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Animal Facts

Learn about some of the strange and unusual facts and terms in the animal kingdom.

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Animals Covered in Oil: Gulf Oil Spill Pictures

Check out these devastating images of animals after the Gulf Oil spill.

Can humans communicate with animals?

Alex the gray parrot had a better vocabulary than most animals. He also had a grasp of syntax, an understanding of concepts like bigger and smaller and the ability to manipulate numbers. But was Alex simply parroting what he learned, or could he really communicate?

Do animals have emotions?

Your kitten's strange faces and chirps might seem perfectly intelligible, but how much meaning can you really read into them? Can animals display happiness, sadness, empathy or fear?

How do animals communicate?

All animals might not be able to speak, but they certainly have other ways of communicating. How do animals pass on information to their own species, and how do they pick up cues from other members of the animal kingdom?

Do all creatures sleep?

Sleep might seem pretty simple, but scientists are still scratching their heads over questions surrounding the slumbering state. What does sleep mean to a whale, a brown bat, a migratory bird or even an invertebrate?

Do Animals Commit Suicide?

Distressed birds will peck out their feathers until they expose their flesh to infection. Whales will die stranded on beaches for no obvious reason. But do animals willingly end their own lives?

How many insects are there on Earth?

Whether you're talking about a swarm of bees buzzing about, a cluster of butterflies sucking down nectar or a nest of cockroaches hidden in a corner of your house, insects are really plentiful. How plentiful?

How Rabies Works

Most of us know not to pet an angry dog with a foaming mouth, and that perhaps snuggling with a bat isn't the brightest rabies-prevention plan. But how does rabies choose its victims, and what can it do to humans?

Do coyotes and badgers work together to find food?

Coyotes and badgers? This unlikely partnership is actually a surefire thing when it comes to catching a tasty dinner.

Are zoos good or bad for animals?

As you visit each amazing exhibit at your local zoo, do you ever feel a twinge of guilt or remorse when watching these enclosed creatures? Are zoos helping or hurting animals?

African Animal Pictures

Many kinds of animals are native only to Africa, such as gorillas, chimpanzees, zebras, giraffes, hippopotamuses. Take a gander at these amazing African animals and see how many you recognize.

How Animal Detectives Work

The next "CSI" spin-off may not take place at a zoo or wildlife preserve, but there are real-life detectives working to solve cases of the furry, feathered variety.

Are Komodo dragons' mouths deadlier than cobras' venom?

A Komodo dragon's bite is a deadly cocktail of bacteria and venom. But is it worse than a cobra's bite? Who would win in the hypothetical battle of lizards versus snakes?

Can piranhas really strip a cow to the bone in under a minute?

Ever since Teddy Roosevelt witnessed a piranha feeding frenzy, the fish have been known as fearsome predators. But can they really strip a cow to the bone?

Arctic Animal Pictures

Arctic animals, such as polar bears, puffins and narwhals, have developed amazing adaptations to be able to survive in the arctic tundra. Check out these Arctic animal pictures to catch a glimpse of animals that you'll probably never see up close.

Cryptozoology

Cryptozoology is the study of creatures that are rumored to exist. But for true believers and alleged eyewitnesses, these "cryptids" are alive and well and lurking among us.

Bird Facts

Approximately 10,000 species of birds make up the class Aves--a diverse group that has long fascinated the human race with peculiar behaviors and adaptations.

How Aquaculture Works

Where do we get all the fish and other seafood that we eat? How do fish farmers keep up with the heavy demand?

What is filter feeding?

Forks. Knives. Spoons. Chopsticks. All those utensils are a pain to pick up and set down again. What if you could just open your mouth wide?

Why Are Moose More Dangerous Than Bears?

Surprisingly, the gentle, loafing moose could be more threatening than a grizzly bear. Find out what you should do if that looming moose barrels at you like a bull.

How Animal Domestication Works

Domesticated animals provide us with innumerable products, hours of labor and even loving companionship. Find out why the dog was so easily domesticated and why you'll never see someone riding a zebra.

Do animals have personalities?

Well, duh. Of course animals have personalities, right? Find out how scientists are proving what pets owners have always suspected: animals -- both pets and wild animals -- possess personality.

How Hibernation Works

Walking, breathing, thinking: All of these activities burn energy. But in the winter when food supplies are scarce, some animals conserve their energy -- by hibernating.

How Dog Shows Work

The droopy-faced bloodhound. The prancing poodle. The small Maltese you could easily mistake for a mop. How can these impossibly different dogs compete for the same prize?

Why do groups like PETA oppose the Iditarod?

Dogsled race officials and mushers say that they put the welfare of the dogs first. But animal rights activists say they will continue to protest the Iditarod and other sled dog races.

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