Showing posts from October, 2010

Conservation: Every Drop Counts

With melting icecaps, rising sea level, flashfloods and severe droughts making news in the media every other day, the Blog Community has come up with an interesting idea “ that unites the world’s bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day with the aim of sparking a global discussion and driving collective action ” called the Blog Action Day . In order to minimize our impact on water, let’s view water as a large resource, and then break it down into small stages in the way water has helped humanity expand; based on its availability (for all living things), productivity (for agriculture and irrigation) and further human development (urbanization). The earth’s surface is covered in 70.9% water, with oceans holding 97% of surface water, 2.4% in solar ice caps and 0.6% in lakes, rivers and ponds. To some terrestrial organisms, including us, we only have this 0.6% of water available as a direct, cheap resource. Now when you look at the percentage, it really doesn’t make an

Chasing Tiger Beetles

Cicindela sexguttata , photographed in early spring at Medway Creek, 2010 Patience is virtue, but if there is an insect that knows how to test your patience, it has to be a Tiger Beetle. Belonging to the order Coleoptera, family Carabidae , subfamily Cicindelinae (all Tiger Beetles belong to Carabidae, but not all Carabidae beetles are commonly called Tiger Beetles; they were previously considered to be under a distinct family Cicindelidae), these beetles are commonly referred to as Tiger Beetles for a very good reason. We all know that tigers are carnivores, earning the rightful throne of being on top of the food pyramid in their prime habitats. Their hunting tactics involve ambushing, stalking, chasing and surprising the prey, making them efficient – if not supreme – predators of the Indian subcontinent. Likewise, Tiger Beetles are known to use all these tactics while hunting for food. Only difference between the mammalian tiger and an insect tiger is their apparent size, but if w