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Newly Discovered Fish Fossil in Nevada (US) has Shark like Features

Researchers learned of the fossil about five years ago after fossil collector Jim Jenks of West Jordan, Utah, stumbled upon it near Winecup Ranch north of Wells

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Birgeria americana, newly discovered fish species
The 26-cm-long fossil preserving the right side of the skull of Birgeria americana. VOA
  • A fossil found in northeastern Nevada shows a newly discovered fish species 
  • Scientists believe, it looked and ate like a shark
  • Researchers call this fish, Birgeria Americana 

New Delhi, August 9, 2017: A fossil found in northeastern Nevada shows a newly discovered fish species that scientists believe looked, and ate, like a shark.

The fossil is what remains of a bony, sharp-toothed fish that would have been about six-feet-long (1.83 meters) with long jaws and layers of sharp teeth.

The type of jaw and teeth on the fish suggest it would have chomped down on its prey before swallowing it whole, like a shark, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported.

“The surprising find from Elko County in northeastern Nevada is one of the most completely preserved vertebrate remains from this time-period ever discovered in the United States,” said Carlo Romano of the University of Zurich, lead author of a Journal of Paleontology article about the find.

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The fish, which researchers called Birgeria americana, predates Nevada’s most famous fossil, the Ichthyosaur, by more than 30 million years. The Ichthyosaur was a 55-foot-long (16.76 meters) reptile. One of the largest concentrations of Ichthyosaur fossils was found near Berlin, Nevada. The find led to the Ichthyosaur becoming Nevada’s state fossil.

Birgeria americana found in Nevada
Possible look of the newly discovered predatory fish species Birgeria americana with the fossil of the skull shown at bottom right. VOA

The evidence shows the fish was alive and well about 1 million years after mass extinction 66 million years ago wiped out an estimated 90 percent of marine species.

It also shows a large fish was surviving in water previously thought to be too warm to support such life.

At the time, water near the equator, which is where land that became Nevada was positioned about 250 million years ago, could have been warmer than 96 degrees. “The eggs of today’s bony fish can no longer develop normally” at such a high temperature, researcher said.

ALSO READ: Living Fossil in Illinois Waterways: Disappeared from 1990’s Water, Fish “Alligator Gar” is back in US Rivers

Researchers learned of the fossil about five years ago after fossil collector Jim Jenks of West Jordan, Utah, stumbled upon it near Winecup Ranch north of Wells.

“It was just a very lucky find,” said Jenks, who was credited among the paper’s authors. “I happen to notice the teeth glinting in the sun. That is what caught my attention.”

Jenks turned the fish over to the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science, which has a large collection of fossils and connections with leading researchers. (VOA)

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Goddess Parvati portrayed as “Servant” in a Japanese Mobile Game; Hindus Urge Removal of the Character

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Goddess Parvati
Goddess Parvati characterised as servant in a japnese game. ush

Nevada, October 9: Hindus are upset at “Fate/Grand Order” (FGO) mobile role-playing video game, developed by Japan’s Delightworks Inc., for reportedly portraying goddess Parvati as one of the “new” servants; as it trivializes a highly revered Hindu deity.

Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada today, urged Tokyo headquartered Delightworks Inc. to withdraw the character of goddess Parvati in its free-to-play FGO video game, whose tagline is “This is a story about taking back our future”.

Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, said that in this mobile game set-up, the player became the Master who summoned and commanded servants controlling their movements, including goddess Parvati; while in reality, the devotees put the destinies of themselves in the hands of their deities.

Moreover, Goddess Parvati depicted in FGO appeared more like a belly-dancer than the Hindu deity devotees were used to seeing, Rajan Zed pointed out, and termed it as incredibly disrespectful.

Zed indicated that reimagining Hindu scriptures, symbols, concepts and deities for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees. Controlling and manipulating goddess Parvati by the game-player was denigration. Goddess Parvati was meant to be worshipped in temples and home shrines and not to be reduced to just a “servant” in a video game to be used in combat in the virtual battleground.

Rajan Zed further said that Hindus were for free speech as much as anybody else if not more. But faith was something sacred and attempts at belittling it hurt the devotees. Video game makers should be more sensitive while handling faith related subjects, as these games left a lasting impact on the minds of highly impressionable children, teens and other young people, Zed added.

Hindus welcomed entertainment industry to immerse in Hinduism but taking it seriously and respectfully and not for refashioning Hinduism scriptures, symbols, concepts and deities for mercantile greed. He or other Hindu scholars would gladly provide genuine entertainment industry seekers with the resources they needed for their study and research regarding Hinduism, Zed stressed.

Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about 1.1 billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought and it should not be taken frivolously. No faith, larger or smaller, should be mishandled, Rajan Zed noted.

In this game, Goddess Parvati is shown as carrying Trisula (trident), which is her greatest weapon; while in reality, Trisula is Lord Siva’s most powerful weapon. In the game, when Parvati is equipped with Nandi, it increases her performance; but in Hinduism, Nandi is Lord Siva’s mount. This kind of misinformation spreading creates further confusion among non-Hindus about Hinduism, Zed states.

Delightworks Inc. undertakes planning, development and management of games. Tactical, turn-based FGO, on iOS/Android platform and composed by Kinoko Nasu, is claimed to be “easy to learn, but hard to master”. “Servant” in this game is “an attendant that serves the Master” and follows orders.

Goddess Parvati finds mention in Mahabharata and Puranas.

One response to “Goddess Parvati portrayed as “Servant” in a Japanese Mobile Game; Hindus Urge Removal of the Character”

  1. It isn’t like how they portrayed the Goddess was disrespectful and who cares if they make a mistake or two in a 100% accurate portrayal if someone does find interest in learning more about the Goddess they can just do research on their own as many would realize a game is different from real life and shouldn’t be seen as a perfect source of information in regards to real world topics they mention.

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Reason Behind Multicolored Bird Feathers is Unveiled, Find Out Here!

It has previously been discovered that different patterns and colors help camouflage the birds from predators

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Bird feathers
Honeyeater bird. Pixabay

Chicago, Aug 08, 2017: Ever wondered how birds carry multicolored feathers to show off? While some birds are bright in color as one can spot them remotely, some are colored and appear deceiving so much that you’ll never realize if you’re even looking at the bird!

There are more than 18,000 bird species on Earth, and every species is differently colored.  The feathers of the birds are composed of intricate combinations of mottles, scales, bars, and spots, making each one unique and resembling different.

It has previously been discovered that different patterns and colors help camouflage the birds from predators.

A study on about 9000 bird species’ plumage coloration was conducted by Dr. Ismael Galvan and his team of expert researchers to answer the very question: How birds get such different colors?

ALSO READ: Traffic Noise can reduce Birds’ ability to hear an Alarm call, making them Vulnerable to Predators

Two types of pigments are responsible for the plumage coloration: melanins, which produce a range of black, gray, brown, and orange colors and carotenoids, which are used by specialized feather structures to generate brighter color shades.

Melanins are synthesized by in the birds’ bodies in special cells called “melanocytes,” which work together with feather follicles to achieve a fine control of coloration.

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Carotenoids are present in certain food items that circulate through the bloodstream and to the feather follicles when birds consume such food items. The birds cannot produce carotenoids, nor can they exercise direct cellular control of synthesizing and depositing carotenoids. The specialized feather structures react to the consumed carotenoids with a mechanism that is not regulated by specialized cells.

Carotenoids are more commonly examined in the study of bird coloration, however, Dr. Galvan and group are the first to test whether melanins are indeed the only pigmentary element that birds’ bodies directly control on a cellular level.

Galvan says, “Knowing beforehand that different pigments and structures produce different types of colors in feathers, we examined the appearance of the plumage of all species of extant birds and determined if the color patches that they contain are produced by melanins or by other pigmentary elements.”

He further added, “We also identified those plumage patterns that can be considered complex, defining them as those formed by combinations of two or more discernible colors that occur more than two times uninterruptedly through the plumage”, reports ANI.

According to the researchers, 32% of the species examined have complex plumage patterns, with the large majority of these complex patterns produced by melanins rather than carotenoids.

To put simply, carotenoids produce color patches, whereas melanins produce intricate patterns

However, in exceptional cases, unusual colors appear to be produced by their bodies making metabolic alterations to the carotenoid colors that they consume. Some of these are Fruit doves, cotingas and one type of stork have complex plumage patterns without melanins.

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A 3-year-old Giraffe ‘Ozzie’ surprises Visitors by its Painting at a Lion sanctuary in Nevada

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The paintings consist of a disorganized conglomeration of colorful lines.

Les Vegas, May 31, 2017: Few giraffes have the talent that Ozzie was born with, but the three-year-old giraffe paints at a lion sanctuary in Nevada and his work is selling reasonably well.

Standing almost four meters (13 feet) tall and weighing 635 kg, Ozzie surprises visitors to the Lion Habitat Ranch in Henderson, 25 km southeast of Las Vegas, with his colourful pictures, reports Efe.

“Ozzie likes to paint. If he didn’t he wouldn’t do it because we have no way to force him,” Keith Evans, President and owner of the lion preserve measuring 34,000 square meters with its 36 lions, dozens of birds and house artist Ozzie, told EFE.

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The animals there are accustomed to living peacefully together and the lions’ roars don’t bother Ozzie, and neither does the busload of excited schoolchildren on a field trip to see him at work on his latest creation.

In his habitat, surrounded by a fence where the curious station themselves, Ozzie moves around with a brush in his mouth, calmly using it to paint on various canvases that will be fastened to the fence for others to admire.

The paintings consist of a disorganized conglomeration of colorful lines – some might call it “abstract art” at its finest – and each one is about 20×25 cm (8×10 inches) and sells for $40, although larger ones measuring 40×50 cm fetch up to $300.

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Ozzie eats up to 20 kg of vegetables each day, snacking on Brussels sprouts and chunks of cauliflower in exchange for returning the paintbrush to his caretaker after each artistic foray.

Ozzie arrived at the lion sanctuary when he was eight months old. Since then he has been honing his talents, says Evans, whose lion preserve is visited by an average of 3,000 people each month.

He says the giraffe “works” on his paintings at three sessions each day, painting a maximum of two works per session, and he doesn’t mind having his picture taken with his fans.

The artwork is sold at the ranch’s store, along with other items such as T-shirts, hats and scarves. (IANS)