Fire breathing dragons and bombardier beetles

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theophilus
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Fire breathing dragons and bombardier beetles

Postby theophilus » Tue Nov 08, 2016 11:24 am

Most people believe dinosaurs became extinct before any humans existed, but many cultures have legends of creatures called dragons that closely resemble dinosaurs. This fact indicates that the extinction of dinosaurs must be very recent. (There are some who believe that there are still living dinosaurs. http://www.newanimal.org/dinosaurs.htm ) Some of these dragon legends speak of dragons that breath fire. Is it possible that such a creature actually existed? The best way to answer that question is to look at an animal that we know does exist, the bombardier beetle. Here is what Wikipedia says about it.

Bombardier beetles are ground beetles (Carabidae) in the tribes Brachinini, Paussini, Ozaenini, or Metriini—more than 500 species altogether—which are most notable for the defense mechanism that gives them their name: when disturbed, they eject a hot noxious chemical spray from the tip of their abdomen with a popping sound.

The spray is produced from a reaction between two chemical compounds, hydroquinone and hydrogen peroxide, which are stored in two reservoirs in the beetle’s abdomen. When the aqueous solution of hydroquinones and hydrogen peroxide reaches the vestibule, catalysts facilitate the decomposition of the hydrogen peroxide and the oxidation of the hydroquinone. Heat from the reaction brings the mixture to near the boiling point of water and produces gas that drives the ejection. The damage caused can be fatal to attacking insects. Some bombardier beetles can direct the spray over a wide range of directions.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombardier_beetle

Bombardier beetles defend themselves by expelling a hot liquid from their bodies. What if some dinosaurs had this ability but expelled the liquid from its nose or mouth? Because dinosaurs are much larger than beetles the amount of liquid would be much greater and if it landed on something flammable it might even be capable of starting a fire. To an observer it would appear that the dinosaur or dragon was breathing fire. Fire breathing dragons might not be a product of human imagination but something that actually did exist at one time.
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Re: Fire breathing dragons and bombardier beetles

Postby hughfarey » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:46 pm

I used to give seminars on the existence of dragons, loosely based on Peter Dickinson's book, "The Flight of Dragons", and because I was known as a science teacher, people usually came to think that they probably existed, complete with cave-dwelling, fire-breathing, gold-and-jewel hoarding, knight-in-armour fighting and princess eating, all of which were essential to its biological lifestyle. It was even possible to show that the complete absence of any dragon remains or fossils was in fact very good evidence for their existence. Sometimes it was quite hard to unconvince people in the bar afterwards...

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Re: Fire breathing dragons and bombardier beetles

Postby RickD » Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:41 pm

I saw a really short Guatemalan today, so that means there's a pretty good chance that hobbits existed.
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Re: Fire breathing dragons and bombardier beetles

Postby Audie » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:05 pm

RickD wrote:I saw a really short Guatemalan today, so that means there's a pretty good chance that hobbits existed.


Short people jokes huh. Some day, somehow, when you least expect it, I will get you.

https://i.ytimg.com/vi/T8SaaNlkNW4/maxresdefault.jpg

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Re: Fire breathing dragons and bombardier beetles

Postby RickD » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:30 pm

Audie wrote:
RickD wrote:I saw a really short Guatemalan today, so that means there's a pretty good chance that hobbits existed.


Short people jokes huh. Some day, somehow, when you least expect it, I will get you.

https://i.ytimg.com/vi/T8SaaNlkNW4/maxresdefault.jpg

Audie,

I'm 5'-5 1/2" tall. I can make short jokes. ;)
1 Corinthians 1:9
9 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Audie wrote:
"Christianity is not a joke, but it has some very poor representatives."


St. Richard the Sarcastic--The Patron Saint of Irony

Audie
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Re: Fire breathing dragons and bombardier beetles

Postby Audie » Wed Nov 09, 2016 7:30 am

RickD wrote:
Audie wrote:
RickD wrote:I saw a really short Guatemalan today, so that means there's a pretty good chance that hobbits existed.


Short people jokes huh. Some day, somehow, when you least expect it, I will get you.

https://i.ytimg.com/vi/T8SaaNlkNW4/maxresdefault.jpg

Audie,

I'm 5'-5 1/2" tall. I can make short jokes. ;)


Good, someone I can look up to for his high minded jokes.


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