Terrible hairy fly and other beasts

December 10, 2010 • 4:29 pm

The Guardian‘s “This week in wildlife” site has put up a new photo of the world’s rarest fly, the terrible hairy fly from Kenya.  Here the wingless beast looks a bit like a spider mimic (predators might not be able to count legs), or maybe the legs are elongated simply to help it maneuver about in its rock-cleft, bat-guano environment.

Mormotomyia hirsuta (photo from Nairobi’s International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE).

And what creature do you think this is? (Answer: check the Guardian site.)

Finally, this is sweet (and should be on Pharyngula). The Guardian caption: “An octopus is released by a group of Buddhists into Victoria harbour in Hong Kong on 4 December 2010. The group gather regularly to release fish left unsold from Hong Kong’s thriving local markets back into the harbour, while offering prayers of long life and freedom from future captors.”

19 thoughts on “Terrible hairy fly and other beasts

  1. By-catch is an important environmental problem and it is laudable that the Buddhists are doing this. May Buddha bless the by-catch.
    But “fish”? If I were the cephalopod I would be seriously offended.

  2. Buddhists release live, nonnative freshwater turtles off of NYC bridges all the time–into seawater.
    Probably all die.

    1. care to document that statement with some facts.most buddhists are highly educated.sounds like you made this up.another bigoted atheist.I am a buddhist atheist.I do not believe it is necessary to br an asshole to point out delusion.

      1. “most buddhists are highly educated”

        Ah, now there’s a “fact” that I would like to see documented. I certainly don’t get that impression throughout regions of India and the rural populations of China.

      2. @Richard,

        So, merely implying that higher science literacy would ensure such gesture of compassion towards other living beings would not have ended in vain, or even backfire, is an example of bigotry!? Wow! Sounds like you need to increase your offense threshold to me.

        I myself was a buddhist, before I became an atheist about a year ago. I still hold dear Buddhist teaching of compassion, though for different reasons. Many years ago, my own father, a staunch Buddhist, used to buy captured tortoises and set them free in a local river. A well-meaning action, but it could have wreaked havoc in the river ecosystem if the tortoises didn’t belong there. Wouldn’t you agree that if my father had even basic knowledge of ecology, he would be able to save, rather than endanger, more animals?

        Furthermore, your claim that “most buddhists are highly educated” is dubitable. Even if it is true, “highly educated” and “science-literate” are two different things.

  3. The Guardian photo of the orangutans is hard to look at – the one in the foreground seems clearly to have given up all hope. I feel guilty focusing on his hands and feet, marvelling at how they are nearly identical.

  4. One really, really wants to think that that second picture is a soft, warm pony-muzzle with a little frost adorned in picturesque little soft hairs … But what if it is a GIGANTIC fly with white hairs and non-facetted eyes (shudder)
    I think it’s a pony. Must go look in link.

  5. Good for you Sven 🙂 For posting and substantiating your information about the release of freshwater turtles by Budhists into a deadly seawater.

    A lot of groups falsely claim bigotry when someone rightly points out that a member of their group is doing something wrong.

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