Category Archives: animal behavior

Selective tool use in ants

You’re probably aware that tool use, once considered a uniquely human phenomenon, has now been documented widely in primates and birds. You may not know, though, that it’s also been seen in some insects, as in wasps that use pebbles to close off their burrows after laying eggs. Ants, too, have been seen to use […]

Readers’ wildlife photos

Please keep those photos coming in, for they get depleted quickly! Today we have two sets of photos showing aggressive behavior. The first is from reader Dick Kleinknecht of Washington State. His notes: We have an acre or so meadow just below our house (near Seattle, Washington) that often provides entertainment from wildlife: lots of deer, some elk, […]

Mammals in the snow

To end a snowy day, here are two videos of Giant Pandas in the snow. The first shows the Toronto Zoo’s panda Da Mao frolicking in newly fallen snow: and twin cubs in the snow: And here from the CBC News is a heartwarming (and catwarming) story of a nearly frozen cat rescued by a […]

Readers’ wildlife photographs

I seem to have lost this batch of photos, but fortunately reader Loren Russell re-sent them the other day. His notes: The pix were taken on a trip from Corvallis to LA along Cal 1.  This is the rookery at Piedras Blancas, just south of the Sur Coast.  A wonderous case of back from near […]

The mighty pinch of the coconut crab

The coconut crab, or “robber crab” (Birgus latro), is the largest terrestrial arthropod in the world, with individuals weighing up to four kg (about 9 pounds).  They have a wide range: But because of their size and the fact that they’re tasty, they’ve been largely driven extinct by humans on populated islands. Here’s how big they are: They […]

Fun cat facts

And from BBC Radio 4, courtesy of reader Laurie, we have “16 things you never knew about cats.” Hint #4 could be useful if you own a cat.  I knew 8 of these “facts” (some of which may be doubtful). 1. When night falls in the Disneyland theme park, 200 cats are released to catch […]

Readers’ wildlife photographs

Reader Mike Hannah send some photos from the Land of Kiwis and notes (indented): I understand that you are visiting New Zealand next year – so I have attached three photos of endemic species to whet your appetite. All the pictures were taken in an urban sanctuary called Zealandia situated in the suburbs of Wellington. […]

Cat and chipmunk friends

Well, I’m not convinced that this cat and chipmunk story, from Shareably and imgur, means that they’re BFF’s, but it is a photo of a cat cuddling up to a rodent who’d normally be considered a meal. It may be a one-off set of photos, but it’s still cute: h/t: Nicole Reggia    

A snake-mimicking spider

by Greg Mayer Matthew shared with me an interesting video of a spider from Singapore that looks like the head of a snake. The videographer, Nicky Bay, is most interested in the pulsation of a dark region below the ‘eyes’, but to me it’s the resemblance to a snake that is most striking– the ‘nostrils/loreal […]

Snakes on a plain!

by Matthew Cobb By common agreement, the most terrifying footage of Sunday night’s BBC Life on Earth II – narrated by David Attenborough – was the scene where the newly-hatched marine iguanas on the Galapagos had to run the gauntlet of the racer snakes (the clue is in the name). The iguana eggs are laid […]