Under Threat: The Solitary Jaguar.

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Jaguar (image via: Awesome-Desktop/S.K.)
The Jaguar (Panthera Onca) is the third-largest of the four big cats in the genus Panthera, and the only living member native to the western hemisphere.
Growing up to 160 kg (350 lb), Jaguars are distinguished by rosette-emblazoned fur, comparatively short tails and an exceptionally powerful bite that enables them to successfully prey on armored reptiles such as caimans and turtles.

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(Images via: Fanpop and WWF/Go Wild)
Jaguars are stated to be Near Threatened by the IUCN and while their current range is roughly half of what it once was, these often solitary big cats can still be found from southern Arizona in the United States down to Paraguay and northern Argentina.

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Source: Rio Meow: 9 Amazing Wild Cats Of South America – WebEcoist

“Out of this World,” Mungo National Park, New South Wales.

Picture of the week Mungo National Park.
Lisa spent the weekend exploring Mungo National Park, in New South Wales, to take this “out of this world” photo.
Image Credit: Photograph by ABC Open contributor Lisa Mildura.
Source: Pic of the week Mungo NP – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

A male Allen’s Hummingbird, Santa Cruz, California.

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A male Allen’s hummingbird (Selasphorus sasin) near Santa Cruz, CA. Image credit: Shravans14 / CC BY-SA 4.0.
Since the 1830s, ornithologists have assumed that hummingbirds drink by capillary action (wicking), the passive process of a fluid rising into a narrow tube because of forces attracting the liquid to the tube’s solid internal surface.
A new study, led by Dr Alejandro Rico-Guevara from the University of Connecticut, debunks the ‘wicking theory’ and shows that the hummingbird’s tongue actually works as an elastic micropump.
Using high-speed cameras, Dr Rico-Guevara and co-authors filmed the tongue-nectar interaction in 18 hummingbird species, from seven of the nine main hummingbird groups throughout the Americas.
The results were published online today in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences.
“A hummingbird’s tongue, which can be stuck out about the same length as its beak, is tipped with two long skinny tubes, or grooves,” Dr Rico-Guevara explained.
“Rather than wicking, the nectar is drawn into the tongue by the elastic expansion of the grooves after they are squeezed flat by the beak.”
The tongue structure is collapsed during the time it crosses the space between the bill tip and the nectar pool, but once the tip contacts the nectar surface, the supply of fluid allows the collapsed groove to gradually recover to a relaxed cylindrical shape as the nectar fills it.
via Hummingbird Tongues Work Like Elastic Micropumps, Study Shows | Biology | Sci-News.com.

Cargo Ship caught by Thunderstorm off the Coast of Malta.

A cargo ship sails on through a menacing Mediterranean Sea during a thunderstorm some 20 nautical miles off the coast of Malta in September, 2017.
Image Credit: Photograph by Aris Messinis / AFP / Getty.
Source: Photos of the Week: 9/23–9/29 – The Atlantic

Our Life Below the Surface by Andreas Franke.

1166‘Vandenberg: Life Below the Surface’ is simply a breathtaking exhibition by creative genius & Austrian photographer Andreas Franke.
The exhibit features a dozen digitally composited images on the Gen. Hoyt S. Vandenberg that was scuttled in May 2009.
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 The 4 x 5ft photographs stretch along 200 feet on the starboard side of the Vandenberg’s weather deck, 93 feet below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean.
Source: These Outstanding Underwater Photos Are Simply Magic

China’s Neon-Lit Alleyways by Marilyn Mugot.

Cinematic images of some of China’s neon-lit back alleys by Paris-based graphic designer and photographer Marilyn Mugot inspired by the films of David Cronenberg, Ridley Scott and Stanley Kubrick.
She visited China in November and spent six weeks exploring Chongqing, Guilin and Hong Kong, setting out for a different neighborhood as the sun went down to spend several hours wandering and shooting.

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As part of her Night Project series, she tells Wired in an interview: “I prefer to work at night because it’s exciting. The lights and the elements take on mystical and secret dimensions which are not always real but a result of my imagination.”
See more of Marilyn Mugot’s work on Instagram and at her website.
Source: Photos of China’s Neon-Lit Alleyways by Marilyn Mugot