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Thread: Visions of Earth

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    Visions of Earth


    Butterflies, Brazil




    Photograph by Zig Koch


    Butterflies spatter the shoreline of the Juruena River in Brazil’s new 4.7-million-acre (2-million-hectare) Juruena National Park. Several different species flock to the riverbanks to sip mineral salts from the sand.





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    Victoria Falls, Zambia




    Photograph by Annie Griffiths Belt
    The 355-foot (108-meter) drop of Victoria Falls just inches away, a swimmer stands at the lip of a hidden pool—an eight-foot-deep (two-meter-deep) divot in the riverbed rock—accessible only when the Zambezi River runs low.



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    Whale Shark and Snorkelers, Maldives




    Photograph by Manu San Felix
    A school of snorkelers struggles to keep pace with a whale shark—the world’s biggest fish, which can grow more than 60 feet (18 meters) long. These rare sharks glide along swiftly, exhausting even fit swimmers within minutes.



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    Carrot Seeds, Czech Republic




    Photograph by Viktor Sykora
    It takes a microscope to make a handful of carrot seeds look like a swarm of bristling space invaders. There are about 450,000 of these Daucus carota seeds in a single pound.



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    Sanaga-Yong Chimp Death



    Photograph by Monica Szczupider
    At the Sanaga-Yong Chimpanzee Rescue Center, more than a dozen residents form a gallery of grief, looking on as Dorothy—a beloved female felled in her late 40s by heart failure—is borne to her burial.



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    Colt Fetus, England




    Photograph by Tim Flach
    Like a porcelain figurine carved into repose, the fetus of a foal floats in a jar. The 85-day-old, 5.5-inch-long (14-centimeter-long) colt was removed postmortem and preserved in formaldehyde after its mother, a thoroughbred, died.



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    Mosquito and Water Drops, Finland




    Photograph by Juhani Kosonen
    On a window in Kotka, a slightly battered mosquito sits silhouetted against a mosaic of water drops, each reflecting spring sky and the crayon colors of nearby buildings.



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    Sperm Whales, Atlantic Ocean




    Photograph by Magnus Lundgren, Wild Wonders of Europe
    Near the Azores, just below the sunlit Atlantic surface, sperm whales float in vertical repose. Scientists think "drift dives" are a form of communal slumber. This species may sleep the least of any mammal.



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    Glass Frog, Germany




    Photograph by Heidi and Hans-Jurgen Koch
    The see-through skin of an inch-long (2.5-centimeter-long) glass frog reveals her eggs. Native to Venezuela, the frogs lay eggs in bushes and trees overhanging streams. Tadpoles hatch, then tumble into the current to be swept away.



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    Icebreaker, Arctic Ocean




    Photograph by Paul Nicklen
    The 22-ton stainless steel propellers on the icebreaker Louis S. St-Laurent pause in their work pushing the Canadian vessel through frozen waters—allowing a diver to venture near.



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    Lions, Kenya




    Photograph by Christine and Michel Denis-Huot
    Hungry lions in a Masai Mara pride leave little of a wildebeest. "The animals were so involved [with] eating that I was able to drive very close and take a picture standing on my car's roof," says photographer Michel Denis-Huot.



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    Big Rigs, Japan




    Photograph by Roger Snider
    Covered in chrome and gleaming neon, big rigs from across Japan shine at a truck show in Aichi Prefecture. Known as dekotora, most are working trucks—though on long hauls, they're typically not driven with all their lights on.



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    Mount Fitz Roy, Argentina




    Photograph by Jordi Busque
    Moonlight sets mist aglow on the Patagonian peak of Mount Fitz Roy, known to local people as Cerro Chaltén, or "smoking mountain," because its summit is often capped in clouds.



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    Wind Turbines, California




    Photograph by Jeff Kroeze
    More than 3,000 wind turbines bristle across the hills of the Tehachapi-Mojave Wind Resource Area, generating enough electricity to serve a quarter million homes each year.



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    Great Gray Owl, Sweden




    Photograph by Magnus Elander
    The facial disk of feathers circling this great gray owl's eyes channel forest-floor sounds back to its ears, helping the bird pounce on a vole and carry it away.



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