Monday, January 25, 2021


Science stories about animal research, including wildlife conservation and endangered animals studies.

Big Bad Wolf Really Is A Fairytale

(WOLVES/ANIMAL SCIENCE) Next time you’re stuck in a graveyard with a full moon in the sky, and you hear a wolf howl in the distance, don’t be afraid. Studies suggest startling wolf howls are just cries of loneliness. Once thought to be a simple stress cry, research shows wolf howls actually change depending on the partner they’re trying to reach. Continue reading below to learn how researchers came across this interesting conclusion, and how wolves change their vocal pattern to find their friends. — Global Animal

Speak Out Against Useless Monkey Experiments

(MONKEYS/ANIMAL TESTING) In the last several months, controversial NIH-funded "maternal deprivation" experiments, in which infant monkeys are removed from their mothers at birth so investigators can study the psychological consequences, have sparked public debate and a congressional inquiry. Monkey researchers believe their work is justified because of the potential benefits to human patients suffering from anxiety disorders. Critics argue that these studies cause a great amount of animal suffering, but produce no useful results. -- Global Animal

Sea Squid Swing Both Ways

(OCEANS/ANIMAL SCIENCE) Animal reproductive strategies have baffled scientists for generations. From the male bottlenose dolphin to sheep, many species in the animal world exhibit same-sex relationships. With remote operating vehicles, researchers are documenting the mating habits of male deep sea squid, who not only show same-sex behavior, but mate with males as often as with females. Read more about what scientists think is the reason behind the sea squid's "swinging" ways. -- Global Animal

12 Reasons You Don’t Want To Clone Your Pet

(PETS/ANIMAL SCIENCE) So maybe your animal, who was of course the best animal in the whole world, died, and you’d do anything to bring them back. You heard about cloning--it was so long ago that Dolly was cloned (1996, but announced 1997) that by now they should be able to clone your best friend with ease. In fact, plenty of dogs and cats and other animals have been cloned around the world. But let’s look at some facts about the pet cloning industry... -- Global Animal

Can Fish Use Sign Language?

(FISH/ANIMAL SCIENCE) Two types of fish—grouper and coral trout—have been found to use sign language to help out their hunting buddies. A study revealed the fish are able to "point" their heads toward prey to alert their partners in crime where their next meal is hiding. After studying gesturing grouper in the wild, researchers found that when the prey fish escaped the hunting alliance, a grouper would sometimes move to where the victim was hiding and "signal" the others. Coral trout practice similar gestures, and as a matter of fact, this is the first time "sign language" has been found to occur in animals other than ravens and primates. Read on for more on these signing creatures and this enlightening study. — Global Animal

Do Animals Have A Sense Of Humor?

(WILDLIFE/ANIMAL SCIENCE) Studies show that our great ape relatives, from chimpanzees to gorillas, experience pant-like laughter when positively stimulated. These extremely intelligent beings are also known to have great senses of humor, and are able to crack their own jokes. It was also discovered that rats experience something close to laughter when they are being tickled. But what about the rest of the animal kingdom? Are all animals capable of having a sense of humor? Read on to find out more about the animal kingdom's relationship with humor. — Global Animal
Toads may gather into groups before a quake occurs. Photo credit: BBC Nature

Can Animals Predict Earthquakes?

(ANIMAL SCIENCE) CHINA — While studies have shown dogs can possibly predict earthquakes, Chinese government researchers believe that other animals such as chickens, fish, and toads may also be capable of predicting quakes. -- Global Animal

Why Penguins Can’t Fly

(ANIMAL SCIENCE/PENGUINS) Millions of years ago, penguins lost their ability to fly, and now scientists finally know why. The tuxedoed birds are some of the best divers out there, but unfortunately good flippers don't make for good flyers. Scientists say, once penguins sacrificed flight, their wings and body size most likely evolved quite rapidly since flying no longer placed constraints on body form. Researchers were confused as to why the aquatically-skilled animals chose sea over air, but they hold a promising theory regarding the species' perplexing decision. Continue reading for the answer to this mind-boggling question, and learn more about prehistoric flying penguins. — Global Animal

15 Weird Animal Facts!

(WEIRD ANIMAL FACTS/ABOUT ANIMALS) Have you ever wondered how fish communicate? Or why you just can't shake those pesky mosquitoes? There are so many things that we still don't know about our friends in the animal kingdom, but we learn new, fun, and weird animal facts all the time. Check out these facts about animals, mammals, insects and more. Then share some trivia of your own in the comments below! -- Global Animal

A Mama Goat Never Forgets

(MOTHER'S DAY/ANIMAL SCIENCE) Many mammal moms recognize their babies' cries during the post-birth and nursing periods, but it can be difficult to observe whether those bonds last over time. However, according to new research, mother goats are able to recognize their babies' bleats at least a year after separation. Read on to learn more about this study and how the results demonstrate strong family ties throughout the entire animal kingdom. — Global Animal

Does Your Pet Like Your Music?

(PETS/ANIMAL SCIENCE) We hate to break it to you, but your cat might not like that Radiohead CD you always play. Scientists have been able to pinpoint what types of music different animals prefer, and surprisingly it has more to do with the size of the animal than their relative temperament. Read more to find out if your pooch is more partial to metal or Mozart. — Global Animal

If You’re Happy & You Know It…Can Your Dog Tell?

(ANIMAL BEHAVIOR/ANIMAL SCIENCE) For many dog guardians, the results from a recent study on the emotional awareness of dogs may come as no surprise. The study, conducted by scientists at the University of Veterinary Medicine in Vienna, Austria, claims dogs are able to recognize the difference between their guardian’s smiling face and angry face. -- Global Animal

More Than Just Cute: Learning From Animal Friendships

(WILDLIFE/ANIMAL SCIENCE) The Internet isn't the only place overflowing with adorable pairs of unlikely animal friends. In fact, scientists are beginning to use these friendships to better understand wildlife. Researchers are claiming that by understanding unique animal friendships, it can help us understand how species communicate. Continue reading to find out more about what these unusual animal pairings are teaching scientists. -- Global Animal

Cruel Lab Experiments Inflict Monkey Madness

(ANIMAL CRUELTY/ANIMAL TESTING) Last month, PETA released a horrific video of the psychological damage purposely inflicted on baby monkeys through experiments by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). These monkeys are taken from their mothers and subjected to maternal deprivation, traumatic psychological experiments, and social isolation. Up to 60 monkeys are bred each year for these horrible experiments. Dr. Jane Goodall, along with PETA, are demanding an end to this 30-year-old cruel practice. The NIH experiments have received at least $30 million from tax funds in the past seven years. To make matters worse, the NIH monkey experiments have been approved through 2017. Continue reading for more on how PETA is fighting this cruelty. — Global Animal