How do amphibians hear?

Amphibians have two ways to capture the vibrations of the medium and transform them into sound: In one hand, through their legs… What actually happens is that when the ground vibrates, vibrations are transmitted by the legs to the scapula of these animals, and  through the opercular muscle and opercular bone, reaching the oval membrane … Read more

Scorpions also shine

Scorpions emit fluorescence…when they are illuminated with ultraviolet light. It is supposed to be a kind of warning. The same happens with centipedes. In biology this phenomenon is called aposematism, that is, warning mechanisms to indicate that they are dangerous. There are several types of aposematism, especially in relation to color (intense colors such as … Read more

Syrphids. Camouflaged as wasps

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Surely, many of you have seen these animals flutter in the field… And surely many of you have turned away when you saw them nearby and shouted: “Watch out, a wasp!” Well, they’re actually flies… yes, harmless FLIES known as syrphid flies, flower flies or hoverflies. They imitate the coloration of wasps, which warns of … Read more

Cobwebs: Architecture in miniature

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There are up to 7 types of silk-producing glands (and each silk is different). But not all spiders have all those glands. Not all the spiders build cobwebs, but all of them have the ability to produce silk. The construction of cobwebs is genetically codified, it is not by learning. In addition, it is done … Read more

Awareness of death in non-human animals (Part 2)

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In this second part we expand the range of animal species that have been shown to exhibit unique behaviors after the death of a relative or companion. In these new cases we will see how both domestic and wild animals react surprisingly to death. More examples which suggest that the human being is not the … Read more

Awareness of death in non-human animals (Part I)

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There are many documented cases in which different species of animals have shown different types of behaviors toward dead bodies. Although the cases can be considered anecdotal observations and involve small sample sizes, they induce to think that feeling pain for a loss and being aware of death is not unique to humans. In this … Read more

Koko: The gorilla that could communicate with humans

Gorillas share 98.6% of the genetic material with humans. Like other species of animals, they communicate orally, visually, olfactorily and tactilely. As for the first form, several types of vocalizations have been identified. However, the gorilla Koko was and always will be,famous for being able to communicate with humans through sign language Koko, a Western … Read more

Behavior manipulators. The organisms capable of breaking the will

Behavioral control has always aroused deep fears. For instance, the mere idea of the existence of institutions and projects that have tried to manipulate the most private and apparently untouchable aspects of an individual arouses evident uneasiness. However, the human being is not pioneer in behavioral control techniques. In nature, several species have been practicing … Read more

Can a Canarian volcano cause an international catastrophe?

Can you imagine a wave of biblical proportions capable of flooding and destroying part of Europe and West Africa and the eastern shores of America? This is predicted by a mathematical model published in 2001 by a couple of geologists. This study predicts that such an event could be triggered by a volcano on La … Read more