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Wolfram87
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01 Jun 2020, 5:02 pm

There has been some debate as to whether T.rex was actually a predator, or merely a scavenger (predator all the way, eye positioning!). The only ones saying it was a herbivore that I've seen were christian fundamentalists who believed all animals were herbivores before the fall or something like that.


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Gromit
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02 Jun 2020, 3:12 pm

Wolfram87 wrote:
There has been some debate as to whether T.rex was actually a predator, or merely a scavenger (predator all the way, eye positioning!).

Teeth are probably a better indicator. Compare the eye position of the hammerhead shark to that of the bushbaby.
Image

Image



Wolfram87
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02 Jun 2020, 3:54 pm

I'd agree, but the reasoning was something along the lines of it habitually stealing fresh kills from smaller predators, thus explaining the teeth. While the eyes of the T-rex are relatively small (and so probably didn't rely heavily on sight), they are still the forward-facing binocular vision of an animal that hunts.

Also, your examples are both highly specialized; the bushbaby for night vision and the hammerhead not even for vision at all but rather for sensing the electric fields of potential prey via Ampullae of Lorenzini.


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02 Jun 2020, 8:34 pm

Most predators are also scavengers. And top predators often use their might, not to over power prey, but to steal prey from other lesser predators. Lions steal prey from hyenas, and the American bald eagle will extort freshly caught fish from osprey (fish hawks). T rex probably often mugged smaller predatory dinosaurs after the later did the work of killing the prey.

My theory is that early hominids were also "proactive scavengers" who stole protein from predators before we became proficient hunters ourselves. Our chimplike ancestors might have mobbed cheetahs to steal the later's kills, or would seek out trees inhabited by leopards. Leopards hang slain animals from the branches of their home tree, festooning every branch with dead gazelles. Our chimplike ancestors may have waited for the leopards to leave home to hunt and would then rob the trees of the stored meat. We probably did that for a million years before we figured out how to use weapons to do big game hunting for ourselves. We may owe our survival to the big cats.



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05 Jun 2020, 11:58 pm

Some ape facts!

Chimpanzees and bonobos are the closest living relatives to humans, and share at least 98% of their DNA with us.

Despite human offspring relying on their parents for longer, great apes breastfeed their offspring for a longer period than humans do. Humans naturally breastfeed on an average of about two years, while chimpanzees breastfeed for an average of five, gorillas an average of four, and orangutans an average of eight to nine years!

Orangutans are the biggest arboreal primate, and the only great apes that live their lives primarily in the trees.

Chimpanzees eat meat and will commonly hunt Colobus monkeys, often doing so in groups.

Chimpanzees also have something similar to wars with other groups over territory, and one of the biggest populations of chimpanzees is especially known for this behaviour.

Female bonobos have more developed breast tissue than other non-human great apes, and overall have a body shape that's more similar to humans than their chimpanzee counterparts, such as shorter arms, longer legs, and a centrally positioned foramen magnum (the hole where your spine connects to your head), which all allow for easier bipedal movement.



PhosphorusDecree
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06 Jun 2020, 1:55 pm

HeroOfHyrule wrote:
Female bonobos have more developed breast tissue than other non-human great apes, and overall have a body shape that's more similar to humans than their chimpanzee counterparts, such as shorter arms, longer legs, and a centrally positioned foramen magnum (the hole where your spine connects to your head), which all allow for easier bipedal movement.


It's just struck me- I don't think I've ever seen a bonobo on a wildlife program. I've read the occasional magazine article about them, usually focused on their extravagant sex lives and how much less aggressive they are than chimps. But I've no visual sense of what they're like.

More primates-

Tarsiers are the only primates that don't eat any vegetable matter at all: they live entirely on insects and small vertebrates. There are 14 species, confined to the islands of south east Asia. They are nocturnal, but their eyes have lost the reflecting "tapetum lucidam" that helps many mammals see in the dark. So to compensate, their eyes ridiculously big. A tarsier's eyeball is roughly the same size as its brain. They can turn their heads to face straight backwards, like an owl. They cling to vertical branches and get around by jumping, with the aid of long, wierdly proportioned hind legs. Which kind of look like frogs' legs to me. Only fluffier.


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HeroOfHyrule
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06 Jun 2020, 8:48 pm

PhosphorusDecree wrote:
It's just struck me- I don't think I've ever seen a bonobo on a wildlife program. I've read the occasional magazine article about them, usually focused on their extravagant sex lives and how much less aggressive they are than chimps. But I've no visual sense of what they're like.

I don't see bonobos covered on documentaries and things like that often either. I honestly don't know as much about them as I do the other great apes due to that. They were considered the same species as chimpanzees before, and a lot of the research on their individual behaviour and qualities seems relatively recent compared to the other apes.

- I'm gonna leave a few more bonobo facts due them not getting as much attention as other apes:

Bonobos are a matriarchal species, with the highest ranking members always older females. The females in a population also usually have very close relationships, will help each other raise their offspring, and will band together to stave off males who are making unwanted sexual advances towards another female. They've even bitten toes and, uh, intimate parts off of male bonobos before while doing this.

When female bonobos reach adulthood they will leave their current population in search of another group to join, which aids in genetic diversity.

Once male bonobos reach adulthood they will often stay in the group with their mother, and if they're lower on the social order their mother will help their sons chances of mating by staving off rival males and helping them find mates. This behaviour helps to ensure that the mother bonobos genes are passed on by her son.



PhosphorusDecree
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10 Jul 2020, 4:52 pm

Ringtailed lemurs are more aggressive than most lemurs, but they're still matriarchal. So a fight between ringtail bands is a bit different from chimps or baboons. The most dominant females do all the snarling, threat postures and physical scrapping. These dominant females are also the most likely to breed, so the warriors often go into battle with a baby or two clinging to them. Meanwhile, the males contribute by dancing around and wafting their pheromones in a menacing manner. To get the full effect, they rub the scent glands on their arms down the length of their long bushy tails.


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13 Jul 2020, 8:10 pm

Horses are physically incapable of throwing up

Clown fish are born male. Then if the turned female in the sexually mature clown fish pair dies, the male will then sex change to take her place. Then picks the next largest male in the group/school as a mate.

Some female snakes, (like copperheads & cottonmouths)are capable of fertilizing their own eggs - virgin births

Pigs don't sweat

Female preying mantises have a pension for killing and eating their mate after copulation

Female dragonflies will fake their own deaths to avoid mating with males (that they unassumingly don't like)

This weird thing: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-zoo-blob/paris-zoo-unveils-the-blob-an-organism-with-no-brain-but-720-sexes-idUSKBN1WV2AD?fbclid=IwAR0IJJ4tYXx1y04XKNxALB8kQKN7396c_F7QvgvSrlfpaF7vbyASoKHME5w

Snails have teeth. Like 2,000 of them

A narwhal's 'horn' is actually a big ole tooth


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cyberdad
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13 Jul 2020, 8:28 pm

A little known fact is that animals such as your pets are also susceptible to COVID-19
https://theconversation.com/can-your-pe ... hem-135611

So pets should also practice social distancing from other kitties and pooches...



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14 Jul 2020, 10:01 am

Those things that look like giant mosquitos are actually crane flies, which eat mosquitos.

Only female bees, wasps, and other things with stingers can sting, because the stinger is actually a modified ovipositor, which is what they use to lay eggs.


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Wolfram87
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14 Jul 2020, 11:16 am

dragonsanddemons wrote:
Those things that look like giant mosquitos are actually crane flies, which eat mosquitos.


Adult craneflies, if they have the capacity to eat at all (some of them don't), feed on liquids like nectar and othe rplant juices. They have neither capacity nor inclination to prey on mosquitoes.


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usagibryan
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14 Jul 2020, 11:50 am

Spotted hyena society is matriarchal; females are larger than males, and dominate them.



dragonsanddemons
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14 Jul 2020, 12:22 pm

Wolfram87 wrote:
dragonsanddemons wrote:
Those things that look like giant mosquitos are actually crane flies, which eat mosquitos.


Adult craneflies, if they have the capacity to eat at all (some of them don't), feed on liquids like nectar and othe rplant juices. They have neither capacity nor inclination to prey on mosquitoes.


I fully admit I may be wrong, I don’t remember where I got that information, could easily not be a credible source.

I found out from personal experience that whatever species of toad we commonly find around here will play dead, tucking their limbs up under themselves and not moving. I learned this when my dog found a toad, and I was afraid he’d killed it, but it hopped off not long after I put it on the ground away from the dog.

True bugs are a subset of insects that are easy to identify by the triangle shape they have on their backs. These include cicadas, stinkbugs, and boxelder bugs. (Learned in an entomology class in college)

Only one species of rabbit can swim, the swamp rabbit. This gives them an advantage in finding habitat that a lot of other animals can’t get to. (Learned from some show on TV that was about rabbits, don’t remember what it was called)


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Yet in my new wildness and freedom I almost welcome the bitterness of alienage. For although nepenthe has calmed me, I know always that I am an outsider; a stranger in this century and among those who are still men.
-H. P. Lovecraft, "The Outsider"

When you try to assume, it makes an a** out of u and me.

I have increasing memory issues, and a tendency to forget that I forget everything. Please don't take it personally if I forget something, it probably says absolutely nothing about how important the thing is/isn’t to me.