hunting behavior

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 I was showing a friend videos of normal snow leopard locomotion last night (read: their interaction with the laws of physics looks like it came straight out of a cartoon) and I found this incredible video of how that agility and strength benefit them in the wild. 

The actual video of the chase starts at around 2:10 (before that there’s a lot of really gorgeous footage of the snow leopards and the goats on their own) and it’s incredible to watch an animal race across steep, rocky terrain with such grace. It’s also worth noting how effective a snow leopard’s pattern is at camouflaging them on the mountainous backdrop. 

(CW: minor animal injury - the goat gets bitten, but there is no visible blood). 

self care is coming face to face with a ghost and setting out on a quest to capture what you once saw onto video with no big camera crews following you around joined only by your fellow investigator nick groff and your equipment tech aaron goodwin as you travel to some of the most highly active paranormal locations where you spend an entire night being locked down from dusk till dawn

The only artists who are Passionately against Mean Antis and “”“"witch hunts”“”“ over ~problematic~ behavior are the ones who are scared because they know they deserve backlash and are projecting honestly

anonymous asked:

In regards to pigeon diets; I've seen vets and wildlife rehabilitators mention that pigeons can eat a variety of vegetables,(appears corn and peas are recommend for young ones if they're abandoned and need to be cared for, in particular) berries, and insects as well, and according to ornithologist, rock pigeons regularly have a varied diet similar to that in a nature setting. I'm wondering where the idea that pigeons can't digest foods besides seeds and grain comes from?

So I have to ask you:

Do you know what anatomical part of the plant corn kernels and peas are?

Given that you called them vegetables, I have to assume not.

They are seeds.

Seeds have a VERY different structure from the rest of a plant’s anatomy.

They are embryonic tissue wrapped in a protective shell. Almost pure protein, and in terms of digestion, closer to processing meat than any other part of a plant’s anatomy.

Leaf, stem, root, tuber and vegitable flesh are largely comprised of Cellulose, the stuff that makes wood rigid.

Animals cannot process cellulose on their own. 

They need bacteria for that, which is stored in a specialized organ called the Cecum, which branches off from the intestine in many species, and it just an extra length of it in others (such as humans and ruminants.)

In most birds, the cecum branches off of the intestines and food does not directly pass through it.  Bacteria are excreted from it to digest the vegetation that the body cannot break down unaided.

Animals that eat a lot of leafy or fleshy vegetation have very large caeca to store the volume of bacteria required to break it down enough to get any nutrition out of it.

Here, for example, is the Cecum of a horse.

@why-animals-do-the-thing talked about the cecum in their post about why feeding a cat a vegetarian or vegan diet would kill it, and they found this helpful comparative image set.

Animals with a low cellulose diet tend to have either a very small cecum or none at all.

So, the idea that a pigeon cannot process cellulose stems from the fact that pigeons have less of a cecum than a DOG does.

Let’s have a look at the anatomy of a genuinely omnivorous bird that eats everything from flesh to bugs, to grass and does a LOT of grazing on vegetable matter:

A chicken has, not one cecum, but TWO very long Caeca.

Chickens eat a LOT of vegitation, so they need a LOT of storage space for their bacterial partners.

Now, let’s look at a pigeon.

See that teeny little blip of a cecum?

That’s all they need because the only cellulose in a seed diet is the shell of the seed, which pigeons swallow whole.

Unlike parrots, finches, and other seed eating birds, Columbids to not remove the shell from the seed. 

The shell is an absolutely necessary source of dietary fiber that finches and psitticines get no use out of.

Animals that can process sugars need to be able to detect them.

Pigeons have 40 taste buds. None of which can detect sweetness.

Their enjoyment and selection of favorite food items is based more on texture than taste.

Pigeons who have never seen other birds eat a berry, when offered a berry, will generally fail to recognize it as a food, so the conclusion I have reached is that feral pigeons who do eat them have observed song birds do it, and with food being scarce and most of the,m being hungry, they don;t have the option to be picky. 

That’s why you see ferals eating discarded hot dogs when they are not even remotely built to be flesh eaters.

 Insects are actually very nutritionally similar to the embryonic tissue that seeds are, and there tend to be insects on or in seeds that birds pick up and swallow.

But now let me ask you:

Have you spent any time observing feral pigeon flocks?

Have you ever seen them employ hunting behavior?

Honing in on something that moves, stalking it and pecking it up like a chicken or corvid (both of which are omnivorous) would?

Because watching pigeon flocks is a big part of my research, and I have yet to see them react in a predatory manner to live insects.

Peeps are interested in the movement, but consumption largely seems to be incidental rather than intentional.

Across the world and for millions of years, army ant colonies have been infiltrated by impostors—beetles that pass for ants and make their living as parasites. Army ants are named for their aggressive hunting behavior, and they’re also fierce defenders of their colonies. But this hasn’t stopped several beetle species from the family Staphylidae which have evolved to infiltrate roaming army ant colonies and live in them as parasites. A new study published in the journal Current Biology finds this capacity evolved not just once, but at least a dozen times in beetle species that are only distantly related. Read more about this new research on the blog.

ausdogkora  asked:

What's the protocol for when the power goes out at the aquarium? And do you have advice of what to do to keep fish (and filter bacteria!) alive if the power goes out? :)

Okay, staff at the aquarium actually get questions like this frequently from visitors. This is because visitors are often quite shocked to realize that many of the animals they saw during childhood visits are still there, in spite of Hurricane Sandy and all the damage it brought to the Jersey shore. They start asking about how we weathered the storm.

The truth is, we have major plans in place for handling any emergency or power outage. This is how the aquarium staff (at the time of Sandy, I was still just a volunteer!) did so well. By having plans in place and reviewing them, it greatly helps with most issues.

Minor power outages or rolling brownouts are a common enough occurrence during the worst of summer heatwaves or storms, no matter where you live NJ. While modern upgrades and redundancies to the power grid has removed much of the risk of significant power loss, it can happen.

To deal with minor losses, we have a few hidden treasures tucked away. While the building has emergency lighting to assist with human navigation, every free-standing exhibit has a flashlight or lantern tucked underneath. Why? Well, every extra bit of light is important to help us pathetic humans navigate in the dark. We employees and volunteers know our aquarium and the terrain pretty well, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be hazardous in the dark. This means helping everyone get around safely to a secure area or possibly exiting the building if external conditions warrant is priority 1.

These lights are also crucial for our sharks and their tank mates. Successfully keeping larger sharks with fish requires working with their natural tendencies. Sharks tend to be more active with hunting at night. One of the biggest tricks to keeping sharks in aquaria is making sure they have a nightlight. It need not be bright enough to disturb, just bright enough to prevent them from getting into that hunting behavior and starting to look at their tank mates as a possible snack. So, a big job is specifically ensuring that there are lights on our sharks.

Side note : I picture this whenever we talk about power outages and shining flashlights for the sharks. I’ve never experienced a power outage at work, but I have a feeling this will be me if it happens while I’m around the sharks.

Originally posted by oneangryshot

In addition to hidden flashlights, each and every free-standing exhibit has a hidden emergency kit underneath including a battery operated air pump, line, and stone. If the power outage will continue longer than a minor inconvenience, these little battery operated pumps can be set up to keep some circulation and surface disturbance in the exhibits.

This plan for dealing with minor outages is only as good as our prior preparation. So, these pumps and flashlights are frequently checked to ensure that everything is in working order and that they all have good batteries. We have a cache of batteries in our lab, as well as a huge tote of spares.

If a power outage looks like it is going to persist for longer than a few hours, then we have a bit of a challenge on our hands. Temperatures on smaller exhibits (especially terrestrial ectotherms) may begin to slide, and prolonged stagnation of water through filter media may cause the beneficial bacteria to consume all available oxygen (and die). The aquarium has generators on hand for this very emergency. We may not be able to operate ALL life support systems, but our generators can handle ensuring that critical systems are functioning.

Where it gets interesting is our water quality monitoring. In our day to day operations, the aquarium alternates between two systems from Hach and YSI. These are both battery operated, handheld devices with internal lighting that we can use to go from tank to tank and monitor for temperature, dissolved oxygen, salinity, and pH (on the YSI). As we test, the data is displayed on the device in use and is also stored for later retrieval. So, although I need a computer to upload data and make our pretty spreadsheets for logging purposes, I could still easily go around and ensure that each tank is sitting within a reasonable range for general parameters.

Our aquarium has two levels, and our upper level has been known to turn into “tent-city” when a prolonged outage is expected (or a significant storm). Staff has camped out there and spent the night to ensure that nothing goes awry. I am told, however, that the seals make bad roommates (they can be active and noisy at night, apparently!).

We also put in a ton of prep work if we suspect an event will cause us to lose power, such as a hurricane or other major weather event. This may include things like setting up the generators, putting pumps into place, etc. By being ready in advance of the power going out, we’ve already done much of the hard work. I also like to think it gets us in the right mindset for when the power does go out, no different than having a fire drill.

Okay, I think this is long enough for one post. I’m going to make a second one for home hobbyists dealing with power loss.

anonymous asked:

"A lost dog poster (up next to a free kittens ad and a for rent sign…)" I'm sorry I don't understand what this means...

Cas. The “dog who thinks he’s people.” The Winchesters’ “attack dog.” Who’s currently “lost.” Because he’s not answering his phone and Dean can’t even track him with his phone’s GPS, and he’s even tried checking through national police databases to see if anyone fitting Cas’s description has been arrested… I mean, Dean was trying to distract himself from the fact that he couldn’t find his dog by going down to the pound to pet a different dog. Basically. Metaphorically speaking.

I think fandom has pretty universally decided that Cas would be a cat person.

And for rent could mean several different things… but mostly the fact that Dean’s waiting for Cas to properly come home, move into the bunker.

anonymous asked:

I didn't know cats were dangerous to chickens? Like, my chickens sometimes attack the cats if they get too close, except our one cat, Bucky. He grew up around them and actually helps me find them if they roost in the trees. He's never attacked them? Idk if it's a dander issue, but.... Idk.

Cats and chickens should never be allowed to interact closely, even if they seem to tolerate each other. Its fine if they are in the same area supervised, but they shouldn’t be allowed to touch or play. Cats (and dogs) have bacteria on their fur and in their mouths that are deadly to chickens. Most of the videos depicting chicken and cats interacting have the cat displaying obvious hunting behaviors, or have the cats licking the chickens which could be fatal. You never really know when a cat could pounce or scratch too rough and kill/injure the bird. 

A concept:

Werewolves seldom live alone. The wolf instinct is powerful- but it doesn’t drive hunting behavior; that’s a little too cognitive, a little too much testing and careful gauging. It’s only the very recently turned, or those whose inhibitions are lowered one way or another, that catch themselves hunkering down when something runs in front of them or salivating at the presence of any raw meat.

But the pack instinct dominates, powerfully. Partners, romantic or platonic. Family, biological or found; in a gregariousness that transcends species boundaries some make their pack out of pets, or even plants- but a werewolf will virtually never be caught in isolation if they can possibly help it. Amateurs at the supernatural look for werewolves in unshaven pariahs, but far more often they are found in the soccer moms whooping enthusiastically from the bleachers- the man who never misses a single meeting of his book club, people with pockets full of bandages and snacks and a spare coat for everyone. 

Another concept: Vampire social circles tend incredibly exclusive. There are a thousand and one blood clans and most of them have upwards of twenty rivalries they’ve been nursing for centuries. Debts unpaid, ancient dueling accidents- points of contention arise over the changing values of eras and how someone was turned.

Out of this isolation, most vampires live in pockets of time; here a slice of Victorian London, there, a coven dating back to the Islamic Golden Age. Clinging to the familiar, though new blood always saturates even the oldest lines in the end, and brings those ideas with them- as much as they complain, yearn for the times when the world made sense, many do so discreetly checking smartphones, from the comforts of electric lighting and air-conditioned houses

Some are forced to set aside rivalries by sheer virtue of everyone else in their respective circles has died or moved on, leading them back to each other- but of course, they don’t forget their old grudges. 

phantomnoodlez  asked:

What does tail flicking mean?? I heard it means agitation or anger, but my cat flicks her tail even when she's happy and purring

There’s nuance to tail flicking! 

So if the are relaxed, purring, and just the tip of the tail is sort of twitching, like curling up and down again, that’s just a contentment thing. Some cats do that, some don’t, but it’s not a sign of agitation in that case. 

HOWEVER. 

The tail SWISH is very different. 

The tail swish is the larger, more dramatic back-and-forth sweep of the tail. Cats will sometimes employ this when they are at play, but if you are petting or holding a cat and it starts to tail sweep, that usually means they are feeling overwhelmed and agitated and would like to be left alone please. Persisting in annoying or stimulating a cat who is tail swishing will likely lead to an escalation, including growling, ear flattening, or even biting or hissing. But if you respect the swish and let the cat go when it first asks, you are less likely to have negative encounters with him! 

Cats communicate a LOT via body language and ESPECIALLY tail language. A fluffed tail is alarm or fear. A tail straight back with the tip curled is a relaxed cat. A low tail (along with a low body) is often hunting behavior. And an exclamation point tail–straight up–with a hooked tip is a kitty “Hello!” 

Learn to talk tail language and your relationship with your kitty friends will greatly improve! 

young-pastel-space-boy  asked:

How long did it take you to be able to handle these exotic animals?? I'm wondering because in the future I want to get an exotic bird and I'd like to know. Thank you. Also, if you have any tips on taking care of exotic birds, I'd like to know. Thank you.

Hi there!

I actually wanted to be a zookeeper so I did several years worth of volunteer jobs, at raptor centers, herpetology labs, zoos, vet clinics, etc. I worked everything from birds to venomous, to dogs.

Then I worked as a full time reptile keeper (snakes, gators, turtles, some fish) for a couple years before deciding I wanted to do something different.

I’ve always wanted to do falconry and that took a while too. I had to do a minimum two year apprenticeship under a more experienced falconer. That is how I have raptors, under a state falconry permit. These raptors aren’t my pets but rather my hunting partners. After training they fly completely free, able to leave if they choose, and get lots of exercise and mental stimulation. I give them the chance to do what nature designed them to do-hunt. Raptors that aren’t allowed to hunt can develop behavior issues. It’s what they want to do, what they’re driven to do, and when people try to keep them as pets they often become either self destructive or aggressive towards the pet keeper.

If you want to own exotics I suggest you start doing volunteer work for reputable places like zoos, so you can learn how to provide a proper diet, and enrichment for your critters, along with housing. Exotic animals have needs regular cats and dogs do not, and it’s important to meet those needs for the well being of your animal.

As for exotic birds–it depends on what you’re thinking of. I can’t say much about parrots except think really hard before getting one. They’re eternal two year olds. While I enjoy other people’s parrots, I’m -not- a parrot person. Don’t much like them at all other than they’re cute and nice to look at. I know I don’t want to own one.

If you’re thinking something like an African pied crow, make sure you have the ability to keep its environment stimulating and enriching. This goes for any bird really, but corvids especially.

If a hawk or a falcon I suggest getting them through a falconry permit where you can really work with them in a partnership fashion. Otherwise you might want to consider working rehab or education where you can enjoy the birds but go home at the end of the day.

To end, again, talk to or volunteer with someone who keeps the kind of animals you’re interested in. Read everything you can. It’s our jobs to do the best by these critters that we possibly can.

4

The large, leisurely Aragorn insists on “scent-rolling time” prior to every treadmill session. He used to shock the trainers and students with spontaneous “surprise-rolls” while the treadmill was running at full speed. Making it stop before he could get hurt, was quite a challenge, so we decided to allow him this little privilege…
Photos: Rooobert Bayer

30 Day Retrosaur Challenge part 17 - Apex Predator

Living during the mid Cretaceous, Praedonius (meaning ‘the pirate’, due to the sail-like ridge running along its back) was a very successful predator due to its versatile hunting behavior. It could surprise its prey in an ambush, chase down and exhaust quarry while running on all fours, and was an adept swimmer, able to chase aquatic and semi-aquatic prey, like Duck-Billed Goliaths. When large prey was scarce, it would resort to foraging for small fry.

It did face stiff competition when other invasive tyrant species moved into its territory. That being said, it did have a mutually beneficial relationship with some True Tyrants, such as Akrodon. For instance, Praedonius would swim behind a herd wading of duck-bills in order to chase them onto the land, where an Akrodon is laying in wait. Or vice versa, with Akrodon chasing them into the lake. By working together, both predators had a higher rate of success while hunting.

Keep reading

ranty-ramblestein  asked:

I've been looking into getting a Spearow ever since a wild Fearow managed to OHKO my Empoleon with Assurance. Is there any advice you can give me about handling one? On a related note, are there any less-hostile breeds? Though this assumes that Spearow wouldn't fight Empoleon for dominance when/if he evolves...

A few things to think about before you commit:

-Spearow are what they are, wherever they are. Expect them to be aggressive, not out of dominance, but because that is just their normal behavior.

-Spearow need lots of room and activity to thrive.

-Spearow will often reject dead food and require live prey between the ages of 2-6 months. Scientists believe this is an adaptation that promotes hunting behavior. Make sure you are comfortable handling live insects and worms. After this period, you can wean it to dead or pre-prepard foods, but this may take a few months.

-Your Empoleon might be hostile to new Pokémon. Consider how adding Pokémon on previous occasions has gone, and plan accordingly.

anonymous asked:

My brother is having trouble with webs that his Ariodos keeps making. They aren’t in any places where they would stop people from moving about but they are just EVERYWHERE.

Ariados might be trying to replicate wild hunting behavior. Try telling your brother to train with ariados more, and hide treats around the house or buy a treat-dispensing puzzle toy to keep them occupied.

As for the webs, they’re really sticky at room temperature and get even worse with hot water, so use cold water and a stiff brush so they’re less flexible and more likely to pull away from whatever they’re attached to.

psychoinnocent  asked:

So I'm sure you've gotten a similar question before but if not: what kind of research did you do when you decided on the settled forms for Dæmorphing? Like did you go through an animal encyclopedia or decide on a general family before going into specifics? I'm curious since I'm working on a HDM crossover and I underestimated how much thought had to be put into it haha

I did a RIDICULOUS amount of research for the settled forms of the main human characters of Dæmorphing. (Main characters include the Anifamilies but not the Valley new-frees, to give some perspective.) 

I never picked a family before going into specifics. I left everything on the table, which is why I think I ended up with some really fun forms like four-eyed butterflyfish for Tidwell and cabbage white butterfly for Melissa. For me it was super important to avoid stereotypes of what a character’s dæmon ought to be, given that a major theme of Dæmorphing is the disconnect between what people believe about animals and what they’re actually like.

I’m making it sound simpler than it is, but my method is this, more or less. 

1. Come up with a list of personality traits for the character. I don’t mean preferences like “hates mornings” or “likes math.” I mean patterns of behavior like “values privacy” or “can’t stay focused on one thing at a time.” Don’t forget exceptions and caveats like “lazy, except when it’s a project she’s doing for herself, not one she’s been asked to do.”

2. Organize the list into useful categories. By “useful” I mean things you can translate into animal behavior together. Put social traits into a category. Put boundaries and privacy into a category. Put work ethic traits into a category.

3. Translate the traits into animal behaviors. Often it’s not a one to one thing but a group of traits. Say you have traits like “values privacy,” “gets angry when people touch his stuff,” and “defensive.” All of those add up to an animal that lives alone on a territory it defends against all comers. But caveats are important too. “Gets angry when people touch his stuff, except his friends,” might suggest an animal with more porous territorial boundaries, or maybe an animal that defends a territory with a mate or a social group.

4. Find an animal that has all of those traits. This is the really hard part. There’s gonna be a lot of blind alleys. I usually start with one really unusual animal behavior to filter on, and then go from there. My starting point with Eva, for example, was that she’s super tough and can survive even the most extreme adversity. That pretty much cut me down to animals in the desert, tundra, deep sea, and mountaintops. But you will find animals that are perfect except for one thing and it will drive you crazy. I nearly picked eyelash viper for Marco because they’re territorial, they’re ambush predators, they have extravagant courtship displays, they use manipulative behaviors to hunt, and they have sensitive passive senses – but they’re just too solitary for him. It wasn’t working. So I had to move on.

In terms of where I do my research, well, it depends on the stage of research. Wikipedia is always great as a jumping off point, if you need to assemble a list of burrowing animals, for example. There’s lots of freely available articles on Google Scholar, if you’re willing to wade into the weeds of scientific language (I am.) I often find that zoo websites have really good information about animals. I’m also a big fan of UMichigan’s Animal Diversity Web, and for more specific groups of animals, Ultimate Ungulate and Primate Info Net

I’m also happy to give you advice as long as you come to me with specific questions like “Hey, do you know of a burrowing animal that is also an active chase predator?” rather than broad ones like “What dæmon does X character have?”