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15

Handedness has been studied in several different species of toads. As basal tetrapods, the authors argue that these taxa are unlikely to be influenced by human hand dominance and are thus a better model for studying the evolution of handedness. Bisazza et al. (1997) studied "pawedness" in Bufo bufo, B. viridis, and B. marinus in wild-caught animals by ...


13

Cats and dogs can both view tv screens & monitors ... though their viewing experience is a little different to ours thanks to differences in cone structure leaving them color blind and giving low acuity. Both species have lower levels of color vision than humans. Cats see slightly more color (in the blue green and yellow end of the spectrum) than dogs ...


12

The female stood with the tail held sharply to one side, and the quills on the back lying very flat. The male stood on his hind legs, while the front legs grasped the sides of the female. There was no repetition of the act. The male's urethra is 115-120 mm long, and his penis is 75 mm, so the he doesn't need to be as close to the female as one ...


11

Yes. Menopause is common for long-lived mammals. For instance, in the wild, killer whales go in a sort of menopause as reported in 2009 by Ward et al. Front Zool. 2009 Feb 3;6:4. So it is not due to captivity. According to a Nature review, reproductive cessation has also been documented in non-human primates, rodents, whales, dogs, rabbits, elephants and ...


11

Lions Lions are a classical example of cannibalism. To understand why this occurs we have to understand their mating system. Males have harem of females and males fight in order to access a harem (Note: females may also take part in the battle depending of which male they prefer). When a male takes over a new harem, he may kill the youngs of the previous ...


10

As both @Rory M and @Alexander Galkin suggest, there are various non-visual mating behaviors to allow these species to select mates and also allow taxonomists and researchers to identify these species. And they hit on the two major ones, courtship rituals (mating calls, throat bulging, dancing) and pheromones. Let's have a look at some two examples: The ...


10

Well, first off, they have eyes, so there's that. However, a lot of what ants wish to achieve can be done through a combination of a random walk and chemical trails. When ants are exploring their surroundings, they are essentially wandering about without much in terms of a sense of purpose; laying down a chemical signature as they go. When they find ...


8

Limiting the conversation to mammals, and taking relative brain size as a proxy for intelligence (which, of course is not necessarily "true", but at least is quantifiable), the answer is yes: body-size relative brain size correlates with body-size relative longevity in mammals. using a global database of 493 species, we provide evidence showing that ...


7

The author is likely referring to the mechanosensory behavior of bone (reviewed in Huang and Ogawa, 2010; lots of Google Scholar citations). Bone loading produces very tiny mechanical deflections (strain) which are translated into biochemical signals that promote bone growth through the action of osteoblasts. Burger and Klein-Nuland (1999) review possible ...


7

"How come most animals never seem to evolve over millenia?" I guess the word "seem" in your question should not be disregarded. You seem to assume that cockroaches (or most animals as you say) did not change much the last tens or hundreds thousands of years. But what do you know about that? Have you actually reviewed many research that estimate the rate of ...


7

Flies use any object they can find as a landmark. The flies patrol well-defined airspaces underneath landmarks like lampshades. ... Male flies approach a landmark from below and, in the absence of other flies, settle to patrol an airspace close to the landmark. A second male approaching the same landmark chases, or is chased away by, the patrolling fly ...


6

Having read this article on tool use in Chimpanzees in full, I am inclined to say that if such a term existed then either the article itself or the titles of any of the 30 articles referenced would have included it. Searching a couple of online biological dictionaries and ethology sites hasn't yielded anything either, therefore until someone else points ...


6

Wasps are extremely territorial creatures. They also have great sight. Wasp colonies will send out foragers and scouts to look for uninhabited areas with food in which they can build a nest. Because wasps are so fiercely territorial, a scout wasp will generally stay away from an area with another colony already in it. Because of this fact fake wasps nest ...


6

Yes, sub- or satellite colonies are common in many species (see e.g. Hölldobler & Wilson, 1990; Debout et al. 2007), and these are then labelled as polydomous species. Subcolonies can either contain extra queens, but sometimes only contain foraging workers. The purpose can be both to expand foraging grounds or as a pre-stage for colony budding. The ...


6

Yes, it is a common behaviour and is called necromone signaling (Yao et al 2009, see references in paper for many examples), and is probably used to avoid predators, parasites and disease. The chemicals used are often similar (unsaturated fatty acids), and seem to have an old evolutionary history (~400 million years). Many groups of species can also detect ...


6

I agree with Amory in the sense that the Hamilton's rule is not a rule that applies to each specific individual and explain their behavior (or other traits). The Hamilton's rule describe the direction (and not the dynamic) of how a social trait evolve. A social trait is any trait which does not only affect the fitness of its carrier but also affect the ...


5

Mantis shrimp use their first maxillipeds for grooming (maxilliped=modified appendage), which is specialized for this purpose. Details and a picture of the organ can be found in the link. The second maxilliped is their famous specialized organ for striking or spearing prey with enormous force. More about their raptoral appendage, with links to further ...


5

Actually, nesting failure means that nesting trial fail before offspring could even leave the nest. In case of precocial species (where chicks leave nest immediately after hatching, like swans) it means that eggs was destroyed or parents abandoned nest, as @nico point out. In case of altricial birds (offspring stay in nest) nesting failure may also mean that ...


5

Apparently it refers to the inability of nesting the eggs, because the nest was somehow destroyed, or environmental conditions were unfavourable. I found a few examples pointing in this direction: The Trumpeter Swan page on the Yellowstone National Park websites reports that: Nest flooding is the primary cause of nest failure. Egg predation by coyotes, ...


5

You will be hard-pressed to find any scientific data on this question. Psychology in humans is already a difficult study, at times failing to demonstrate results with real scientific rigor. When studying animal psychology, you face another substantial barrier - language. Although some primates have been taught to communicate with sign language, the best of ...


5

This is a story I have been told as well when I was a kid. Usually this is related to the foreign smell that the humans leave on the chick. However, this seems to be an urban legend, as birds have not a great sense of smell. Snopes says about this: However, Mother birds will not reject their babies because they smell human scent on them, nor will ...


5

It was moistening its respiratory and osmoregulatory organs: Woodlice as all other terrestrial arthropods face the major challenge of preserving water balance. In their case the two systems that immediately suffer from desiccation are osmoregulation itself and respiration. In woodlice these two functions are carried out mostly by the pleopods: modified ...


4

Unlike Terdon I think that you are generally correct in your assertion that animals can swim whereas humans can't (although I'm sure there are exceptions). However, I think his answer contains the real answer: Dogs can't swim as such, they simply do the same motions in the water as they do on land. There is no different action happening, they don't ...


4

While I am not sure I buy your assertion that all mammals know how to swim, I would say that humans are at least as good as dogs when swimming. If you drop a human in water we will instinctively flap around and try too keep our head out of the water in about as elegant a way as a dog. The main problem for humans is panicking. Someone who does not know how to ...


4

Insomnia most certainly occurs in other animals. One interesting example is the case of insomnia in Drosophila melanogaster. In this study 3 day old male and female flies that demonstrated reduced sleep time were crossed together over 60 generations to create flies insomnia-like (ins-l) that sleep less than 60 minutes a day compared to 800 min a day in their ...


4

As far as I understand it, Hamilton's "rule" isn't really meant to apply individually, it's meant as a way of thinking about kin selection and altruism that can be reduced to individual cases. The reality is that B and C can rarely, if ever, be easily measured or determined. If the two sides were equal then who knows? You'd have to observe it. Presumably ...


4

It looks like it is trying too threat. Source: Individual differences in scanpaths correspond with serotonin transporter genotype and behavioral phenotype in rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta)


4

That is a threat face. Barbary macaque threat faces often appear with a brow raise, lowered head, and an o-shaped mouth, sometimes with and sometimes without a vocalization. Given the context you described it is not surprising the girl received a threat. *Based on personal research experience


3

Not really my field, but I can point to this review which discusses a couple of different ways in which ants organize their communities: Heinze. 2008. The demise of the standard ant (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) I know that in some species there can be several queens per colony (so more robust to queen deaths). In many species, workers can start laying eggs if ...



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