Wayne's Trivia Notes #4
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Wayne's Trivia Note #129 (12 April 2014)

Harry Potter Fans: In "Goblet of Fire," Mad-eye Moody tortures this harmless cave spider (Damon variegatus) with the Imperius Curse until Hermione Granger begs him to stop. Moody makes the following two contradictory statements: "Don't worry, completely harmless....If she bites, she's lethal." In case you are wondering, this spider relative is nonvenomous! More Information About Cave Spider


Wayne's Trivia Note #130 (15 April 2014)

My 1st attempt at photographing last night's "blood moon." Next time I will use a larger lens! During total eclipse the orange moon was very faint and my lens kept fogging up (condensation) with moisture from early morning dew. More Moon Images

Wayne's Trivia Note #131 (19 April 2014)

This time of the year my house is inundated by harmless long-legged crane flies (erroneously called "mosquito hawks" or "daddy-long-legs"). This morning I grabbed a similar-appearing ichneumon wasp by mistake and quickly discovered my error! Crane Fly Images


Wayne's Trivia Note #132 (23 April 2014)

Greetings from a high ridge above Boyce-Thompson Arboretum near Superior, Arizona. The glide path for Turkey Vulture was at my approximate altitude!


Wayne's Trivia Note #133 (26 April 2014)

Greetings from Chiricahua National Monument in southeastern Arizona. Would you go hunting for an expert fighter defending his homeland, like Geronimo, in this terrain!


Wayne's Trivia Note #134 (27 April 2014)

Another view of Geronimo's Homeland in the Chiricahua Mountains of southeastern Arizona.


Wayne's Trivia Note #135 (10 May 2014)

This conspicuous sign was in the window of a Lordsburg, New Mexico gas station. If it refers to rolling your tongue into a U-shape, once thought to be caused by a dominant gene, there is no genetic basis for this trait in human populations (according to Journal of Heredity Vol. 66: 179-180, 1975). The attendant had no idea why the sign was placed in their window, so I gave my introductory Biology 100 lecture anyway.


Tongue Roller and Non-Tongue Roller
(Click On Image To See Explanation)
I used the tongue-rolling demonstration for many years in my general biology genetics laboratories at Palomar College. Based on the Journal of Heredity, it probably is not a good example of simple Medelian genetics, although our discussions of the adaptive advantage of tongue-rolling was quite fascinating.

     Click Left Image To See Explanation By Dr. John H. McDonald,
        Department of Biological Sciences, University of Delaware.


Wayne's Trivia Note #136 (15 May 2014)


View from N. Las Posas Road near Palomar College.

View from my neighborhood in Twin Oaks Valley.

Wide Angle View from Owens Peak north of Palomar College.

Telephoto View from Owens Peak north of Palomar College.

Telephoto View from Owens Peak north of Palomar College.

San Marcos Fire = Cocos Fire (14 May 2014) .


Wayne's Trivia Note #137 (17 May 2014)

Although the chaparral is dominated by shrubs that are adapted to periodic brush fires, fire intervals that are too frequent can be very destructive to this plant community. Population growth, urbanization, vehicle traffic, and the introduction of alien weeds has altered the natural environment in southern California. The human impact on this ecosystem in some areas has been disastrous, particularly where slopes, ridges and canyons of prime watershed have been converted into housing developments. Not only is this urban sprawl destructive to a unique ecosystem, it poses a serious threat to residents and firefighters. In this Mediterranean climate, the fire danger is exacerbated by high temperatures, low humidity, strong, descending "Santa Ana" winds, and powerful, "tornadic" winds generated by fires. See Ashes To Wildflowers: https://www2.palomar.edu/users/warmstrong/ww0604.htm


Wayne's Trivia Note #138 (18 May 2014)

My latest train image: A Union Pacific freight train passing through Lordsberg, New Mexico. The perfect image to go with Jason Aldean's new country western song "Night Train." See YouTube Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQzHs-XNa3s


Wayne's Trivia Note #139 (19 May 2014)

This is not a wasp! It is a large queen carpenter ant (probably Camponotus vicinus) almost 20 mm in length. It was discovered under a pillow in a friend's bed who lives on Palomar Mountain! He wanted a carpenter, but preferably a mammal in the family Hominidae. https://www2.palomar.edu/users/warmstrong/redmite8c.htm#carpenterant2


Wayne's Trivia Note #140 (19 May 2014)

Palomar College Commencement May 19, 2014 (6:00 P.M.) viewed from the summit of Owens Peak north of the campus. Sony DSC-HX20V


Wayne's Trivia Note #141 (20 May 2014)

A small sample of Google Analytical data for Wayne's Word. Some conclusions from this data: The top 10 pages are undoubtedly viewed by general biology students from throughout the world; Internet Explorer is not the most popular browser; mobile devices are becoming increasingly popular for viewing Wayne's Word; based on the total page views during the past month (30 days), nearly 400 people viewed Wayne's Word every hour.


Wayne's Trivia Note #142 (23 May 2014)

This undersized mariposa lily managed to send up a flower stalk during one of the worst spring droughts in decades. It is only May and the parched hills around San Marcos resemble the October fire season.


Wayne's Trivia Note #143 (29 May 2014)

Ant Hypothesis: Elaine brought several deceased ants back from her recent trip toTurkey. The appearance of (B), a thief ant queen (Solenopsis molesta), in my kitchen sink coincides with a recent trip to the local San Marcos Costco. Since this is a widespread North American species, I must conclude that it came from Costco and not Turkey!


Wayne's Trivia Note #144 (2 June 2014)

Amazing Technology: My dentist made a 3-D image with a graphics program on her PC. She sent it by WiFi to a milling machine in another room that made my new crown from a small cube of lithium disilicate in about 12 minutes! BTW the operating system was Windows 7.


Wayne's Trivia Note #145 (3 June 2014)

A keyboard & mouse made of bamboo: The perfect gift for a botanist!
See Wayne's Bamboo Page    Primo Design Keyboard On Amazon


Wayne's Trivia Note #146 (7 June 2014)

Have you seen the Internet message about a deadly spider that lurks under toilet seats and bites you on your derriere? This is a hoax or myth--like Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster and coconut pearls. In fact, the two-striped telamonia spider depicted in some accounts is harmless. See Snopes.com: Two-Striped Telamonia Spider


Wayne's Trivia Note #147 (8 June 2014)

In response to "toilet seat spider" questions, I also received e-mail about human crab lice. These are actually wingless insects and not crustaceans. They are not well-adapted for clinging to toilet seats, so it is very unlikely you could get one that way. They are actually closely related to gorilla lice. By the way, DNA evidence indicates that body lice evolved from head lice about 70,000 years ago, approximately the time when people began wearing clothing! Kittler, R., M. Kayser and M. Stoneking. 2003. "Molecular Evolution of Pediculus humanus and the Origin of Clothing." Current Biology 13: 1414 - 1417. Wayne's Word Lice Page


Wayne's Trivia Note #148 (10 June 2014)

Three of my images will be featured in the San Diego Natural History Museum's new exhibit: Coast To Cactus In Southern California. San Diego Natural History Museum


Wayne's Trivia Note #149 (19 June 2014)

Yesterday, north of Escondido, I found the remains of one of the largest pufballs (Calvatia gigantea) I have ever seen. It was the size of a soccer ball! Images Of Puffball Fungi


Wayne's Trivia Note #150 (25 June 2014)

"Leaves of three, let it be; berries white, poisonous sight." This attractive shrub is turning bright red in the hills along I-15 north of Escondido. Wayne's Poison Oak Article


Wayne's Trivia Note #151 (27 June 2014)

Testing macro capability with new Sony pocket camera on this corn mimic left over from Halloween on day 304 of the 3rd millennium (31 October 2001). Wayne's HX50V Test Images


Wayne's Trivia Note #152 (30 June 2014)

A species of Apsena in the Tenebrionidae: My latest beetle discovery on Owens Peak. It is always a thrill to figure out the name of a new beetle (new to me), especially considering that there are at least 350,000 described species. University of California Museum of Paleontology Evolution 101: Why So Many Beetles? Go To: Wayne's Beetle Page


Wayne's Trivia Note #153 (1 July 2014)

I made a pot of black beans & tomatoes for dinner tonight. Elaine found this purely random tomato in her bowl and chose not to eat it. I doubt if it has any religious significance, especially because of its cleft lip. A toasted cheese sandwich with an image of the Virgin Mary sold for $28,000 in 2004. My tomato head is open to the highest bidder! See The Most Expensive Toasted Cheese Sandwich


Wayne's Trivia Note #154 (2 July 2014)

Image of Virgin Mary (or Michael Jackson) on a $28,000 toasted cheese sandwich: Mathematician William Dembski proposed a numerical value called "Universal Probablity Bound" (UPB) that gauges the likelihood that a given event could have occurred by chance in nature, or whether it occurred by intelligent design (see following link). The possible arrangements of pixels in the facial region on the toast exceeds Dembski's UPB. This appears to be an example of intelligent design according to Dembski. Read About Universal Probability Bound


Wayne's Trivia Note #155 (3 July 2014)

Speaking of images miraculously appearing on toast, I couldn't resist uploading this one to Facebook! Church Of The Flying Spaghetti Monster


Wayne's Trivia Note #156 (4 July 2014)

For cardiovascular exercise and to keep myself mentally challenged and happy, I photographed and identified 14 species of ants on Owens Peak north of Palomar College. There are about 22,000 species of ants on earth, with an estimated 1 million ants for every person; and the weight of all the ants in Africa exceeds the weight of all the elephants! See Wayne's Word Introduction To Ants


Wayne's Trivia Note #157 (8 July 2014)

Cleaning symbiosis: A harvester ant worker (Messor andrei) cleaning my thumbnail. For this manicure service I supply the colony with water on a hot summer day. See Wayne's Word Introduction To Ants


Wayne's Trivia Note #158 (10 July 2014)

Found another mite in my nose pore! This is NOT a gross personal hygiene issue. We all have these microscopic 8-legged creatures in our sebaceous glands & hair follicles, especially if you are an adult human and have had personal contact with other adult humans. See Hair Follicle Mite Greeting Card


Wayne's Trivia Note #159 (12 July 2014)

Last night's (11 July 2014) sunset from under my carrotwood trees in Twin Oaks Valley. Sony DSC-HX50V (Hand-Held Twilight Mode). Sony HX50V Review


Wayne's Trivia Note #160 (13 July 2014)

I've had several birds of prey in my backyard bread ecosystem, including a golden eagle! Last Thursday I had a red-tailed hawk.


Wayne's Trivia Note #161 (14 July 2014)

View of my neighbor's owl box at dusk. Barn owl about to take flight. See Wayne's Barn Owl Page

Note: I will no longer upload all of my image files under Facebook's current policy: By posting your pictures and videos, you grant Facebook "a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to to use any (IP) content that you post on or in connection with Facebook." In other words, Facebook can use your images any way they want for free and without your permission. They can give them away or sell them to other persons or websites! As a published author and photographer this policy is not acceptable.