Category Archives: animal behavior

Afternoon badinage: “Hey, doc, warm that thing up first!”

A tw**t from SciencePorn. I’ll lay odds that at least one reader will claim it’s a fake shot. h/t: John W.  

Why do animal species vary so much in the shape of pupils in their eyes?

Here’s a picture of some animal pupils from National Public Radio. The website showed them because they’re the subject of a new paper by M. S. Banks et al. in Sciences Advances (reference below; free download). The paper asks an interesting question: why do the pupils of vertebrate species vary so widely in shape? (Supplementary material, […]

NSFW? – katydid pre-mating sperm removal

by Matthew Cobb This neat video by Ralf Jochmann, with commentary, shows katydids (or bush crickets, if you prefer) mating and above all, shows the male using his bits to remove sperm from previous males from the female. These scenes are rather detailed, so you might find them icky, or your colleagues might find you […]

Dances with Seagulls

Did this guy teach a seagull to dance, or did this seagull teach a guy to give him food? The story is over here.     The little pattering feet are immensely cute, but personally I think the seagull isn’t so much dancing as saying, “Get on with it! Food! Me!”   Then again, the […]

So what killed the ‘squirrel’ being eaten by the four-legged snake?

by Greg Mayer As the capstone to Snake Week, let’s take a closer look at how the squirrel-like mammal being eaten by Tetrapodophis in Julius Csotonyi’s striking reconstruction died. In my earlier post, I took note of the fact that the describers of the newly discovered four-legged fossil snake had inferred from its skeleton that […]

Three owlets and a fly

My old friend Hempenstein sent this video, and at first I couldn’t figure out what was going on: I thought the owlet nestlings were listening for their mother. But then I realized that they were following a fly that was loose in the nest box.  As Hempenstein commented on the video: Jesus they’re strange-looking, but […]

The world’s largest aggregation of snakes

Since Greg is posting twice about snakes this week, I declare it Official Website Snake Week.™ My colleague Steve Arnold used to work at my university, and since his research was partly on garter snakes, I knew about the amazing mating aggregations of that species that occur in some locations. But by far the largest aggregation […]

Man bathes goldfinch in his hands

Reader Adrian sent me a link to this video, which I found on YouTube and can thus embed. It’s a lovely relationship between a man and a goldfinch. I know nothing else about it.

Won’t somebody think of the children?

by Grania No Republicans or ultra-Conservative Christian groups are going to be worried terribly much about this case though. However it seems that at least one other mammalian species is “redefining traditional relationships”. There’s an interesting article by Colin Barras  in New Scientist on mixed-species dolphin groups in the Bahamas. Although interaction between dolphin species is […]

Smart crow opens pizza box

We all know that corvids are really smart, and able to solve complex problems. Here a wild crow figures out how to open a pizza box. The YouTube notes. Crow figures out how to open a pizza box. The Ferrari is not mine :( Filmed in Vancouver on a Samsung Note 3 on the 27th […]


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