Questions tagged [zoology]

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

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3
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0answers
139 views

Can water buffalo be hypnotized as depicted in Crocodile Dundee (1986)? [closed]

In the fictional movie Crocodile Dundee (1986), the character Mick Dundee is seen "hypnotizing" a water buffalo with hand movements. Is this possible in real life?
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2answers
1k views

The extinction of the thylacine: could some still survive?

(Image comes from Wikimedia Commons) The last known thylacine died in 1936, and the species was officially moved from 'endangered' to 'extinct' in the 1980s. Since the last living specimen died, ...
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0answers
344 views

Are dog silhouettes effective at keeping geese away?

Canada Geese are a big nuisance where I live (despite living several hours away from Canada). To keep them away, I've seen more and more places put down black wooden dog silhouettes like this one from ...
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4answers
2k views

Are some breeds of dog inherently dangerous, despite training?

On another SE site, this report was cited as evidence that some breeds of dogs are inherently more dangerous than others. I have some serious issues with that report (not least of which is that it is ...
3
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1answer
10k views

Will a shark kept in a fish tank have stunted growth?

There is a widely recited saying that sharks kept in fish tanks won't grow to their full size. For example, author and motivational speaker Bob Harrison posted: A shark in a fish tank will grow 8 ...
4
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1answer
610 views

Do geoducks increase sex drive?

Geoducks are a species of clam from North America, sold as aphrodisiacs, but are they? 1987 UPI article: Saving the geoduck from the sexually hungry 'The geoduck is threatened with extinction due ...
5
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0answers
570 views

Did Finding Nemo encourage people to flush pet fish down the toilet?

A Smithsonian article about goldfish starts out with (emphasis added): The 2003 Pixar film Finding Nemo popularized the misconception that all drains lead to the ocean, encouraging young fans to ...
6
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1answer
878 views

Is it illegal in Alaska to wake up a sleeping bear for the purpose of taking a photograph?

DumbLaws.com claim: While it is legal to shoot bears, waking a sleeping bear for the purpose of taking a photograph is prohibited. The Gray Line Alaska blog repeats the claim. There is also a ...
10
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3answers
4k views

Did “hundreds of birds” fall out of the sky in the Netherlands due to a 5G test? [duplicate]

A conspiracy news site claims that (emphasis added): Hundreds of birds have fallen from the sky in The Hague, the Netherlands, during a 5G experiment to see how large the range was and whether the ...
36
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2answers
9k views

Can tortoises become deformed by growing up inside rings of plastic?

I found these images on this image aggregator, which states that the photo credit is unknown for both images. The tortoises are implied to have become deformed from growing up inside the rings of ...
24
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1answer
17k views

Is this video of the Soviet Dog Revival Experiment real?

In this video a dog's head is brought back to life by artificially injecting blood and air. The dog's head reacted to sound and touch and used its tongue to taste. I am not skeptic about its ...
25
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1answer
17k 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 ...
157
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4answers
24k views

Is bread bad for ducks?

This image has being going around (e.g. Facebook with a message attributed to The Friends of Bushy and Home Parks: Transcript: Please don't kill us with bread! Bread is actually a danger to ...
11
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1answer
979 views

Do European deer still stick to their sides of the Iron Curtain?

I found such a claim in an article here: http://nowiknow.com/the-thin-red-deer-line/ But that was a long time ago, especially if you’re a deer — they only live about ten or so years in the wild. ...
10
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0answers
371 views

Is it bad for an elephant’s back to carry a human?

Lots of sites warn you not to ride elephants as they are often treated poorly and don't have freedom (1,2). But these sites also mention that it’s bad for the back of an elephant. With some ...
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4answers
14k views

Are spiders unable to hurt humans, especially very small spiders?

In an episode of Peppa Pig, one of the characters says that spiders are very very small, and that they can’t hurt you. Broadcasters in Australia have avoided broadcasting the episode involved, ...
48
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9answers
21k views

Can trained humans run faster than all other animals on a marathon distance?

During the athletics world championship, a commentator mentioned casually during the marathon discipline that humans are faster over long distances than all animals. I'm unsure if this can be said ...
4
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0answers
274 views

Do a diver and a clownfish share a 10 year friendship?

A YouTube video from The Dodo, called Clownfish Named Nemo Has 10-Year Friendship with This Diver shows footage of a New Caledonian scuba diver, Marino, who claims to have a special relationship with ...
15
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1answer
897 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
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0answers
590 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, ...
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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 ...
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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
680 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 ...
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0answers
195 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 ...
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0answers
875 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 ...
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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, ...
13
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1answer
793 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
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1answer
455 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
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1answer
3k 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 ...
10
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0answers
535 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
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2answers
12k 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 ...
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0answers
709 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
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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
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2answers
2k 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
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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
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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
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2answers
9k 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, ...
11
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1answer
545 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
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1answer
20k 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 ...
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1answer
9k 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
329 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
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1answer
5k 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 ...
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1answer
3k 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 (...
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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
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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 ...
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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
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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 ...
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6answers
7k 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 ...
53
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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 ...