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Jenny
1802.  Fri Nov 21, 2003 7:58 am Reply with quote

That's vitamin A at toxic levels in a polar bear liver, Frances, not vitamin B.

http://www.tapirisat.ca/english_text/itk/departments/enviro/wildlife/polar_bear_n.htm

However, should you be able to boil or bake the polar bear meat in a stew, you'd find the fat contained very useful levels of omega-3 fatty acids as well as more tolerable levels of vitamin A and a good source of iron and protein. Be sure to cook it well though, or there is a danger of trichinosis, or roundworm infestation.

 
Frances
1911.  Sat Nov 22, 2003 3:39 pm Reply with quote

Thanks, Jenny. But first kill your bear...

 
Jenny
1912.  Sat Nov 22, 2003 3:55 pm Reply with quote

There's always a snag somewhere, isn't there?

 
Jenny
1986.  Sun Nov 23, 2003 7:40 pm Reply with quote

Here's one I would love to know if there's a fact behind:

There's an analogy about a gardener who finds a moth coccoon, and he sees that the moth is trying to emerge. It's struggling to break free of the coccoon, but is having a hell of a time.

So the gardener takes his knife and very carefully cuts open the coccoon, thereby freeing the moth. But the action of cutting the cocoon open kills the moth. Why? Because he can't fly. The moth needed to fight against the cocoon on order to strengthen his wings, so he could fly.

But is this true? If you cut the cocoon open just as the moth is emerging, would it actually stop the moth from being able to fly?

 
sarah
1991.  Sun Nov 23, 2003 7:52 pm Reply with quote

There is a random theory that if you touch a moth's or a butterfly's wings then you can accidentally rub some sort of powder off it, meaning that said insect is rendered unable to fly. Poor thing... Don't know if it's true tho!

 
Jenny
1996.  Sun Nov 23, 2003 10:55 pm Reply with quote

<mother> There's a theory that people who go to bed at a reasonable time can function better in the morning... </mother>

But enough of that :-)

You're right about the powder, but it's actually tiny scales, which perform the same function as the feathers on a bird's wing. You can see a nice magnified picture here http://www.3dham.com/microgallery/bflywing.html but apparently the colours don't photograph well.

I couldn't google up anything that suggested that the butterfly dies, though I suppose logic would suggest that, just as if you pulled enough of a bird's feathers out it would be unable to fly, if you rubbed enough of the scales off the butterfly would be unable to fly, but as a butterfly has rather more scales than a bird has feathers I think it would need to be a more extensive grasping or rubbing of the wings than just catching it lightly in cupped hands. So you don't need to worry about putting a butterfly out of a window.

Interestingly, at a tangent, an article in the Guardian suggests that the structure of a butterfly's wing may lead to the development of the self-cleaning car... http://www.guardian.co.uk/online/science/story/0,12450,922356,00.html

Now that sounds like a Good Idea.

 
Frances
2046.  Mon Nov 24, 2003 5:10 pm Reply with quote

Scaly cars? Where the outer scales rub off to clean it? Wouldn't it get thinner and thinner until it softly and suddenly vanished away? That needs a lot of thinking about...

 
Jenny
2054.  Mon Nov 24, 2003 8:06 pm Reply with quote

No need to be snarky.... :-)

Oh ye of little faith - you mean you don't think this wonderful invention will be part of all our lives in the next decade or so? I must say I can think of a few inventions that I'd rather have, but if somebody wants to provide me with a self-cleaning car they are welcome to do so.

 
Flash
2060.  Tue Nov 25, 2003 3:57 am Reply with quote

This is interesting: if we didn't know that Sarah was on the young end of the spectrum by the way Jenny admonishes her, we would still be able to tell by the way she uses the word "random". Do you think the rest of us include comparable tell-tales in our posts, ie could Sarah spot us as oldies by our choice of vocabulary, even if we tried to pretend otherwise?

Just off to listen to the wireless.

 
Jenny
2079.  Tue Nov 25, 2003 7:47 am Reply with quote

Sarah is 23 in February, Flash, so not *that* young, so I now feel rather old... Mother habits die hard, unfortunately :-)

This goes back to your post on another thread where you talk about referring to the 'records' in your collection. I do the same, but my kids don't.

 
raindancer
2242.  Thu Nov 27, 2003 2:31 pm Reply with quote

Did you know that swans sneeze?

 
raindancer
2243.  Thu Nov 27, 2003 2:33 pm Reply with quote

sarah wrote:
There is a random theory that if you touch a moth's or a butterfly's wings then you can accidentally rub some sort of powder off it, meaning that said insect is rendered unable to fly. Poor thing... Don't know if it's true tho!


Complete nonsense. I have accidentally touched lots. They fly off quite happily.(Apparently!).


Last edited by raindancer on Thu Nov 27, 2003 2:34 pm; edited 1 time in total

 
JumpingJack
2244.  Thu Nov 27, 2003 2:34 pm Reply with quote

Do they?

I know they don't sing...

 
JumpingJack
2245.  Thu Nov 27, 2003 2:35 pm Reply with quote

if you can back up this bizarre suggestion with a creditable source, raindancer, perhaps you might transfer it to the "Birds" thread where it will be in good company...

 
raindancer
2246.  Thu Nov 27, 2003 2:35 pm Reply with quote

Rubbish. They also sing. The last one gave a very fair rendition of 'O sole mio'. I know. I was there.

 

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