Chimeras, Heterochromatism, and Halfsider Parakeets

Cool bird, right? I did some research on chimerism while working on Fuzzy Forensics and Forensic Science: In Pursuit of Justice. A couple of different kinds have been found in humans. The type described in the video, where two embryos with different sets of DNA merge during early development, is thought to be the rarest. There’s not a lot of data on chimeras in humans (and even less in animals), because the condition is undetectable unless it causes health problems… or, as in the CSI episode Bloodlines (S4E23), a criminal’s blood and hair have different sets of chromosomes. Every...

So I Saw Jurassic World….

…and I have thoughts. The special effects are amazing, and I enjoyed the way the film pokes fun at theme parks everywhere – the splash zone at the mosasaur exhibit, the bored teenager running the gyroscope ride, the restaurants and shops with dinosaurs splashed on every conceivable object. But compared to Jurassic Park, Jurassic World is just… soulless.   Don’t get me wrong. Jurassic Park had its flaws, most notably (to me at least), this one. But Jurassic Park was about something. It tapped into our childhood fascination with dinosaurs and showed us the joy and wonder we’d experience if they...

The Birds Are Back!

Definite sign that spring has arrived? The return of migratory birds. We’ve got woodpeckers in the trees, robins pecking at the ground, and two loons paddling around the lake out back. Also spotted this beauty and three of his friends: The picture is a couple weeks out of date (the snow is gone now and the ferns are uncurling) and I am eagerly awaiting the appearance of ducklings. Also the building of the dock so we can actually get the canoe in the water and paddle out in search of baby loons! What are some of your favourite signs...