Before Christmas, with a signed A3 giclée ‘Creature Comfort’ prints from Claudine O’Sullivan on offer, we asked you to share an obscure fact about an animal of your choosing.
It was quite a stampede, but alas only one winner…
…Liam Deliverance writes:
‘I watched a documentary recently about the Poison Dart Frog, found in parts of tropical Central and South America. So called because their toxins were harvested and used in the tip of blow-darts by Native Americans in their hunting techniques. Visually they are famous for very bright colours and stripes, referred to as aposematicness, and is an advertising function to tell would-be predators to keep walking so to speak.
‘Some frogs which display these bright colours and striping have no toxicity but are just mimicking their dangerous cousins without having to go to all the trouble. The poison dart frogs do not produce the toxins themselves, but instead derive them from eating a rich diet of toxic mites, ants and centipedes, a magnificent evolutionary step to not become victims themselves and instead take the sustenance and process the toxins into defensive patches of poisons contained on areas of their skin.
‘The most poisonous of all these frogs, the Golden Poison Frog, has enough toxin on average to kill 10 to 20 men or about 10,000 mice. This is all the more remarkable when you consider their size, weighing in at an average of 28 grams and measuring 1.5 cms in length, comfortably fitting on the average thumbnail. The extracted chemicals they produce have some medical applications with one such poison used to make a painkiller 200 times as potent as morphine.’
Well done, Liam.
Nostalgia by Fuchsia Macaree
Also before Christmas…
…with a print from the new collection of limited edition A2 giclée prints by 8 of Irish based artists all based around the theme of Nostalgia on JamArtPrints.com on offer, we asked you for your favourite Christmas memory.
Paul took the print with this gem:
‘My favourite memories of Christmas are usually centred around video games and me being a giant sap. The three that stand out concern the NES, the Gameboy and the Playstation 1. This is the NES one.
‘The NES was my first videogame system. I didn’t know about it when it released and I doubt my parents could have afforded one. But when the SNES was about to came out and my cousins were offloading their NES, I did every job imaginable during that summer holiday for my parents, neighbours, extended family etc, all to earn the money to pay for it and pay for it I did (came with Duck Hunt and a few other bits). Magic, pure magic.
‘At this time, we would spent alternating Christmas’ at home in Dublin or with the rest of my family in Cork. We were lodged with my Grandparents and it was jobs, jobs, jobs for all of us. Old country people, idleness was the Devil etc. They’re all dead now but I remember them very fondly. The idea of getting to play my new console was out of the question but on Christmas morning, set up in the back store room of my Grandparents house was our family telly (my Dad had snuck it down, tiny little Mitsubishi 13 inch), my NES (I must have been a dense child, I didn’t notice it being packed) and a new game from Santa, Wrath of the Black Manta.
‘For the rest of that morning, my parents ran interference on my Grandparents, telling them I was gathering turf from the shed, changing my socks, tidying the bed etc, so they wouldn’t wonder where I was and give me a job. It was only an hour or so before we were hustled off to Mass but that time was magical. Whenever the game was off, I was like a puppy to my parents, hanging around them, trying to help them with everything they were doing for the rest of the holiday as I knew the work that had gone into that Christmas.’
Thank you, Paul.
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