Squid’s Got Talent — Super-Powers Astonish Scientists

Benjamin Burford, bioluminescent organs, camouflage, cuttlefish, Dosidicus gigas, Douglas Axe, environmental clues, Evolution, giant squid, Humboldt squid, innovation, Intelligent Design, Jonathan Wells, Marine Biology Laboratory, Massachusetts, Monterey Bay Aquarium, natural selection, Nature (journal), octopuses, photophores, pigmentation, PNAS, random mutations, remotely-operated vehicle, RNA editing, School of Humanities and Sciences, selective pressure, skin, squid, Stanford University, University of Chicago, visual signals, Walter Myers, Woods Hole
They swim. They shine. They camouflage themselves. The humble squid astonishes scientists with its super-powers. Are these marine champions really the products of random mutations and natural selection? Just saying so is not convincing when you look at the facts. Ranging in size from fingerlings to sea monsters, squid look like visitors from an alien planet. So do the other main groups within cephalopods (“head-foot”), the octopuses and cuttlefish. Those cousins are no less extraordinary, but recent news and research showcase the talent of these amazing creatures. (Note: “squid” can be both singular and plural; as with fish, it’s “one squid, two squid, red squid, blue squid.” But “squids” is acceptable, especially if talking about different species. The size range of squids is enormous, from 10 centimeters to 24 meters!)…
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How Butterflies “Evolve” by Design

beauty, butterflies, caterpillar, cortex (gene), Douglas Blackiston, Drosophila, Elena Casey, Evolution, foresight, Georgetown University, Heliconius, helicopter, hotspot gene, Illustra Media, Intelligent Design, larvae, Lepidopterans, light waves, Martha Weiss, Metamorphosis, Model T, Monarch butterflies, moths, New Scientist, odors, Paul Nelson, photonic crystals, pigmentation, PLOS ONE, Royal Society Biology Letters, South America, tobacco hornworm moths, University of Liverpool, wing patterns
Butterflies, those universally loved flying works of art, offer many reasons to celebrate design in nature.  They showcase aesthetic beauty beyond the requirements of survival (see “Beauty, Darwin and Design,” featuring Paul Nelson).  Their migrations show foresight over multiple generations.  The one-gram Monarch butterflies astonish biologists with their exceptional endurance to survive hardships while flying thousands of miles on paper-thin wings (see “2-Minute Wonder: A Monarch’s Journey“). Their navigation systems exhibit stunning accuracy to arrive at locations they have never seen. Their keen senses can find the right host plants from miles away; they can smell very faint pheromones for mating; and they can distinguish precise angles of sunlight for orientation and timing of migration.  Their wing scales, organized into “photonic crystals,” give precision control of light waves to create…
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