April 3rd, 2009

Ann Vole

Autarky

An autarky is an economy that is self-sufficient and does not take part in international trade, or severely limits trade with the outside world. Likewise the term refers to an ecosystem not affected by influences from the outside, which relies entirely on its own resources. - wiki
Ann Vole

zero energy home organizations in Canada

Ann Vole

ecodensity

City planners are starting to catch on to the idea that high-density housing is a good thing for everyone as long as parks, businesses and transportation needs are also considered for being near to that denser housing scenario. Vancouver intends to convert some alleyways to new streets of houses that have smaller yards. I think we need to make more multi-suite buildings and condo complexes rather then lose the yards with their potential for gardens.
Ann Vole

Super-order of the day: Afrotheria

an order of animals is a grouping of animal families that are believed to be genetically related. A super-order is a group of orders that may have some genetic relationship but the connection is not obvious. The Afrotheria super-order contains several orders of very diverse animal types:
Order Afrosoricida has "golden moles", tenrecs and otter shrews
Order Macroscelidea has elephant shrews (also called sengis)
Order Tubulidentata only has one animal, the aardvark
Order Hyracoidea is the hyraxes
Order Proboscidea has the three types of elephants
Order Sirenia has manatees and the dugong
the other two orders are extinct but one looks a bit like the Loch Ness monster and the other looks like a rhinoceros.

you may not be familiar with some of these animals so here are some wiki quotes:
"Tenrecs are widely diverse, resembling hedgehogs, shrews, opossums, mice and even otters"
"a hyrax could be mistaken for a very well-fed rabbit or guinea pig"
"aardvark comes from the Afrikaans/Dutch for "earth pig" (aarde=earth, varken=pig), because early settlers from Europe thought it resembled a domesticated pig"
"As it has become plain that the elephant shrews are unrelated to the shrews, the biologist Jonathan Kingdon has proposed that they instead be called sengis, a term derived from the Bantu languages of Africa"
"Elephant shrews vary in size from about 10 to almost 30 centimeters, from just under 50 g to over 500 g"
"Manatees and the Dugong are the only marine mammals classified as herbivores"
"Living sirenians grow between 2.5-4 meters long and can weigh up to 1500 kg. Steller's sea cow, extinct since 1786, could reach lengths of 8 meters"