February 9, 2008

WE ARE ALL INTELLIGENT DESIGNISTS NOW:

On 'Nature,' how 2 species intertwine: The rapidly disappearing red knot depends on the increasingly popular horseshoe crab. (Sandy Bauers, 2/09/08, Philadelphia Inquirer)

Every spring on the bay, as the crabs begin their spawn, the robin-size red knot is beginning one of the longest migrations on the planet, headed from the tip of South America to Arctic breeding grounds.

It lands on the shores of the Delaware Bay, exhausted and emaciated, with about two weeks to fatten up before continuing north. There is but a small window of opportunity for it to breed before the snows begin again.

It needs the crab eggs.

The creatures are linked by an astonishing synchronicity.

But a few decades ago, humans discovered other uses for the crab. Its blood, which clots in the presence of bacteria, is used in medical tests. "Each day, we're finding more ways the crab can help us, from sutures to contact lenses," Argo notes.

The crabs are released alive after donating some of their blood. But beginning in the 1990s, millions have been harvested to be used as bait for eel and conch, suddenly in high demand in the Asian food market.

As the crabs have declined, so has the bird.


Nature doesn't select. Intelligent beings do.

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 9, 2008 12:00 AM
Comments

The horseshoe crab is the environment of the red knot; man is the environment of the horseshoe crab. Nothing to see here. Move along.

Posted by: Lou Gots at February 9, 2008 12:17 PM
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