Friday, October 17, 2008

Interesting finds of the week!

1. Kiwano

I stumbled upon these weird looking fruits quite some time ago whilst reading up on veges for my Veggie Patch! Apparently they taste like a mixture of "bananas, cucumbers, limes, and passionfruit" according to Wiki (of course!) :P Kiwanos come from the Kalahari desert originally but now you can find them growing in California & New Zealand. grin* Never attempt to squeeze them though, not good for juicing! :P

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2. Buddha's Hand fruit

Another odd looking fruit :) Surprisingly its part of the citrus family! Wiki again mentions that "The fruit is segmented into finger-like sections. It has a thick peel and a small amount of acidic flesh and is seedless and juiceless.

The fruit may be given as a religious offering in Buddhist temples. According to tradition, Buddha prefers the "fingers" of the fruit to be in a position where they resemble a closed rather than open hand, as closed hands symbolize to Buddha the act of prayer." (I didn't know that!)

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3. Giraffe Weevil

Isn't just so adorable? :P Madagascar sure is lucky! Wiki has it that the giraffe weevil is endemic to Madagascar. It derives its name from an extended neck much like that of the common giraffe. The total body length of the males is just under an inch (2.5cm).

The extended neck is an adaptation that assists in nest building. When it comes time to breed the father-to-be will roll and secure a leaf of the host plant, at which point the female will lay a single egg within the tube.

Picture Link: Pete Oxford / Minden / Getty / TIME

4. Ribbon eel

Amazingly these eels are color-coded for life!
Juveniles and sub-adults are jet black with a yellow dorsal fin, while females are yellow with a black anal fin with white margins on the fins. The adult male are blue with a yellow dorsal fin. As the eel grows and gets older, it changes sex from a male to a female. The ribbon eel also changes its colour from blue to yellow when it becomes fully mature (& female).

Like many eels, the ribbon eel is sometimes thought to be angry or aggressive, because its mouth is often open, appearing ready to strike. In reality, the eel is simply breathing. In the wild, the ribbon eel buries itself in sand or hides in rocks or reefs, dashing out to feed on small fishes. The ribbon eel is known as one of the most sociable and peaceful of all moray eels, and does not bother humans or get easily irritated.

Picture Link: Gary Bell / zefa / Corbis / TIME

5. Feather

Neither edible nor living, this is very pretty nonetheless.
A beautiful feather brooch studded with white and fancy vivid yellow diamonds, rubies and amethysts. Designed by Michelle Ong for Carnet. More on her jewellery range here. (if your pockets are deeeeeeeep enough)

Picture Link: Carnet | TIME

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