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It might be better to just get another gerbil.
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Some time in the prehistoric past when the oxygen level on earth was far greater we had giant insects roaming about. These puppies were measured in feet not inches and were big enough for a kid to ride. Insects are nutritious and grow quickly + the biosphere project was a bust = more fun food for all.
Lets fill the biosphere project with a higher level of oxygen and select generations of insects for increasing size and nutritional value (though in our society shape and color will predominate). Filet of grasshopper anyone. Makes a great Christmas pet (in oxygen enriched aquarium), if it gets out it makes a great meal. Note that if a millipede loses a leg it can grow a replacement, try that with a cow!
Future 4H blue ribbon winner.
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Apr 11 2005]
The future is now
Some people already eat bugs. [whippinggas, Apr 11 2005]
Ancient Centipede 1' wide, 5' long
[Widgit, Apr 11 2005]
[Widgit, Apr 11 2005]
Meganeura - Giant gragonfly
Interesting info [Widgit, Apr 11 2005]
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||//Makes a great Christmas pet // <obligatory> A giant millipede is not just for Christmas - with luck, you'll have enough for a curry on Boxing Day.
||//we had giant insects roaming about. These puppies were measured in feet// ? ? ? Love to see a link on that.
||Are you talking about ancient marine arthropods? Because the coconut crab is about the limit for arthropod size on land.
||As a kid I recall an exhibit at the museum of prehistoric forest. The giant millipede stuck in my mind as it was large enough for me to ride. Somewhere else I read that the higher oxygen levels allowed larger insect life. Not sure if true but does make some sense as insects intake oxygen through valve opens in their exoskeleton which then passively diffuses through their body tracheal tubes (see link). If the oxygen was higher then it could fget further down these passages before being depleted.
||"The strip coal mine has also yielded fossils of two rare arachnids, a giant centipede-like insect measuring about 60 inches long (150 centimeters) and 12 inches wide (30 centimeters), and a new genus and species of gerarid insect. " (see link)
||Meganeura (giant dragonfly) which lived more than 280 million years ago in the forest swamps and said to have a wing span of more than 27 inches. (see link)
||[widgit] But when you squash things for millions of years, don't they grow flatter and larger, like a cartoon cat through a mangle? Who's to say these weren't just itty-bitty, ordinary millipedes/dragonflies?