Baby octopus on a leaf - Okinawa, Japan by Okinawa Nature Photography
The Japanese spider crab (タカアシガニ（高脚蟹）, takaashigani , lit. “tall-footed crab”), Macrocheira kaempferi, is a species of marine crab that lives in the waters around Japan. It has the largest leg span of any arthropod, reaching up to 3.8 metres (12 ft) and weighing up to 41 pounds (19 kg). It is the subject of small-scale fishery.
The Japanese spider crab has the greatest leg span of any arthropod, reaching 3.8 metres (12 ft) from claw to claw. The body may grow to a size of 40 cm or 16 in (carapace width) and the whole crab can weigh up to 41 pounds (19 kg).The males have the longest chelipeds; females have much shorter chelipeds, which are shorter than the following pair of legs. Apart from its outstanding size, the Japanese spider crab differs from other crabs in a number of ways. The first pleopods of males are unusually twisted, and its larvae appear primitive. The crab is orange, with white spots along the legs. It is reported to have a gentle disposition “in spite of its ferocious appearance”. (read more)
A puffer fish made this for his nice lady friend. A diver in Japan filmed this never before seen hatchery/nest. It measures about 6.5 feet across and consists of a circle with geometric spokes in the shape of ridges, sort of like the spokes on a wheel.
Underwater cameras showed that the artist was a small puffer fish who, using only his flapping fin, tirelessly worked day and night to carve the circular ridges. The unlikely artist – best known in Japan as a delicacy, albeit a potentially poisonous one – even takes small shells, cracks them, and lines the inner grooves of his sculpture as if decorating his piece. Further observation revealed that this “mysterious circle” was not just there to make the ocean floor look pretty. Attracted by the grooves and ridges, female puffer fish would find their way along the dark seabed to the male puffer fish where they would mate and lay eggs in the center of the circle. In fact, the scientists observed that the more ridges the circle contained, the more likely it was that the female would mate with the male. The little sea shells weren’t just in vain either. The observers believe that they serve as vital nutrients to the eggs as they hatch, and to the newborns.
More pictures and full story at Spoon & Tamago.
What an effort! Well done my lad.
‘Whale meat reduces your penis size’ poster by Bangbang concept in Taiji, Japan.
Japan Earmarks $29 Million of Tsunami fund to fund revival of whaling industry
By Krista Mahr | Time
Whaling is not an easy practice to defend these days, particularly when recent polls have shown that 95% of Japanese eat whale meat rarely, if at all. The state-backed industry, which Japan considers its sovereign right to pursue as part of a centuries-old tradition, is under attack both by environmental groups at home and abroad. And yet the government did not do its beleaguered case any favors when it confirmed last week that $29 million of the national post-tsunami recovery fund had been allotted to the whaling industry, including to provide extra security for the whaling fleet.
They had to know that wasn’t going to go down well. Environmental groups in Japan are outraged that the disaster fund is being used to prop up an industry they have been fighting against for years. Though commercial whaling has been banned for decades, Japan is one of a handful of nations that continue their catch with the permission of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) for scientific purposes, culling about 1000 whales annually. “Pouring billions of yen into Antarctic whaling during this time of crisis is downright shameful,” Junichi Sato, head of Greenpeace Japan, told the Guardian last week. “Japan cannot afford to waste money on whaling in the Antarctic when its people are suffering at home.”
Tokyo says the whaling industry needs the support of the fund to get back on its feet after March 11 just like other fishing communities on the devastated northeastern coast of Japan. Port towns like Ayukawa that were built on the back of the multi-million dollar whaling industry were destroyed along with so much else, and, like their neighbors, residents there want to get their businesses back up and running, too. “Many people in the area eat whale meat,” an official from Japan’s Fisheries Agency told CNN. “They are waiting for Japan’s commercial whaling to resume and it is their hope for recovery.”
Bioluminescent Organisms, Japan
Photograph by Paul A. Zahl
The transparent shells of tiny Cypridina hilgendorfii, found in the coastal waters and sands of Japan, hold a creature that emits a luminous blue substance when disturbed. During World War II, the Japanese harvested these creatures for soldiers to use when reading maps and messages at night.
Lets get this out there.
Txt REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 in the US, or to 30333 if you’re in Canada.
This image provided by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center shows a tsunami forecast model predicting the wave height of the tsunami generated by the Japan earthquake. (via Globe and Mail)
The Clear Science staff can’t help but imagine the equations behind such a forecast. To all our readers in the Pacific, do take care.
Blows my mine, the model, the scale, the damage. Fingers crossed for all involved.