapomorphies that allow them to be assigned to extant orders–at least according to the experts.In part, this reflects a few localities that yield unusually well-preserved arthropod fossils (notably the Rhynie chert), but the geologically “simultaneous” appearance of these extant orders in the fossil record is consistent with the genetic evidence pointing toward a relatively rapid radiation — and this itself is coincident with molecular and fossil evidence for the relatively rapid radiation of terrestrial plants and the first appearances of other terrestrial arthropod groups roughly around 430 Ma. All very circumstantial to be sure, but still quite interesting.Okay back to the reptiles.
  • torecanu - Martedì 17 Aprile 2012 21:41
    Grazie Gilberto, avevi visto giusto, si tratta di Pieris rapae. :thumbup:
  • gilbonol - Martedì 17 Aprile 2012 12:07
    Più che Pieris brassicae a me questo esemplare sembra [i]Pieris mannii[/i] o, in seconda battuta, [i]Pieris rapae[/i]
    Ciao, Gilberto
  • Lurraine - Martedì 17 Aprile 2012 06:41
    Well it may go back a good bit further. Over at Jerry Coyne’s blog that started this thread, one commentator notes that the Swedish word for beetle is “bagge”, which seems highly likely to be a cognate. Since the Old Norse part of the ancestry of both English and Swedish goes back considerably earlier than Middle English, it would appear that this could be an old North Germanic term for a bug or beetle (or generic for both). On the other hand, there are the bug of “bugaboo”, and of “that bugs me” (in the ghost or goblin sense, at least mildly), an example of the common “inadequacy” of natural languages to come up with a separate term for every thing and concept about which people speak. Going way off on a tangent, I would note that there have been attempts to create artificial languages that had a separate and supposedly unambiguous term for every possible concept. Needless to say, they never caught on. People like the ease of expression, double entendre, punnery, etc. that natural language affords them.
  • Jan - Sabato 14 Aprile 2012 20:42
    I so want to sign up. But EPICon is driving me nuts and tankig up all my time. I've not written a serious word count in months.
  • Wender - Sabato 14 Aprile 2012 20:04
    Some great pics, again. Were those birds lining up and aniktg turns to sit on the wire?Also think you need to update your home pic with one of you with your new lens.
  • Gioovanna - Domenica 8 Aprile 2012 17:37
    Ladybirds will be increasing lgeuhy this summer the numbers I have seen about are higher now than I've seen for quite sometime,its just nature cycles,you can't work it out looking at the small picture here but there will be a definite increase in number and science will be baffled,as well as there will be an increase in butterfly and bee numbers over the next few years or so,I do wish people would stop panicking and trust nature a bit after all the system has worked unbelievably well for billions of years,looks to me like there's some kind of 20 year cycles these should be observed on a whole rather than zooming in on microscopic levels perhaps then we can start to properly understand the truth behind nature .
  • Aslan - Martedì 3 Aprile 2012 09:52
    I suppose I’d better weigh in here since I’m the one who started the ruckus.I largely agree with the perspective offered by Alex that entomologists already have a perfectly good, unambiguous technical term for the so-called “true bugs”, one that does not require scare-quotes: Hemiptera. So trying to convince people that bug should be widely accepted as a synonym for hemipteran seems unnecessary as well as ultimately futile.Regarding Jesse’s point about ants, grasshoppers, etc: It seems to me the difference is that what we might call the folk-entomological meanings of those words happen to correspond closely to the technical meanings. Specialists and non-specialists can agree on what an ant is (or isn’t) because they’re using similar criteria to make those distinctions.The same does not seem to be true for bugs. Cheesy sci-fi flicks feature bug-eyed creepy-crawlies, not bug-mouthed piercy-suckies. Mouthparts are largely irrelevant to folk entomology; most people never get close enough to see the mouthparts. It’s the legs and eyes that make an impression. By those criteria, there is no clear distinction between near-bugs and “true” bugs; they’re all one category, which (at least where I come from) we call bugs. Not because we’re ignorant and don’t understand the technical meaning of the word “bug”, but because we’re using ordinary language to do folk taxonomy, as people have done since the invention of language.That’s my take on it anyway. Thanks for sharing yours.

  • Benny - Venerdì 30 Marzo 2012 09:03
    It seems the modern lgainees arose very quickly in time. I suppose this is a throwaway statement however, there are two problems with it:1) we can NOT know the speed of adaptive radiation in this or any other group so far back in time. Jeeze you are discussing events more than 445 million years old. At best we get a peek at such events from what fossils we stumble upon.2) we can NOT know all that much about what lgainees were involved vs those present at the time and which were which to have sifted down into extant representatives. Again, we have some few fossilized representatives to draw inferences from, inferences which could well be erroneous due to chance of which individuals were found as fossils.Still, I agree that more data is better and its always nice to see science stumble along, lol.