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Questions tagged [zoology]

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

23
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1answer
2k views

Did an ostrich pull off its own head?

In The Runaway Brain by Christopher Wills, the author illustrates the fact that ostriches aren't too bright by saying that an ostrich has been recorded as getting tangled in the fork of a tree, ...
9
votes
0answers
4k views

Will putting peanut butter or butter on a cat's paws help them to not get lost?

It is a common wives' tale that putting peanut butter (or sometimes just butter) on a cat's paws will help a cat not get lost in a new environment. Advocates of this give many varying reasons why it'...
31
votes
1answer
5k views

Are (wild) elephants afraid of mice?

Source I have heard from people working in zoos that the myth of elephants being afraid of mice is not true. Here is a short video of a zoo elephant clearly not caring about a mouse. I don't find ...
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 ...
8
votes
2answers
6k views

Do cats always come back home from anywhere?

It is said that no matter how far you take away a cat from home, it always come back from anywhere. Is that true? Obviously, this pre-supposes that: Home is some place that the cat lived in for a ...
10
votes
1answer
714 views

How likely is it that the Ivory Billed Woodpecker is not extinct?

Currently at the JREF forums, there is a big debate going on about possible Ivory Billed Woodpecker sightings. This bird has been thought to be extinct for over 50 years, and no reliable sightings ...
77
votes
1answer
7k views

Do Ostriches bury their heads in the sand

I have always believed that Ostriches when frightened bury their heads in the sand. Upon closer re-examination of this belief, I came to the following conclusions: Ostriches typically live in arid ...
179
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 ...
18
votes
3answers
7k views

Why do cats and dogs fight?

From our daily experience we know that most of the time cats and dogs are involved in fights rather than in expressions of affection. Is there an evolutionary basis(justification) for this? Why would ...
176
votes
1answer
18k views

Do cats always land on their feet?

Assuming a fall from a survivable height, will a cat always land on its feet? Has this been studied? Is there real data to back it up?
15
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1answer
2k views

Do dogs commit suicide at Overtoun Bridge?

Over the last 50 years, many dogs have jumped to death from Overtoun Bridge in Scotland for no apparent reason. There are many popular explanations for this weird phenomenon. According to one of them, ...
17
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1answer
782 views

Does having a pet help to cure your depression?

According to the community based website Curetogether spending time with a pet helps people with depression. Is there peer reviewed research that makes the same recommendation?
22
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2answers
4k views

Do dogs know when their owner is coming home through some form of telepathic link?

My friend cited a study by Rupert Sheldrake which ran an experiment over several years that video taped dogs, showing that dogs knew when their owner was coming home due to some psychic link. He ...
13
votes
1answer
31k views

Chickens that lay eggs twice a day

I have heard that chickens can actually lay multiple eggs in a single day. Is this possible? I know that leghorn hens usually lay eggs every 25 hours or so (for an annual total of about 280-320), ...
18
votes
4answers
8k views

Is eating cloven-hoofed animals, bottom-feeders or ruminants bad for you?

The Torah and Talmud claim (and I have Christian friends that also claim) that eating animals that are bottom-feeders or ruminants—That is, eat the crud off the sea-floor, like shrimp, or digest ...
56
votes
1answer
15k views

Are humans the only species to have homophobes?

Here's a quote that's being passed around: Homosexuality is found in over 450 species. Homophobia is only found in one. Which one seems unnatural now? With all the good intentions behind what's ...
42
votes
1answer
7k views

Is chocolate bad for dogs?

I once had a dog that was fairly frequently given chocolate, and I never noticed any consequences. I heard somewhat recently that chocolate is bad for dogs. Is this true? Certainly, too much ...