In order for certain insects, crustaceans, and reptiles to grow, they must periodically shed, or molt, their outer layer of skin or other covering in a process known as ecdysis. Prior to shedding, a new soft and expandable layer is laid down underneath the existing one. Then the inner layers of the old cuticle are digested by a molting fluid secreted by the epidermal cells, the animal emerges from the old covering, and the new cuticle hardens. How often do insects undergo ecdysis?
Miguel de Cervantes
Back in the day
Father's Day is a day set apart in many countries for honoring fathers. In the US, UK, and Canada, it is observed on the third Sunday in June. The idea for a father's day originated when Sonora Louise Smart Dodd of Spokane, Washington, heard a sermon on Mother's Day in 1909 and was inspired to create a date to honor fathers like her own, a Civil War veteran. Through her efforts, the first Father's Day was celebrated in Spokane in 1910. When was the holiday made official in the US?
Born on a day like today
Pascal was a French mathematician, physicist, and religious philosopher. A child prodigy, he earned the envy of René Descartes with an essay he wrote on conic sections when he was still a teen. Credited with founding the modern theory of probability and advancing differential calculus, he also made important contributions to physics, notably in the study of atmospheric pressure. Why did he later abandon his scientific work to focus on theology and philosophy?