Sometimes I wonder how many people know that horses' flat molars can grow sharp edges that need to be filed down or risk shredding mouth and tongue, and how many people would freak out knowing that. Do you have other little unknown facts on animals?
Many horses also have vestigial teeth called wolf teeth. Their presence can make a bit painful.
A cat queen can conceive a single litter from multiple toms, because their ovulation is induced by mating rather than preceding it. In very rare cases, a human can bear twins from different sires, too.
Octopuses have remarkable control over their arms (not tentacles; that’s nautili and squids) but they have shit for proprioception. That means that their brain tells an arm to do a thing, and the arm does the thing, but never really reports back to the brain that the thing was done. I have tried and failed to conceptualise what that must be like.
Mantises are the only insects that can turn their heads to look backwards.
Wolves and dog breeds that were developed to be at home in water, on the snow, or digging have webbed toes.
Where humans and dogs infringe on wolves’ land, a pack will sometimes lure larger dogs off thus: one member of the pack goes out to play and flirt with the dog, and leads them out into the woods where the rest of the pack lies in wait, and it’s curtains for the dog.
The “thumb” feathers on a bird’s wing are called an alula. It acts as a brake.
Birds’ knees do not point backwards. Holy fuck, pet peeve alert. The backward-pointing joint visible on a bird’s leg is its ankle, and everything below that is foot. The knees are tucked up against the body, covered in feathers.
Rats laugh when tickled. Tragically, we can’t hear it.
Many harmless snakes whose ranges overlap with rattlesnakes will rattle their tails in a similar way. My corn snakes, for example, will rattle when startled or upset.
Domestic hogs are bigger than you think. A lot bigger. They can grow up to six feet long and weigh almost 800 pounds. They are massive. And they will come at you.
A long time ago when oxygen was more plentiful, arthropods were much bigger. There were dragonflies with two-foot wingspans. Dragonflies never really lost the attitude when they lost the size.
Among cats, squinting is a very friendly gesture.