Man fined $190 for not putting a leash on his pet snake, Lucy

Jerry Kimball of Sioux Falls, South Dakota received a $190 ticket because he failed to put a leash on his pet boa constrictor, Lucy, when he took her to a park. “He was literally asking me to put a rope around my snake,” Kimball told The Argus Leader. “I was like ‘dude, no.’ I was dumbfounded.”

Animal Control Supervisor Julie DeJong told the paper that the ticket was appropriate. “Snakes fall under the same restrictions as cats and dogs,” she stressed. Read the rest

How to make a simple pipe mousetrap

Chris Notap likes to make humane mousetraps. He's a recreational trapper, I guess. This is the fifth one in his series of homemade traps.

Another of my best and easiest homemade humane mouse traps! The 5th in a series! Easy to build, easy to bait, easy to release and best of all, it's humane and there's no springs or levers to wind up or load! The mouse or vole cannot escape or chew his way out of this mouse trap. Mice are not harmed in any way during capture. As a matter of fact, the mouse or vole remains very calm since there is no snapping latches to scare him! Mice can be released calmly and easily without fear of getting bitten even by the most "fearful of mice" person!! Simple operation makes this diy homemade vole mouse trap fun and easy to build and adjust for easy trapping and best of all easy release. Just use a dab of peanut butter to bait the trap. It's the best do it yourself homemade humane live release vole mouse trap you'll find! A few common items is all you'll need. I'll be building a humane squirrel trap next so you can capture and release squirrels easily too so subscribe and don't miss my upcoming "diy humane squirrel trap". Thanks for watching. I also have a "diy humane rat trap" coming soon too!

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A southern three-banded armadillo unballing itself

Southern three-banded armadillo

Found in South America, the southern three-banded armadillo "are the only species of armadillos capable of rolling into a complete ball to defend themselves."

From Wikipedia:

The three characteristic bands that cover the back of the animal allow it enough flexibility to fit its tail and head together, allowing it to protect its underbelly, limbs, eyes, nose and ears from predators. The shell covering its body is armored and the outer layer is made out of keratin, the same protein that builds human fingernails.

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Watch: Pampered cats ring call bell for treats

These two cats have trained their human servant well. Read the rest

Wild orangutan figures out how to saw wood

This wild-born, free-living orangutan found a saw and quickly figured out how to cut wood with it. Read the rest

Russian cat won't let go of bread bag

YouTube description translated from the Russian: "Cat Boris lives in a shelter. He and the other tails looking for a home! Dear friends, we are a haven for cats. We are located in St. Petersburg."

[via] Read the rest

Public entomologists struggle with an epidemic of delusional parasitosis

Dr Gale Ridge is a public entomologist at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, where an average of 23 people a day call, write or visit; an increasing proportion of them aren't inquiring about actual insects, they're suffering from delusional parasitosis, and they're desperate and even suicidal. Read the rest

Dog takes possession of baby's pacifier

Stop it it's mine, stop it it's mine, stop it it's mine. I SAID STOP IT IT'S MINE.

“All life is a purposeful struggle, and your only choice is the choice of a goal.” — John Galt, Atlas Shrugged (Part 3, Chapter 7, Page 1,068) Read the rest

Seven things you didn’t know about vultures

The thing with my Miriam Black books is, they’re all named after birds. It starts with Blackbirds, then moves to Mockingbird, The Cormorant, and now, Thunderbird. (If I can write one called Blue-Footed Booby, I will, so don’t tempt me, goddamnit.) Part of the reason for that is the mystic, supernatural symbolism sometimes associated with birds (particularly as psychopomps), and also because Miriam eventually through the story gains the ability to control birds by entering their minds. At the start of Thunderbird, she, umm, requires the help of some vultures to complete a task.

Now, vultures are pretty bad-ass birds. We don’t think of them as such – we think of them as lazy, dull scavengers, but that’s not true at all.

We have a local animal rescue near us, and they do a lot of work with rehabilitating birds – or housing birds that cannot be rehabilitated – and so I got to meet and study some vultures, and learn some charming facts about these gorgeous and grotesque harbingers of death.

Let us begin.

1.) Vultures are not only scavengers. We think of them as picking meat off roadkill, but make no mistake, some vultures are happy to go predator when it suits them. Black vultures in particular sometimes perform acts of predation on livestock. They’ll besiege baby cows and eat them alive. They’ll even find a larger cow—usually a sick one—and mob its back and peck out its eyes. (They do not generally attack healthy livestock, however.)

2.) Vultures have featherless scalps because it makes it all the easier for them to plunge their entire faces into a carcass. Read the rest

Weird undersea life photos and videos from NOAA expedition

The NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research has a bunch of great photos and videos from a recent expedition to American Samoa. Photo above is the Cosmic Jellyfish.

In this video, you can see the perfectly relaxed arrangement of the two sets of tentacles; scientists think this is a position that allows for optimum feeding in the midwater environment at ~3,000 meters. Through remotely operated vehicle video observations such as this, we can learn much about the animals in the midwater and what they are up to when we can catch them in an undisturbed manner.

By the way, the White House is proposing a 17% cut to NOAA's budget. Read the rest

Talented border collie knows many tricks and routines

All dogs are amazing but this one stands out

Mary, age 16, has a two-year-old border collie named Magic. They have a lot of fun together. Here's their Instagram account. Read the rest

Raccoon attempts to rob woman in kayak

Raccoon Robbing A Girl In A Kayak

Hominidae and Procyonidae -- natural enemies since time immemorial. Read the rest

Live burros by mail

pREAL LIVE MEXICAN BURROS

The Gift of a Lifetime for Any Youngster

From South of the Border comes this soft-eyed gentle little pet of all Mexican children, and the hard-working friend of their parents... to make Christmas this year unforgettable for your youngster! You'll be the talk of the town! Everyone will want to pet your burro.

What years of pleasure this real, live Mexican burro will bring you and your children, Lovable, huggable, long-earred, extra tame, extremely intelligent. Friendly to other animals. Easily hitched to small cart. Economical to raise. Eats anything -- straw, hay, alfalfa, corn, oats, grass, bread, etc. Hardy, select specimens -- sound, well-fed, clean.

When fully grown at about 2 years, they stand about 43" high (size of a large dog) and weigh about 200 lbs. Live up to 25 years. Thrive in any climate.

Send check or money order for amount of Burro now. Burro will arrive about 5 weeks from time we receive your order, unless otherwise specified. Comes uncrated, with food and water for the journey, by Railway Express, collet, F.O.B. Laredo, Texas. You pay express charge of $20 to $40 on arrival. Mexican and U.S. duties already paid. Sorry, no exchanges or refunds. Dipped and U.S. Gov't inspected before shipping. Guaranteed live delivery in their natural born colors.

Baby -- For children up to 5 years (3 mos. old -- 38" high -- 50lbs) Female: $95 Male $85

Youngster -- For children up to 10 years (7 mos. to 1 yr. Read the rest

Visible crocodile model

This 15" long crocodile model has 26 detachable organ and body parts, and see-through skin to let you inspect its innards. It's on sale for $20 on Amazon. Read the rest

A surprisingly large number of animals kill each other after sex

Katherine Ellen Foley reports on the curious phenomenon of sexual cannibalism in the animal kingdom.

But octopuses aren’t the only ones who kill their sex partners. Female praying mantises often kill their mates, especially if they’re hungry, and within certain species of spiders, the males will actually offer themselves as a meal for their newly-impregnated partners.

Despite the ferocity of mating in the animal kingdom, romance is not dead: sexual cannibalism can be something of a gift from the male to the female in many cases. Female wolf spiders and tarantulas, who often eat males pre-intercourse, produce 30% more eggs than those who don’t when they finally get around to mating. And in the mantis’ case, the death of one male often means the survival of the reproducing female.

“It’s probably not the male’s preferred outcome,” Scheel says. “But if you think about it…contributing his calories to his offspring doesn’t do any harm [to the species].”

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The vicious war of succession for the baboons of the Toronto Zoo is finally over

When zookeepers at the Toronto Zoo euthanized Betty, the zoo's 16-year-old baboon-troop matriarch, it touched off a vicious war of succession among the troops female members that saw them mutilating one another in savage combat -- the war was finally settled when zookeepers implanted the warring baboons with estrogen-releasing implants that reduced the viciousness of the fighting. Read the rest

Crow has ulterior motives

Office workers try to feed a wild crow, which wants something other than food. Read the rest

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