Animals/Wildlife

1:34pm

Thu February 14, 2013
Shots - Health News

Traces Of Anxiety Drugs May Make Fish Act Funny

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 3:40 pm

Perch exposed to the anxiety drug oxazepam were more daring and ate more quickly than fish that lived in drug-free water.
Courtesy of Bent Christensen

Many of the drugs we take aren't actually digested — they pass through our bodies, and down through the sewer pipes. Traces of those drugs end up in the bodies of fish and other wildlife. Nobody's sure what effect they have.

Now, a paper being published in Science magazine finds that drugs for anxiety drugs — even at these very low levels — can affect the behavior of fish.

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5:40am

Thu February 14, 2013
Animals

Pets Feel The Love On Valentine's Day

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 1:05 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Chocolate is bad for dogs and cats, but that doesn't mean they won't be feeling the love on this Valentine's Day. The National Retail Federation says Americans will spend more than $800 million on gifts for their pets - from heart-shaped treats to heart-healthy vitamins. And in honor of Valentine's Day, the ASPCA hosted an online dating show to match humans and animals in need of a home. They called that event "Puppy Love." It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

3:05pm

Sat February 9, 2013
Animals

Vultures Beware: Virginia Town Targets Flock Of Unwanted Visitors

Originally published on Mon February 11, 2013 5:34 am

Turkey vulture droppings can strip paint, kill grass and sicken pets. The droppings also smell really bad.
Holly Kuchera iStockphoto.com

It sounds like a horror story: Every few years, usually in the winter months, residents of the town of Leesburg, Va., come home from work to find their backyards overrun with turkey vultures. Not just a few birds, but hundreds of them. Everywhere.

Lt. Jeff Dube is with the town's police department. For a whole week, he spent every evening driving around town, looking for the latest vulture hotspots.

"They like Leesburg. There's really no rhyme or reason. Every three to five years they come back en mass, like this year, 2- to 300," Dube says.

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2:59am

Sat February 9, 2013
Krulwich Wonders...

Yes, Cats Know How To Fall On Their Feet. But These Guys Do It Better

Agence Nature Science Source

The champ has met its challenger.

Drop a cat and it will swing its head to a horizontal, rearrange its rear, arch its back, splay its legs, and — amazingly often — land on its feet.

This is what cats do. They're famous for it. But now they have a rival.

This is an aphid.

Aphids spend their days sucking sap from leaves. Those leaves can be high off the ground. "High" of course, being a relative term, but think of it this way: Five feet high up is 381 aphids tall. Which is why things get so dicey when a ladybug comes by.

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3:01pm

Thu February 7, 2013
The Salt

Animal Magnetism: How Salmon Find Their Way Back Home

Originally published on Fri February 8, 2013 12:50 pm

Bright red sockeye salmon swim up the Fraser River to the stream where they were hatched.
Current Biology, Putman et al.

Before they end up filleted and sautéed on your dinner plate, salmon lead some pretty extraordinary, globe-trotting lives.

After hatching in a freshwater stream, young salmon make a break for the ocean, where they hang out for years, covering thousands of miles before deciding its time to settle down and lay eggs in their natal stream.

So how do these fish find their way back to their home river?

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