Nothing like a little conspiracy to kickstart this Friday’s edition of the smorgasbord. Claims that a rogue iron-dumping experiment happened off the Canadian cost near British Columbia is making waves. According to reports, The Haida Salmon Restoration Corporation allegedly spread 220,462 pounds of iron sulfate in the Pacific 200 nautical miles west of the Haida Gwaii islands in July. The goal was to trigger phytoplankton blooms to help restore salmon and other fisheries in the area. The outrage in the scientific community is calling for more transparency in geoengineering. No word yet on whether the iron dump did anything more than produce an algae bloom visible from space or if there was any other carbon-capturing benefits. We are sure this isn’t the last we hear of this issue.
[via CBS News]
Small. Cute. Deadly. The blue-ringed octopus is an interesting and quite deadly cephalopod whose venom can kill a human. The blue coloration warns attackers not to mess with the deadly critter that can light up with glowing blue circles all over its body. Lydia Mäthger, a marine biologist at Woods Hole Lab, wanted to find out how this creature could turn on the switch in milliseconds, so she took some super slow motion video of the octopus lighting up. Click here or the image above to view the amazing video.
For many of us koi are just big, strangely shaped goldfish but to others there is an art and beauty they understand. Thanks to this handy-dandy chart, you can trace the koi gene tree to discover how koi breeds came from the original Magoi carp. While the Magoi is a dark, muddy brown color, koi are known more for the colorful aberrations that were bred to create the brightly colored fish we know today.
[via Put’s Pond & Garden, thanks Jonathan Dooley]
The ancient ocean was pretty darn scary with some crazy looking creatures looking for a meal and scientists may have just discovered the first fish to have a nasty bite. Armored placoderm fish appeared and while some weren’t much larger than a goldfish, they did brandish jaws and most likely nasty teeth as well. These early armored fish lived around 430 million to 360 million years ago, confirmed with new analysis of fossil Compagopiscis croucheri placoderm published online October 17 in Nature.
[via Scientific American]
When a ginormous blue eyeball was discovered on a Florida beach, the internet was in a tizzy trying to figure out where this came from and wildlife experts may have an answer. The eyeball appears to have come from a swordfish and the experts believe it was cut out of the fish and tossed overboard by fishermen. This is the time of year where swordfish are in season but while the wildlife agency does some fishy-forensic DNA testing, not all people agree with the answer. One scientist thinks the whole thing is a little fishy. “You usually don’t find random floating eyes of any animal,” Duke University biologist Sonke Johnsen told LiveScience.com.
[via NY Daily News]