After watching a Sir David Attenborough special on the crocodile this weekend my interest was piqued when he noted that generally, the crocodilian reptile has remained unchanged for 70 million years the reason – adaptability.
Apparently no other species has evolved to adapt as well to the ever-changing climate changes, food sources, fresh or saltwater, etc. Imagine my surprise when reading about Denis Jourdanet’s (1815-1892) work on hypoxia at high altitudes – a similar highlighted story in today’s Science Daily connected to research conducted on alligators to see how dinosaurs (a close relative) evolved in earth’s then 12% oxygen atmosphere. Another related click brought me to biodiesel research; apparently extracted oil from alligator fat can easily be converted into biodiesel similar to soybeans. This project focused on the alligator meat industry disposing about 15 million pounds of alligator fat in landfills (American Chemical Society (2011, August 17) – Gator in your tank. Not only would this free up valuable food crops but shift the dependency on oil; move on over Tiger!
Who would have thought that this slightly terrifying apex predator has survived the millennia – here at BioStat we only go back two decades, but we have adapted to our client’s needs in those years and continue to do so; it’s part of our culture.