Archive for the Love & Sex Category

Wolf packs are not led by alpha males

Posted in Images & Videos, Love & Sex, Nature Attacks! on August 24, 2009 by Gustav

I didn’t know this, but apparently the leader of wolf packs should not gererally be termed alpha males, or alphas at all.

However, most of the early research on wolves was done on artificially built groups, e.g., wolves caught in various places all put together in a single wolf pen at a zoo. In such rare and unnatural situations, these stranger-wolves do indeed form social hierarchies (or “pecking order” – a term that arose from studies of chickens).

But such situations rarely if ever happen out in nature. A pack of wolves is usually composed of Mother, Father and their (sometimes quite grown-up) offspring: closely related individuals who know each other well. [A Blog Around The Clock]

Wolf researcher L. David Mech explains further in this video:

Science.

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Orchid lures hornets with (the smell of) treats like a sexual predator

Posted in Love & Sex, Nature Attacks! on August 13, 2009 by Gustav

Sexual reproduction is tricky business when you’re a plant and can’t move around to find a mate. Plants have solved this problem by attracting pollinators to do the all that hard, physical work. Orchids have taken the ol’ pollinator-attracting gambit further than most.

Take the Dendrobium sinense, for instance, which has evolved to produce the same pheromone that honeybees use to alert hive mates to trouble. This chemical signal attracts hungry hornets expecting ti find some tasty honeybees.

The predatory insects recognise the smell and pounce on the flowers, only to find the larder empty. But they carry pollen with them to the next orchid that lures them into its honeybee trap.

Scientists had noticed that the hornet, Vespa bicolor, was a frequent visitor to D. sinense orchids. Rather than landing and pausing on the petals, like most pollinators, the hornets instead swooped in on the red centre of the flower – as if attacking prey. [Daily Mail]

The orchid is basically a sexual predator, luring unsuspecting hornets to land on their genitals and sprinkling their seed on the poor hornets who then have to fly home hungry.

Pixar and the science of sex, modeling robot, “high-tech” crap and steampunk postcards

Posted in Humour, Images & Videos, Love & Sex, Robots & Cyborgs, Science Fiction, The Ancient World on July 28, 2009 by Gustav

From the makers of beloved children’s movies Toy Story and Up comes: The Ancient Book of Sex and Science. NSFW. Via Nerve.

She can change him!

She can change him!

Robot Miim model wedding dress at Japanese fashion show, The Sun reports. High fashion, high geekness.   

Comedy website Cracked lists, “7 High Tech Products And Their Cheap Ass Ingredients” (e.g. audio cables that cost thousands of dollars but are indsistinguishable from any old cheap cable).

From io9: Postcards of Edwardian ladies and gentlemen walking on moving sidewalks and flying in personal airships. 1900 AD steampunk.