A male peafowl is one of the largest flying birds when the combined length of its train and its large wingspan are considered. Peacocks are large, colorful pheasants (typically blue and green) known for their iridescent tails.
See a whooping crane, a Javan rhinoceros hornbill, and more stunning birds photographed by Joel Sartore. Get right up close to 12 colorful new bird galleries, featuring photos from My Shot members and classic art from the NG archives. Scientists already knew that the marine invertebrate, which lives in the shallow ocean waters off the Pacific coast of North America, breathes with its butt.
The respiratory trees receive oxygen when water is pumped through their anus using the muscles of their cloaca, an opening at the end of the intestinal tract. The sheer amount of water flowing into the anus got two invertebrate biologists thinking—since P. Their first hint that the sea cucumber anus was doing triple duty came from a structure called the rete mirabile, a set of blood vessels that connect the sea cucumber’s respiratory trees with its gut. Initially, Jaeckle, of Illinois Wesleyan University, and Strathmann, of the University of Washington, thought that the rete mirabile was used to transfer oxygen from the respiratory trees to the gut.
To test their idea, the team fed several sea cucumbers radioactive algae, which also contained iron particles. Not surprisingly, the results showed that the sea cucumbers ate the algae through their actual mouths, which then traveled through their gut. However, the researchers also found a high level of radioactivity when they looked at the rete mirabile. When the scientists looked at tissue samples from the sea cucumber under the microscope, they found even more hints that P. In addition, the sea cucumber’s respiratory trees had small, finger-like projections known as microvilli that are normally found in the gut and aid with nutrient absorption. The authors conclude that although they looked only for evidence of bipolar feeding—the more formal and perhaps polite term for eating with your butt—in one species of sea cucumber, many other species are likely to use this method of feeding. Sea Cucumbers are the most disgusting of all animals, they eat, breath, sh*t and f**k all through the same hole. If it could only talk out it’s butt, the sea cucumber would be a natural in Congress!

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Two years after being discovered deep in a South African cave, the 1,500 fossils excavated during the Rising Star Expedition have been identified as belonging to a previously unknown early human relative that National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Lee Berger and team have named Homo naledi. With at least 15 individuals of all ages and both sexes represented, the find adds an unprecedented amount of information to our understanding of early human evolution in Africa. In addition, the absence of any other animal remains or large debris in the fossil chamber strongly suggests that these non-human beings intentionally deposited their dead within this cave. BANABA ISLAND, Kiribati—Asbestos dust covers the floors of Banaba’s crumbling colonial houses, buildings, and schools. The loss of animal species is irreversible and potentially catastrophic, not to mention heartrendingly sad.
Find out what National Geographic Society is doing to save animals all over the world, and learn what you can do to help.
These tail feathers, or coverts, spread out in a distinctive train that is more than 60 percent of the bird’s total body length and boast colorful "eye" markings of blue, gold, red, and other hues.
Just answer four simple questions to search our database of 150 backyard birds common to Canada and the U.S. If anyone holding the copyright to any of the images on this website objects to their presence here please contact us and the offending images will be removed immediately.
The iron and radioactivity proved an easy way to trace the food as it traveled through the sea cucumber’s body. The only way that those blood vessels could have such a high concentration of radioactivity is if the animal was transferring food from the respiratory trees to the gut via the rete mirabile.
Posters and commenters are required to observe National Geographic's community rules and other terms of service. To learn firsthand what's going on in and around this marine treasure of global importance, the National Geographic Society sent its top scientists and officials to the region in January 2016. Asian nomads probably domesticated the first horses some 4,000 years ago, and the animals remained essential to many human societies until the advent of the engine.

But their tenure in paradise is perilously close to its end; only about 1,100 seals remain in the wild. For instance, areas of the body with the highest concentrations of radioactivity would provide clues about which orifices the animal was using to eat. They toured the desert islands off the southeastern coast of the Baja Peninsula and they listened to presentations by more than a dozen experts, including several whose Baja California research is funded by the Society. Horses still hold a place of honor in many cultures, often linked to heroic exploits in war.Wild and DomesticatedThere is only one species of domestic horse, but around 400 different breeds that specialize in everything from pulling wagons to racing. It can be arched into a magnificent fan that reaches across the bird's back and touches the ground on either side. Females are believed to choose their mates according to the size, color, and quality of these outrageous feather trains.Male vs.
Free-roaming North American mustangs, for example, are the descendents of horses brought by Europeans more than 400 years ago.Wild horses generally gather in groups of 3 to 20 animals. Females are peahens, and together, they are called peafowl.Suitable males may gather harems of several females, each of which will lay three to five eggs.
A stallion (mature male) leads the group, which consists of mares (females) and young foals.
In fact, wild peafowl often roost in forest trees and gather in groups called parties.PopulationPeacocks are ground-feeders that eat insects, plants, and small creatures. The colts then roam with other young males until they can gather their own band of females.The Przewalski's horse is the only truly wild horse whose ancestors were never domesticated. The blue peacock lives in India and Sri Lanka, while the green peacock is found in Java and Myanmar (Burma).
A more distinct and little-known species, the Congo peacock, inhabits African rain forests.Peafowl such as the blue peacock have been admired by humans and kept as pets for thousands of years.
Selective breeding has created some unusual color combinations, but wild birds are themselves bursting with vibrant hues.

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