Category Archives: Animals

The Skin of an African Elephant

african-elephant-bull

When you consider their size and how much they have to keep under wraps, African elephants have surprisingly thin skin, relatively speaking. Holding Everything In Across most of their bodies, an African elephant’s skin is only somewhere between 2 and 4 cm or .78 to 1.6 inches thick on average. All of this relatively thin skin holds in a whole […]

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The Eleven Thousand Year Old Contagious Cancer Still Multiplying Today

dog-x-ray

Eleven thousand years ago, one saucy canine got busy and, as can happen with unprotected sex, gave its partner a venereal disease, although uniquely, this VD was cancerous. Over the course of the intervening millennia, that second dog, its partners, and its partners’ partners, all did what dogs eventually do, each spreading the disease, which has continued to retain some […]

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Where Do Insects Go in Winter?

frozen-bee

Michael asks: Where do insects disappear to in the winter time? As cold-blooded creatures, insects are particularly susceptible to winter’s freezing temperatures. To survive, this class of animals has developed a wide variety of adaptations, including long migrations, creating their own anti-freeze and even purposely freezing portions of their bodies. Migration Perhaps the best-known migratory insect is the Monarch Butterfly. […]

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Frogs and Milk- How to Keep Milk from Spoiling Without Refrigeration

frog-cup

For centuries, before refrigeration, an old Russian practice was to drop a frog into a bucket of milk to keep the milk from spoiling. In modern times, many believed that this was nothing more than an old wives’ tale. But researchers at Moscow State University, led by organic chemist Dr. Albert Lebedev, have shown that there could be some benefit […]

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Do Cow Farts Really Significantly Contribute to Global Warming?

cow-backside

Shawn asks: Do cow farts really significantly contribute to global warming? There are currently approximately 1.3 to 1.5 billion cows grazing, sleeping, and chewing their cud at any given time on planet Earth. And these 1,300 pound (average weight for both a beef and dairy cow) animals eat a lot. Much like humans, when they eat,  gas builds up inside […]

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When a New York Yankee Beat an Ostrich in a Spaghetti-Eating Contest

ostrich-eating-spaghetti

The date was April 3, 1919. The location was the South Side Pavilion in sunny Jacksonville, Florida. The occasion was a much-hyped competition of gastronomical strength between Ping Bodie, the five foot eight and 190 pound New York Yankee outfielder, versus the “world’s greatest eater,” an ostrich named Percy. They were to engage in a spaghetti-eating contest to determine, once […]

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Disordered Hyperuniformity – The State of Matter Found in a Chicken’s Eye

chicken-eye

Despite what you learned in grammar school, there are way more than four states of matter. One possible new one, disordered hyperuniformity, was recently found in the weirdest place – the eyes of chickens. Classical States of Matter  To better understand an exotic state of matter like disordered hyperuniformity, it may be helpful to review the characteristics of the classical […]

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There Is Technically No Such Thing as an Electric Eel

electric-eel

Myth: Electric “eels” exist. There are, however, electric fish: eight-foot long, 600 volt, mouth breathing, alligator-killing fish. Electrophorus electricus Although there are a number of fish that produce an electric charge, the species that is called “electric eel,” E. electricus, is a member of the fish order, ostariophysian. Mistaken for an eel due to its shape and lack of pelvic, […]

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