Category Archives: animal behavior

Springtime for giraffids

I saw this on last night’s news and was enchanted. The giraffes at Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo are kept inside during cold weather, as they don’t have the right genes for winter, but there’s been a warm spell the past few days and so they were let out into their outdoor enclosure. (Giraffes are let out […]

Do chimps have “sacred” rituals?

Reader Ant called my attention to a piece by Laura Kehoe in The Conversation, detailing “accumulative stone-throwing behavior” in chimpanzees living in the Republic of Guinea. Kehoe describes a behavior, caught on a camera trap, that she and others eventually wrote a paper about: What we saw on this camera was exhilarating – a large male […]

Tree climbing lessons for a raccoon cub

Yes, “cub” is the proper name for the young of the raccoon (Procyon lotor). And it’s hard not to anthropomorphize this video, sent by reader Diane MacPherson, of a mother raccoon showing her cub how to climb a tree. In fact, what mom’s doing is bloody obvious—and also adorable. As Diana noted, “this is cute, but […]

Bats photographed in flight

Our old friend Piotr Naskrecki, biologist, naturalist, and crack photographer (photo page here, website here), has an article at Cognisys about how he set up a portable studio in the field to photograph bats—and other animals—in flight. Piotr has apparently been spending most of his time at Gorongosa National Park in Mozambique, and I’ve featured a lot […]

A murmuration of starlings near Oxford

The BBC tw**ed this yesterday, and you can see a longer video at this site. They estimate the flock contained 70,000 birds. This appears to have happened two days ago. I hope it’s not a portent for my visit.  

This fox encounters a bedsheet, and you won’t believe what happened next!

The biological context:

RIP Sarah, the fastest known land mammal

According to a piece on the NPR site, Sarah the cheetah has died at the age of 15 at the Cincinnati Zoo. Or, rather, she was euthanized, for she was old and her health was failing. The site notes that the average age of a cheetah is 12-15 years, but that appears to be longevity in […]

Raccoon rides the Toronto subway

Some animal fun for the afternoon from Blog TO: a raccoon rides the Toronto subway, and just this morning! Toronto’s unofficial mascot was spotted on the TTC earlier today, to the surprise, amusement and chagrin of morning commuters. The raccoon was seen lurking around the subway platform sniffing at people’s feet before boarding the train at […]

Snapping shrimp and handstanding skunks

I have well over a thousand draft posts in a 51-page list on this site’s dashboard, and most of those posts will never appear, moving ever father back in the unrecovered past. But sometimes I go back a bit to see if I’ve forgotten anything cool. Today, on page 3, I found three nice animal videos, […]

Russian snow hare surfs avalanche – and survives

by Matthew Cobb As featured on the BBC Winterwatch programme, this video shows a Russian arctic hare getting caught up in an avalanche  triggered by a snowboarder. The hare runs across the onrushing snow, and manages to escape – just. Put it on full screen – it is really rather impressive. RT notes that this was […]


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