83

Short Answer Yes. handedness (or Behavioral Lateralization) has been documented in numerous vertebrates (mammals, reptiles and birds) as well as invertebrates. This includes domestic cats (see Wells & Millsopp 2009). Long Answer There have been numerous studies that have documented behavioral lateralization in many groups of animals including ...


60

A quick search on Web of Science yields "Polyphasic Wake/Sleep Episodes in the Fire Ant, Solenopsis Invicta" (Cassill et al., 2009, @Mike Taylor found an accessable copy here) as one of the first hits. The main points from the abstract: Yes, ants sleep. indicators of deep sleep: ants are non-responsive to contact by other ants and antennae are folded ...


37

The short answer is apparently yes. Studies on sleep in insects date back to papers published by Phil and Nellie Rau in 1916 and 1938. Hussaini et al. (2003) showed that sleep does affect memory formation in honey bees. They showed that retention of extinction learning is significantly reduced in bees that were sleep-deprived. More about sleep in honeybees ...


30

1. Sheep are fearless 2. English common names are misleading when it comes to the genetic differences between goats and sheep You posted a picture of Mountain Goats (Oreamnos americanus), which are a different genus than Domestic Goats (Capra aegagrus). Both Capra and Oreamnos are members of the Subfamily Caprinae, as are Domestic Sheep (Ovis aries). ...


29

Short answer Do ants really find the shortest path to a food source? No! But they can find a decent path Longer answer Optimization algorithms are used to search through a possibility space that is too large to explore every single possibility. Such algorithms attempt to find a good enough solution, often without necessarily knowing how 'good' the ...


27

It is difficult to find a scientific answer to this question, but let me insert this citation from a specialist site: Contrary to popular belief, beaver cannot plan the direction in which trees will fall. Many trees become hung up in the branches of surrounding trees and are lost to the colony. In heavily forested areas, this loss may amount to one-half ...


21

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 ...


20

Trypophobia is not a recognised specific anxiety disorder (Washington Post). It is worth mentioning that anyone can have a phobia to anything, this is merely a question of whether many people associate these spatial patterns with anxiety. Nevertheless, the response of individuals to these images can be quantified (Le et al., 2015). Ultimately the findings ...


16

How come most animals never seem to evolve over millennia? 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 of thousands of years. But what do you know about that (no offence here)? Have you actually reviewed many kinds of research that ...


15

Like so much of biology, we just don't know! I'll preface this answer by disappointing you; this answer doesn't entirely answer your question. That's because this is a pretty big mystery in research and a fascinating topic. I'll start with a couple of quotes that maybe explain why! "If you search on the Web of Science database for papers on the emotion ...


14

Flies rubbing their legs are cleaning themselves. They can also often be seen rubbing their back legs often. Additionally, flies also often clean their wings, compound eyes and bodily bristles. Legs and wings are used as a primary means of locomotion and means of escape. Eyes and bristles are sensory organs and hence also essential for their survival. ...


13

Crows are omnivorous, and will eat almost anything they find or can kill. In this case the prey looks like a Yellow-Shafted Flicker.


13

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 ...


12

You should also bear in mind that the fact that they are great climbers does not make them fearless. For example, if I were to find myself floating 500 meters above the ground, I would be terrified. The fact that birds do not appear to be scared in the same situation does not make them fearless, it just makes them fliers. Similarly, I am sure a fish would ...


12

Yawning is contagious in humans, which means that, in general, it is more likely that a person yawning after perceived (by sight, hearing, or both directions) yawning issued by another person. The frequency of infection varies throughout the day, with a peak in early morning and late evening. A recent study conducted by Ivan Norscia and Elisabetta Palagi (...


12

Disclaimer: I'm an infectious disease modeler, and generally pretty skeptical of "We modeled X like an outbreak!" claims, because many are just an exercise in curve fitting. Given that, the answer is both "Yes" and "No". "No": Murder as an act really isn't transmissible, and if its not transmissible, it can't be modeled as an infectious disease. "Yes": It ...


12

As someone who is very disgusted by this kind of image, I think it is a caused by an association with maladies like burns, infections, and especially parasites. It is difficult for me to even describe this without feeling a bit nauseated, but it is hard for me to see things like that without picturing it being my, or someone else's, skin. Or that it is ...


11

The reason for their behavior is that exactly the fact that even though some of them do indeed get killed, most of them survive -- what you have said. The deer cross the river because that allows for the better continuation of the species rather than if they had stayed on the original side of the river. You could think of it this way: If there was a crowd ...


11

This is a good question. This type of behavior -- pecking at a branch, wiping the side of the beak on a branch, pulling off twigs and dropping them, or knocking off pieces of bark -- is quite common among many corvid species, particularly when they are interrupted by something or someone that they might consider a threat. This includes not only potential ...


10

As the previous answers clarify, all organisms have heritable traits that may be manipulated through selective breeding. It is the pragmatics that can be prohibitively challenging. From an (zoo)archaeological point of view, few animals have actually been domesticated, and only recently in our species' history. The dog is an unusual case, perhaps domesticated ...


10

The whole point about your question is to define what is an "evolved trait"? The concept of "evolved trait" does not exist in evolutionary biology. Here are various definitions I can think of that could apply to the expression "evolved traits". Heritable Traits Does evolved traits mean heritable traits? A trait may be heritable or not. See for example my ...


10

Eating the dead makes far more likely you will catch whatever killed them. They transport and dispose of the dead for the same reasons we do, to reduce disease vectors. They dispose of their garbage for much the same reason, in fact they often dispose of both in the same place even if they separate the two in distinct piles. Hygiene is very important is ...


9

The idea that we only love our family according to biology is not true, but its also not clear what people mean by the word 'love'. There are many ways to interpret that word! Hope this doesn't totally suck any romantic ideas out of you, but metaphysical concepts of love and romantic ideas of love are not always relevant when you talk about biology. A ...


9

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 ...


9

The behaviour that you describe is common in most animal species, as part of the natural trade-off between access to food, minimizing risk, habituation and hunger. Animals usually choose to forage in high-quality habitats that has a low risk of predation, but if food sources are depleted (or competition and/or territoriality is high) they will move to other ...


9

I think you're observing drinking and food moistening. Since birds have no teeth, food like bread, especially if dry, is easier to consume if it is moistened first. Drinking from a gutter is attractive because most other water sources are at ground level, which means there are potentially attacks by ground-based predators as well as aerial ones. Cats are ...


8

Among the great apes, chimpanzees and gorillas live in very hierarchical, male-dominated clans that are often in violent conflict with other clans. Bonobos, on the other hand, lead very peaceful lives, and are female-dominated, using sexual contact as a manner of communication to reduce tension within and between groups. Orangutans are largely solitary ...


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