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Questions tagged [zoology]

Use this tag for questions involving animal biology; evolution, ecology, physiology, behavior, genetics, and marine biology.

15
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1answer
687 views

Do Japanese crows use traffic to crack nutshells?

In a BBC article, its contended that: In a Japanese city, carrion crows have discovered how to eat nuts that they usually find too hard to tackle. One method is to drop the nuts from height on ...
7
votes
0answers
348 views

Will koalas eat pre-plucked eucalyptus leaves?

Various sources online (including a frequent copy-pasta disparaging the animal) claim that koalas will not recognize eucalyptus leaves as food if they are cleanly laid out on a table in front of them, ...
14
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4answers
2k views

Do we know why animals have evolved to have sex for reproduction?

I've been reading 13 Things That Don't Make Sense: The Most Intriguing Scientific Mysteries of Our Time (2010) and Chapter 10 concentrates on the subject of Sex. The author argues that we do not know ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Are yowies real?

According to several articles, yowies (i.e. wild, unidentified, hominids, reputed to live in Australia) have been allegedly observed by many. For example, in this Herald Sun article about a man in ...
12
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0answers
663 views

Do squirrels fed by humans develop cancer and heart disease?

In Michael P Ghiglieri and Thomas M. Myers's book Over the Edge: Death in Grand Canyon (a chronicle of deaths in the Grand Canyon by a biologist and a medical doctor), in the section about squirrels ...
2
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0answers
176 views

Is there as significant danger to frequent close contact with a pet dog? [closed]

An article in the National Geographic here talks of the dangers of dog licks. On the other hand, this NYT article states that dog owners tend to live longer and healthier than non-pet owners. Is it ...
10
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0answers
583 views

Do fireworks kills birds, dogs and other animals?

Diwali is a Hindu festival of lights, celebrated with fireworks. My closest friend on Facebook shared this picture on my wall: Happy Diwali Thousands of birds, dogs & other animals ...
59
votes
4answers
14k views

Have we wiped out 60% of vertebrate populations since 1970?

According to The Guardian (reporting an analysis by WWF) humanity stands on the verge of an ecological catastrophe as: Humanity has wiped out 60% of mammals, birds, fish and reptiles since 1970, ...
12
votes
1answer
587 views

If cows were a country, would they rank 3rd in greenhouse gas emissions?

According to GatesNotes.com: If all the cattle in the world joined together to start their own country, they would rank behind only China and the United States in greenhouse gas emissions. But they’...
9
votes
1answer
405 views

Do lobsters get stoned with marijuana?

It's all over the news. A restaurateur from Maine wants to smoke lobsters with cannabis before boiling them to make their death more humane. The cynic in me says that she's smoking them for flavor ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

Do prairie dogs die when they eat bubblegum?

There are many sources on the internet which claim that prairie dogs can be exterminated using bubblegum: Source 1: prairie dogs are handled with poison or bazooka joe bubble gum, of which the ...
27
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2answers
6k views

Under the right circumstances, can lobsters live indefinitely?

I've been reading a lot about longevity and I came up with this Wikipedia article where it states that it might be possible for lobsters to live indefinitely. Recent research suggests that ...
9
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0answers
499 views

Do cats avoid water when it is placed near food?

This tumblr post makes the interesting claim that if a cat's water is placed near its food, the cat will consider the water to be unsafe to drink, and that cats will be more inclined to drink it if it ...
23
votes
2answers
11k views

Is cows' milk bad for cats?

My mother used to tell me that I shouldn't give our kitten cow milk, even if she seemed to enjoy it. Since I loved my kitten, and was quite disobedient at that time, I did it fairly often, and never ...
5
votes
0answers
508 views

Can Male Giraffes Breed at 18 Years of Age?

From the NY Times Article detailing a big game hunter's kill of an 18 year-old giraffe, the hunter Tess Thompson Talley reportedly claims in an email to news organizations that an 18 year old giraffe ...
65
votes
1answer
10k views

Are raptors in Australia intentionally spreading brush fires to smoke out prey?

Articles have been popping up with headlines like the Daily Mail's "Birds of prey are starting fires DELIBERATELY: Kites and Falcons are 'intentionally dropping smouldering twigs' to smoke out mice ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Are there no camels in the Qur'an?

It seems to be an often-repeated saying that "there are no camels in the Koran". But I just repeated this factoid in the presence of a guy from Syria who insisted it's not true and that there is a ...
15
votes
1answer
5k views

Does genital-electrocution of animals cause immediate death?

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) claim that fur-farms use genital electrocution techniques to kill animals without damaging the fur: Animals have clamps attached to or rods forced ...
16
votes
1answer
6k views

Are animals skinned alive or dead for their pelt?

An animal rights activist friend of mine recently went on a rant about how fur should be illegal. One of her main arguments was that all animals suffered greatly during the fur removing process as ...
12
votes
2answers
8k views

Does wearing a mask on the back of one's head protect against tiger attacks?

Today while visiting the tiger exhibit at my local zoo, I read that in areas where tiger attacks on humans are common, people will often wear a mask on the back of their head to ward of tiger attacks, ...
21
votes
1answer
16k views

Is the video of Soviet Dog Revival Experiment real?

In this video a dog head is brought back to life by injecting blood and air artificially. The dog (its head actually) reacted to sound, touch and used its tongue to taste. I am not skeptic about its ...
12
votes
1answer
515 views

Have badgers eaten coyotes?

Wikipedia claims that badgers sometimes eat coyotes: In North America, coyotes sometimes eat badgers and vice versa, but the majority of their interactions seem to be mutual or neutral.[19] ...
36
votes
1answer
19k views

Does a lobster feel little/no pain when boiled alive?

Image Source I have just read Cracked.com's "9 Ridiculous Cooking Myths You Probably Believe", that claims: [...] because [the lobster's] nervous system isn't very complex, so it's feeling little ...
6
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1answer
8k views

Can mice find their way back to your home from 1+ miles away?

I've read on many pest control websites that if you catch a mouse in your home that they must be taken 1+ miles away, otherwise they will easily make their way back to their old home (ie. your house). ...
3
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0answers
325 views

Can Rambo, the German shepherd, follow written commands?

An article on The Laughing Squid shows a German shepherd seemingly following written commands. An impressively intelligent German shepherd named Rambo, who’s learning how to read with the help of ...
20
votes
1answer
4k views

Can lions sense menstruating women?

I had an interesting chat today with a young woman from a traditional circus family, who explained she could not grow up to become a lion tamer, because lions could smell when women are menstruating ...
18
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1answer
2k views

Did travelers by troika throw passengers before the wolves, to save others?

In several places, I have seen reference to the story that in the past in Russia, travelers by troika might throw one of the travelers before chasing wolves in order to save the other travelers (...
12
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0answers
1k views

Can a 7-Hz tone kill chickens via resonance?

In the Sound function section of the Turbo C Version 2.0 Reference Guide 1988 I found the following comment. /* Emits a 7-Hz tone for 10 seconds. True story: 7 Hz is the resonant frequency of a ...
17
votes
1answer
10k views

Do elephants see humans the same way humans see puppies?

This tweet and others like it have been making the rounds lately: Julia‏ @JuliaHass I just learned that elephants think humans are cute the way humans think puppies are cute (the same part of ...
45
votes
5answers
8k views

Can venomous snakes be determined by these pupil, nostril and scale patterns?

This image was recently shared by an Australian Facebook friend: The source appears to be a Facebook post of a man from India with a staggering 380,000 shares from around the world! There are ...
20
votes
2answers
4k views

Can a pair of rats multiply to 200 within a year?

A story on the BBC News website makes the following claim: Brown rats are one of the planet's most serious mammalian pests, ruining crops and harbouring disease. Expert jumpers, climbers and ...
42
votes
6answers
6k views

Can a frog be slowly boiled alive without it noticing?

It's commonly believed that a frog will not perceive a rise in temperature, and will boil alive. And, of course, if it were to be put in already-boiling water, it will immediately jump out. Any ...
52
votes
3answers
63k views

Can cats survive a fall from any height?

So here's the premise. A cat reaches its terminal velocity after around 10meters of free fall. A cat can survive a landing from a speed equal to its terminal velocity. Therefore a cat can survive a ...
16
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0answers
610 views

Did an octopus visit another tank to hunt?

I've seen several versions of this story. An aquarium (or pet store, or rich fish collector) noticed that fish were mysteriously vanishing from a tank at night. After this happened a few times, ...
157
votes
1answer
32k views

Is it illegal to own a rabbit in Queensland unless you're a magician?

From all that is interesting How Bunny Rabbits Took Over Australia — And What The Government Is Doing About It In Queensland, Australia, it’s illegal to own a pet rabbit unless you’re a magician. ...
22
votes
2answers
2k views

Do apes/monkeys open bananas from the floral end?

I often hear people lecturing about how to open a banana from the "right" end, including an explanation that this is how monkeys do it. A quick search in the internet offers a lot of examples (for ...
178
votes
4answers
28k views

Will a mother bird abandon her young if touched by a human?

Welcome to installment #2 of my "the science of animals falling" series of questions.... I've heard it said many times since childhood that if you are to find a baby bird on the ground which appears ...
20
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2answers
12k views

Is the “dancing squid” odori-don dead?

In these videos: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ug6pVj0Lq9w http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dzj95jHuPiw http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqphVlp2VJI (shows what I think is the brain) Soy sauce is ...
4
votes
1answer
557 views

Are cheap scallops made from flounders or stingrays?

Jaws the book (1974) claimed that if you use a cookie cutter to punch holes from flounder wings, you can create fake scallops and that these are commonly sold in restaurants: 'I was just looking at ...
28
votes
2answers
2k views

Do headless chickens run around?

It's a clichè that is constantly repeated by the likes of Gordon Ramsey: You are running around like headless chickens! source Also, for example, they do in South Park animations Do ...
29
votes
1answer
9k views

Do Macaque monkeys steal money from wallets and use it to buy food from vending machines?

I saw this rumor on Reddit, which refers to factsanddetails.com and which doesn't indicate the information source. I saw a video of a monkey using a vending machine on College Humor, but that doesn't ...
15
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0answers
8k views

Do cats have a chemical in their brains that resembles LSD?

So while our cat was acting "crazy" this evening tearing from room to room and pouncing on on nothing, my wife and I were laughing at its behaviour. During discussions she mentioned hearing that cats ...
4
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0answers
1k views

Are Common House Geckos poisonous?

The Common House Gecko (Hemidactylus frenatus) is a South-East Asian lizard. In some parts of India, there are various beliefs about the them, or their urine, being toxic to eat. Wikipedia describes ...
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0answers
317 views

Can Master Kanzawa make animals sleep at a distance?

As seen here and other places, like Stan Lee’s Superhumans, Master Kanzawa claims to be able to put animals to sleep at a distance by exchanging "chi energy". I am doubful this is true, since Chi ...
21
votes
1answer
4k views

Do ducks sink in soapy water?

It is often said that if one were to add surfactants to water ducks would not be able to float as their feathers would start soaking water instead of repelling it. Has anyone actually tried this ...
5
votes
0answers
2k views

Do orangutans rape women?

Following up from the lions-attacking-menstruating-women question, I read an account that claimed male orangutans will rape a human woman, especially if she is in menstruated. Are there verified ...
11
votes
1answer
587 views

Does TNVR work to reduce cat populations?

On a social website, our neighborhood is having a bit of a debate about local "wild" cat populations. In essence, "wild" cat populations consist of both feral and not-feral but not-homed cats in a ...
25
votes
2answers
3k views

Do water bottles on sidewalk/corners prevent dogs/cats from peeing?

It's very common, at least in Italy, to see bottles of water near walls in sidewalk and I've been told it's because it prevents dogs and cats from peeing on the wall. Is this actually the case and why ...
22
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1answer
15k views

Can kangaroos walk backwards?

Source From Exploring Nature: They cannot jump backward because of their thick, muscular tail. Their long feet and heavy tail also make walking impossible, forward or backward. The ...
8
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1answer
1k views

Do pigeons and doves refrain from mating after their lifelong mate dies?

I just came across this quote by Jerome (I don't know in what book he originally wrote it): Even the pigeons and doves don't take another partner if their companions pass away. I don't take Jerome'...