Learn about the Hercules beetle in this short video

Without a doubt one of the coolest looking insects around, the Hercules beetle is now a threatened species as a result of deforestation. Great Big Story's 80-second video has beautiful footage of this majestic animal.

Reaching up to 17 cm in length, the Hercules beetle is one of the largest insects in the world. They’re commonly identified by the characteristic horn-like pincers found on male beetles. Just like its heroic namesake, these little guys are strong. They can lift and carry up to 850 times their own weight. Despite their formidable strength, deforestation and loss of habitat has left the species threatened in the wild.

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Young dog has a hard time convincing a sleeping pig to play with it

It takes a lot of barking, jumping, and prodding to awaken this sleeping hog, and when the dog finally succeeds, it seems to wonder if it was a good idea.

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Monkey flips out after being flipped off

Just because domesticated primates have taken over the planet doesn't mean they can be rude to wild members of their order without suffering consequences, as this aggrieved monkey demonstrates.

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This dog is eager to get on the doggie school bus

They must have a good time at doggie school, judging from this excited dog's reaction to the doggie school bus pulling up to his house. Read the rest

Ancient trilobites had eyes made of crystals

Fun fact: trilobites were able to see thanks to eyes made of calcite instead of soft tissue. YouTuber Thunderf00t shows off a cool fossil and explains the phenomenon. Read the rest

Owl and dog are friends forever

Tanja Brandt shares her videos and photos of Ingo the German shepherd and Poldi the owl. The two have been fast friends since Poldi was a hatchling. Read the rest

It won't be as easy as it used to be to bring comfort animals on a Delta flight

Delta passengers who wish to bring emotional-support animals with them on flights now face tighter restrictions. Beginning March 1, passengers must provide a letter signed by a doctor or licensed mental-health professional attesting to the passenger's need to travel with the animal and a letter that states the animal can behave out of a kennel.

From USA Today:

Because of a vague definition for what qualifies, Delta said passengers have brought turkeys, possums and snakes on planes as comfort animals.

Delta said it won't accept those critters as comfort animals any more — or other exotic animals such as hedgehogs, ferrets, reptiles, or anything with tusks or hooves.

Comfort animals can be discomforting to others. Incidents of animals urinating, defecating and biting, and behaving more aggressively with growling and lunging, have increased dramatically in recent years, according to the airline.

In one highly publicized case in June, an emotional-support dog bit a neighboring passenger in the face during the boarding of a flight from Atlanta to San Diego.

“The rise in serious incidents involving animals in flight leads us to believe that the lack of regulation in both health and training screening for these animals is creating unsafe conditions across U.S. air travel,” Laughter said. “We are committed to consistently improving our policies, prioritizing the safety of all Delta customers and employees.”

Image: DanDee Shots/Wikipedia, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. Read the rest

Watch this undersea vehicle's close encounter with a shimmering purple jellyfish

EV Nautilus shared a spectacular unplanned find during a recent live filming of a sampling expedition: a pink and purple Halitrephes maasi jelly that looks like a firework. Read the rest

Mantis squad activate! Watch praying mantises get aggressive in unison

InsecthausTV is a channel dedicated to all sorts of wonderful insects, and this collection of mantises all frozen in attack mode is no exception. Read the rest

Costume designer makes a new wing for an injured monarch butterfly so it can fly again

Romy McCloskey of Faden Design Studios (Instagram, website) makes stunningly gorgeous costumes for movies, television, and private commissions. She also is interested in butterflies, and so she put her talents and interests together to repair the badly damaged wing of a monarch butterfly. She glued the intact wing of a dead monarch onto the butterfly, and allowed it to recover overnight, feeding it homebrew nectar. The next day she released it and it flew away.

Images: used with the permission of Romy McCloskey

Here's a video from the Live Monarch Foundation on how to fix broken butterfly wings: Read the rest

World's smallest species of wildcat could fit in the palm of your hand

The Rusty Spotted Cat of Sri Lanka weighs two pounds when it is an adult.

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Photo of murmuration of starlings looks like a giant starling

Photographer Daniel Biber caught some spectacular sunset images showing murmurations of starlings. In the most remarkable of these, the murmuration itself looked like a starling. Read the rest

Man with stick calmly convinces charging elephant not to run him over

Alan McSmith has been a safari guide for 30 years. In that time, he's learned a thing or two about elephants, including how not to get killed by one. Here we see him calmly encourage an elephant to seek a nonviolent approach.

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National Geographic's Nature Photographer of the Year 2017 contest winners

Jayaprakash Joghee Bojan risked crocodiles and other dangers to snap this stunning image of an orangutan, named National Geographic's top nature photo for 2017. Read the rest

Rich people in Bristol install anti-bird spikes in trees to keep shit off their cars, rendering trees "literally uninhabitable" by local wildlife

Two trees in a fancy neighbourhood in Bristol, UK have had strips of anti-bird spikes nailed to their branches, rendering them "literally uninhabitable" by local wildlife, according to local Green Party councillor Paula O'Rourke. Read the rest

Lioness overjoyed to reunite with her former human companion

It doesn't take long for this lioness to realize that a man entering her cage is her long-lost pal. There's not much he can do after that other than accept her enthusiastic display of affection.

Lion reacts to seeing her old caretaker.
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Tiger only seems mildly perturbed to have tooth pulled

In this GIF, we see a man force open the mouth of a noncooperative tiger, then skillfully and swiftly yank out one of the tiger's teeth with a pair of pliers. The tiger is a bit surprised, but instead of killing the man on the spot, it playfully gnaws his arm.

TIgEr mAuLS gUy afTEr hE tRIes tO kILl iT
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