Category Archives: Animals

Animals are members of a group of biological organisms classified in taxonomy as the kingdom Animalia, based on certain shared characteristics. The word “animal” refers to all members of the kingdom Animalia, encompassing creatures as diverse as sponges, jellyfish, worms, insects, fishes, reptiles, amphibians, birds and mammals (including humans).In everyday non-scientific usage, the word animal is often used to refer only to non-human members of the kingdom Animalia.

What is Vermiculture? How can you prepare Vermicompost?

Earthworms are often called friends of farmers as they help in recycling agricultural waste and improving the quality of the soil. They live in soil by making burrows which makes soil porous and helps in the respiration of plant rootsThe terms vermiculture, vermicompost, and vermicomposting all are related to earthworms. Let us now define them one by one.

What is Vermiculture?

Vermiculture is the artificial rearing or cultivation of earthworms. It is a scientific process to produce earthworms in large numbers. Earthworm farms all over the world produce thousands of earthworms per day. They are useful in several ways, some of them are listed below.

  • Soil improvement: They make soil porous and allows better aeration, quick absorption of water, and easy penetration of plant roots.
  • Vermicomposting: Earthworms are the best worms for vermicomposting.
  • Fishbait: They form excellent bait for catching fish with fishing rods.
  • Scientific Study: Scientists study and dissect them in labs as they are easily available.
  • Scavengers: The earthworms act as natural scavengers they eat organic debris present in the soil.

What is Vermicomposting?

vermicultureVermicomposting is the process of turning organic waste into worm castings (worm excreta). In this process, earthworms are fed with organic waste in a composting pit so that they can digest it and then excrete it as worm castings.

Worm castings are rich in nitrogen, potassium, phosphorous, calcium, and magnesium and thus act as an excellent biofertilizer. This biofertilizer is commonly known as vermicompost and is nutritionally more beneficial than other composts.

How can you prepare vermicompost?

You can prepare vermicompost easily at home or in agriculture fields. All you need is the species of earthworm, a composting bin or pit, and organic matter which can be fed to the earthworms.

1. Species of Earthworm:

Eisenia fetida is the best earthworm species for vermicomposting. It feeds on rotting vegetation, compost, and manure.

2. Composting pit or bin:

compost-binYou can carry out vermicomposting in various kinds of pits and bins.

  • Tanks of brick and mortar with proper aeration.
  • Plastic crates with holes drilled at the bottom and sides.
  • Wooden crates.
  • Clay pots with holes on sides.
  • Simple homemade bin made of wood.

3. Organic matter:

  • Agri waste – crop, husk, straw, stems, leaf matter, etc.
  • Animal waste – cow dung, biogas slurry.
  • Kitchen waste – scrapes of vegetables, fruits, eggshells, etc.

The process of vermicomposting:

1. Predigestion of Organic matter:

You should mix organic matter with cattle dung or manure to initiate bacterial decomposition. During the initial days, organic matter produces a lot of heat because of active bacterial decomposition. So, you should add the organic matter to composting bed only after it has cooled down.

2. Preparation of Vermibed or Bedding:

VermicompostingYou should place a layer of bedding at the bottom of the container or pit. Worms thrive in moist conditions, so cardboard, paper, coconut husk, or sugarcane husk are the best. This is because these items can hold a lot of moisture.

You can either soak bedding material before placing it in the bin or you can spray it with water after placing it in the bin. After that, we can add the predigested organic matter. Now fill at least half of the container or pit.

3. Introduction of worms:

earthwormsYou can place earthworms by digging a shallow depression in the middle of bedding or can simply spread them over the bedding. You can add them depending upon the size of the vermibed. However, you should know that earthworms reproduce rapidly. So, if you give them enough food and space they can double their population in 60 to 90 days.

After introducing earthworms, you should add a top layer of husk or dried matter to protect them from direct sunlight.

4. Harvesting of Vermicompost:

You can harvest compost when the organic matter becomes somewhat loose, crumbly, and dark brown. It should smell like earth at the time of harvesting. If there is a bad smell then it means bacterial decomposition is still undergoing. So, you should not harvest it.

The complete harvesting process can take about three to four weeks or it can take up to months depending upon the material used. After harvesting, you can clean the composting bin, and then you can repeat the above process for the next harvest.

Also Read: What are Antitranspirants? How do they Reduce Water Loss in Plants?

So, now you know about vermiculture, vermicompost, and vermicomposting. Also, you can now easily prepare vermicompost at home. So that is all for now, meet you in my next article. Keep Reading, Keep Exploring, and Keep Sharing your Knowledge, and above all BE CURIOUS. 🙂

Also Read: What is Soil? How is it formed?

Tiger Cubs are born Blind.

Tiger cubs are born blind. Yup, that’s true. They remain dependent on their mother for the first two months. The tiger cub’s eyes open around six to twelve days from their birth. However, they attain full vision after a couple of weeks.

At this stage, they are completely vulnerable to every other predator. That is part of nature’s balancing act, which allows a fair chance to others against the apex predator. The tigress is solely responsible for the protection and care of the cubs that’s why she leaves them only for short periods.tiger-cubs

Tigeress usually give birth to around seven cubs, but the average size of its litter is three. The tigress spends a lot of time at the late stages of pregnancy searching for a safe birthing place. Tigress is overly cautious when caring for young cubs. For instance, she will immediately move cubs to a new place if the surrounding area gets disturbed or threatened.

The tiger cubs start following their mother for casual walks or on drinking trips only after two months of age. Tigress will spend nearly 70% of their time nursing and caring for their cubs. The cubs spend most of their time playing with their siblings and they become independent after seventeen to twenty-four months of age.

Also Read: Mesozoic Era – the Age of Reptiles.

So now we know that Tiger cubs are born blind and how tigress takes care of them. Also, we know how nature plays its balancing act to allow a fair chance to others against the APEX predator. 🙂. So that is all for now, meet you in my next article. Keep Reading, Keep Exploring, and Keep Sharing your Knowledge, and above all BE CURIOUS. 🙂

Also Read: 11 Algae that are Used as Human Food.

Evolution of Brain – Where did our brains come from?

Brain in all organisms can be simply defined as a mass of nerve tissue that integrates sensory information and directs motor responses and in higher organisms, it is also the center of learning. The evolution of the brain occurred over a time scale of 3.5 billion years. It transformed from simple nerve conduction through ion channels in single-celled bacteria into a complex human brain made up of billions of cells.  Continue reading Evolution of Brain – Where did our brains come from?

How do lipids maintain the fluidity of the plasma membrane?

The plasma membrane is an outer, thin, semi-permeable membrane that surrounds the cytoplasm and the other constituents of the cell. The Fluid Mosaic model proposed by Singer and Nicholson in 1976, describes the plasma membrane as a structure in which a mosaic of proteins is discontinuously embedded in or attached to a fluid lipid bilayer (membrane).

Continue reading How do lipids maintain the fluidity of the plasma membrane?

How does a Tadpole change into a Frog?

A freshly hatched tadpole larva has a limbless body divide into an ovoid head, a short trunk, and a slender tail. At this stage, there is no mouth and as a result, it cannot take anything from outside. Most of the nutrition is provided by the yolk material. The exchange of gases takes place in three pairs of highly vascular and feathery external gills. Continue reading How does a Tadpole change into a Frog?

11 Amazing facts about Butterflies.

Nature has created many beautiful masterpieces, but a butterfly is the most beautiful and colorful masterpiece. The vivid colors of butterfly wings are so life like that sometimes people call them “flying flowers”. Do you know, these colorful creatures actually belong to the insect family of the animal kingdom. Here are some amazing facts about butterflies that may surprise you.

Continue reading 11 Amazing facts about Butterflies.

Mesozoic Era – the Age of Reptiles.

The Mesozoic Era started about 225 million years prior to the present era, the amphibians were declining after a long period of supremacy among the animals and the reptiles were gradually replacing them. Many of them became very large fearsome and came to dominate the animal life practically everywhere. As a result, giant reptiles, dinosaurs, and other monstrous beasts become very abundant and spread into all habitats. For this reason, the Mesozoic era is also called the Age of Reptiles or the Age of Dinosaurs. Continue reading Mesozoic Era – the Age of Reptiles.

Why is the Two-Kingdom Classification System Inadequate?

We can easily distinguish a living animal from a living plant in our surroundings. We do not find any difficulty in identifying an animal as long as we see it moving, eating and alive. When it comes to plants, we have an image of a structure having spread out appearance with green parts like leaves in our mind. So, to keep it as simple as it was, Carolus Linnaeus classified all the organisms of the world into two Kingdoms i.e. Plantae and Animalia. Continue reading Why is the Two-Kingdom Classification System Inadequate?

What is meant by Cellular Totipotency?

Cellular Totipotency is the innate ability of a single cell to produce all cell types and to organize them into an entire organism when cultured in a suitable culture medium at an appropriate temperature and aeration conditions. Plant spores and Zygote are examples of single cells that show cellular totipotency. Continue reading What is meant by Cellular Totipotency?