Nature – Images

Interesting Images

Living ‘Balloon on a String’

The depths of the Indian Ocean are home to some bizarre creatures — including one that looks like a balloon on a string. Explorers captured a video of this gelatinous creature in a recent dive to the Java Trench, the bottommost part of the Indian Ocean.

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Nature – Images

Interesting Images

Swimming in the open ocean entangled this loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta) in a dangerous trap posed by a discarded fishing net. Luckily, photographer Eduardo Acevedo encountered the turtle near the Canary Islands, and released her from the net after capturing this striking image.

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This tiny sea slug, the Cyerce nigra was photographed near the Philippines. This photo allows us to enjoy the visual feast of a creature too small to appreciate with the naked eye.

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Nature – Images

Interesting Images

Fireball at Yosemite

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As meltwater plunges 1,500 feet (457 meters) to the ground from the El Capitan rock formation in February, the setting sun throws its light against the falls. If the sky is clear and the sun is positioned precisely in the western sky, that setting sunlight paints the the water with fiery orange, yellow and pink light.

Dragon and Phoenix Auroras over Iceland

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Nature – Images

Interesting Images

Sometimes, at sunset, the sun appears to suddenly and briefly change color. Blink, and you’ll miss it.

A green flash is a phenomenon in which part of the sun appears to suddenly change color for about 1 or 2 seconds. The brief flash of green light is seen more often at sunset than at sunrise.

This fleeting spectacle is caused by the refraction of sunlight, which is particularly significant at sunset and sunrise, when the light travels through more of the Earth’s atmosphere. The atmosphere bends the sunlight passing through it, separating the light into its different colors, much like a prism bends and splits sunlight into rainbows.

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Cute:

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This Mary River Turtle happens to be a tiny, green-mohawked turtle living in Australia.

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In November, NASA satellites caught a glimpse of arguably the most poignant possible symbol of Earth’s climate-hobbled future: A lone iceberg, shaped like a coffin, drifting into warm waters to die forever.

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Nature – Images

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Squirrel Knot

Five infant squirrels that got their tails caught together in a giant knot were rescued and untied by the Wisconsin Humane Society. They were taken to the group’s vets by someone who came across the bizarre scene of their tails caught in what the rescuers called a “Gordian knot” of squirrel tail and nest material. “You can imagine how wiggly and unruly (and nippy!) this frightened, distressed ball of squirrelly energy was, so our first step was to anesthetize all five of them at the same time,” the Humane Society said. The squirrels were frazzled but unharmed by the experience.

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Nature – Images

Interesting Images Deadly ‘Love Vines’

Smooth, shiny balls that cling to the undersides of oak leaves often hold a grim secret inside, or, depending on how you look at it, a crunchy surprise: the dried-up corpse of a wasp, killed by a parasitic plant known as the love vine.

These tiny spheres are leaf deformities called galls — swollen tumors of leaf tissue — and their growth is caused by a type of insect called the gall wasp. These parasitic wasps house their eggs and protect their young inside the galls.

When the scientists opened galls that were in the grip of the delicate orange vines, they found wasp mummies inside; the vines had penetrated the galls and drained the insects to husks for their nutrients.

Nature – Images

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Eerie blue flames flared from the ground on Hawaii’s Big Island on Tuesday night (May 22), marking a rarely seen phenomenon that can arise during volcanic eruptions. When red-hot lava buries plants and shrubs, the burning vegetation produces methane, a colorless gas that burns blue, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).

When methane is heated, it can seep into voids below the surface — in this case, the cracks on Kahukai Street in the residential area of Leilani Estates. Heated methane can explode, but when it was ignited on Tuesday night, its blue flames simply burned out of the fractures in the road, several feet away from the lava, the USGS reported.

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Nature – Images

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NASA scientists flying over the Arctic earlier this month spotted strange shapes out the window, but they aren’t sure what caused them.

Three holes dot the sea ice, seen from the window of a NASA aircraft in the photo above, taken April 14. They’re clustered together, each surrounded by one or two radiating layers of ridged, textured ice, almost as if a batch of archery targets had melted and gone lopsided. All around them are bumpy formations that mean the ice is thin and relatively new.

It’s possible, NASA wrote, that some large mammal took advantage of that thin ice to poke holes through it to breathe.Ring sealsand harp seals are both known to poke holes through the ice that look somewhat similar to this.

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