|Michotamia aurata||Heliconia angusta||Balistapus undulatus||Chroicocephalus ridibundus|
|Aepyceros melampus||Phyllidia varicosa||Pelomyxa palustris||Pseudotrapelus sinaitus|
Francesco Redi was an Italian entomologist, parasitologist and toxicologist, sometimes referred to as the "founder of experimental biology" and the "father of modern parasitology". Having a doctoral degree and in both medicine and philosophy from the University of Pisa at the age of 21, he worked in various cities of Italy.
Redi is best known for his series of experiments, published in 1668 as Esperienze Intorno alla Generazione degli Insetti ("Experiments on the Generation of Insects"), which is regarded as his masterpiece and a milestone in the history of modern science. The book is one of the first steps in refuting "spontaneous generation", a theory also known as "Aristotelian abiogenesis". At the time, prevailing theory was that maggots arose spontaneously from rotting meat, which Redi was able to disprove. In an experiment, He used samples of rotting meat that were either fully exposed to the air, partially exposed to the air, or not exposed to air at all. Redi showed that both fully and partially exposed rotting meat developed fly maggots, whereas rotting meat that was not exposed to air did not develop maggots. This discovery completely changed the way people viewed the decomposition of organisms and prompted further investigations into insect life cycles and into entomology in general. It is also an early example of forensic entomology.
In Esperienze Intorno alla Generazione degli Insetti Redi was the first to describe ectoparasites, such as lice (Phthiraptera), fleas (Siphonaptera), and some mites (Acari). His next treatise in 1684, titled Osservazioni intorno agli animali viventi che si trovano negli animali viventi ("Observations on Living Animals, that are in Living Animals") recorded the descriptions and the illustrations of more than 100 parasites. In it he also differentiates the earthworm (generally regarded as a helminth) and Ascaris lumbricoides, the human roundworm. An important innovation from the book is his experiments in chemotherapy in which he employed what is now called "scientific control", the basis of experimental design in modern biological research. Perhaps, his most significant observation was that parasites produce eggs and develop from them, which contradicted the prevailing opinion that they are produced spontaneously. Altogether he is known to have described some 180 species of parasites.See also: Distinguished authors of previous months.
Species of the month
Hoffmann's Two-toed Sloth
Some facts on this mammal:
Length: 58 to 70 cm.
Weight: 4 to 8 kg.
Distribution: South America.
Hebitat: Tropical rainforest canopy from sea level to 3,300 metres.
Diet: Mainly tree leaves; may also eat fruits and flowers.
Protection status: Least Concern (IUCN 3.1).
First described: By the German zoologist and explorer Wilhelm Peters in 1858.
Choloepus hoffmanni isn't the best candidate to win a running race. In fact this Two-toed Sloth has the record for the world's slowest mammal. So sedentary it is, that algae grows on its furry coat. The sloths come in two variants: the two-toed and three-toed, identified by the number of long, prominent claws that they have on each front foot. These animals are built for life in the treetops, spending nearly all of their time aloft, hanging from branches with a powerful grip of their long claws. Choloepus hoffmanni also sleep in trees, and they do this in abundance: between 15 and 20 hours every day. Even when awake they often remain motionless. At night they eat leaves, shoots, and fruit from the trees and get almost all of their water from juicy plants. Sloths mate and give birth while hanging in the trees and their young cling to their mothers and travel by hanging onto them for the first five weeks of their lives. The name of this animal commemorates the German physician and naturalist Karl Hoffmann.
See also: Species of previous months.
위키생물종은 다언어, 자유 콘텐츠를 지향하는 비영리 단체인 위키미디어 재단에서 운영합니다.