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Category: Science
Date: 09/30/11 03:29 PM

37 Responses to The Bombardier Beetle: Natures Bad `Ass`

  1. Profile photo of canusuck
    canusuck Male 30-39
    796 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 3:30 pm
    Link: The Bombardier Beetle: Natures Bad `Ass` - When provoked, this beetle spews hot acid from its butt, how`s that for evolution?
  2. Profile photo of sethmccary
    sethmccary Male 18-29
    208 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 3:41 pm
    Whoa.
  3. Profile photo of Subushie
    Subushie Male 18-29
    1646 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 3:41 pm
    talk about fire hole.
  4. Profile photo of McGovern1981
    McGovern1981 Male 30-39
    14268 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 3:49 pm
    Me favorite bug!! Heard about this from my father when I was a little kid still impressive.
  5. Profile photo of splat13
    splat13 Male 30-39
    301 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 4:00 pm
    Don`t bring a knife to a gun fight...
  6. Profile photo of Steelgrid
    Steelgrid Male 30-39
    2700 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 4:10 pm
    Its living things like this that can prove that dragons MAY have existed, just kept blowing up.

    Wonder if people could breath fire at one time?
  7. Profile photo of DuckBoy87
    DuckBoy87 Male 18-29
    3288 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 4:13 pm
    Same thing happens to me after eating at Taco Bell.
  8. Profile photo of tlshaman
    tlshaman Male 13-17
    378 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 4:13 pm
    Dangg, he killed an ant.
  9. Profile photo of MCMXCIII
    MCMXCIII Male 18-29
    356 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 4:25 pm
    How didn`t it get hit too?
  10. Profile photo of CheshireKiti
    CheshireKiti Female 18-29
    31 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 4:27 pm
    That`s clearly the Blast-ended Skrewt of the muggle world.
  11. Profile photo of simmerdown
    simmerdown Female 18-29
    62 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 4:38 pm
    Awesome beetle, but probably not the best argument for evolution. o_O A science lecturer at my uni used to give conferences around the country on exactly why it was evidence against evolution, that is, that the two chambers which contain two seperate chemicals then mix to form the acid. This means that for the beetle to evolve it would`ve had to have developed both chambers fully at the same time so that the chemicals didn`t mix and kill it, and of course, develop both chemicals at the same time within those chambers to be effective. I`m not sure if that`s totally right, but it was something like that. Of course he didn`t teach any anti-evolution stuff at uni because e`d probably be sacked for it. I`m not trying to start a religious debate here, but I`d be interested to know the other side of the argument I`ve only heard the one for this beetle.
  12. Profile photo of Lolboy
    Lolboy Male 70 & Over
    798 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 4:46 pm
    God, that thing has such a hot ass.
  13. Profile photo of ukulelemike
    ukulelemike Male 40-49
    129 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 5:40 pm
    @simmerdown: An excellent example of irreducible complexity, indeed. And I believe there is a third chamber which inhibits the two chemicals from reacting together until clear of the beetle`s backside, so that`s three chambers, three chemicals, which, if evolved, would have kept blowing the poor li`l fellers up for millions of years until one got it right. Somehow I don`t see that it would be possible, since no one would be alive to breed.
    I may be incorrect about the third chamber, but no time right now to check on it.
  14. Profile photo of Fatninja01
    Fatninja01 Male 30-39
    25420 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 6:03 pm
    wow... and this is nature. I want that power! :)
  15. Profile photo of evanbartlett
    evanbartlett Male 30-39
    559 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 6:35 pm
    SImmerdown:
    Insects produce quinones for tanning their cuticle. Quinones make them distasteful, so the insects evolve to produce more of them and to produce other defensive chemicals.
    The insects evolve depressions for storing quinones and muscles for ejecting them onto their surface when threatened with being eaten. The depression becomes a reservoir with secretory glands. This configuration exists in many beetles, including close relatives of bombardier beetles.
    Hydrogen peroxide becomes mixed with the quinones. Catalases and peroxidases appear along the output passage of the reservoir, ensuring that more quinones appear in the exuded product.
    More catalases and peroxidases are produced, generating oxygen and producing a foamy discharge, as in the bombardier beetle Metrius contractus.
    As the output passage becomes a hardened reaction chamber, still more catalases and peroxidases are produced, gradually becoming today`s bombardier beetles.
  16. Profile photo of evanbartlett
    evanbartlett Male 30-39
    559 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 6:39 pm
    There is very little in the way of nature demonstrating irreducible complexity. ID (not be be confused with its parent of the same acronym) is the same theory that has been used to describe the mammalian complex eye, even though it is easy to trace the evolution of every part of it.
  17. Profile photo of srgkoala
    srgkoala Male 18-29
    299 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 6:47 pm
    That beetle needs yo lay off the spicy burritos...
  18. Profile photo of GringoLoco
    GringoLoco Male 18-29
    17 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 7:33 pm
    what a jerk. those ants weren`t doing anything to him.
  19. Profile photo of deathxtra
    deathxtra Male 13-17
    2791 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 7:40 pm
    Evolution? The beetle just had indian food for lunch and was using it to his advantage.
  20. Profile photo of Gerry1of1
    Gerry1of1 Male 50-59
    36860 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 8:39 pm

    Big deal. I do the same thing after a curry.
  21. Profile photo of jadoig
    jadoig Male 30-39
    434 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 9:32 pm
    That`s pretty awesome. I wonder what it has to make it immune. It was getting sprayed too.
  22. Profile photo of davymid
    davymid Male 30-39
    12140 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 9:38 pm
    @simmerdown: An excellent example of irreducible complexity, indeed.
    Ah, ukulelemike, a Creationist/Intelligent Design proponent.

    *Looks up profile*

    Religion: Christian
    Politics: Conservative
    Favorite Book: The Bible, (KJV 1611)
    Favorite Song: A Mighty Fortress is Our God

    Ah yes, I think I see what`s happened here.
  23. Profile photo of MrPeabody
    MrPeabody Male 30-39
    1920 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 9:46 pm
    @evanbartlett
    Just how long did all that take?
    If they needed this mechanism to survive, how did their ancestors survive without it? And if their ancestors could survive without it, why did they need to evolve it in the first place?
  24. Profile photo of Yaezakura
    Yaezakura Female 18-29
    385 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 10:05 pm
    Just how long did all that take?
    If they needed this mechanism to survive, how did their ancestors survive without it? And if their ancestors could survive without it, why did they need to evolve it in the first place?
    Need is the wrong word. Evolution does not have a final plan it is working towards. It tries a million different things, and some of them happen to survive.

    Much like how the evolution of the complex eye can be seen in various stages of living animals, it`s not hard to imagine how, over time, what probably was once a mechanism for releasing a foul tasting/smelling chemical would slowly change its composition based on diet and changes in the body to become more volatile. During this process, many beetles with malformed chambers probably did not survive, as many today with mutations that cause them to be malformed are not. Evolution isn`t "oh, here`s something brand new", but it`s the change of existing structures into something ne
  25. Profile photo of Yaezakura
    Yaezakura Female 18-29
    385 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 10:05 pm
    something new*.
  26. Profile photo of davymid
    davymid Male 30-39
    12140 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 10:07 pm
    Peabody, if I may:

    @evanbartlett, Just how long did all that take?
    Millions of years. Possibly 10s of millions of years, maybe hundreds. We know beetles have been around much longer than that. Heck, we`ve got scientific proof. Imagine that!

    If they needed this mechanism to survive, how did their ancestors survive without it? And if their ancestors could survive without it, why did they need to evolve it in the first place?
    They likely evolved this behaviour over time. It`s not like one day a beetle appeared that could squirt hot acid out its ass. They probably started out as being distasteful in their exoskelton, then were able to eject that distasteful substance (much like many species of ants do, in the form of formic acid), then adapted the formula further.
  27. Profile photo of davymid
    davymid Male 30-39
    12140 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 10:07 pm
    We know relatively very little about beetle evolution, as they`re rarely preserved in the fossil record, except in very rare deposits of amber. Even then, the specimens are mostly disarticulated. However we do know that insects, with their short life-cycle, can evolve at extraordinary rates. These kinds of experiments are performed on flies every day, mostly in high-school science classrooms.

    "God of the Gaps", I`m afraid. We just don`t know yet. But we can speculate.

    I encourage you to read this article if you have the time.
  28. Profile photo of davymid
    davymid Male 30-39
    12140 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 10:08 pm
    Yaezakura beat me to it while I was typing.
  29. Profile photo of Yaezakura
    Yaezakura Female 18-29
    385 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 10:22 pm
    Yaezakura beat me to it while I was typing.
    Well, to be fair, your contribution was far better constructed than mine, and the link to a source that explained the possible evolutionary path of the firing mechanism is more than I bothered with. So I may have been first, but I give the win to you, good sir.
  30. Profile photo of 614188
    614188 Male 18-29
    220 posts
    September 30, 2011 at 11:43 pm
    i shoot the same thing on my face
  31. Profile photo of phoneybone
    phoneybone Male 18-29
    1744 posts
    October 1, 2011 at 2:42 am
    hot caustic liquid out of one`s anus
    sounds like what happens to me after Taco Bell
  32. Profile photo of MrAtari
    MrAtari Male 40-49
    1566 posts
    October 1, 2011 at 7:21 am
    Never pull that thing`s finger... Oh, luckily he hasn`t any
  33. Profile photo of cyborg
    cyborg Male 13-17
    2790 posts
    October 1, 2011 at 7:42 am
    awesome
  34. Profile photo of DixxyRarr
    DixxyRarr Female 18-29
    2674 posts
    October 1, 2011 at 10:24 am
    Up next: Hippo gets explosive diarrhea.

    Could not click the link fast enough (what is WRONG with me??)
  35. Profile photo of Andicicle
    Andicicle Male 18-29
    503 posts
    October 1, 2011 at 11:55 am
    up till recently, they believed that it was simply a smelly cloud it excreted. they only recently realized it was both defensive and offensive.
  36. Profile photo of PopeRocket
    PopeRocket Male 30-39
    120 posts
    October 1, 2011 at 7:20 pm
    Yeah? Well Honey Badger doesn`t give a $#!%.
  37. Profile photo of Vimto
    Vimto Male 40-49
    2853 posts
    October 3, 2011 at 9:13 am
    Hey, a bug that carries mace.

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