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Questions tagged [animal-behaviour]

Questions relating to specific or unusual behaviour shown in animals.

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4 votes
2 answers
311 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?
7 votes
1 answer
1k views

What animal might uproot and relocate a newly-transplanted sedum?

My husband transplanted a sedum to an area under our bird feeders about ten feet away. The plant is 6 inches wide, 14 inches long, and the hole was approximately 10 inches deep. After removing it, he ...
5 votes
1 answer
11k views

How/why do moths appear to not move for days?

I've noticed that there is a moth on the outside of my apartment door that has been just sitting there for two days now: There is a light outside my apartment door that likely is what attracted this ...
17 votes
3 answers
16k 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 ...
4 votes
2 answers
3k 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 ...
5 votes
2 answers
368 views

Is there any statistical evidence that hunting reduces the likelihood of mountain lion attacks?

There has been some discussion on this question about whether or not hunting would increase or decrease the likelihood of a mountain lion attack. I have seen some websites saying that it does not, but ...
17 votes
4 answers
8k views

Dozens of earthworms came on my terrace and died there

We've had a harsh weather turnaround lately in central Europe. It went from a pretty warm late summer to a pretty cold autumn in nearly one single night. As this happened, earthworms started to come ...
3 votes
1 answer
5k views

How can I tell if there's a living snail in the shell, without picking it up?

When I go to the beach, I love to look at sea shells. I never take them with me because they're vital to the eco-system. I just gently pick them up, have a close look and sometimes take pictures, then ...
1 vote
0 answers
107 views

What (if any) is the empirical evidence for ravens being (a) helpful to humans or (b) helpful to predators preying on humans?

BACKGROUND: I am rereading The Mind of the Raven by Bernd Heinrich, an eminent biologist and naturalist. Edward O. Wilson gave this book an excellent review. Based on his many observations of wild ...
0 votes
1 answer
162 views

Why do largemouth bass collectively go into non-feeding mode?

I was at a cottage on Big Clear Lake near Kaladar, Ontario recently. I caught several largemouth bass from a dock with a simple worm/hook/bobber setup (the hook and bobber were very large): As a ...
1 vote
2 answers
445 views

Do puff adders really not bite you if you step on them?

I had understood the puff adder to be one of the most dangerous snakes in the world; apparently, it kills more than thirty thousand people each year. From which I had concluded that it must be very ...
3 votes
2 answers
310 views

Do deer know they're safe from hunting in cities?

I was just up in Prince Rupert, BC and there were deer all over the city. Saw some earlier this summer in Port Alberni as well. Now, from what I understand of BC/Canadian gun and hunting laws, you ...
9 votes
1 answer
228 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 ...
6 votes
1 answer
573 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 ...
3 votes
1 answer
321 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 ...
3 votes
1 answer
136 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 ...
1 vote
0 answers
159 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 ...
22 votes
4 answers
9k views

Why do robins tilt their head to the side before pulling a worm out of the ground?

I've seen this happen several times. The robin hops along, stops, tilts it's head slightly and then grabs the worm/grub, etc. What's the purpose of this gesture? I'm thinking it maybe helps them ...
5 votes
0 answers
148 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. ...
-1 votes
1 answer
141 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 ...
4 votes
1 answer
582 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?
26 votes
4 answers
13k 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, ...
11 votes
1 answer
540 views

How would a dragonfly get to above 13,400 ft (4000m)?

I found this dragonfly, here, at around 13,400 ft. The coordinates are 43°10'52.96"N, 109°39'17.74"W if anyone would like to check the location themselves. It didn't look like it was moving and as ...
4 votes
1 answer
10k views

If you hear a mountain lion screaming, how close is it?

Female mountain lions will scream to attract a mate, and males will do it as well. This YouTube video and this one both have audio of what it sounds like. Given how loud it sounds, would there be ...
3 votes
1 answer
3k 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?
10 votes
2 answers
7k 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 ...
8 votes
2 answers
551 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, ...
2 votes
0 answers
142 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), ...
4 votes
1 answer
370 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 ...
4 votes
1 answer
474 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 ...
1 vote
0 answers
115 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 ...
3 votes
1 answer
91 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 ...
2 votes
3 answers
229 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 ...
7 votes
1 answer
9k 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 ...
9 votes
3 answers
7k 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 ...
10 votes
3 answers
2k views

Will a Rocky Mountain Goat attack a person?

We went to Gargantua this weekend, I've been going at least once a year for the past few years, and it's not uncommon to see rocky mountain goats up at that elevation, but this time around we ran into ...
5 votes
1 answer
390 views

How would you protect yourself from Rocky Mountain Goats?

After finding out that Rocky Mountain Goats have killed one person and have been known to harass hikers, how would you protect yourself from an aggressive goat? In most cases I would guess that simply ...
16 votes
3 answers
9k 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 ...
4 votes
2 answers
210 views

Could this year's unusual warmth harm turtles?

I currently live about 25 miles northeast of Cincinnati, Ohio, USA. On February 20-21, 2015, a fairly significant snow and ice event struck the area. On February 29-March 1, 2016, a smaller event ...
8 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 ...
4 votes
1 answer
342 views

Are elephants used in tourism in Thailand cracked and if yes why is it possible to take the infants away?

A friend of mine told me that elephants used for tourism in Thailand are mistreated. They are taken away from their mothers in the wilderness and brought to a station where they are tortured to make ...
20 votes
4 answers
1k views

Is there an easy way to tell if a bee in my yard is being raised in a hive (domestic), or if it's wild (feral)?

I live in Massachusetts, in the Northeastern region of the United States. As a lover of bees, I'd like to learn how to identify some varieties, including their behavior, and how they're raised. ...
27 votes
6 answers
38k views

What animal could strip all the bark off the lower 7 feet of this tree?

I was out in the woods the other day and I came across a tree. It had all of the bark around the bottom removed, and a good layer of wood removed as well. I estimated the damage was a good 7-8 feet ...
3 votes
1 answer
2k 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 ...
30 votes
2 answers
4k views

Why are these turkeys circling a dead cat?

I recently came across a gif file showing a gang of turkeys circling what appears to be a dead cat. It appears to be a structured formation as the turkeys are trotting at the same pace and spacing ...
9 votes
4 answers
9k views

Things to consider when approaching deer

I often approach deer to see how near I can get and to watch them (just for fun - not to hunt). I take care for the wind and of course to be silent enough. What else should one consider stalking/...
1 vote
1 answer
336 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 ...
6 votes
2 answers
961 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 ...
6 votes
3 answers
275 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 ...
10 votes
2 answers
617 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 ...