Friday, 20 October 2017

The Mysterious 400 Stone Structure of Saudi Arabia

The mysterious ancient gates 400 stone structures found on the edge of volcanoes are spotted on Google Earth, but archaeologists are unsure, why they were built, could be thousands of years old in a remote desert area in Saudi Arabia. The stone structure seems like field gate from above. The stone walls purpose remains unknown, the strange cluster 'appear to be the oldest man-made structures in the landscape' and some are up to 1,700 feet long and built across old lava domes.

The stone structures- which were found using Google Earth - have been dubbed the 'gates' built across ancient lava domes, some of these strange features are more than four times the length of a football pitch, and archaeologists be certain of they may be up to 7,000 years old. However, the smallest gates are 43 feet in length while the longest are 1,699 feet long. Archaeologists believe that thousands of years ago this area would have been much more hospitable than it is now.

Hence, there is no certain explanation of why they were built. These gates are discovered almost completely in bleak, inhospitable lava fields with scant water or vegetation, places seemingly amongst the most unfriendly area. The gates are stone-built and the walls unevenly made and low. Moreover, remains of lava flows can be seen on top of some of the gates, suggesting that they are older than some of the lava flows. The odd clusters appear to be the oldest man-made structures in the landscape. Many of the structures have multiple stone walls that form a rectangular design whereas others type gates - have one stone wall with piles of stones at the ends. Hence, most of them were exposed through satellite surveys and no archaeological fieldwork has yet been carried out. Therefore, earlier research has found thousands of stone structures that form geometric patterns in the Middle East.

This includes two wheel-shaped patterns date back some 8,500 years. A number of the designs, found in Jordan's Azraq Oasis, appear to have an astronomical significance, built to align with the sunrise on the winter solstice. Other types of stone structures such as “kites” were used to hunt animals and wheel-shaped objects have also been discovered in the lava fields. They were found on top of the gates - signifying the gates pre-date them. An area mapped that included lava done with gates and other stone structures. It is estimated that some of the gates around the lava domes they looked at were built 7,000 years ago.   

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Devil’s Finger Fungus,

Clathrus archeri is commonly known as octopus stinkhorn, or devil's fingers, is a fungus indigenous to Australia and New Zealand, and an introduced species in Europe, North America and Asia. In Britain this amazing fungus is usually known as Devil's Fingers, and in parts of the USA it is referred to as the Octopus Fungus. This crazy organism looks better suited to life on Proteus than Earth the fungal “egg” opens, unleashing four to eight blood-red arms. A large, starfish-like fruit-body whose 4 to 8 arched red arms are coated with a smelly gleba on the upper surface, the mature fruit-body is typically 20cm across with arms arching to 10cm in height. Devils Finger habitually is a saprobic and mainly found in leaf litter under trees and shrubs; also increasingly on bark mulch in parks and gardens.  

The young fungus erupts from a sub-erumpent egg by forming into four to seven elongated slender arms originally erect and attached at the top. After that arms unfold to reveal a pinkish-red interior covered with a dark-olive spore-containing gleba. Therefore, at the time of maturity it smells like putrid flesh. Before rupturing the ball or egg of Clathrus archeri is typically 2 to 3cm in diameter. The bright red color makes this remarkable species very easy to identify; however, it is a relatively rare find in Britain and mainly found in the south of England and in the Channel Islands.

Devil’s Finger is not proven to be toxic, but it is treated as suspect, can tolerate the stench it's a risky snack. In fact the eggs of numerous stinkhorns are edible, but there are no archives of fights having taken place over these delicacies as there surely are over truffles, morels and some kinds of edible boletes.  The arms of Devil's Fingers emerge vertically and spread out, making the gleba accessible to insects; it is by this means that the spores are distributed. In the recent times Devil’s fingers, with white tentacles or arms has been witnessed in the Shola Forests of Western Ghats, Kerala, India.