The Codex Cospi (Codex Bologna); pre-Columbian Mesoamerican pictorial manuscript [detail], Puebla-Tlaxcala, Tehuacan valley, Mexico, nd.
A Thief of a Magpie
William James Webbe, 1856
From Buddha’s Crystal and Other Fairy Tales, 1908.
These amazing underwater “crop circles” are the result of a species of pufferfish. The males create these large, intricate designs in the seabed with their fins to attract potential mates. The females inspect the finished design and decide if they wish to mate with the male from there. The female will lay her eggs in the center of the circles, and the male will then fertilize and guard the eggs.
Previously, the circles were of unknown origin, and remained a mystery for several years until it was discovered that these little guys were responsible for the beautiful designs.
Gustav Klimt (Austrian, 1862-1918) - Favola (1883)
Basket Star - Astrocladus cf. euryale
Basket stars are a group of ophiuroids (Ophiuroidea - Euryalida - Gorgonocephalidae) in which the five arms are very branched. Most of them remain hidden during the day but come out at night, extending their arms into the water to trap food particles.
The Basket Star Astrocladus euryale (in the photos) is a species native to South Africa, whose arms are branched successively and are covered with pale spots. Sometimes this Basket star is commonly referred to as Gorgon’s Head.
Wading by Luke Mancini:
"Inspired by egrets in the creek between my place and work, a non-avian cousin enjoys foraging in a somewhat more natural environment. I had the tail in a more traditionally ‘dinosaur’y curve for most of the process but actually quite like the straight (more accurate) version in the end."