Weird science facts, September 28 — October 4

Somewhere along the way, I failed to notice that I passed the 1 1/2 year mark of #weirdscifacts on Twitter! Enjoy them while you can — I’ll be definitely stopping at 2 years!

564. Sep 28: The psychedelic frogfish moves by acting a bit like a bouncing ball in the wind! 

565. Sep 29: Glacial earthquakes: the Antarctic Willans Ice Stream releases 2 magnitude 7 seismic events/day.  These are remarkably intense earthquakes, being caused twice a day by the glacier! The kicker is that it is still unclear exactly what causes them.

566. Sep 30: Chastity belts: alive and well in the animal kingdom.  It is very easy to think that certain human social conventions couldn’t possibly have an analogue in the animal kingdom; much of the time that assumption turns out to be wrong.  (Post by @DrBondar)

567. Oct 01: In 1904, the discovery of radium prompted a hit Broadway song, “The Radium Dance“.  Science can permeate popular culture in very surprising ways!  (Post by @ptak)

568. Oct 02: Williamina Fleming, (1857-1911). went from Pickering’s housekeeper to astronomer.  Many great scientists have started from humble origins; I’ve noted previously how Michael Faraday started as a valet for Humphry Davy.  Williamina Fleming had even more working against her, but worked her way up to a respected astronomer.  (Post by @womanastronomer)

569. Oct 03: By the time Josephson won the Physics Nobel Prize in 1973, he had become a researcher in the paranormal.  A surprising number of scientists eventually adopt… ahem… unconventional views as they get older.  What is particularly unusual about Josephson is that he had already become a rather goofy believer in the paranormal years before he won his Nobel.  (h/t @DrMRFrancis) (More can be read here and here.)

570. Oct 04: Tiny projections inside nose slowly stop beating hours after death, giving time of death!  (ht @scimomof2)

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