Archive for the 'Mammals' category

The Bull That Didn't Know the Rules

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Yesterday morning while I was in the gym, I saw this footage over and over and over again on the national news. Even with my language barrier, it's not difficult to figure out what was happening nor what the eventual outcome would be.
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TEDTalks: Carl Safina: The Oil Spill's Unseen Culprits, Victims

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The Gulf oil spill dwarfs comprehension, but we know this much: it's bad. Carl Safina scrapes out the facts in this blood-boiling cross-examination, arguing that the consequences will stretch far beyond the Gulf -- and many so-called solutions are making the situation worse.

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The Laryngeal Nerve of the Giraffe is Proof of Natural Selection

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This video, including comments by Richard Dawkins, documents a necropsy (an autopsy on an animal other than a human) carried out in a classroom on a giraffe. In this video, we follow the pathway of the recurrent (inferior) laryngeal nerve, an important nerve that is a branch of the Vagus nerve (tenth cranial nerve). The recurrent (inferior) laryngeal nerve, which branches off the Vagus nerve at the base of the brain, travels down the neck, around the arteries of the heart and travels back up the neck to ennervate the larynx, or voice box, thereby providing motor function. The purpose of doing this exercise is to show that there is no so-called "intelligent designer" because the pathway of this nerve is completely illogical -- unless, of course, you accept that evolution is the reason for this nerve's convoluted pathway through the body.

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TEDTalks: Peter Tyack: The Intriguing Sound of Marine Mammals

Jun 18 2010 Published by under Mammals, Streaming videos, Teaching, Zoology

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Bird watchers (especially those who do most of their birding by ear) will particularly enjoy this video: Peter Tyack of Woods Hole talks about a hidden wonder of the sea: underwater sound. Onstage at Mission Blue, he explains the amazing ways whales use sound and song to communicate across hundreds of miles of ocean.

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A Bird's Eye View of the BP Oil Spill

Jun 09 2010 Published by under Animalia, Environment, Mammals, Streaming videos

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This news report of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico features a "bird's eye view" of the spill, including footage of the pelican rookery filled with oiled adult birds and a dead dolphin. Nothing like taking a close look at the REAL victims of this disaster!

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Obsession for .. Animals?

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This fascinating video shows that Calvin Klein's "Obsession for Men" is NOT just for men! This is a great example of how careful observation of captive animals' behavior is directly impacting research with wild animals. When biologists at the Bronx Zoo started spritzing "Obsession for Men" cologne near heat-and-motion-sensitive cameras, the tigers, snow leopards, jaguars and cheetahs became curious ... very curious. And snuggly.

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TEDTalks: Brian Skerry Reveals Ocean's Glory -- and Horror

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Professional photographer Brian Skerry shoots life above and below the waves -- as he puts it, both the horror and the magic of the ocean. Sharing amazing, intimate shots of undersea creatures, he shows how powerful images can help make change.

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Pocket Piglet

Jun 03 2010 Published by under Brain & Behavior, Humor, Mammals, Pets, Streaming videos

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This video shows a "pocket piglet" .. a miniature pig as a baby. I think keeping pigs as pets ultimately ends up becoming a sad situation for both the pigs and the people, but after seeing this video, I can certainly understand the attraction that people have for keeping them in their homes -- as this pig demonstrates, they're a helluva lot cuter and smarter than either puppies or kittens!

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Bait Ball Feast

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In late summer, the plankton bloom is at its height. Vast shoals of herring gather to feed on it, diving birds round the fish up into a bait ball.

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The World's Smallest Horse

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The world's smallest horse, a colt named Einstein, was born 22 April 2010 on a farm in Barnstead, New Hampshire. Just 14 inches tall and weighing only 6 pounds at birth, Einstein appears to have beaten the previous "world's tiniest horse" record holder by three pounds. This raises the question: how small can humans force horses to evolve through selective breeding? Apparently, pretty damned small, according to equine geneticist Samantha Brooks of Cornell University, who asserts that there may be no limit to how tiny we can make our horses.

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