Follow The Trace | The brave fell

first_img Lack of confidence Title favourites Kingston College (KC) failed to live up to their famous school motto “the brave may fall but never yield” by falling and eventually yielding in their unsuccessful bid to unseat defending champions Calabar at the 2017 ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’ Athletics Championships on the weekend. In one of the most epic Champs battles of all time, Calabar showed the poise and class in the critical moments that were worthy of champions on their way to securing a sixth straight hold on the Mortimer Geddes Trophy, but it was equally that Kingston College underperformed and wilted under the pressure after all the pundits agreed that it was their Champs to lose, and lose it they certainly did. The narrow three-point margin, and all the unpredictable variables, including the pivotal injuries to Kingston College star man and team leader Jhevaughn Matherson, as well as top Class Two man Wayne Pinnock, all played a part. However, in the end, it was as much the championship mettle of the Calabar coaching staff led by the guru Michael Clarke, alongside his battle-hardened group of athletes, that once again set the champions apart. This entire generation of Calabar athletes simply do not know what it is to lose this title. The feeling of champs defeat is foreign to this group, and they were willing to fight tooth and nail to avoid that feeling. Confidence and focus are also pivotal to sports performance. Calabar, at no point during this season’s twists and turns, took their eyes off the prize. Conversely, this Kingston College crop does not know what it is like to lift that trophy. With that uncertainty come doubts and a lack of confidence, which, in the end, cost KC another Champs they should have won. Clarke took the entire Kingston College staff to school with some super strategic and tactical moves that severed the head of the snake and totally shifted the balance of power midway the championships. Blistering pace That decision to have the two Calabar runners in the Class Two 1,500m put the race at such a blistering pace effectively took the popular Ugandan Aryamanya Rodgers out of his comfort zone. To score a decisive points and psychological victory over the purples sucked the energy and confidence out of their athletes. With that damage done, the pre-championship title favourites and their droves of fans were sent scampering for all the mathematical possibilities, which never added up in the end. It is difficult to do any kind of credible post-Champs analysis without factoring in the additional motivation that the Calabar team must have received from the fact that they had been written off by almost every single local pundit before a single race was run. This columnist went as far as to predict confidently a 70-to-100 point defeat of Calabar at the hands of Kingston College. These public pronouncements must have added an extra motivational pep or two in the step in every single Calabar athletes. The Rodgers controversy must have also fanned the Calabar flames significantly as the way the saga unfolded, with Calabar emerging as the villains that hated Kingston College and Rodgers. All that drama must have fired up the Red Hills Road team to emphatically show us all that we should never ever underestimate the heart of a champion. Additionally, it could be argued that poetic justice took its course as too much conjecture and too many unanswered questions abounded relating to the participation of Rodgers at Champs. In the end, “God was fully awake” as the famed Purples fell and yielded.last_img read more

Female dragonflies found to fake death to avoid male advances

first_img Explore further (Phys.org)—A biologist with the University of Zurich has discovered a species of dragonfly whose females play dead to avoid copulating with other males once her eggs have already been fertilized. In his paper published in the journal Ecology, Rassim Khelifa recalls his first experience with a female mooreland hawker dragonfly playing dead, and what he found after further study of the species. Journal information: Ecology Citation: Female dragonflies found to fake death to avoid male advances (2017, May 1) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-05-female-dragonflies-fake-death-male.html © 2017 Phys.org More information: Rassim Khelifa. Faking death to avoid male coercion: extreme sexual conflict resolution in a dragonfly, Ecology (2017). DOI: 10.1002/ecy.1781center_img Male choosiness emerges when females have multiple partners Credit: CC0 Public Domain As Khelifa describes it, he was out collecting larvae in the Swiss Alps one day, when he happened to notice one dragonfly chasing another—suddenly, the one being chased simply stopped flying and crashed to the ground, belly up. The pursuer, he notes, paused for a moment, then moved on. As Khelifa approached the dragonfly on the ground he noted it was female and then was surprised when she suddenly awoke, turned over and flew away.Intrigued, and suspecting the behavior was intentional, Khelifa initiated a study of the species in their native environment, watching 31 male/female pursuits over time. He reports that the females tried the fake death routine 27 times, and that it worked 21 times. He notes further that in each of the fake death attempts, the female had just left her eggs, or was on her way to tend to them again.After noting the fake death behavior, Khelifa reports that it makes sense for the female hawker, because unlike other species of dragonfly, the males do not quit attempting to mate once finding success, nor do males assist in protecting the eggs. He notes also that with the hawker species, the males have the ability to pull sperm from prior males out of the female reproductive tract with their penises, and perhaps even worse, can cause damage if he mates with a female that has already laid her eggs.Khelifa also notes that the females tended to hide among dense vegetation when searching for food, likely another means for warding off ardent male pursuers. He points out that the feigned death behavior is the first observed in a dragonfly, but suggests it likely occurs with other species with females that go it alone after laying their eggs. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more