Glow In The Dark – Little Creatures that Light Up The Night

Glow In The Dark – Little Creatures that Light Up The Night

Glow in The Dark – Little Creatures That Light up The Night.

In the forest, along coastlines, at the deepest parts of the sea and hidden away in the quiet of dark caves are creatures that light up the night.

A unique ability to luminesce.

Blessed with the ability to self illuminate – there is a plethora of fauna and fungi with the enviable ability to glow. Their secret is a special chemical called Luciferin that they produce inside of their bodies.

 

It Could Be Lights Out for our sacred fireflies.

Today the artificial light we are immersed in – be it from a screen or the city light haze – is distorting our perception of reality, disrupting our circadian rhythms and eroding our human relationships, blanketing out the night sky and putting very special nighttime critters at risk of extinction.

Light Pollution is Killing Us

Sadly unnatural light is affecting the lives of truly wonderful critters, fireflies and other luminous insects and organisms that are at risk of extinction because there is too much artificial light in the world.

Light of My Life

Fireflies and other magical little insects that hum and fluff about in the warm night breeze are the stuff of fairy tales and myrrh, their tales glowing green and yellow, pulsing to a secret beat in an effort to attract the love of their life are one such insect with the discreet and wonderful ability to self illuminate.

Galaxies of Grubbs

Grubbs in their millions that make artificial galaxies shroud the ceilings and walls of ancient caves, and hiding along the undersides of ancient trees and quietly decaying logs are delicate universes of glowing Mycena and oyster shaped mushrooms that luminesce green in the dark of night.

Watch the video

https://youtu.be/p4YPVJ-t-6Y

 

Disclaimer

None of our content, including information provided by external resources is meant to replace professional medical advice or intervention.

The views and opinions of third party resources included in our posts are not necessarily the views and opinions upheld by Horatio's Jar.

If you happen across something on our platform that may have been disproven by a reputable resource, please let us know.

Copyright Horatio's Jar, 2021, All Rights Reserved

Glow In The Dark – Below the Midnight Zone

Glow In The Dark – Below the Midnight Zone

Glow in The Dark – Below the Midnight Zone

The Midnight Zone is a place of eternal night. 3300ft below the ocean’s surface is where no light from the sky reaches, and the sea pressure is immense. Life still exists in the dark silent realm of the deep ocean, but it is not quite what you might expect it to be.

The Dark Night of Sea

There are places so dark on this planet that no light exists, places that are silent, secret and too far deep for humans to reach. In these eery places out of sight, live creatures and critters with features not quite what we are used to closer to the daylight. Alien bodies that hang about in the abyss with which tentacles of light extrude as cables reaching out into eternity, signalling to passers-by a possible place of refuge that will lead to a grizzly end.

Lovely Lights don’t always equal sweet.

Something is comforting and intriguing about the natural light emitted by fun and harmless looking things, liked wild fungi in the forest, glow worms in caves, and the universe of blue-lit phosphorescent plankton that turn the ocean into the sky along the coast of the Maldives.

But in the far depths of the ocean, where there is no natural light, there are critters and creatures not so sweet and cute that makes use of their lighting systems.

Watch the video to find out exactly what I mean …

The Film Below is Suitable for Kids 9+.

Some Supervision is recommended as there is biological information that may be too detailed for a younger audience.

Queen of the Night

There are places so dark on this planet that no light exists, where humans can not go, and living species that are far more curious and creepy than we ever expected to see bob and hang about, adrift in the aquatic night.

The Angle Fish is the ruler of the eternal darkness; her tensile illuminated lantern moves forward and back over a gauging mouth filled with nasty sharp teeth.

Disclaimer

None of our content, including information provided by external resources is meant to replace professional medical advice or intervention.

The views and opinions of third party resources included in our posts are not necessarily the views and opinions upheld by Horatio's Jar.

If you happen across something on our platform that may have been disproven by a reputable resource, please let us know.

Copyright Horatio's Jar, 2021, All Rights Reserved

Natures Hidden Worlds – The Shy Spiders’ Garden

Natures Hidden Worlds – The Shy Spiders’ Garden

Natures Hidden Worlds – The Shy Spiders’ Garden

There are worlds of incredible beauty, colour and wonder hidden all around us, it just takes a curious mind to discover them. Miniature worlds full of living beings, that go unnoticed because we humans are too busy or have forgotten how and where to find them.

These little worlds are often found in the quietest of places, secretly tucked away from the busy world, loud noises and prowling predators like domestic cats and dogs.

Hidden in a hillside in a thin strip of native bush, I discovered one such world by accident.

The Shy Spiders’ Garden – A Short Story

There lives beneath a bloom of orange horseshoes, tucked away into the hillside, a trapdoor spider; The guardian to a miniature bush garden, filled with wild rocket and tiny, tiny bulbs of garlic and bush onions.
Every day that I visit, the once minute buds of orange grow bigger and brighter as the season of May moves forward. And the doorway to one shy spiders’ realm changes, weather depending. Sometimes the door is closed, sometimes not. When the rain comes, the door is woven shut with silk. Today it’s closed; rain is on the way.

First published in May 2021

What started as an expedition to discover what local spiders inhabited the Yarra Trail, has become a daily ritual of exploration, patience, imagination and learning.

This is the Shy Spiders’ Garden, a secret world that perhaps only I know about?
A world of miniature proportions that could and is – easily unnoticed by the usual passer-by.

 

 

Disclaimer

None of our content, including information provided by external resources is meant to replace professional medical advice or intervention.

The views and opinions of third party resources included in our posts are not necessarily the views and opinions upheld by Horatio's Jar.

If you happen across something on our platform that may have been disproven by a reputable resource, please let us know.

Copyright Horatio's Jar, 2021, All Rights Reserved

Facts on Frogs – Fun Kids Poster

Facts on Frogs – Fun Kids Poster

Facts on Frogs – Fun Kids Poster

Frogs are our distant relatives. Having lived on the earth for 250 million years, these adaptive vertebrates were the first to bridge land and lake and marked the beginning of animal evolution on land.

Frogs are an important emblem of nature; they represent the finite balance and health of the planet. Sensitive to toxins, climate change, habitat destruction, pollution and predation, the decline or extinction of frogs species indicates disease in all other areas of the biosphere.

The natural world and its abundance of rare and gorgeous creatures are fast becoming natural history. We are hurriedly trying to capitalise on the last remaining sanctuaries of rare creatures, plants, microbes, fungi, insects, reefs and wilderness  – documenting and synthesizing natures wonder market, where compounds and chemical used in pharmacy – are only now coming to attention as we lose time.

 

Will Frogs Outlive Us All?

Frogs have lived and thrived on mother earth for 250 million years, dwarfing the timeline of nearly everything else living in today’s biosphere – excluding dragonflies, sharks (450 million years), and cockroaches. With such a robust history of survival and the tenacity to thrive through millennia of changes, frogs everywhere are now going extinct.

A species of incredible endurance and mythological status, amphibians such as frogs, salamanders and lizards and crocodiles, outlived the dinosaurs, meteors and the ice ages to greet humanity onto the earth’s stage some short time ago.

Frogs and toads are incredible little creatures, their diversity and habitats just as broad. Frogs live on every continent except Antarctica and live in almost all environments, including arid deserts with no water and in places that turn to ice in the winter.

Disclaimer

The views and opinions of third party resources included in our posts are not necessarily the views and opinions held by us.

The information provided is not intended to replace medical advice. Always seek professional medical intervention from a licensed health practitioner, doctor or therapist if you feel unwell.

.................................

If you happen across something on our platform that may have been disproven by a reputable resource, please let us know.

Copyright Horatio's Jar, 2021, All Rights Reserved

Hermit Crabs – No More Plastic

Hermit Crabs – No More Plastic

They may look like crabs, but are they?

Hermit crabs are not really like other crabs, sure they look similar, but there are some pretty big differences. Hermit crabs don’t have a hard outer shell covering their whole body. Only the front end has the hard shell of a crustacean, the other half of their body, which is curled inside an acquired home, is soft, squishy and curled to one side.

Hermit Crabs aren’t really hermits at all, and they aren’t exactly crabs either?. Rather than living in solidarity and hiding out in the dark corners of a lonely rock pool, Hermit crabs are incredibly social. They live together in large family groups, swapping shells, sharing tidal pools and fighting over food.

Dressed to Impress

Dressed to impress, hermit crabs share their spacious abode with a garden of friends. Stacked atop their spiralled homes are sea anemones, strange collectables, shells and sometimes human recyclables.

To protect their bodies from the hot sun, hungry birds and octopus, the hermit crab needs to find shelter in the discarded shells of sea snails. Hermit Crabs don’t grow their own shells and need to find new ones as they grow bigger.

If there aren’t enough shells to go around, the hermit crab will find an alternative, and sometimes that could mean recycling human rubbish and popping on a tin can or a plastic cup until a better housing alternative is available.

It may look cute and quirky to see a little crab wearing human garbage, but truthfully the trash we put in the oceans impacts the crabs negatively. Plastics in the sea and everywhere for that matter increase ocean acidification, which means that the ocean becomes toxic, and animals that grow shells like crabs and sea snails, cuttlefish and lobster, won’t be able to anymore and will die.

Hermit crabs choose alternative options with fewer shells available, and this could be anything from a plastic cup to a tin can. Plastic micro-particles in seawater interfere with the hermit’s ability to make decisions when choosing the right sized shell and changes their motor function, meaning they can’t move properly anymore. It’s as if they have a brain injury.

It means they can die from starvation. They can’t move their bodies properly and get eaten by predators because they don’t have the right shell to protect them.

Say ‘no’ to Plastics

Hermit crabs are sensitive social little beings. They live a really long time, as long as 40 years in the wild. There are over 800 species of hermit crab, and they live in coastal areas across the world.
To make sure these cute little guys stick around on our gorgeous planet earth we need to make better choices when it comes to what we buy and how it is packaged.
Plastics are forever, the more we create, the more that ends up in our oceans, our drinking water and our food.
Choose products in the supermarket that have bio-degradable packets, use garbage bags that are compost friendly, and do not buy water in a plastic bottle.
Just a few small changes make a world of good!

Link and Resources

More on Ocean Acidification
https://oceanservice.noaa.gov/facts/acidification.html

What is a Hermit Crab
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/invertebrates/facts/hermit-crabs

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
https://www.nationalgeographic.org/encyclopedia/great-pacific-garbage-patch/

Disclaimer

We provide resources selected on their relevance and believed authenticity, but we do not hold responsibility for their accuracy.
We are not responsible for fraudulent or inauthentic claims made by external resources. 

The views and opinions of third party resources included in our posts are not necessarily the views and opinions held by us.

A huge effort goes into creating each article, blog, activity, artwork, and video. The desire is to make sure the information included in our content is useful, meaningful, and honest. If you happen across something on our platform that may have been disproven by a reputable resource, please let us know.

Copyright Horatio’s Jar, 2021, All Rights Reserved

Natural History: The Short – beaked echidna

Natural History: The Short – beaked echidna

Natural History – The Short-beaked Echidna

Scientific name: Tachyglossidae
Order: Montremata
Higher classification: Monotreme
Family: Tachyglossidae; Gill, 1872

At the end of a year spent isolated, a little emblem of hope has emerged. A symbol of conservation, community, natural wisdom and curiosity, the echidna is the final of the 5 environmental ambassadors for our Natural History project.

Introduction

 

We are blessed to live on a continent abundant with native animals and plant species. Creatures live here that are found nowhere else. The earth here, stained red with rich mineral ochres, our coastlines immersed in marine national parks and our country inhabited by the oldest living culture on earth.   

Australia is not just, ‘the land down under’, it’s a rich and wondrous treasure trove of rare and beautiful creatures, that are sadly going extinct and the reality of this is unnoticed. With our minds taken hold by the uncertainty of our personal health, global economy, and relative future in the wake of the 2020 COVID-19 global pandemic, the natural world and the present global environmental crisis, has taken a back step in the media.  

It’s my hope this project, with its final ambassador ignites curiosity and passion for the natural world we are living in. It’s been a tough year for human beings, but an even harsher one for all the other life forms who are subject to the realities of climate change, habitat loss and human behaviour. 

We watched 17 million hectares of forest in Australia burned to nothing during the 2019, 2020 wildfires, and with the forest went billions of wild animals and insects. Koala, almost totally extinct, and habitat is gone for any animal that might have survived. 

As a nation we are known to rally in tough times when it concerns the human family, but not so much for the rest of our people, and by that, I mean all other living beings. Now is the time to put our curious and creative minds together and figure out a way to make life better for all living things before we all become – natural history.

By Emily Rack

 

Echidna’s are sweet, sensitive, curious, and loveable. Shaped like a fuzzy spiked four legged ball, with a long thin leathery nose, and big clawed feet. 

Soft and wonderful on the inside and very sharp and pointy on the outside. Living up to 50 years in captivity, the echidna is more than just a thorny curiosity. The echidna has an incredible memory, the ability to solve complex problems and they love to swim and play for fun, just like we do.

So why this little guy? 

Well, truthfully it was a dream I had rescuing animals from dehydration inside a large forest log that was the catalyst.
The dream was an inspiration to start a very satisfying, and very invested illustration – that as I write this is still in process.  

I knew from past knowledge that the Echidna is special, not only because it is a monotreme, ( half reptile and half mammal ), and that it has survived for 15 million years on the planet relatively unchanged, but that it has a unique ability that it, its cousin the platypus and sharks possess; the ability to sense the electromagnetic field of all living things through its beak.

Echidna’s, (also called a spiny ant-eater), live a really long time, some as long as 50 years in captivity. They are smart, curious, shy and slow moving, and often hide in a half dug hole with their spines sticking out in the daytime. Trust me, you wouldn’t want to step on their spikes, ouch!. 

Their spikes are what protect them from predators like wild dogs, eagles, domestic cats, foxes, and people. They aren’t all spiny though, Echidna have fur in amongst those spines too, and the colder the climate, the more fluff they have. Underneath all that savage armour is a very soft and squishy little fellow, and they really are super cute and cuddly, well I wouldn’t exactly cuddle one.  

Echidna are natural conservationists, like a lot of other wild animals they contribute to the health and wellbeing of the planet. They behave in ways much like a mini dump-truck as they turn over the soil all day foraging for food and building homes. This helps to improve the soil quality and keeps the earth healthy. They also have amazing hearing, and are sensitive enough to pick up the vibrations of termites and ants working underground 

Echidnas preferred diet are termites and ants but they will sometimes eat grubs and other insects too. They use their long sticky tongues to lap up their food, and have a beak to mash it with; they don’t have any teeth or a stomach like we do, they digest their food inside a weird sac. 

They lay eggs like reptiles, but feed their young milk like we do, have fur just like all other warm blooded mammals, except their body temperature is much lower than ours or any other warm-blooded, and they can thrive in the freezing temperatures of the Australian alps, and the intense heat of the Australian desert. Echidna are hardy, resilient and clever and for an animal so old in the evolutionary scale, incredibly well adapted . 

The stories and dreamtime from our indigenous landowners characterise the echidna as a symbol of community, sustainability, conservation, and wisdom. To me they represent home, comfort, self-care, taking your time and doing things slowly, self-awareness, intuition and fun.

 

What to do if you see an echidna

  • If you ever see an echidna, please leave it alone.

  • Never ever use a shovel to pick up an echidna, dig around it in the earth or move it.

  • If you find an echidna that is sick or injured call WIRES on +61 1300094737

  • If you have to pick up an echidna wear leather gloves or use a very thick blanket or towel.

  • Wild echidnas are not pets.

  • If you see someone harming animals of any sort call the RSPCA via their website, it’s a crime to injure or abuse animals.

The Hawaiian Bobtail Squid

A full moon illuminates the surface of the warm waters off the Hawaiian coastline. Bobbing just beneath the silvery light spray is a dumpling shaped squid that can hide itself in the light of the moon.

Glowing from the inside, The Hawaiian Bobtail Squid, (Euprymna scolopes), is a cephalopod with super-powers. Cute and sparkly with big eyes, a plump body, a skirt of fins and a fist of tentacles exploding from its face, this little squid not much bigger than a lime, is like no other.

Links and Resources

 

Nat Geo WILD

What gives birth to a puggle? Covered in spines, Australia’s echidna is one of the rarest animals in the world: It’s one of only two known mammals that lay eggs. Subscribe: http://bit.ly/NatGeoWILDSubscribe

Platypus and Echidna

Echidnas and platypuses are unique, the only mammals in the world to share some traits with reptiles, such as laying eggs. Aaron Pedersen explains how they are highly-tuned to their environment.

https://iview.abc.net.au/show/australia-remastered-wild

https://iview.abc.net.au/show/australia-remastered-wild-australians/series/0/video/DO1847H006S00

https://iview.abc.net.au/show/australia-remastered-wild-australians

Disclaimer

This article is as a general guide to better health and wellbeing.
It is not intended to replace medical advice. If you are suffering from anxiety, depression or poor health, we strongly advise you to seek medical attention.

We provide resources that are selected on their relevance and believed authenticity but we do not hold responsibility for their accuracy. Although we do our very best to make sure we use top-notch resources, unfortunately, mistakes can be made.

We are not responsible for fraudulent or inauthentic claims made by external resources or for mistakenly including information sourced externally, that may prove inaccurate.

The views and opinions of third party resources included in our posts are not necessarily the views and opinions held by us.

A huge effort goes into creating each article, blog, activity, artwork and video, and the desire is to make sure the information included in our content is useful, meaningful and honest. If you happen across something on our platform that may have been disproven by a reputable resource, please let us know.

Copyright Horatio's Jar, 2021
All Rights Reserved