Friday, February 12, 2010

Some Really Surprising Animal Facts

When most people think about animals, they imagine furry little cow-eyed creatures innocently plucking leaves from trees or bugs from the ground for nourishment. However, many people are shocked to learn that, just as in human life, there’s an incredible, dark and even lascivious underbelly to the animal world. If you thought you new a lot about animal behavior, the following unbelievable but true animal facts may cause your jaw to drop.

10. Cows Are More Deadly Than Sharks

For most people, few things evoke fear like the image of a great white shark. A combination of popular culture movies and pervasive media stories concerning shark attacks has worked in concert to create a universal fear of these toothy eating machines. However, the dangers posed by sharks to humans are overstated. In fact, sharks kill only ten people each year. By contrast, you’re ten times more likely to die under the clumsy feet of ordinary cows who fatally trample around 100 people every 12 months.

9. Headless Roaches Can Live Up To Nine Days

Most people are familiar with the notion that roaches are hearty, durable pests. Anyone who has ever been plagued by a roach problem knows just how resilient these grotesque little creatures can be. If you’ve ever seen roaches scatter at the flick of a late night light switch, you also know that these nasty little vermin have an amazing propensity toward copulation. Yet, many are surprised at just how adept roaches are at survival and reproduction. Roaches are able to live up to nine days without a head because their brains are located deep within their body cavities. A headless roach continues to mate with other fertile roaches until eventually succumbing to starvation.

8. Male Lions Mate 672 Times Per Week

When a lion gets ‘in the mood’, theres nearly nothing that can stand in the way. During mating season, a male lion mounts a female once every fifteen minutes for a full week straight. This amounts to around 672 raucous episodes. Although, this feat is remarkably impressive, it appears to take a substantial toll as lions take as much as a two-year hiatus between mating seasons.

7. Frogs Are Unable to Vomit

Frogs lack the vomit reflex found in nearly every animal, but fortunately when a frog feels the need to empty its stomach it does have a solution. Instead of vomiting out the contents of its stomach, the frog throws its entire stomach up. Then, it immediately gobbles it back into its mouth and swallows it back down.

6. Deer Are The Most Dangerous Animals to Humans

Many are surprised to learn that deer kill more people each year than spiders, snakes, bears and wolves combined. Because of their propensity to find their way in front of traffic, deer kill more people annually than any other creature.

5. A Wolf’s Howl Does Not Echo

Wolves hunt in coordinated packs, so long-distance communication is critical to a successful kill. However, wolves hunt in mountainous areas, so their howling is left vulnerable to echoes that can distort their ability to communicate. To combat this, wolves howl at a frequency that will not echo. This allows them to confirm the exact location of their hunting partners, which helps them to ambush unsuspecting prey.

4. Half of All Orangutans Have Broken Bones

Orangutans seem to drift through branches from tree to tree with relative ease. However, almost all orangutans suffer serious falls at least a few times in their lives. Proving this is the fact that 50 percent of adult orangutans have fractured bones somewhere in their body.

3. Some Clams Are Transgendered

Every single clam is born into the world a male. To combat this sexually unproductive sausage-fest, clams have developed the ability to change their gender from male to female. However, before the clam makes this serious adjustment, it has to be sure, as once the change is made, its irreversible.

2. Woodpeckers Are Soft-Headed

Woodpeckers bash their heads against wood about 20 pecks every second, so youd think theyd need heads made of steel to survive. Instead, the reality is that woodpecker heads are relatively soft. Each bird is born with a soft, sponge-like mass behind its beak that absorbs the shock created by pecking.

1. An Elephant’s Daily

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