This is pretty crabby

Thousands of red crabs swarming in low-oxygen waters off the coast of Panama have been captured on video during a recent diving expedition. The crabs were identified by DNA as Pleuroncodes planipes, or Tuna Crabs, which have never been seen in waters so far south. The lead author, Jesús Pineda, said “when we dove down […]

Coho Salmon are native to Canada. They are fished from the wild as well as farmed in aquaculture. (Image credit: Oregon Department of Forestry)

Salmon like the dark side

Salmon living in tanks with darker backgrounds are typically less aggressive than those living in a lighter coloured environment, according to new research. The researchers divided 100 Coho Salmon into 10 different tanks, each with different colour patterns, and monitored their behaviour. They found that the salmon prefered the darker areas, and were less aggressive […]

Birds which beg their parents the most for food are not always those who receive the most, according to the new analysis. (Image credit: Camilla Hinde)

Which chick to feed? How birds choose

  Which chick gets fed first in a brood seems to depend more on the environment than a chick’s begging or its size. That’s what researchers report after reviewing data on 143 different bird species. When food is plentiful and supplies are stable, birds will usually feed the chicks who beg the most and are […]

Cutting away at the mystery of leafcutting bees

Leafcutting bees use pieces of various plant leaves to build their nests, however determining which plants they prefer has been a challenge. In the past, researchers had to either observe leafcutting bees visiting a plant or identify pieces of leaf in the nest in to know which plant the bees relied on. Now, using DNA […]

A sea butterfly at different stages of a wing beat. (Photo credit: David Murphy.)

When snails fly

  A snail that flies may sound like science-fiction, but it’s not – quite. The Limacina helicina, a zooplanktonic sea butterfly, is a type of sea snail (the “butterfly” is a misnomer) that moves through the water in the same way a fruit fly flies, by moving its wings in a figure eight pattern. Using […]

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Ravens on their mind

Ravens possess the “Theory of Mind”, or the ability to predict the mental state of others, according to a new study. This is the first time the “Theory of Mind” has been confirmed in an animal other than humans or non-human primates. The researchers fed individual ravens in an enclosed study area, while playing raven […]

Two endangered Southern Resident killer whales rise in unison from the Salish Sea as a tanker passes through their habitat. (Image credit: beamreach.org)

Shipping noises potentially harming Vancouver Island’s Killer Whales

New findings suggest noise from ships overlaps frequencies used for communication and foraging by orcas, potentially affecting the endangered Southern Resident orcas living in the waters around Vancouver Island, B.C. The researchers found container ships created the highest levels of background noise at frequencies below 20,000 Hz, and military vessels typically had some of the […]

T.V.’s newest hit drama – The Secret Lives of Octopuses

Contrary to their reputation, octopuses are indeed a social bunch. That’s what researchers realized after watching over 52 hours of film of the shallow-water Octopus tetricus in Jervis Bay, Australia. They saw footage of octopuses communicating with each other using body postures and by changing colours. For example when an octopus with a dark body […]

Studying autism with genetically modified monkeys

Genetically modified monkeys showing autism-like behaviours could help the development of strategies to treat the symptoms of autism disorders, according to researchers. Currently one of the major challenges for researchers studying autism spectrum disorders is the lack of animals models that reproduce symptoms typically found in human patients. These monkeys, and their offspring, show behavioural […]

A New Caledonian crow observes another using a stick to access insects for food. (Image credit: Jolyon Troscianko)

Branching out of the family

Crows spend most of their social time with family members, but when they need a little extra help to get some food – they’re not averse to enlisting others, according to researchers. New Caledonian crows are a clever group – a species known to use tools to get hard to reach food. Analyzing the activity […]

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