zoology-biology-benno-meyer-rochow-florian-nock-hate-animal

You Hate Something?

So how about the animals: do they hate something too?

Somebody recently told me a vulgar joke about why cats hate dogs and dogs hate cats, but since I hate vulgarity I neither found the joke funny nor will I retell it. However, what the joke did, was to make me think whether animals can indeed hate and express such an emotion usually associated with human behaviour. Obviously, animals can express affection: the cat rubbing its head against your leg (or another cat’s head), dogs licking your hand, baby mice snuggling up to their mother and even a tame koi carp turning on its side to have its belly scratched. But is that love and if it is, is there also the opposite, namely hate? —>

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The Race of Life and death

Life is a continuous struggle – is there anyone who’d disagree? Life is a race, a race of the fittest to survive as Herbert Spencer observed 150 years ago after reading Charles Darwin’s “On the Origin of Species” opus. And it starts with the sperm. In most animal species the male gametes, also known as spermatozoa or spermatozoons, vastly outnumber the eggs and often the ratio is millions to one. It is therefore only an incredibly tiny percentage of sperm that are successful and meet, enter, and fuse with the egg cell nucleus to start a new individual. —>

Partnerships

Let’s focus on the good ones

I think we can all agree that not all partnerships are the same. The worst are probably those, in which both of the coalition are suffering. However, equally unpleasant are unions, in which one of the partners is benefitting, while the other endures hardship often to the extent of a deterioration of health. Such one-sided relationships are, of course, the hallmark of parasites attacking their hosts. The best partnerships are undoubtedly those, in which both members benefit and although it can sometimes be difficult to decide whether partners support or exploit each other, there are some natural partnerships that leave no doubt as to whether there are winners or losers: in fact both are winners. Continue reading