The biological study of animals.

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Why do we grow so much hair on our heads compared to our bodies?

I've been wondering about head hair, facial hair in particular. Human males can grow very extensive beards should they choose to not shave - however you do not really see this in our chimpanzee ...
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3answers
6k views

What's the difference between a plant and an animal?

Are there some living things where the distinction between plant and animal is blurry or unclear? I wouldn't know where to put something like yeast. I also thought of photosynthesis, but then I ...
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4answers
4k views

Why we have no enzyme to digest cellulose?

As we know, cellulose is the most abundant polysaccharide in nature. Why don't we have any enzyme to digest cellulose?
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1answer
322 views

Sexual selection in cats or other animals

I was wondering if you could answer some of my questions regarding sexual selection in cats (or any other animals). I would like to apologize beforehand for my incorrect term use. When it comes to ...
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1answer
84 views

Are these bat social calls?

I'm currently researching bat social calls (not echolocation calls) and have been given a series of samples (in .wav format) and wanted to know, if what I can hear is actually the social calls. Below ...
3
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1answer
278 views

Why apes started to contemplate and become altruistic? [closed]

I was asking this first on philosophy forums, but it is suggested, that answer could be found from evolutionary view of point, so here we go: Again my question raised when thinking of myths, their ...
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2answers
105 views

The least complex animals with ability to dream

People can dream, dogs can dream, cats probably too when they are sleeping. What about other creatures? Can a bird dream? Do rats have dreams? Are there any studies about that kind of thing? What ...
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1answer
59 views

Clownfishes and Sea anemones

Relation between clownfishes and sea anemones is a classic example of mutualism. I wanted to list the species of sea anemones that are involved in this mutualism but I got lost.. Could you help me ...
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1answer
64 views

Can pets catch the cold?

Last night I was drying my cat with a towel after shenanigans in the rain and she sneezed! Questions Can cats/dogs/hamsters or other pets catch the cold? How quickly do they recover?
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27 views

Temporal effects on pathways? [closed]

I was wondering whether or not there exist certain pathways that are triggered by a temporal signal. We're almost at the winter solstice now. Does animal or plant function involve signals that are ...
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2answers
341 views

How to know if a woman is fertile without actually making her pregnant?

How to know if a human female is fertile (can give birth to child in future) without making her pregnant? Any signs, tests?
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1answer
84 views

Niche overlap Index

I wanted to use the compana() function from the adehabitat package. I don't really understand the meaning of the data in the ...
2
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1answer
325 views

What are the visual, behavioral similarities and differences between Yellow Fever Mosquito (Aedes aegypti) and the Tiger Mosquito (Aedes albopictus)?

The Tiger and Yellow Fever Mosquito visually look very similar. Recognizing the difference is important for tracking and controlling the spread of Yellow Fever, Dengue fever and other diseases. ...
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The number of nipples (breasts) a species has?

Only mammals have mammaries and mammary glands. What evolutionary factors determines the number of mammaries (nipples/teats/breasts) a species has? Is it always an even number?
2
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1answer
563 views

Excretion of various wastes and water requirement

A common fact is that Ammonia, Urea and Uric acid are the most common excreted metabolites and their removal needs varying amount of water, highest for ammonia (hence suited only for aquatic animals) ...
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0answers
72 views

Organisms with the most extreme sensory capabilities? (sight, smell, sound) [closed]

Background It is quite mind boggling to imagine what it would be like to be missing sight, sound, touch, smell, taste etc. Question Which organism holds the record for most extreme sensory ...
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1answer
2k views

Cats, Dogs and Bears - how are they related?

What is the ancestral relationship between cats, dogs and bears? I presume they are more closely related to one another than other paraphyletic clades of mammal. Which came first? What did their ...
4
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2answers
213 views

Do animals suffer from “Human” mental disorders?

It is tragic, but apparently Killer whales and Dolphins can commit suicide too (e.g. here)... This suggests they can become depressed. I wondered whether they were "clinically" depressed like many ...
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1answer
159 views

Can anyone identify this caterpillar / cocoon?

This insect is about 0.5 mm in length, so it is very small. It doesn't have legs I don't believe, I am not too good at this but I don't know if it's a worm or more like a cocoon for something. I do ...
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1answer
197 views

What are the universal laws of Nature concerning animals' behaviour? [closed]

I'm looking for very old (centuries) treaty or recent (20 & 21th century) research that state what some of the laws of Nature are, particularly concerning wild animals' behaviour. Such as; every ...
3
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1answer
376 views

Is there a difference between pig and cow anatomy that makes religious slaughter of the latter less painful?

This question is not for the squeamish. I was told that non-Kosher animals like pigs have a different anatomy in their neck compared to kosher animals like cows such that the Shechita method of ...
6
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3answers
31k views

Small worm living in some kind of cocoon, what are these animals?

I am curious what animal is this. It is/lives inside some kind of cocoon, about 1 cm in length. They are attached to walls and to the ceiling, but sometimes they fall off. Inside the structure there ...
2
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1answer
1k views

Do bigger animals have more testosterone?

I was wondering the other day outside, thinking about varieties of species and their aggression levels, etc. I had a theory that since these highly aggressive, powerful, and viciously advantageous ...
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1answer
1k views

Do fish break a water molecule to absorb oxygen?

How do fish separate oxygen from H20 & consume it? Do they break the water molecule and absorb the oxygen only?
0
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1answer
73 views

Function of carapace

Majority of crustacean larvae have expanded carapace drawn out into processes as an adaptation for : a. Protection from enemies b. Planktonic habit The answer given is b but I think it should be ...
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1answer
117 views

Why would the Camargue horses have a white coat while the foal have a dark coat?

The current issue of the magazine Lonely Planet India(Oct 2013) presents a photo of Camargue Horses which are white coated and mentions that they are born with dark hair. A search shows that the foal ...
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3answers
161 views

What kind of arthropod/animal is this?

Can anyone identify this strange creature? I live in a very urban part of Montreal, Canada. It wasn't moving (seemed dead) and although the image is huge, it wasn't as big as it seems (a couple of ...
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2answers
213 views

What insect is in this photo?

Found in Russia, in the kitchen. It is about 1–2 cm length.
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1answer
101 views

When is wing growth in the bat complete and how soon can bats fly after wing growth is complete?

I was reading this paper by Cretekos et al (2008), in which they state that wing development in the bat is not complete until after birth - the wing continues to elongate postnatally. This would ...
3
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1answer
80 views

Fear in elephants

It has been noted that elephants trained for war, as was done occasionally in earlier times, have still shown a tendency to panic in battle much more often when compared to a war horse trained for the ...
4
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1answer
103 views

How animals maintain their body shape after development to maturity?

I've recently read a book on evolutionary-developmental biology for laymen, and it described how a fetus is progressively divided into more refined zones of genetic activity. These zones, kinda like ...
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2answers
2k views

What is dental health like in animals?

Do animals suffer from tooth decay, such as cavities? Is it to the same extent as in humans, or do animal teeth decay more or less? If teeth decay in animals as well, are there natural strategies ...
2
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1answer
54 views

Can a chicken's lard become liquid depending on its diet?

On Cooking.se, somebody asked a question about the fat in chicken stock sometimes being liquid and sometimes solid once the stock has cooled. The only answer until now suggests that the difference is ...
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2answers
6k views

Did animals evolve from plants?

Did animals evolve from plants? Did animals' ancestors have chloroplasts in their cells?
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2answers
669 views

Do primates other than humans have a consistent sleep schedule?

I'm doing some sleep research and would like to compare a human sleep pattern as recorded by a wrist-based actigraph with a "natural" sleep pattern, such as from apes. In an experiment like that, a ...
4
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2answers
446 views

Is life expectancy linked to intelligence in animals?

For example, animals that live only a few days or a few years are often not very intelligent. In contrast, the most intelligent animals seem to live longer. Is this true? Are there any studies to ...
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0answers
44 views

What's behind the amazing colour combinations in pests & insects?

What's behind the amazing colour combinations in pests & insects ? Do this colour combination signals any character/ poison of the pest/insect ?
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0answers
180 views

how much grass does a sheep eat in square meters per day? [closed]

I want to buy some sheeps in order to eat my garden's grass. How much grass does a sheep eat each day ??
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0answers
73 views

Where are the gastralia (stomach ribs) attached?

Crocodiles and some dinosaurs have a second set of ribs between the sternum and pelvis called gastralia. Where are the gastralia attached to the rest of the skeleton?
5
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1answer
313 views

Are tongues red because they contain blood?

Many animals have red tongues, though not all of them - blue-tongued skinks and giraffes come to mind. Are they red because of the blood (and therefore haemoglobin) in them? It sounds plausible, but ...
3
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1answer
55 views

How diverse are dogs in their traits other than appearance?

I've asked this question about dogs not so long ago, and the short answer was - dogs are the most diverse looking species of mammals because they got a small number of genes that have a big impact on ...
5
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2answers
321 views

If a dead snake reflexively attacks itself, why does it not always attack itself?

Recently there has been this video going around of a snake that had been decapitated. Its body swung around to the decapitated head and the head attacked the body on "reflex". Now we know that most ...
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0answers
41 views

Does sleep duration vary for animals based on time of the year?

I'm interested in the sleep patterns of wild animals, that still use sun for controlling their biological clock. Animals entrain their biological clock to the day/night cycle using light as the ...
9
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2answers
246 views

Why do animal teeth get darker if exposed?

I was wondering why the teeth of cats (And dogs, as far as I know, plus possibly some other animals or even humans) get darker if they are exposed to air / light? Example: (See the lower end of ...
5
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3answers
2k views

Fetal development, gastrulation and embryonic disc

I am completely confused by the images circulating on the internet of human gastrulation. First, lets see how it happens in deuterostomes. This image depicts the process: (image is from Wikipedia) ...
6
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2answers
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Do animals get sick from eating dirty food or eating off the floor?

Humans have very strict tradition of hygiene, such as washing hands before eating, using utensils, and in general keeping as much distance between food and dirt as possible. At the same time, most ...
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1answer
320 views

How do animals/plants change for each season?

The question pretty much sums it up. How do animals/plants change for each: Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter? A detailed explanation on distinct behaviour and appearance changes would be nice.
5
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1answer
403 views

What makes an animal/species suitable for domestication/training?

Humans have domesticated all manner of creatures during the course of their civilization - dogs, horses, several types of cattle, varieties of birds, and perhaps others too. A prerequisite for an ...
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1answer
139 views

List of species recently found of economic value

Is there a website or organization cataloging lists of biological species to have been recently found of great economic value? For example, a plant that wasn't of economic relevance a while ago but ...
2
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0answers
114 views

Green feather-like formations in tap water - what is it? (with pictures)

These things recently appeared in my tap water Copenhagen Denmark, this summer 2013. They are very small, and have a feather like structure. I've called the water supply, and they thought that it was ...