Skepchick Quickies 3.28


Siouxsie Wiles is a research scientists whose blog is called Infectious Thoughts. Recently she wrote the post Astroquid! and created this animation on the little creature.

The Hawaiian bobtail squid – when science and nature collide

Siouxsie says:

Meet the Hawaiian bobtail squid. This tiny nocturnal hunter has its very own colony of glowing bacteria, which it uses as an invisibility cloak to hide its shadow from any potential predators and prey. As if that wasn’t cool enough, studies of this amazing creature led scientists to discover that bacteria can communicate with each other to coordinate their behaviour – including causing disease in us!

For a little more detail, you can listen to Siouxsie chatting about this amazing little creature on Radio New Zealand’s Nine to Noon programme with Kathryn Ryan [13 minutes].



Featured image is an Euprymna scolopes by Nhobgood. [from the page] The bobtail squid is shown exhibiting defensive behavior by digging in the sand to cover its body, leaving only its eyes exposed. This may explain the color difference between the body and the upper rim above the eyes.



Geologic Universe, vault-keeper. Sheer Brick Studio, principal. Empty Set, designer. Bethlehem Mounties, media. WDIY 88.1FM NPR station programmer. Skepchick.

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  1. Re: Doug Manwaring
    He’s a formerly closeted gay guy who had decided to fit himself into society’s mold by marrying a woman and having children. When he came out, his marriage fell apart (who knows how healthy it was in the meantime) and he feels that he had no social life after the divorce.
    Therefore, he concludes, gay marriage is wrong because, like, gay guys should be forced into straight marriages so they’ll have social lives.
    Oh, and also, children need parents of both genders. He won’t offer any evidence of that except that, you know, society ostracized him less when he was pretending to be straight, and having an ostracized gay dad was probably bad for the kids. Or something.
    There’s a lot of nonsense filler material. He even brings up how legalizing same-sex marriage is actually the “increase of government’s role in our lives” instead of lowering the government’s control, which is what it actually is.
    Poor guy. He sounds very mixed up trying to rationalize the bullshit his life has been because he’s convinced he must conform.

    1. C’mon. He plainly stated that not giving kids two parents of opposite sexes was an “objective evil.”

      Is this not enough evidence for you?

  2. Madfishmonger- I agree. R,P,S struck just the right tone.

    dtkgreg- Thanks for your perspective. I think there’s a lot of internal conflict and denial going on there.

    Jack- Succinctly well-played.

  3. Bishop Harry: “When a man and a woman are in the house, poverty is lessened. When a man and a woman are in the house, kids don’t go to prison. When a man and a woman are in the house, there’s less domestic violence. When a man and a woman are in the house, sexual abuse does not happen.”

    This is one of the more bazaar abuses of child welfare statistics combined with lies I’ve ever seen. Single parents are certainly more likely to live in poverty and a child raised by two parents is less likely to engage in criminal behavior. However there is no evidence I’m aware of that indicates a child with same sex parents is any more likely to live in poverty or become a criminal than a child raised by two biological parents. And domestic violence can only happen when there are two adults in the home regardless of their sex. As for abuse, the statistics are clear that a non related male partner or boyfriend of a female parent has a higher likelihood of abusing a child than a biological or adoptive parent. And considering the vast majority of child sex abuse perpetrators are men… fuck it, the stupid is so big my head is about to explode so I’ll stop.

    1. For the first little while, I would in fact expect the adopted children of gay parents to do *better* than same-sex parents.
      Think of all the roadblocks and time-wasting and extra skepticism regarding gay parents. Who gets through that procedure? Super awesome, crazy determined gay couples. Think of what stands between hetero couples and parenthood … um, nothing?
      Until gay people are actually treated equally, even gay adoptive parents will probably be subject to higher standards than straight adoptive parents.
      It’s going to be a long running comparison of the parenting skills of Neil Patrick Harris vs that guy at the grocery store who advises you not to accept a raise at work because it’ll put you in a higher tax bracket.

      1. I can see where that may be possible in some situations. In my state out gay couples or singles have been adopting children for over 20 years and they go through the exact same screening process as everyone else; and we in WA have been leading the way on many of these issues so it is undoubtedly different in other states.

  4. Jacob- I’m totally submitting the Bishop Harry story to George Hrab’s podcast for the Religious Moron of the Week spot! It’s beyond the beyonds.

  5. Oh, cool, so the government should be deciding which Americans should be allowed to pair off and have children? I’m pretty sure that goes far beyond socialism, but since we’re deciding who is and isn’t a fit parent, how about a simple test?

    Parenting Competency Assessment
    Directions: For each question in this test, select the best answer from among the choices given and fill in the corresponding circle on the answer sheet.

    Question 1:
    When children die _____
    A they are gone forever and it is a terrible tradgedy. Parents should actively try to keep their children from dying.
    B they go to a magical paradise where they will be happy forever!

    If you finish before your time is called, you may check your work or turn in your test early.

  6. I also can’t help but wonder if enough of these gay men living in heterosexual marriages come forward if we won’t start to see some “Marriage is between one heterosexual man and one heterosexual woman” signs start to show up.

  7. It was disappointing to read about the changes in Vegas. Even more so were the comments at the site. They were too stupid to realize that corporations had basically screwed over the entire labour force and turned jobs into nothing but walking talking sex advertizements.

    The protections for workers in the USA is simply terrible. Calling bartenders, servers and dealers “entertainers” lets the companies do pretty much anything, and fire them for pretty much anything. Hopefully when these fools get older they won’t find they are being fired so the company can hire younger people. But they probably will if they don’t help stop the practice. They appear to be too shallow and stupid to realize that basic human rights should apply to everyone. And corporations are not really people.

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