Society X

the Great Universe

Category: altruism

Children of the Corn

by 5ocietyx

Interesting research from the University of Colorado Boulder suggesting altruism exists in corn plants:

“The researchers looked at corn, in which each fertilized seed contained two “siblings” — an embryo and a corresponding bit of tissue known as endosperm that feeds the embryo as the seed grows, said CU-Boulder Professor Pamela Diggle. They compared the growth and behavior of the embryos and endosperm in seeds sharing the same mother and father with the growth and behavior of embryos and endosperm that had genetically different parents.

“The results indicated embryos with the same mother and father as the endosperm in their seed weighed significantly more than embryos with the same mother but a different father,” said Diggle, a faculty member in CU-Boulder’s ecology and evolutionary biology department. “We found that endosperm that does not share the same father as the embryo does not hand over as much food — it appears to be acting less cooperatively.”

Quite what this says for Monsanto’s GM corn remains to be seen, but could their bio-engineered master race be poised to take over the indigenous corn populations of the world? We at 5ociety X remain skeptical about the future.

taken from –

http://www.colorado.edu/news/releases/2013/02/01/can-plants-be-altruistic-you-bet-says-new-cu-boulder-led-study

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Pelorus Jack

by 5ocietyx

Pelorus Jack was a Risso’s dolphin who helped guide ships through a perilous stretch of water between the islands of New Zealand. First seen in 1888, and last seen in April 1912, ‘he’ would meet and escort ships through Cook Strait, New Zealand. In 1904 Pelorus Jack was shot at from a ship called The USS Penguin, after which a law was passed protecting Jack from any harm in the future. Interestingly, the experience didnt put him off of his important work, though Jack would never escort The Penguin again, and it was wrecked on the rocks 2 years later.

Pelorus Jack would swim alongside a ship for twenty minutes at a time. If the crew could not see Jack at first, they would often wait for him to appear.

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