SCI-ART LAB

Science, Art, Litt, Science based Art & Science Communication

Calcifying Lake

Lake Natron in Tanzania is one of the most serene lakes in Africa, but it's also the source of some of the most phantasmagorical photographs ever captured — images that look as though living animals had instantly turned to stone.

The alkaline water in Lake Natron has a pH as high as 10.5 and is so caustic it can burn the skin and eyes of animals that aren't adapted to it. The water's alkalinity comes from the sodium carbonate and other minerals that flow into the lake from the surrounding hills. And deposits of sodium carbonate — which was once used in Egyptian mummification — also acts as a fantastic type of preservative for those animals unlucky enough to die in the waters of Lake Natron.

Despite some media reports, the animal didn't simply turn to stone and die after coming into contact with the lake's water. In fact, Lake Natron's alkaline waters support a thriving ecosystem of salt marshes, freshwater wetlands, flamingos and other wetland birds, tilapia and the algae on which large flocks of flamingos feed. 

Lake Natron is one of two alkaline lakes in that area of East Africa; the other is Lake Bahi. Both are terminal lakes that do not drain out to any river or sea; they are fed by hot springs and small rivers. As shallow lakes in a hot climate, their water temperatures can reach as high as 106 degrees Fahrenheit (41 degrees Celsius).

Information Source: live science

The lake Natron in Tanzania is known as “Deadly Lake” due to the high concentration of calcium carbonate.

The fascination towards this lake arises as it calcifies living beings, animals, birds into calcified mummies.

Monarch Butterfly Migration:

Monarch Butterflies Migrate 3,000 Miles—

The colourful insect's migration across the North American continent is one of the greatest natural events on Earth.

Each fall, millions of monarch butterflies leave their summer breeding grounds in the northeastern U.S. and Canada and travel upwards of 3,000 miles to reach overwintering grounds in southwestern Mexico.

But unlike birds or wildebeest that also embark on epic migrations, these individual butterflies will never return.

As the days get shorter and the temperatures drop off, monarchs begin to abandon breeding and feeding territories in search of a safe place to spend the winter.

For monarchs, that overwintering ground is found high up on just a few mountains in central Mexico. Once there, the monarchs huddle together by the millions on the branches of oyamel fir trees.

These trees, also known as sacred firs, create a microclimate that protects the insects.

The tree canopy and ecosystem provide a blanket effect for the monarchs, so the temperatures don’t go too high or too low.

After waiting out the winter, these individuals head part of the way back north to warmer climes such as Texas, where they mate and lay eggs on milkweed plants. In just a few days, the eggs hatch into brilliantly striped caterpillars of black, gold, and white. These monarch larvae consume vast amounts of milkweed before forming a chrysalis and transforming into adult butterflies.

At this point in the cycle, the new butterflies take to the skies again and fly another few hundred miles north before finding another patch of milkweed and repeating the process.

It might take the monarchs as many as four to five generations to complete the journey all the way back up to Canada.

Then, when fall rolls around again, the monarchs make use of air currents to wing all the way back to Mexico—a seemingly impossible feat for such a delicate-looking insect.

"Interestingly, the waves of monarchs heading north will complete their entire life cycles in just five to seven weeks each.

Information source: National Geographic

When we realize, we know a lot, nature shakes us with its phenomena.

Every year in October, you can witness a kaleidoscope of Monarch Butterflies migrating from North America to Mexico.

Great Blue Hole

Found in Belize, Egypt, Guam, Australia, Bahamas, these underwater caves are formed due to the rise of sea level.

The Eye of the Sahara

Prominent mark in the great Sahara Desert is visible from the space. Resemble like a human eye, is a gigantic structure known as Richat Structure.

The eye is visible from the sky.

Reflecting Desert, Salar De Uyuni:

Perfectly reflecting.

Known as the “Heaven on Earth”- Salar De Uyuni in Bolivia is a salt desert, reflecting enough to make you believe that you are standing on a mirror.

Raise your hand if you are about to look at this mirror soon!

8. Desert Rose

For the sake of ROSE!

A form of the mineral gypsum that usually develops in dry sandy places. The switch between dry to wet lets gypsum crystals traps between grains of sand.

Would you like to gift this to someone?

9. Giant permafrost explosions

Ever experimented with frozen methane?

This is what happened when you heat frozen methane trapped in the Siberian permafrost. The heat turns into a gas, building so much pressure that it explodes the ground.

Red Snow:

Sometimes in the summer months, snow surfaces in the polar regions and high mountains appear red in colour The red colour is due to a certain species of algae that grows in the snow.

BLOOD-RED SNOW cloaks polar station in the Antarctic (PHOTOS)

It is considered a ‘seaweed’ – and goes by the name of Chlamydomonas Nivalis which stays deep under the snow in winter, but rises to the surface to reproduce during summer months.

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