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  • December 17, 2014
  • 07:11 AM
  • 50 views

Humpback Whales Sing For Their Supper

by beredim in Strange Animals

Humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) are known to employ group foraging techniques, however details on how individuals coordinate with each other still remain a mystery.

A new study by Susan Parks, assistant professor of biology in the College of Arts and Sciences, in collaboration with a consortium of other researchers examined the importance of specific auditory cues that these whales emit... Read more »

Parks SE, Cusano DA, Stimpert AK, Weinrich MT, Friedlaender AS, & Wiley DN. (2014) Evidence for acoustic communication among bottom foraging humpback whales. Scientific reports, 7508. PMID: 25512188  

  • December 15, 2014
  • 07:00 AM
  • 67 views

The Paradoxical Shrinking Frog

by beredim in Strange Animals



Pseudis paradoxa in a pond
Credit: Mauricio Rivera Correa

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Amphibia
Order: Anura
Family: Hylidae
Genus: Pseudis
Species: Pseudis paradoxa
Common Name(s): Paradoxical frog or Shrinking frog
Conservation Status: Least Concern (Not Threatened)

Looks like a pretty much regular frog, doesn't it? Well.. it's not! Meet P. paradoxa, a frog that grows down ... Read more »

  • December 12, 2014
  • 02:58 AM
  • 70 views

Researchers Discover Well-Endowed Bone Eating Worm

by beredim in Strange Animals



Male Osedax priapus
The entire body of males has evolved  as a tool for mating

Osedax is a genus of weird, deep-sea polychaetes worms, commonly known as boneworms, zombie worms, or bone-eating worms.



The story of these creatures began twelve years ago, when researchers from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) first discovered them, using the submarine ROV Tiburon in ... Read more »

  • December 10, 2014
  • 08:59 AM
  • 71 views

Pacific barreleye: Weird Fish with Transparent Head

by beredim in Strange Animals



Pacific barreleye fish
By Isa2014 (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-4.0],
via Wikimedia Commons

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Argentiniformes
Family: Opisthoproctidae
Genus: Macropinna
Species: Macropinna microstoma
Common Name(s): Pacific barreleye




The Pacific barreleye fish is one the weirdest creatures lurking deep in the ocean. Named after its eyes that are ... Read more »

  • December 8, 2014
  • 04:46 PM
  • 62 views

Electroreception in Mammals

by beredim in Strange Animals



The duck-billed platypis is one of the handful
mammals with the ability to sense electrical fields
By TwoWings, via Wikimedia Commons

Electroreception is the biological ability to perceive natural electrical stimuli or in simpler words, the ability to perceive the world via electricity.



Electroreception is quite common in aquatic or amphibious animals, since water is a much better conductor... Read more »

Scheich, H., Langner, G., Tidemann, C., Coles, R., & Guppy, A. (1986) Electroreception and electrolocation in platypus. Nature, 319(6052), 401-402. DOI: 10.1038/319401a0  

Pettigrew JD. (1999) Electroreception in monotremes. The Journal of experimental biology, 202(Pt 10), 1447-54. PMID: 10210685  

Czech-Damal NU, Liebschner A, Miersch L, Klauer G, Hanke FD, Marshall C, Dehnhardt G, & Hanke W. (2012) Electroreception in the Guiana dolphin (Sotalia guianensis). Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society, 279(1729), 663-8. PMID: 21795271  

  • December 4, 2014
  • 07:24 PM
  • 119 views

Non-Echolocating Bats Actually Echolocate Using Wing Clicks

by beredim in Strange Animals

Spectacled flying fox (Pteropus conspicillatus)A non-echolocating speciesCredit: MnolfContrary to what most people think, bats are not blind. The truth is that all one-thousand something bat species can see. Most people also think that since bats are blind they rely on their echolocation to get around. Again a mistake, since many bats don't possess echolocation.For example, most species of Megabats [Suborder: Megachiroptera] have to rely exclusively on their vision. Or that's what we thought up ........ Read more »

  • November 23, 2014
  • 10:52 AM
  • 98 views

Ampulex compressa: The Wasp That Turns Cockroaches Into Zombies

by beredim in Strange Animals

Jewel WaspBy Muhammad Mahdi Karim (Own work) [GFDL 1.2], via Wikimedia CommonsKingdom: AnimaliaPhylum: ArthropodaClass: InsectaOrder: HymenopteraSuborder: ApocritaSuperfamily: ApoideaFamily: AmpulicidaeGenus: AmpulexSpecies: Ampulex compressaCommon Name(s): Emerald cockroach wasp or jewel waspThe Emerald cockroach wasp is best known for its unusual parasitoid reproductive behavior, which among other includes stinging and injecting a cockroach with mind controlling toxins and using its ........ Read more »

  • November 22, 2014
  • 10:32 AM
  • 130 views

Hammerhead Slug: World's Largest Flatworm

by beredim in Strange Animals

Bipalium kewenseNotice the distinctive hammer-like headBy Ajaykuyiloor (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia CommonsKingdom: AnimaliaPhylum: PlatyhelminthesClass: TurbellariaOrder: TricladidaSuborder: ContinenticolaFamily: GeoplanidaeSubfamily: BipaliinaeGenus: BipaliumSpecies: Bipalium kewenseCommon Names: Hammerhead slug, Greenhouse PlanarianNicknamed as the "hammerhead slug" due to its half-moon shaped head, Bipalium kewense is not your ev........ Read more »

  • November 19, 2014
  • 10:33 AM
  • 156 views

Video: Seals Caught Raping Penguins !

by beredim in Strange Animals

Someone's having a really bad day!In a study published a few days ago, researchers from the Mammal Research Institute at the University of Pretoria, South Africa reported three incidents of fur seals (Aptenodytes patagonicus) sexually harassing and coercing with king penguins!The authors even took footage of the large mammals forcefully putting the birds to the ground and attempting to mate with them! The incidents took place at the sub-Antarctic Marion Island, on Goodhope Bay and Funk beach.The........ Read more »

  • November 10, 2014
  • 01:17 PM
  • 128 views

The Dancing Kiwa Puravida (Yeti Crab)

by beredim in Strange Animals

Kiwa PuravidaCredit: Andrew ThurberKingdom: AnimaliaPhylum: ArthropodaSubphylum: CrustaceaClass: MalacostracaOrder: DecapodaInfraorder: AnomuraFamily: KiwaidaeGenus: KiwaSpecies: Kiwa puravidaConservation Status: Not assessedCommon Name: Yeti crabMeet Kiwa puravida, a recently discovered deep-sea dwelling decapod and one of three species informally known as "yeti crabs". The other two are kiwa hirsuta and a creature commonly known as the "Hoff cr........ Read more »

  • November 9, 2014
  • 06:12 AM
  • 125 views

Sunday's Nudibranch: Jorunna funebris

by beredim in Strange Animals

 Jorunna funebrisPhoto by © Mark Rosenstein  [CC BY-NC-SA 3.0]Kingdom: AnimaliaPhylum: MolluscaClass: GastropodaSuperfamily: DoridoideaFamily: DiscodorididaeGenus: JorunnaSpecies: Jorunna funebrisCommon Name: Dotted nudibranch, Polka DotWhen I was writing my "14 Most Amazing Nudibranchs" post I had a really hard time choosing which species to include and which not.This animal group is very diverse and full of beautiful, alien-like or simply weir........ Read more »

Pattira Kasamesiri, Shettapong Meksumpun, and Charumas Meksumpun. (2012) Observations on Embryonic Development of Black-Spot Jorunna, Jorunna Funebris (Kelaart, 1859) (Gastropoda: Nudibranchia) . Journal of Shellfish Research, 33(2), 111-117. info:/http://dx.doi.org/10.2983/035.031.0114

  • November 6, 2014
  • 04:04 PM
  • 134 views

Researchers Design Cyborg Cockroaches for Search and Rescue Missions

by beredim in Strange Animals

Cyborg CockroachCredit: Eric Whitmire.Researchers at the North Carolina State University (NCSU) issued a press release today announcing that they have developed "cyborg" cockroaches with electronic circuit boards strapped to their backs. The cyborg cockroaches (or biobots) can be used to pick up sounds with their attached microphones and seek out their source.Hopefully, the technology will one day help emergency personnel to find and rescue survivors in the aftermath of disasters, like earthquak........ Read more »

Tahmid Latif, Eric Whitmire, Tristan Novak, and Alper Bozkurt. (2014) Towards Fenceless Boundaries for Solar Powered Insect Biobots. Aug. 28 at 36th Annual International IEEE EMBS Conference, Chicago, Illinois . info:/

  • November 6, 2014
  • 01:10 PM
  • 124 views

Silky Anteater

by beredim in Strange Animals

Silky AnteaterCredit: Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad Costa Rica (INBio) (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)Kingdom: AnimaliaPhylum: ChordataClass: MammaliaSuperorder: XenarthraOrder: PilosaSuborder:  VermilinguaFamily: CyclopedidaeGenus: CyclopesSpecies: Cyclopes didactylusConservation Status: Least Concern (Not Threatened)Common Name(s): Silky anteater, Pygmy anteater, Dwarf anteater, Two-toed anteaterThis cute, squirrel-sized critter is a silky anteater, the world’s smallest ante........ Read more »

  • November 1, 2014
  • 05:42 AM
  • 176 views

Strange, Vampire-like Deer Still Alive in Afghanistan

by beredim in Strange Animals

Musk deers use their distinctive fungs tusks during the rutting season  to compete with other males.Photo shows a Siberian musk deer, a similar and closelyrelated species.Credit: Julie Larsen Maher © WCSIt's been more than 60 years after the last confirmed sighting of the Kashmir musk deer in Afganistan, a strange deer with vampire-like fangs native to Afghanistan, Republic of India, and Pakistan.Now, a new study appearing in the latest edition of the journal Oryx reveals that the Kas........ Read more »

  • October 24, 2014
  • 12:50 PM
  • 188 views

The Pig-like Aardvark

by beredim in Strange Animals

Adult and juvenile AardvarksCredit: By Scotto Bear from North Beach, MD, USA (aardvarks) [CC-BY-SA-2.], via Wikimedia CommonsKingdom: AnimaliaPhylum: ChordataClass: MammaliaSuperorder: AfrotheriaOrder: TubulidentataFamily: OrycteropodidaeGenus: OrycteropusSpecies: Orycteropus aferConservation Status: Least Concern (Not Threatened)Common Name(s): Aardvark, African antbear, Cape anteaterMeet the Aardvark, a medium-sized, burrowing, nocturnal mammal from Afri........ Read more »

Taylor, W., Lindsey, P., & Skinner, J. (2002) The feeding ecology of the aardvark Orycteropus afer. Journal of Arid Environments, 50(1), 135-152. DOI: 10.1006/jare.2001.0854  

Mutlow AG, & Mutlow H. (2008) Caesarian section and neonatal care in the aardvark (Orycteropus afer). Journal of zoo and wildlife medicine : official publication of the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians, 39(2), 260-2. PMID: 18634220  

Tabuce, R., Asher, R., & Lehmann, T. (2008) Afrotherian mammals: a review of current data. mammalia, 72(1). DOI: 10.1515/MAMM.2008.004  

White, J., Williams, G., Samour, J., Drury, P., & Cheeseman, P. (1985) The composition of milk from captive aardvark (Orycteropus afer). Zoo Biology, 4(3), 245-251. DOI: 10.1002/zoo.1430040305  

  • October 23, 2014
  • 07:38 AM
  • 210 views

Four Solar-Powered Animals

by beredim in Strange Animals

Photosynthesis, a process used by plants and some bacteria to convert light from the sun into chemical energy which can be later released to fuel their activities. Animals on the other hand, have to consume other organisms in order to cover their energy needs. But every rule has an exception.In recent years, researchers have discovered a small number of animals that much like plants have found a way to directly harness and feed off the Sun’s energy.1# Oriental Hornet (Vespa orientalis)Typicall........ Read more »

Rumpho ME, Worful JM, Lee J, Kannan K, Tyler MS, Bhattacharya D, Moustafa A, & Manhart JR. (2008) Horizontal gene transfer of the algal nuclear gene psbO to the photosynthetic sea slug Elysia chlorotica. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105(46), 17867-71. PMID: 19004808  

Plotkin M, Hod I, Zaban A, Boden SA, Bagnall DM, Galushko D, & Bergman DJ. (2010) Solar energy harvesting in the epicuticle of the oriental hornet (Vespa orientalis). Die Naturwissenschaften, 97(12), 1067-76. PMID: 21052618  

Valmalette, J., Dombrovsky, A., Brat, P., Mertz, C., Capovilla, M., & Robichon, A. (2012) Light- induced electron transfer and ATP synthesis in a carotene synthesizing insect. Scientific Reports. DOI: 10.1038/srep00579  

Kerney, R., Kim, E., Hangarter, R., Heiss, A., Bishop, C., & Hall, B. (2011) Intracellular invasion of green algae in a salamander host. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 108(16), 6497-6502. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1018259108  

  • September 28, 2014
  • 04:54 AM
  • 251 views

Andinobates Geminisae: New Fingernail Sized Poison Dart Frog from Panama

by beredim in Strange Animals

This is the hololotype specimen that the researchers used to describe the newly discovered Andinobates geminisaeCredit: Cesar Jaramillo, STRIA team of scientists from the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, the Universidad Autónoma de Chiriquí in Panama, and the Universidad de los Andes in Colombia recently announced the discovery of a new bright orange poison dart frog. The new species is so small that it can fit on a fingernail and was found in a rain forest near the Caribbean coast, Do........ Read more »

  • September 15, 2014
  • 05:57 AM
  • 295 views

Turritopsis Dohrnii - Is It Really Immortal?

by beredim in Strange Animals

The "Immortal" JellyfishCredit: Peter Schuchert/The Hydrozoa DirectoryKingdom: AnimaliaPhylum: CnidariaClass: HydrozoaOrder: AnthoathecataFamily: OceaniidaeGenus: TurritopsisSpecies: Turritopsis dohrnii (formerly classified as T. nutricula.)Common Name: The immortal jellyfishMost of the animals featured on the site are chosen based on their unusual looks. However, this not the case with Turritopsis dohrnii, which seemingly has no notable morphological characteristics. On the outside, i........ Read more »

  • September 10, 2014
  • 07:42 AM
  • 252 views

Indian Purple Frog (Pignosed Frog)

by beredim in Strange Animals

Indian Purple FrogCredit: Karthickbala at ta.wikipedia (CC-BY-SA-3.0)via Wikimedia CommonsKingdom: AnimaliaPhylum: ChordataClass: AmphibiaOrder: AnuraFamily: SooglossidaeGenus: NasikabatrachusSpecies: Nasikabatrachus sahyadrensisConservation Status: EndageredCommon name(s):  Indian purple frog, Pignosed frog, Indian purple frogMeet the Indian puple frog, an endangered and odd-looking species of frog from the mountains of India’s Western Ghats.The species was formally described o........ Read more »

  • September 5, 2014
  • 04:32 AM
  • 232 views

Strange Deep Sea Mushroom-Shaped Animals Discovered

by beredim in Strange Animals

Photos of the newly discovered, mushroom-shapedDendrogramma enigmaticaIn a paper that appeared this week on PlosOne, researchers from the University of Copenhagen announced the discovery of two new strange, deep sea and mushroom-shaped animals. The two species were identified from a collection of specimens that were collected back in 1986.The authors assigned the newly described Dendrogramma enigmatica and Dendrogramma discoides under the animal kingdom, however they couldn't classify them into ........ Read more »

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