More chickens are raised and killed for food than all other land animals combined, but if more people understood the complex nature of these interesting animals, they would probably hesitate before consuming their flesh or eggs. Here are some of our favourite facts about chickens:
- Chickens can distinguish among more than 100 faces of members of their species – who knew that their memories rival those of elephants?
- Chickens have full-colour vision, just like we do.
“Inquisitive hens” by Peter Cooper / CC BY 2.0
- And they tell each other
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Did you know that there are potentially more than 200,000 species of snails and molluscs currently crawling around on our planet?
The species that the majority of us are probably most familiar with are those found in the garden. If you haven’t yet come to see snails as the unique, fascinating individuals that they really are, the following are a few surprising facts that may open your eyes:
- Some species of snail can live for up to 25 years in the wild!
- Snails can crawl along the edge of a razorblade and
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They may be covered with scales and breathe in water rather than air, but if you look below the surface, you’ll understand that fish are far more similar to us than you might have realised.
We’ve long known that fish are sensitive and feel pain. Now some fascinating new research has uncovered more details about their sophisticated intelligence and social lives. The following are some of the findings from a new study carried out by biologist Culum Brown of Macquarie University in Sydney:
- Fish can multitask. Like humans, they are
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Elephants are magnificent, fascinating animals. Here are some facts you may not know about them – and two ways to speak out for elephants who are suffering in captivity.
1. They console each other in times of stress by “hugging”.
According to researchers, elephants hug by putting their trunks in each other’s mouths, offering comfort through physical contact.
2. They mourn their dead.
Wild elephants will stand silently at the bodies of their dead companions, sometimes for days on end. Later, they may return and pay homage to their bones.
3. They … Read more.
Sheep are a familiar sight in the British countryside. But how much do you really know about these gentle, good-natured animals? The following 10 facts about the personalities, intelligence and skills of rams, lambs and ewes might surprise you:
1. Sheep have extremely good memories. They can remember approximately 50 individuals (sheep and humans!) for years at a time.
Sheffield Tiger / cc by 2.0
2. Sheep have been shown to display and recognise emotion by facial expressions with other sheep. Some are noticeable from their ears.
foxypar4 / cc by 2.0
3. … Read more.
Poor old spiders. The much-maligned little critters often have a hard time of it at the hands of humans – getting squashed, washed down the plughole or sprayed with toxic insecticides.
Recent reports about the rising numbers of false widow spiders in this country have made things even worse, inspiring an epidemic of hysterical spider-swatting, despite the fact that the vast majority of the UK’s 600 species of spiders are completely harmless. As for false widow spiders, they are not aggressive towards humans, and in most cases their bites are no more … Read more.
Weymouth’s Sea Life aquarium recently launched an appeal to its visitors asking them not to eat octopuses because of the fact that they are “as intelligent as the average pet dog”.
Studies have shown that octopuses are among the cleverest animals in the sea, capable of complex thought processes. They also have short- and long-term memories as well as distinct personalities and can use tools. They’ve been known to cause havoc in aquariums by escaping from their tanks, short-circuiting the lights, unscrewing water pipes and even pilfering fish from adjacent tanks on … Read more.
If you’ve ever seen Babe, it should come as no surprise to learn that pigs are interesting, intelligent and sensitive. They’re also some of the most intensively farmed animals in the world.
Right now, an intensive pig “prison” that would keep 25,000 animals at a time under lock and key is being considered in Foston, Derbyshire. Please check out these 10 facts to learn why pigs deserve better than being turned into bacon:
1.Pigs are one of the smartest animals (ahead of dogs and toddlers!).
Meneer Zjeroen / cc by … Read more.
Shy, elusive, nocturnal – just some of the words that spring to mind when you try to describe the badger. This most ancient Briton is adapted for life underground, and spottings are rare – yet beneath the mysterious surface, these are remarkable animals.
The following are some reasons why we should be celebrating badgers, not planning to massacre them:
- Badgers have been present in the British Isles for at least 300,000 to 400,000 years.
- Badgers are great builders. Their underground homes, or setts, are often highly complex, with
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Spring is in the air, which means that all over the country, hedgehogs may be starting to blink in the sunlight and wake up from their winter hibernation.
You probably don’t need much persuasion to let these adorable nocturnal animals into your heart. But to give you some extra motivation to love them, here are five of our favourite things about them – and five pieces of advice about how to help them out.
Five Reasons to Love Hedgehogs
- Hedgehogs are unique. They’re the only UK mammal with spines: each hedgehog has
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