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March 4, 2014

Beautiful Bamboo Forests In Japan

Bamboo is a group of perennial evergreens in the true grass family Poaceae, subfamily Bambusoideae, tribe Bambuseae. Giant bamboos are the largest members of the grass family.

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In bamboo, the internodal regions of the stem are hollow and the vascular bundles in the cross section are scattered throughout the stem instead of in a cylindrical arrangement. The dicotyledonous woody xylemis also absent. The absence of secondary growth wood causes the stems of monocots, even of palms and large bamboos, to be columnar rather than tapering.

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Bamboos are some of the fastest growing plants in the world, due to a unique rhizome-dependent system. Bamboos are of notable economic and cultural significance in South Asia, South East Asia and East Asia, being used for building materials, as a food source, and as a versatile raw product.

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More than 70 genera are divided into about 1,450 species. Bamboo species are found in diverse climates, from cold mountains to hot tropical regions. They occur across East Asia, from 50°N latitude in Sakhalin through to Northern Australia, and west to India and the Himalayas. They also occur in sub-Saharan Africa, and in the Americas from the Mid-Atlantic United States south to Argentina and Chile, reaching their southernmost point anywhere, at 47°S latitude. Continental Europe is not known to have any native species of bamboo.

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There have recently been some attempts to grow bamboo on a commercial basis in the Great Lakes region of eastern-central Africa, especially in Rwanda Companies in the United States are growing, harvesting and distributing species such as Henon and Moso.

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A Guy Who Turned Him Broken Car Into A Motorcycle

While people choose to ride motorcycles for various reasons, those reasons are increasingly practical, with riders opting for a powered two-wheeler as a cost-efficient alternative to infrequent and expensive public transport systems, or as a means of avoiding or reducing the effects of urban congestion. In places where it is permitted, lane splitting, also known as filtering, allows motorcycles to use the space between vehicles to move through stationary or slow traffic.

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In the UK, motorcycles are exempt from the £10 per day London congestion charge other vehicles must pay to enter the city during the day. Motorcycles are also exempt from toll charges at some river crossings, such as the Severn Bridge, Dartford Crossing, and Mersey Tunnels. Some cities, such as Bristol, allow motorcycles to use bus lanes and provide dedicated free parking. In the United States, those states that have high-occupancy vehicle lanes also allow for motorcycle travel in them. Other countries have similar policies.

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In New Zealand motorcycle riders are not required to pay for parking that is controlled by a barrier arm; the arm does not occupy the entire width of the lane, and the motorcyclist simply rides around it. Many car parks controlled in this way supply special areas for motorcycles to park, so as not to unnecessarily consume spaces.

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In many cities that have serious parking challenges for cars, such as San Francisco, California, and Melbourne, Australia, motorcycles are generally permitted to park on the sidewalk, rather than occupy a space on the street which might otherwise be used by a car.

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Opening A Wine Bottle With A Shoe

Wine is usually made from one or more varieties of the European species Vitis vinifera, such as Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Gamay and Merlot. When one of these varieties is used as the predominant grape (usually defined by law as a minimum of 75% or 85%), the result is a varietal, as opposed to a blended, wine.

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Blended wines are not considered inferior to varietal wines, rather they are a different style of wine making; some of the world’s most expensive wines, from regions like Bordeaux and the Rhone Valley, are blended from different grape varieties.

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Wine can also be made from other species of grape or from hybrids, created by the genetic crossing of two species. Vitis labrusca (of which the Concord grape is a cultivar), Vitis aestivalis, Vitis rupestris, Vitis rotundifolia and Vitis riparia are native North American grapes usually grown to eat fresh or for grape juice, jam, or jelly, but sometimes made into wine.

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Hybridization is different from grafting. Most of the world’s vineyards are planted with European V. vinifera vines that have been grafted onto North American species rootstock. This is common practice because North American grape species are resistant to phylloxera, a root louse that eventually kills the vine. In the late 19th century, most of Europe’s vineyards (only excluding some of the driest vineyards in Southern Europe) were devastated by the bug, leading to massive vine deaths and eventual replanting.

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Grafting is done in every wine-producing country of the world except for Argentina, the Canary Islands and Chile—the only countries not yet exposed to the insect.

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Pictures Of Only Kind Of Jellyfish That Glows In The Dark

Jellyfish (also known as jellies or sea jellies or a stage of the life cycle of Medusozoa) are free-swimming members of the phylum Cnidaria. Medusa is another word for jellyfish, and refers to any free-swimming jellyfish life stages among animals in the phylum. Jellyfish have multiple morphologies that represent cnidarian classes including the Scyphozoa (over 200 species), Staurozoa (about 50 species), Cubozoa (about 20 species), and Hydrozoa (about 1000–1500 species that make jellyfish and many more that do not).

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Jellyfish are found in every ocean, from the surface to the deep sea. Some hydrozoan jellyfish, or hydromedusae, inhabit freshwater; freshwater jellyfish are less than an inch (2.5 cm) in diameter, are colorless and do not sting. Large, often colorful, jellyfish are common in coastal zones worldwide. Jellyfish have roamed the seas for at least 500 million years, and possibly 700 million years or more, making them the oldest multi-organ animal.

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In its broadest sense, the term jellyfish may also generally refer to members of the phylum Ctenophora. Although not closely related to cnidarian jellyfish, ctenophores are also free-swimming planktonic carnivores, are generally transparent or translucent, and exist in shallow to deep portions of all the world’s oceans.

More specific names for the groups of Cnidarian jellyfish are scyphomedusae, stauromedusae, cubomedusae, and hydromedusae. These may relate to an entire order or class.

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Space Needle From Seattle Turned Into A Giant Slingshot From Angry Birds

The Space Needle is a tower in Seattle, Washington and is a major landmark of the Pacific Northwest region of the United States and a symbol of Seattle. Located at the Seattle Center, it was built for the 1962 World’s Fair, during which time nearly 20,000 people a day used the elevators, with over 2.3 million visitors in all for the World Fair. The Space Needle is 605 feet (184 m) high at its highest point and 138 feet (42 m) wide at its widest point and weighs 9,550tons. When it was completed it was the tallest structure west of the Mississippi River. It is built to withstand winds of up to 200 miles per hour (89 m/s) and earthquakes of up to 9.1 magnitude, which would protect the structure against an earthquake as powerful as the 1700 Cascadia earthquake. The tower also has 25 lightning rods on its roof to prevent lightning damage.

The Space Needle features an observation deck at 520 feet (160 m), and a gift shop with the rotating Sky City restaurant at 500 feet (150 m). From the top of the Needle, one can see not only the Downtown Seattle skyline, but also the Olympic and Cascade Mountains, Mount Rainier, Mount Baker, Elliott Bay and surrounding islands. Photographs of the Seattle skyline often show the Space Needle in a prominent position, even appearing to tower above the rest of the city’s skyscrapers, as well as Mount Rainier in the background.

 

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65 Foot High Snow Layer In Japan

Snow is a form of precipitation within the Earth’s atmosphere in the form of crystalline water ice, consisting of snowflakes that fall from clouds. Since snow is composed of small ice particles, it is a granular material. It has an open and therefore soft structure, unless packed by external pressure. Snowflakes come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Types which fall in the form of a ball due to melting and refreezing, rather than a flake, are known as graupel, ice pellets or snow grains. Snowfall amount and its related liquid equivalent precipitation amount are determined using a variety of different rain gauges.

The process of precipitating snow is called snowfall. Snowfall tends to form within regions of upward motion of air around a type of low-pressure system known as an extra tropical cyclone. Snow can fall pole ward of these systems’ associated warm fronts and within their comma head precipitation patterns (called such due to the comma-like shape of the cloud and precipitation pattern around the pole ward and west sides of extra tropical cyclones). Where relatively warm water bodies are present, for example due to water evaporation from lakes, lake-effect snowfall becomes a concern downwind of the warm lakes within the cold cyclonic flow around the backside of extra tropical cyclones. Lake-effect snowfall can be locally heavy. Thunder snow is possible within a cyclone’s comma head and within lake effect precipitation bands. In mountainous areas, heavy snow is possible where upslope flow is maximized within windward sides of the terrain at elevation, if the atmosphere is cold enough.

 

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Only Giraffe On The World That Lives In A House

The giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) is an African even-toed ungulate mammal, the tallest living terrestrial animal and the largest ruminant. Its specific name refers to its camel-like face and patches of color on a light background, which bear a vague resemblance to a leopard’s spots. The giraffe is also noted for its extremely long neck and legs and prominent horns. It stands 5.8 m (19 ft) tall and has an average weight of 1,600 kg (3,500 lb) for males and 830 kg (1,800 lb) for females. It is classified under the family Giraffidae, along with its closest extant relative, the okapi. There are nine subspecies, which differ in size, coloration, pattern, and range.

The giraffe’s scattered range extends from Chad in the north to South Africa in the south and from Niger in the west to Somalia in the east. Giraffes usually inhabit savannas, grasslands, and open woodlands. They prefer areas with plenty of acacia trees, which are important food sources, and can browse at heights that most other herbivores cannot reach. While adults are nearly invulnerable to predation, lions, leopards, spotted hyenas and wild dogs prey on calves. Giraffes commonly gather in aggregations that usually disband every few hours. Males establish social hierarchies through “neckings”, which are combat bouts where the neck is used as a weapon. Dominant males gain mating access to females, who bear the sole responsibility for raising the young.

The giraffe has intrigued various cultures, both ancient and modern, for its peculiar appearance, and has often been featured in paintings, novels and cartoons.

 

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Spider That Can Eat A Snake

Spiders (order Araneae) are air-breathing arthropods that have eight legs and chelicerae with fangs that inject venom. They are the largest order of arachnid sand rank seventh in total species diversity among all other groups of organisms. Spiders are found worldwide on every continent except for Antarctica, and have become established in nearly every habitat with the exception of air and sea colonization. As of 2008, approximately 40,000 spider species, and 109 families have been recorded by taxonomists; however, there has been confusion within the scientific community as to how all these families should be classified, as evidenced by the over 20 different classifications that have been proposed since 1900.

Anatomically, spiders differ from other arthropods in that the usual body segments are fused into two tagmata, the cephalothorax and abdomen, and joined by a small, cylindrical pedicel. Unlike insects, spiders do not have antennae. In all except the most primitive group, the Mesothelae, spiders have the most centralized nervous systems of all arthropods, as all their ganglia are fused into one mass in the cephalothorax. Unlike most arthropods, spiders have no extensor muscles in their limbs and instead extend them by hydraulic pressure.

Their abdomens bear appendages that have been modified into spinnerets that extrude silk from up to six types of silk glands within their abdomen. Spider webs vary widely in size, shape and the amount of sticky thread used. It now appears that the spiral orb web may be one of the earliest forms, and spiders that produce tangled cobwebs are more abundant and diverse than orb-web spiders.

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This Is The Smallest Chameleon Ever

Chameleons (family Chamaeleonidae) are a distinctive and highly specialized cladeof lizards. They are distinguished by their parrot-like zygodactylous feet, their separately mobile and stereoscopic eyes, their very long, highly modified, and rapidly extrudable tongues, their swaying gait, the possession by many of a prehensile tail, crests or horns on their distinctively shaped heads, and the ability of some to change color. Uniquely adapted for climbing and visual hunting, the approximately 160 species of chameleon range from Africa, Madagascar, Spain and Portugal, across south Asia, to Sri Lanka, have been introduced to Hawaii, California and Florida, and are found in warm habitats that vary from rain forest to desert conditions. Chameleons are often kept as household pets. The English word chameleon (also chamaeleon) derives from Latin chamaeleō, a borrowing of the Ancient Greek χαμαιλέων (khamailéōn), a compound of χαμαί (khamaí) “on the ground” and λέων (léōn) “lion”. The Greek word is a calquetranslating the Akkadian nēš qaqqari, “Water lion”. The oldest known chameleon is Anqingosaurus brevicephalus from the Middle Paleocene (about 58.7-61.7 mya) of China. Other chameleon fossils include Chamaeleo caroliquarti from the Lower Miocene (about 13-23 mya) of the Czech Republic and Germany, and Chamaeleo intermedius from the Upper Miocene (about 5-13 mya) of Kenya. The chameleons are probably far older than that, perhaps sharing a common ancestor with iguanids and agamids more than 100mya (agamids being more closely related). Since fossils have been found in Africa, Europe and Asia, chameleons were certainly once more widespread than they are today. And since nearly half of all chameleon species today are found in Madagascar, chameleons may originate from there. Monophyly of the family is supported by several studies.

 

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Pictures Of Soldiers And Adorable Puppies

A puppy is a juvenile dog. Some puppies may weigh 1–3 lb (0.45–1.4 kg), while larger ones can weigh up to 15–23 lb (6.8–10 kg). All healthy puppies grow quickly after birth. A puppy’s coat color may change as the puppy grows older, as is commonly seen in breeds such as the Yorkshire Terrier. In vernacular English, puppy refers specifically to dogs while pup may often be used for other mammals such as seals, giraffes, guinea pigs, or even rats.

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Born after an average of 63 days of gestation, puppies emerge in an amnion that is bitten off and eaten by the mother dog. Puppies begin to nurse almost immediately. If the litter exceeds six puppies, particularly if one or more are obvious runts, human intervention in hand-feeding the stronger puppies is necessary to ensure that the runts get proper nourishment and attention from the mother.

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As they reach one month of age, puppies are gradually weaned and begin to eat solid food. The mother may regurgitate partially digested food for the puppies or might let them eat some of her solid food such as dog treats.

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