Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Grey bicher

Goal for the week 17.5 hrs
Today work on sphinx

I ran into these guys for the first time while picking up crickets at a Petsmart labeled as "Dinosaur eels" and thought they were very oddly built fish with all of the spikey little fins in back. The grey bicher (Polypterus senegalus) is an African fish that is from an ancient group of fishes that are mostly cartilaginous but have some bone.  They also have rudimentary lungs and so breathe a little bit from the air as well as the water. One of their lungs stretches almost the entire length of their body. Here is an animation (towards the bottom of the page) that shows that.  The grey bicher also has very well armored scales that may be inspiring future military armor. 

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