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Nose Blowing

And other strange sounds

Sounds accompany many kinds of activities. The buzz of a mosquito in the bedroom comes to mind; and then there is the clashing of horns of mountain sheep in combat, the chewing of food, the knock on the door, sounds in courtship, territorial claims in birds, monkeys and other animals. etc. Come to think of it there aren’t really terribly many animals that are totally silent; worms perhaps and, with very few exceptions, spiders, but certainly not fish. —>

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mice song biology

Singing Mice

Songsters with a lust for cheese

It is certainly true that unsubstantiated claims of all sorts of unusual animal behaviours have been made in that past either for reasons of sensationalism or simply because of faulty observations and ignorance. Sometimes, however, observations were correct, but sounded incredulous like for example honey-indicator birds in Africa leading humans to the nests of wild bees, beaver mothers carrying their young on their front paws or the Amphiprion clownfish feeding their sea-anemone partners. Another incredible story is that of singing mice and guinea pigs. Known from several reports in the last century, this behaviour apparently became rarer all the time and now may be at the verge of extinction. Continue reading

fish intelligent brain mute

Mute as a Fish

But fish aren’t stupid

As the saying goes “Travel broadens the mind”: I agree, provided one is not only relaxing, basking in the sun, eating and drinking well and generally lazing around, but also takes an interest in learning something new and exploring the environment.

On a trip to a Japanese town by the name of Tsu in the prefecture known as Mie, I got to know a method that would allow me to go on an extended vacation without having to worry about who is going to feed my aquarium fish while I’m away. Dr Kohbara showed me some goldfish in his laboratory, which when hungry snap at a little bead that’s hanging in the water and is attached to a string that operates a switch of an electronic feeding machine. By pulling at the string, a knife tip of food is released from the feeder. Continue reading