Questions tagged [animal-behaviour]

Questions relating to specific or unusual behaviour shown in animals.

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9 votes
1 answer
147 views

Do long/high beams on a car work to warn moose off the road?

I heard what sounded like an old wives' tale some time ago: If you are driving along a stretch of road with a moose warning, using headlights on long/high beam even during daylight will warn moose off ...
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  • 435
6 votes
1 answer
210 views

What is it about human skin that spiders don't like to walk on?

I'm about to move a spider and I usually use the cup/glass way, but that would seem pretty horrifying if I were the spider. I'd prefer to use my hands, but they don't seem to like the texture of ...
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3 votes
1 answer
226 views

Do predators understand human footprints?

I am guessing that because bears have extremely sensitive smell, even if a bear understood footprints, they would not find this nearly as reliable as following their scent. But could it actually be ...
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  • 203
3 votes
1 answer
83 views

Does groundhog seasonal shedding cause itching

We live in a heavily wooded area with a heavily wooded bluff off our back yard. Wildlife is abundant here, including groundhogs. Until we installed cams to watch wildlife I’d never witnessed the ...
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1 vote
0 answers
113 views

Can lions hunt on cloudy moonless nights?

Lions have truly remarkable night vision, to the extent that they not only hunt at night, but actually prefer to do so when there is no moon in the sky, because the lack of moonlight makes them nearly ...
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  • 1,369
5 votes
0 answers
139 views

My bees have a mite infestation but not sure whether they are Varroa Mites

There is a slight infestation of a type of mites (I'm not sure whether they are Varroa Mites). I would like to seek some expert opinion regarding this kind of mites that take over in the bee colony. ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
121 views

If you were confronted a by a bear and had no defense would offering it food perhaps work? [duplicate]

It seems like this gesture is well understood by a dog or cat and perhaps the combination of distracting the bear plus the indication that you mean no harm would work? Maybe a bear would even reason ...
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  • 203
4 votes
1 answer
226 views

Why do squirrels chew on metal planter?

I have a metal planter on my patio. Why do squirrels come up and chew on the sides of it? Are they sharpening their teeth?
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27 votes
4 answers
10k views

What is wrong with the rabbit living under my shed?

So there is this rabbit that lives under my shed, and I've been watching it through my window for the past few days. It comes out in the mornings, and sits next to its hole crouched in a tight ball, ...
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10 votes
2 answers
5k views

How would a sea turtle end up on its back?

There is a video going round of two guys flipping a sea turtle that had ended up on its back so it could get back into the water. How would a sea turtle end up on its back in the first place (it sure ...
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1 vote
0 answers
89 views

Why are cottontail rabbits smelling through gravel piles?

In one of the gravel parking lots I pass on my way to work there are a number of cotton tail rabbits that hang out there. At one end of parking lot there is piled up gravel from all of the plowing ...
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3 votes
1 answer
70 views

Where to find Rocky Mountain Goats?

All of the times I have seen Rocky Mountain goats it has been by accident, you come around the corner of the trail in the mountains and there they are. If one were to go deliberately looking for them ...
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7 votes
1 answer
4k views

Why does a fox defecate on my patio, which I use as a feeding station for critters?

This question is inspired by the question of @Sue on the peripheral vision of squirrels. It is a much less appealing question, but I figure if we can ask about animal behavior at feeding stations, my ...
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2 votes
3 answers
190 views

Why would a Rocky Mountain Goat be making scrapes in the ground?

While hiking in the Ruby Mountains of Nevada, I came around the corner and saw several mountain goats who had made several fairly large scrapes (3-4 ft long and a couple feet wide) in the ground. Why ...
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16 votes
3 answers
8k views

Will a coyote attack my dog on a leash while I'm on a hiking trail?

Is a coyote or pack of coyotes likely to attack my small dog if she is with me on a trail on a leash? I heard of someone's dog being eaten while the woman was walking her pet on a leash. She was ...
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  • 169
3 votes
1 answer
1k views

Why would cottontail rabbits be hanging out in a gravel parking lot?

There is a gravel parking lot with trees on either side that I pass on my way to work and there are always a couple of cottontail rabbits hanging out under and next to the cars parked there. Why are ...
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4 votes
1 answer
328 views

How can I tell if there's a camouflaged octopus in a coral reef, so I can keep from disturbing it?

This question is based on my desire to avoid disturbing, injuring, or scaring away an octopus which is camouflaged to look like a coral reef. Since it's so difficult to see, I'd like to know how to ...
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1 vote
1 answer
325 views

Is there proof that it's good for animals in captivity to do activities such as painting? [closed]

Last spring, we went to the Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut, United States. We don't like places with captive animals, unless they're work is essential for the survival of life on the planet. We may ...
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6 votes
2 answers
440 views

Do chipmunks hibernate in woodpiles, and, if so, how do I avoid disturbing them when taking wood from the pile?

We have a woodpile, protected from wind and precipitation, under the eaves of our house. Earlier, perhaps a month earlier, I several times saw two chipmunks emerging from, and going back into the ...
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  • 22.2k
6 votes
3 answers
236 views

When should I report a potentially injured-looking animal to authorities in a large, monitored, wildlife area?

We prefer watching animals from a distance, to try and cause them the least disruption. Every so often I've seen an animal in a distant part of a large area that doesn't appear to feel right. For ...
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3 votes
1 answer
952 views

Why are there so many wasps attached to this air conditioner?

I wish to get rid of these wasps. I am not sure what they are trying to do. Are these wasps creating a hive? Or is there something from the A/C they are collecting to create a hive somewhere else?
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  • 147
5 votes
1 answer
103 views

What behaviors in bees change just before, during and after a solar eclipse?

I've heard from a friend that some bees exhibit behavioral changes during a solar eclipse event. I'd like to know what the changes are. Apparently there's a cycle that starts as the eclipse begins, ...
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4 votes
1 answer
189 views

Did a bear knock all my bird feeders down?

We live in a suburban town in Massachusetts, Northeast United States. We keep a lot of bird feeders stocked all year with things birds and animals like, excluding meat and fruit. Yesterday, ...
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52 votes
1 answer
9k views

Why would a seal be flinging an octopus around above the water and then slapping a kayaker with it?

There is a video of a seal sucker punching a kayaker with an octopus, Source I suppose the seal wasn't exactly trying to hit the kayaker, but why would it be flinging the octopus around above the ...
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8 votes
2 answers
311 views

How can we be the most respectful to a moose when photographing it up close?

We've often heard that moose are most active in the early morning or late in the day, around dusk, and are usually near a natural water source. Every year, we travel a few hours away to areas that ...
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2 votes
0 answers
129 views

What are the effects of introducing raccoons into Germany?

I was reading this answer about how raccoons were introduced into Germany, and after the other questions on this site about the harm caused by non-native species,(grey squirrels, house sparrows, etc), ...
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2 votes
1 answer
540 views

Do male mountain lions kill their own kittens?

Stallions will kill unrelated foals, but I have heard that male mountain lions will kill their own kittens, ostensibly to bring the females back into heat so they can breed again. (Bears will do this)....
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8 votes
2 answers
450 views

Why would a raccoon climb a building?

Yesterday, there was a raccoon climbing a 20 plus story building in Minnesota, today it made it to the top and was caught in a live trap for transport to back to the wild. It brings up the question, ...
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7 votes
1 answer
477 views

Behavioural differences between European and North American Wolves

There as been the claim that European and North American wolves behave differently, especially when it comes to encounters with humans. This was brought up in a comment in this question on a wolf ...
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  • 12.1k
9 votes
2 answers
376 views

Are there any animal behaviors that can be used to predict weather conditions within a 24 hr time period?

There are many folklore tales of animals being used to predict weather. Just a few examples from the Old Farmers Almanac: When cats sneeze, it is a sign of rain. If the mole digs its hole 2½ feet ...
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  • 2,750
1 vote
0 answers
115 views

Will bobcats climb cacti when not in fear of their lives?

There are pictures of bobcats climbing on top of really tall cacti, the one story I read says that the reason the bobcat climbed the tree was to get away from a mountian lion who was trying give it a ...
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4 votes
1 answer
115 views

How long is the carp mating season at Presque Isle?

I was on the canoe trail at Presque Isle today, and there were large fish splashing in the shallows all over the place. We learned from a passerby that it was carp mating season, and the splash was ...
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3 votes
1 answer
662 views

Why would porcupines sleep on the ground during the day?

More than once, I have come across a porcupine in the woods sleeping on the ground during the daytime instead of in a tree. They keep their nose tucked down and their long hairs provide some degree of ...
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18 votes
3 answers
15k views

Which animals would kill porcupines?

I found the remains a of a porcupine in the woods, with nothing left but quills and hair. As porcupines are pretty well protected by their quills, what types of animals would be capable of killing ...
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7 votes
1 answer
414 views

Is there scientific evidence of bobcats breeding with house cats?

I have seen some barn cats that were claimed to be the offspring of female barn cats and a male bobcat (they had bobbed tails). Wikipedia says that there is circumstantial and anecdotal evidence for ...
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6 votes
1 answer
194 views

What UK carnivores might I find up mountains?

I found some scats that looked a lot like those of a pine marten or otter at 600-700m in the Lake District, UK. The scat was full of white claw-shaped items, possibly bone, and was 10-15cm long and ...
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  • 161
6 votes
1 answer
408 views

Is there a benefit for animals who return to the area of a deadly forest fire after the fire is out?

In September of 2017, for nearly two weeks, the Kenow Wildfire raged through a swath of Canada. Its largest impact was on the Waterton Lakes National Park in Alberta. More than 38,000 hectares, (94,...
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9 votes
3 answers
3k views

Is there a reason for seeing a lot of roadkill badgers in the spring?

I spent much of today cycling around quiet country lanes in South Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire, and saw at least 6 dead badgers on the road. I saw a few others earlier in the week on ...
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  • 22.5k
-1 votes
1 answer
321 views

What is the possiblity of getting rabies bitten by a street dog in Berlin? [duplicate]

What is the possiblity of getting rabies bitten by a street dog in Berlin. By street dog I mean the dog of a homeless person. Is there a high chance of rabies from that. I must say that I didn't ...
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  • 11
3 votes
0 answers
2k views

Seagulls flocking by night?

I just went outside (11:30pm) and could hear seagulls screaming/cawing overhead. I looked in the direction of where the sound was coming from and could see a couple hundred of them being illuminated ...
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  • 53k
4 votes
1 answer
389 views

How do squirrels find buried nuts?

Squirrels bury nuts for future consumption, sometimes many months away. I recently learned that tree squirrels, including Eastern grey squirrels, sometimes dig empty holes, pretend to drop nuts in ...
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4 votes
1 answer
210 views

Do Eastern grey squirrels pretend to bury nuts in the ground?

I recently heard that Eastern grey squirrels sometimes dig holes, pretend to bury nuts, or other food, and then cover the empty holes. I was told that they use all the same motions and effort as they ...
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4 votes
2 answers
268 views

What should I do if I face Elephant?

What should I do if an elephant is annoyed by my presence and if I can't outrun it?
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  • 191
4 votes
1 answer
291 views

What animal would chew up trees in West Georgia?

I live in the West Georgia area. We now have several trees chewed up beginning 5 feet off the ground and all the way around the tree, some to the very top. I found a birch that had a 4 foot section ...
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5 votes
1 answer
1k views

Do mountain lions play with their food?

House cats will play with their food i.e. catch a mouse then let it go and then recatch it over and over again before finally eating it. Do mountain lions exhibit similar behavior?
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6 votes
1 answer
121 views

Will ibexes react aggressively or flee if approached on a mountain?

On a recent multi-pitch climb, we encountered a strange situation: The wall was basically divided into three parts: 200m of climbing, a large steep grassy part where you untie from the rope and walk ...
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  • 4,417
3 votes
1 answer
4k views

How warm does it need to be for bats to come out of their caves?

Once, I was waiting for bats to come out of a cave (I knew there were some in the cave) and they never came out that I could see. While it was after hibernation and the bats were definitely awake (up ...
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5 votes
2 answers
388 views

Is it likely that decimation of its suburban forest habitat would cause a black bear to wander into a busy city if it wouldn't otherwise go there?

I live in the suburban town of Holden, in Central Massachusetts. Many hundreds of acres of mature woodland areas are being torn down nearby to create new roads and housing developments, and it's ...
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7 votes
1 answer
218 views

What most common factors cause significant fluctuations in numbers of ticks that carry Lyme Disease?

Lyme disease, Lyme borreliosis, has been reported by the Centers for Disease Control as existing, or probably existing, in many of the United States. The Lyme Disease Association also reports it in ...
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9 votes
3 answers
5k views

Do squirrels have front and full peripheral vision?

Our suburban yard in Massachusetts has a small woodsy area. We use a section for feeders for birds, chipmunks, squirrels, raccoons, opossums, rabbits, and the occasional bear or fox. In an area of ...
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