Vanessa at night
mbpi at juno.com
mbpi at juno.com
Wed Jan 23 21:30:41 EST 2002
Oh ye, of little FAITH! A Cleric who believes in a God unseen and
uproven to exist, yet can't entertain the possibility that butterflies
can and do fly/migrate at night because neither HE (nor anyone else to
his knowledge) has "ever seen it" (!)
On Mon, 21 Jan 2002 16:07:24 -0500 "Ron Gatrelle" <gatrelle at tils-ttr.org>
> > It is not possible to prove a negative.
> Paul's solicitation of information relative to butterfly flight at
> (in the dark) in conjunction with his field-observations-based
> that they do not fly in a sustained, directional, migratory (or
> manner in the dark is not trying to prove a negative (hypothetical).
> It is
> a conclusion reached through that which is plainly observable.
> How do we know the Miami Blue is in trouble? Because we _see_ they
> _not_ there. It would be ridiculous for someone or group to come
> along and
> tritely dismiss the move to protect and prosper the Miami Blue by
> "How do they know that there are _not_ Miami Blues all over - one
> can not
> prove a negative. Just because they don't see them does not mean
> that they
> are not there when no one is looking."
> The reason I know there are no orange trees in my yard is that I
> _do_ not
> see any there. The _do_ makes this a positive (factual, actual,
> conclusion based on _observable_ facts. This is how we _know_ that
> a tree
> falling in a forest generates sound whether or not there is a human
> there to hear it or not. (Yet, there are probably some
> intellectually keen
> people in this world that are so dumb they would have to set up an
> "experiment" - with a million dollar government grant of course- to
> fell a
> tree remotely from 10 miles away with video cameras in place at the
> location to observe the reactions of several confined rabbits, deer,
> raccoons at the moment the tree hit the ground. But this too would
> inconclusive as perhaps it was sight that startled the animals and
> was only a false conclusion reached. Thus, the experiment would
> need to be
> carried out again with blindfolded animals. There are inconclusive
> here too, so that ultimately one would have to find Dr. Do-little
> and have
> the animals report directly to him. But then how are we to know
> creatures are telling the truth?)
> Now, Paul's (as probably all or our) observations are very limited
> so there
> is a wide open door for some further testing, which, with the advent
> night vision technology makes observing leps in the dark very easy.
> could tell fairly easily the vast majority of moths in flight from
> butterflies in flight. As others have suggested here - there is a
> project waiting for someone to do it ( if it has not yet been
> yet). However, this will be a waste of money as the answer is
> known as evidenced by our _seeing_ that the clouds of thousands of
> XX which
> have been moving across the desert floor, the highway, and onto the
> windshields and grills has now completely stopped as we stand on the
> spot by the side of the far-from-human-lighting road at midnight.
> And as
> the sun comes up again the next day - slowly they return to the sky
> repeat the second day the dispersal of the first. And perhaps the
> fourth, and fifth DAY - then they are gone.
> For decades I have seen most butterflies in the field fly till the
> last bit
> of light. I, like many others, have seen butterflies attracted to
> (confused by) artificial light - with some types showing up much
> frequently than others. However, none of this has anything to do
> with the
> question as to whether butterflies (Pierids and Nymphalids in
> dispersal or
> Monarchs in migration) engage in this activity (and by necessity
> have done
> so for a few thousand years) _in the dark_ of the dead of night.
> answer in no, they do not. IF they did this would already be well
> documented by people seeing clouds of them at night.
> We are not talking about a couple individuals flitting about after
> dark for
> some unknown unusual reason -- we are talking about 1) migratory
> dispersal flight at night and 2) night flight as a regular local
> We need to remember that butterflies don't just fly because they
> like it.
> Their flight is related to species function - like mate
> feeding (nectar, dung, sap, etc.), escape from predators, mobility
> warmer spots for basking, etc. In other words they need a stimulus
> and effect) to fly _any_ time.
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