Why Evolution Is True
Why Evolution is True is a blog written by Jerry Coyne, centered on evolution and biology but also dealing with diverse topics like politics, culture, and cats.
I haven’t a clue. The first one appears to be traveling among what look like hair. Is it a human parasite? The 2nd is very bizarre looking and is possibly a parasite as well with 6 legs, and the last 2 leave me unable to guess at in any way.
This creature (the new one pictured) appears to be a Water Bear also known as a tardigrade..
They are tiny, micro-animals that only grow to about half a millimeter long. They are also one of the most amazing organisms on Earth.
In 2007 some tardigrades got the chance few humans even get: they were sent into space. A lesser creature would have succumbed to the harsh realities of nature outside the Earth’s atmosphere, but not tardigrades. Neither solar winds nor lack of oxygen could kill them off. They just needed a little water and they were back up and running.
Basically all life on Earth needs water to survive. Humans are famously three quarters water. Everything needs water. Water bears do, too, but less than most. When it gets very, very cold, their body composition goes from 85 percent water to about 3 percent. During periods of extreme dryness water bears can undergo anhydrobiosis, or life without water. These microscopic organisms can survive in this dry state for 10 years. They do this by curling up into a little ball called a tun. While in its tun state, their metabolism can decrease to about 0.01 percent of the normal level.
Not only can water bears survive the very low pressure and temperature found in a vacuum, they can also withstand incredibly high temperatures and high pressures. Tardigrades can survive temperatures between -328 F and 304 F. They can even be frozen and thawed and live to tell the tale. The pressures they can tolerate is just as impressive. They can withstand the very small pressures of space, as well as over 1200 times the pressure of the Earth’s atmosphere.
In regard to radiation, water bears, appear to be resistant to radiation. In their chilled state, it took 570,00 roentgens to kill 50 percent of exposed water bears. To put that in perspective, it only takes 500 roentgens to kill a human.
Read more: http://www.care2.com/causes/4-reasons-why-water-bears-are-the-toughest-animals-on-the-planet-2.html#ixzz3AOA8bG1n