Arthropod Powers Defy Evolution

You may not know the word, but arthropods are all over the place, on land, in the sea, and so on. They comprise most of the animal world, and have an external skeleton, many limbs, a segmented body, and are cold blooded. You have your spiders, insects, scorpions, lobsters, and a whole passel of other things. Let's highlight a few of them, which are being studied for biomimetics (imitation for our benefit).

Butterfly proboscis studied biomimetics
Credit: National Science Foundation (usage does not imply endorsement of site contents)
That big nose-like thing you see in the butterfly picture that looks like a straw is called the proboscis. It works like a straw, or maybe a sponge, or is that a sensor, or some of all of those things. This is being studied for several applications, including a drug delivery system.

Did you know that mosquitoes beat their wings about 800 times a second? (I still swat at the things when I hear that annoying whine.) More impressive is that they make efficient use of their wing strokes to obtain lift. Ever blow on one while it's buzzing around you? It gets buffeted by your wind and is trying to compensate — and it does, because it doesn't crash.

In an earlier post, we learned about those critters that we consider disgusting, but are just doing their jobs, the dung beetles. It turns out that they navigate by the stars. Ahoy, a ball! Well, not specifically the star patterns, but the brightness. Bonus: dung beetle humor.

Of course, homage is paid to Darwin in some studies. Scientists don't know how and have no plausible model, but still put their faith in evolution. Then they mock us when we point out that evolution by chance, time, random processes, luck, and so on is an illogical way to explain the amazing features in God's creation.

You can read about the butterfly, mosquito, dung beetle, and several more gifted things by clicking on "Small Wonders: Arthropods With Superpowers".


  

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