5 Pros of Adopting a Dog

With increasing overpopulation in shelter and rescue organizations scrambling to save animals’ lives, there has never been a better time to adopt.  When faced with buying a new pet or adopting, please consider the following 5 Pros of Adopting a Dog.

Adoption Saves Lives

Shelter animals are almost evenly divided between those who are abandoned by their people and those picked up by animal control services. According to the ASPCA, 50% shelter dogs and 70% shelter cats are euthanized each year simply because no one will adopt them. Adoptions reduce euthanizations. An estimated 25% of shelter dogs are purebred.

Adoption Improves Health

Spending long days in a noisy, cramped kennel is no way to live, but that is reality for many animals. According to the HSUS, adopting animals can improve quality of life for both the animal and you by reducing stress and anxiety. Research shows that pets reduce anxious outbursts in Alzheimer’s patients, help college students cope through transition periods, and reduce risk of heart attacks by almost one-third. Going for long walks and playing Frisbee improve cardiovascular health, and simply living with a pet can lower blood pressure.

Adopting a Pet Can Save Money

With food, supplies, medical care, and training, the average cost of care for dogs and cats can total more than $800 annually. Purchasing from a breeder or pet store can tack on $1,000 or more in the first year. Most animals can be adopted from shelters and rescue groups, often already spayed or neutered and vaccinated, for around $100 or less. So, its not a big deal in giving an animal shelter.

Adoption Finds a Perfect Match

While what you see is what you get at the pound, pet purchasers often don’t know what’s in store for them. Kittens and puppies are cute but eventually grow to have big personalities. Most shelter dogs are at least 6 months old, and rescue groups often place pets in foster homes, so animals’ temperaments and projected size are pretty clear. With 8 to 12 million cats and dogs entering shelters each year the odds of finding a great pet are definitely in your favor. Often shelter dogs are already housetrained and crate trained and know obedience commands.

You Will Gain a Best Friend

Life on the streets and in crowded shelters makes for grateful pets. Because they’ve had difficult lives and uncertain futures, rescued cats and dogs often form deeper bonds with their adoptive parents. These loyal animals can also teach children about compassion, responsibility, and friendship. Not only do pets and people provide emotional support for each other, but a shelter dog is ready to go anywhere with his or her person. From playing in the park to swimming at the beach, people get out more with their dogs, and those looking for love or friendship always have a furry conversation starter by their side. Shelter cats are good companions for people who work long hours. Their independent nature keeps maintenance minimal, and they’re content to cuddle on the couch after a long day at work.

Source

The Atlantic White-Sided Dolphin

The Atlantic white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus acutus) is a highly gregarious species, occasionally being sighted in groups of up to 1,000.

Subspecies
None.

Life span
Up to 25 years

Statistics
Body length: up to 8 feet, Weight: as much as 400 lbs.

Physical Description
Atlantic white-sided dolphins have a black/dark upper surface, grey flank stripe, white patch below the fin, yellowish patch on tail stock, and a white underside. They also have a tall dorsal fin.

Distribution
Atlantic white-sided dolphins inhabit the north Atlantic and Arctic oceans, in cold temperate and polar regions.

Diet
Atlantic white-sided dolphins feed on fish, squid and prawns.

Behavior of Dolphins
Atlantic white-sided dolphin live in groups of 5-50 (although up to 1,000 has been reported) and are often seen in the company of other species.

Atlantic white-sided dolphins are known to associate with white-beaked dolphins, pilot whales and bottlenose dolphins as well as fin whales and humpback whales.White sided dolphin

Highly social animals, Commerson’s dolphins are often seen associating with the Burmeister’s porpoise, and the Peale’s and Chilean dolphins.

Fraser’s dolphins are often seen in mixed groups, swimming with other species of tropical toothed whales and dolphins.

False killer whales can be seen in the company of other species including bottlenose dolphins.

Hourglass dolphins can be found with many other cetaceans including fin whales and long-finned pilot whales.

Southern right-whale dolphins feed on a variety of fish species and squid and are often seen associating with dusky and hourglass dolphins, and pilot whales.

Conservation status
They are not listed by the IUCN. Global threats include hunting, prey depletion, pollution and entanglement in nets.

Should You Get a Glow in the Dark Dog Collar ?

Imagine not having to worry about your dog getting ran over at night if he were to run across the street for whatever reason. Well now you can have some peace of mind with a glow in the dark dog collar. These collars come in a variety of colors as well as sizes. During the day, they look like an ordinary dog collar but in the dark, they light up making you aware that there is a canine present.

Different Types of Glow in the Dark Dog Collars

Collars come in a variety of styles, it’s the same for glow in the dark dog collars. There are some that have an actual LED light which are brighter and easier to see. You can purchase the ones that come in different colors and you can change the light setting to; steady light, slow flashing light, and fast flashing. These are great to use at night when taking a walk or for any nighttime activity.

Glow in the dark dog collarUSB Rechargeable Waterproof Collar

People are almost guaranteed to see your canine more clearly while they wear a glow in the dark dog collar. So many dogs can be easily ran over at night when a driver is not paying attention or perhaps they couldn’t see the dog. The glow in the dark dog collars vary in price starting at$5.99- $20.99. On Amazon, you can purchase either the LED collars or the nylon glow in the dark ones. They also offer rechargeable LED light dog collars which makes it easier for you to use. There is also the option to have one engraved with the dog’s name and the owner’s phone number.

Illumiseen LED Glow in the Dark Dog Collar

While not all dog collars are made equal, make sure the one you purchase actually lights Glow in the dark dog collarup and is visible in the dark. Personally, I would recommend the Illumiseen LED Collar which is brighter and easier to see, plus you can change the light so that it flashes. But the advantage of the illumiseen dog collar is that during the day it looks like a regular collar. Deciding on which one you want is totally up to you. Sometimes dogs tend to go loose at times and it is dangerous for them to wander off during the night. Having your dog wear a glow in the dark collar makes it safer for them.

I Got My First Glow In the Dark Dog Collar as a Gift

You can probably find these collars at your local pet store but there may not be a huge selection. Let your dog be seen at all times during the night with glow in the dark dog collars. You will no longer have to worry about taking your dog out at night and having him wander off. He will stay safer while wearing a lighted up collar. You can give these as a gift for people you know that also have a dog as a pet. That’s how I got one.  I thought it was a silly gift from my brother.  But I turned out to love it.  I have 3 different types now.

There are a variety of options to choose from if you choose to purchase them online. Also, read reviews and ensure you purchase one that works great and is easily seen in the dark.

Related:  Best Electric Dog Fence

 

 

Aye Ayes Facts

The aye aye is a fasicinating animal that is native to Madascar. Below are some of the more interesting aye aye facts.

What Kind of Animal is an Aye Aye?

Aye Aye FactsAye-ayes (Daubentonia madagascariensis) are the largest nocturnal primate in the world. The aye aye is a lemur native to Madagascar. They are also the only primate thought to use echolocation, which they use to find grubs up to an inch deep in a tree.

What Are the Predators of the Aye Aye?

The aye aye’s main predator is the fossa.  And much about the fossa remains a mystery. The catlike fossa is a large relative of the civets and mongooses. Seven of the eight civet-like carnivores that stalk the aye aye are found nowhere else in the world.

How Long Do Aye Ayes Live?

Their lifespan in the wild is unknown, but in captivity they can live for up to 23 years.

How Big is the Aye Aye?

Head and body length: 40cm, Tail length: 40cm, Weight: 2kg

What Does an Aye Aye Look Like?

Aye-ayes have a long, coarse coat of black or brown fur, tipped with white. They have large eyes, surrounded by black rings. Their ears are large and they have a long, slender middle finger with a long claw, used for extracting insects from tree holes.

Where Does the Aye Aye Live?

Aye-ayes live in eastern Madagascar. They occupy rain forests, dry forests, mangroves and bamboo thickets.

What Does the Aye Aye Eat?

Aye-ayes are particularly adept at finding wood-boring larvae. They tap on wood with their middle finger, listening for hollow spaces. They then extract the larvae with their specially-adapted thin finger. They also feed on seeds, fruit, nectar and fungi.

Is the Aye Aye Nocturnal?

Aye ayes are nocturnal, and construct elaborate sleeping nests to sleep in during the day. Aye-ayes are arboreal and move quadrupedally (on 4 legs). Aye-ayes live alone or in pairs. Males have much larger ranges than females, and they overlap those of the females.

How Does the Aye Aye Reproduce?

During mating, aye-ayes hang upside-down on a branch, and the procedure lasts for about an hour. One infant is born after a gestation period of 172 days.Aye Aye Facts

Why Is The Aye Aye Endangered?

Aye-ayes are classified as Endangered by the 2000 IUCN Red List. They are thought to be the most endangered of all mammals in Madagascar. Locals believe that they are a bad omen, and often kill them. Such hunting, coupled with habitat destruction, have put aye-aye populations at-risk. Today they are protected by law.

How to Show Dominance Over Your Dog

When you get a new dog, or bring a second dog into the home, it is important to establish that you are in charge. You need to be the leader of your dog pack, not your dog. In order to establish dominance, you have to know how to Show Dominance Over Your Dog, even if it makes you uncomfortable.

A confused dog that doesn’t know his place in the world might exhibit signs of aggression. Yet, other dogs develop separation anxiety and act out through destructive behaviors. If the dog doesn’t know his place in the household pack, he will be confused and intimidated. On the other hand, if a dog understands his place, he will probably be happier.

The important thing is to establish yourself as the pack leader even if you have a low maintenance dog. The below is even more important if you have a high maintenance dog.

How to Show Dominance Over Your Dog – Take Charge

How to Show Dominance Over Your DogYou may feel a little silly or even mean, but it is important to let the dog know that you are in charge.

  • Be the Owner. Put your hands firmly on the dog and hug him. Pat him until your hands are warm.
  • Praise him warmly then move away
  • Reprimand disobedience fairly and forgive quickly. When you place your hands on your dog, don’t do it out of anger, but with authority. Do not hit the dog to show dominance. You can shake the collar, pull back on the leash, or maneuver them into a sitting position. When you have made the dog do something you want, you are acting as the alpha. Follow up with a hug.
  • Your dog should obey on the first command. If you are constantly repeating yourself with your dog, you are not the alpha. Dogs have amazing hearing, much better than a human’s. Don’t let him give you the slip.
  • Give commands you know you can follow through with. You have to be responsible about completing commands. If your dog takes off across the park to chase a squirrel, don’t yell to call him back. This is a situation where you cannot reprimand disobedience. Just be patient, because once he accepts you as the alpha, he will stop to look for you. When he sees you aren’t following, he will return to you. This is how he knows leaders must be obeyed.
  • Be benevolent. In human terms, a top dog is tough but loving and fair. Dogs only want to know who is in charge and who loves them.
  • Be a model top dog. A top dog has dignity, confidence, intelligence and authority. This will help your dog to be calm himself.
  • If you have more than one dog in your home, you have to decide the rankings within the dog pack. Also, you have to feed the top dog first, and he gets top choice of the bones. The others have to wait for their turn. This is another way for you to gain dominance.

How to Show Dominance Over Your Dog – Dog Training

You can also enroll your dog in a dog training program. Make sure to find trainers that takes potentially aggressive ones, even your pup has delusions of grandeur. Once the dust settles, your dog with understand that, although you are the boss, you are not such a bad guy. Dog trainers will work closely with you and your animal to ensure obedience is achieved.

How to Show Dominance Over Your Dog – Signs of Submission

A submissive dog may do one of the following.

  • flatten their ears back on their head
  • repeatedly sticking out their tongue when you approach
  • rolling over onto their back
  • avoiding eye contact and licking his lips
  • playful position with front paws on the ground, rear end up

How to Show Dominance Over Your Dog – Dominant Behavior

If your dog still acts like he’s the boss, ignore him until his attitude changes. Otherwise, he will continue dominating humans:

  • body blocking or rubbing shoulders
  • standing still and at attention
  • growling and looking you in the eye
  • moving between people or dogs

If your dog is trying to dominate, emphasize your authority and get it specially trained in order to restore your power

What Does it Mean to Have a Memory Like an Elephant?

We know that the crow might be the smartest bird. But what member of the animal kingdom holds the title for smartest animal?  That’s a tough question to answer because there are a lot of factors that make up intelligence and some animals are very hard to research.  Do do have some clues on memory though.  And the saying to have a memory like an elephant is not misplaced.

Elephants do have strong abilities to recall people, places, and behaviors. Examples of this include elephants recalling humans that trained them when they were young, but who they haven’t seen for more than 20 years. Elephants are also known for remembering the locations of important resources in the wild over hundreds of miles of terrain, even if they haven’t visited those spots for decades.

Elephants that have been apart for many years seem to recognize each other and greet one another upon meeting again. This has been observed among zoo elephants. It is probably the ability to keep track of information for many decades that generated the phrase to have a memory like an elephant.

Why Do They Say an Elephant Never Forgets?

This saying has made it’s way into pop culture through movies and books.  The most famous example of the memory of elephants is illustrated in the story Elephant Walk, which was made into a movie in 1954.Memory Like an Elephant

The movie is based on the true story of a British plantation that was built across a traditional elephant walk in India. Elephants typically use the same path every time the move from location to location. The elephants were confused when they came to this plantation and became enraged when they couldn’t use their same “walk”. The elephants end up destroying the plantation in a stampede that smashes most of the house and starts a fire.

What Does it Mean When Someone Says an Elephant Never Forgets?

The saying ‘an elephant never forgets’, is an expression used to imply that a person has a good memory and is unlikely to forget something.  The expression is usually used in a lighthearted or humorous context.

Memory Like an ElephantThe saying may be somewhat accurate but not entirely truthful.  Elephants are extremely hard to study.  Researchers have managed to conduct pioneering studies using zoo elephants in the areas of hearing, sensitivity to vibrations, and self-awareness. Yet these three individual studies were limited to a sample size of one. (The self-awareness test was performed with three elephants but only one produced usable data.)

An elephant’s memory doesn’t stow each detail of every stimulus ever encountered. Instead, their brain encodes what’s necessary for survival, such as food location and family identification, in the same way that our short-term memory systems selectively discard or transfer data to our long-term storage.

Do elephants Forget Anything?

Elephants have incredible memories.  But the myth that they never forget is a myth.  In the wild there is evidence that elephants have forgotten their travel and burial patterns. Elephants that have a friendship with humans seems to erode over time if not maintained. Elephants memory of lasting relationships with other elephants seems to be remember more. In fact, individual elephants can remember their own species even when separated for decades.

So What Does a Memory Like an Elephant Mean?

To have a memory like an elephant means that a person can have great recall.  It may not be perfect (like elephants).  But it can be close.

Why Do Elephants have Such Great Memories?Memory Like an Elephant

Remarkable recall power of other elephants is a big part of how elephants survive. Matriarch elephants, in particular, hold a store of social knowledge that their families can scarcely do without, according to research conducted on elephants at Amboseli National Park in Kenya.

What Do You Call A Group of Elephants?

A group of elephants can be a called a herd, a parade, or a memory.  A herd is the most common name for a group of elephants.  But calling a group of elephants a memory may contribute to the saying that an elephant never forgets.

What Animal Has the Best Memory in the World?

The reputation for the longest memory might be with elephants.  But studies show that dolphin memory wins for best memory in the animal kingdom.  Dolphins might even have a better memory than humans.

Dolphins Have the Best MemoryResearchers in the US say that even after 20 years of separation, dolphins could recall the whistles of former companions. Research published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B believe that these long-term memories are a product of the complex social connections that dolphins have evolved.

The study the scientists used relationships between 56 captive bottle nose dolphins that have been moved for breeding purposes between six different zoos and aquariums in the US and Bermuda. Through a playback study conducted within a multi-institution dolphin breeding consortium (where animals are moved between different facilities), recognition of unfamiliar versus familiar signature whistles of former tank mates was assessed. This research shows that dolphins have the potential for lifelong memory for each other regardless of relatedness, sex or duration of association.

Sources:

royalsocietypublishing.org

transparent.com

The Armadillo Lizard Looks Like a Dragon

The armadillo girdled lizard (Ouroborus cataphractus), also known as the armadillo lizard, golden armadillo lizard or armadillo spiny-tailed lizard, is a girdled lizard endemic to desert areas along the western coast of South Africa. This heavily armored reptile is named after the armadillo for its ability to roll itself into an almost impregnable ball when threatened.

The armadillo lizard is super rare and almost impossible to get one as a pet. This lizard used to be common in the pet trade, but no longer. Wild populations are considered threatened and it is no longer legal to collect them for sale in the pet trade. They are very rare in the pet trade, and are very expensive when available at all. It can live up to 25 years in captivity, or slightly longer in rarer cases.

Why Does the Armadillo Lizard Curl in a Ball?

The armadillo lizard normally only rolls up in a ball when it is scared.  They do not like to parts of the Armadillo Lizardbe handled. The armadillo lizard curls in a ball as a way of protecting itself. If caught by a predator or a human, it will curl up, grip its tail in its jaws and form a tight, armored ball in the manner of an armadillo. In this position, the soft underparts are protected and the lizard is too spiky for many predators to eat.

They are very skittish and like being left alone. Unusual for a lizard, the armadillo girdled lizard is a sociable reptile with its own kind.  In the wild it’s not uncommon to find between 1 and 30 individuals sharing a rock crevice for long periods. Normally these groups comprise an adult pair along with juveniles.

What Do Armadillo Girdled Lizards Eat?

Armadillo LizardThe armadillo girdled lizard feeds mainly on small invertebrates, such as insects and spiders, but sometimes also take plant material. In captivity, they are commonly fed crickets. In the wild, its most common prey items are termites or ants, millipedes, and scorpions.

How Big is the Armadillo Lizard?

The average size for an armadillo lizard is 3 to 4 inches from snout to vent.  They can get between 7 to 9 inches for a very mature lizard. These amazing lizards can weight up to 3 pounds.

How long Does an Armadillo Lizard Live?

Armadillo LizardArmadillo lizards occur naturally in South Africa. They are diurnal creatures, reaching an adult size of somewhere between seven to nine inches in length. They live in social groups amongst rocky outcrops, wedging themselves between the cracks and crevices of the rocks, much like a North American chuckwalla does for protection from predators and the elements.

The armadillo lizard is a potentially long lived species, with life spans reaching 20 to 25 years in captivity. Average and maximum life span in the wild is apparently not known

The Armadillo Lizard as a Pet

Armadillo Lizard in a BallIf you absolutely can not help yourself and you just have to have a beautiful reptile such this one, at least make sure you’re buying from a reputable source. A significant percentage of the animals sold are caught in the wild and not bred.

It is highly recommended if you choose the armadillo lizard as your pet that you keep more than one together for the animals’ sake.

Parasites are also an issue, not to mention that those animals caught in the wild rarely make it longer then a year (and just because it’s not a dog, doesn’t mean it’s easily replaceable). Although pet stores could in theory treat prophylactically for parasites, they probably can’t justify vet exams of each animal, and prophylaxis has the potential to be more harmful. One simply needs to understand the risks of you are putting these animals in. It won’t matter whom what gets the animal from, odds are it has the same original source and problems.  Illegal wildlife trade is still the second-largest trade in the world after drugs.

Armadillo Lizard CareArmadillo Lizard

A 30-gallon tank provides enough room for two lizards. However, providing the largest enclosure possible is better so your lizards feel they have plenty of room. Armadillo lizards need hiding places, a UV-B lamp, a heat lamp or pad, and a dish of water. They can tolerate a number of different substrates, but sand most closely replicates their natural environment. They require a daytime temperature of about 85 degrees Fahrenheit, with a basking area between 120 and 130 degrees. Nighttime temperatures should be between 60 and 70 degrees across the heat gradient. Armadillo lizards like hiding places in both the cool and warm sides of the terrarium. A rock or log should be positioned under the heat lamp so they can bask easily. Humidity between 45 and 55 percent is ideal. Misting the tank daily helps keep humidity at the proper level.

Sources:

animals.mom.me

www.petco.com

 

Pink Fairy Armadillo

The pink fairy armadillo (Chlamyphorus truncatus), is the smallest species of armadillo ( 12-15 cm long) found in west-central Argentina where the inhabitants call it ‘Pichi ciego‘ (a small blind armadillo). It is the only species of the genus Chlamyphorus .

Pink Fairy Physical Traits

The pink fairy armadillo kind of looks like a newborn baby. It has a pale pink shell made up of 23 to 25 rows of bony plates stuck in its skin and covered with a rough skin. The stomach is covered with long hairs (they also have hair under their shell). Its coat is white, soft and silky. They have small eyes and are very small and he has no ear holes. 
The pink fairy armadillo of Argentina is equipped with powerful claws and a tail in the shape of spatula of 2 or cm . It is 12 to 15 cm long and weighs more or less 120 g. It is the smallest member of the order of Cingulata. The pink fairy armadillo digs the earth very quickly and burrows itself if it is worried. It digs the ground of its front legs, bearing on its hind legs and its rigid tail. All members of the armadillo familly have 5 claws. He lives in galleries and emerges from his lodge at dusk to feed. Truncated chlamydophore has proven difficult to breed in captivity, and its reproduction is unknown.
It measures 13-15 cm, plus 4-5 cm of tail. The head, the belly and the hips are covered with a soft, fine fur of whitish color: the tail is naked, flattened and stiff, and in the end it resembles a spoon. The eyes and ears are very small. The front limbs are equipped with robust claws suitable for excavation. They can also have a yellowish armor on his back, formed by 24 corneal plates that start from the forehead and continue to the back of the body, which is abruptly truncated (hence the truncatus name of the species) and is protected by a vertical shield.
The pink fairy armadillo is the only armadillo with the dorsal shell almost completely separated from the body. A bone plate in the shell at the rear of the animal is securely attached to the pelvic bones. The tail is spatula-shaped, and protrudes from a notch in the rear plate. The tail cannot be raised, and as a result drags behind the animal as it walks. Females posses two mammae.

Digging, Burrowing, and Eating

Pink fairies are nocturnal, and spend their nights burrowing in the sands of central Argentina. They are experts at moving through underground sand — they dig with their enormous claws and then pat the sand behind them into a compact tunnel with a butt plate that resembles a spatula.
The pink fairy armadillo uses their digging abilities to burrow in areas beside large ant colonies. Ants provide a constant food source for this species of armadillo. As well, they may also forage on worms, snails and plant matter but ants are their number one choice.
They sometimes come to the ground, where they walk extremely slowly. They do most of their feeding at night, eating ants, termites, and other small insects. The armadillo, Spanish for “little armored thing”, originated in South America more than sixty million years ago.

Where the Pink Fairy Armadillo Lives

The pink fairy armadillo is native to Argentina where it lives on the dry, sandy plains of the west – central part of the country.

Pink fairy armadillos are classified as a subterranean armadillo that is extremely sensitive to environmental changes and stress. As an example, sudden environmental changes that could affect pink fairy armadillos include temperature and soil quality. In order for them to survive and maintain stability, they must occupy undisturbed places that contain sufficient amounts of compact sand and hiding places. This also refers to possible captivity conditions for this animal due to its desert-adapted characteristics.

Conservation Efforts 

The conservation status for pink fairy armadillo is still uncertain, and it is listed as Data Deficient by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. It is listed as “Data Deficient” because there is little information on the population status of this species, and its biology and ecology are poorly known. The decline in population for this species has generally been attributed to farming activities and predators including domestic dogs and cats.
Sources:
http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/4704/0
Mammal Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference

What is a Babirusa?

The babirusa (Babyrousa babyrussa) is a bizarre-looking pig from Indonesia. The males have extraordinary tusks which develop from their canine teeth, growing up through the skull and growing in a curve until it pierces the skull again between the eyes. The babirusa has been called “a wild pig with a dental problem.”

What Does Babirus Mean?

The word babirusa means “pig deer” in Malagasy, as their wild-growing tusks are reminiscent of deer antlers.

How Long do Babirusa Live?

Up to 24 years in captivity.  In the wild an old babirus is 10 years old.

How Many Species of Babirusa Are There?

There are four species of babirusa. The most well-known (Babyrousa celebensis — the naked-looking babirusa with the monster tusks) is found on Sulawesi. The other species of babirusa have longer coats that vary in color from white to creamy gold to black and brown.

What does a Babirusa Look Like?What is a Babirusa?

The babirusa is a bizarre-looking pig with males having curved tusks growing vertically up through its upper jaw and curving back down to pierce the skull between the eyes. The lower canine teeth also grow upwards and curve back to form a second set of tusks. The skin is a brownish grey colour and is covered in sparse white or grey bristles.

Babirusa can vary by species in other characteristics. The golden babirusa has a long, thick pelage that is white, creamy gold, black or gold overall and black at the rump. The pelage of the Togian babirusa is also long but not as that of the golden babirusa. The Togian babirusa has a tawny, brown or black pelage that is darker on the upper parts than in the lower parts. The North Sulawesi babirusa has very short hair and appears bald.

How Big is a Babirusa?

Babirusa can reach 3 to 3.7 feet in length and weigh up to 220 pounds. Tail is usually 10.5 to 12.5 inches long. Males are larger than females.

What are Babirusa Tusks For?

It’s actually a mystery. One hypothesis is that the males use their tusks during fights over Babirusa Skull Deathfemales. It seems reasonable, until you look at how babirusas really fight. They don’t hook tusks, but stand up on their hind legs and “box” each other with their front hooves. Additionally, babirusa tusks aren’t built to withstand much pressure; they are brittle and easily broken, not at all suited for combat. It seems likely that the tusks serve a display purpose, perhaps signaling genetic fitness to females, but this is an idea that hasn’t been tested. For now, the purpose of those marvelous tusks is still a mystery.

What Is the Babirusa Tusk Death?

Babirusas with spiralling tusks, some authors say that, if the animal lives long enough, the tusks grow fatally into the face.

Where are Babirusa Found?

The babirusa is only found on a few Indonesian islands: Sulawesi, Togian, Sulu and Burn Islands.

Babirusa Habitat

In the wild, male babirusas tend to live in solitary or in bachelor herds of two to three males, while females can be found in groups of up to eight individuals with young. They spend the majority of the day roaming and foraging throughout the forest.

What do Babirusa Eat?

Babirusas are omnivorous, eating mainly fruit but also leaves, grasses, small animals and carrion.

Babirusa Behaviour

Babirusa live in groups of one or a few adult females and their young while the adult males are solitary. They spend much of the day in mud wallows, rubbing off the dried mud and skin parasites on trees afterwards.

Babirusa ReproductionWhat is a Babirusa?

The males stand on their hind legs and ‘box’, presumably trying to break their opponent’s tusks. 125-150 days after mating the females produce a very small litter of only 1-2 piglets, born in a nest of underbrush. She has only one pair of teats from which to feed them.

Babirusa Conservation status

The babirusa is listed as Vulnerable, following increased hunting and habitat loss over the last 20 years or more. Despite protection, illegal poaching continues and only a few thousand individuals are left.

Sources:

San Diego Zoo

Wired

What Animals Eat Roses and Other Garden Plants?

Gardening can be a fun and relaxing way to spend your time outdoors.  When we garden we also get to enjoy the fruits of our labor.  For some this can mean vegetables from their vegetable garden, fruits from their trees, or simple flowers that they have spent many hours cultivating. And there can be little more frustrating when you have found your hard work destroyed by an animal that invaded your territory and ate your roses. So what animals eat roses and other garden plants?

Some major mammalian rose-eaters include deer, rabbits, and gophers. Some parts of the world can even have wild goats, feral pigs, or rabbits to contend with. In this article we are going to talk about the 3 main offenders in the western world: deer, squirrels, and insects.

What Animal is Eating my Roses?

Humans aren’t the only mammals who adore roses. Roses are a favorite of deer. It may be the smell that attracts deer but they don’t stop to just smell the roses. They will spend just enough time in your yard to to eat rosebushes down to only twiggy stubs.

Deer Eat Roses

In spite of their size, deer might be hard to identify when they’re moving in on your rosebushes during the evening. They are unbelievably silent and can be found in most places (think urban) that they shouldn’t be.What Animals Eat Roses

Look for deer tracks or deer droppings to be sure that mule deer, whitetail deer, or even backtail deer are your culprits.  If you live near a wooded, open, or even high desert area there is a good chance that deer are eating your roses.

How To Stop Deer From Eating Your Roses

There’s not much you can do to protect your garden from deer besides fencing in your property.  And even sometime that isn’t successful.  There are reports on the internet of some that have had success with deer repellent.  But in my mind the jury is still out on that form of keeping the deer from your plants.

One great combination of both noise and physical shock is using a motion activated sprinkler in your yard. There are hose-connected models for gardening areas close to the house (within reach of a hose), and reservoir models that work from a tank that you can place further out. You can also buy hose connectors to extent your hoses since the tank models may need to be filled each day for high traffic areas.

Squirrels Eat Roses

What Animals Eat Roses?Squirrels could be to also be to blame. Bonnieplants gives the signs of squirrel activity:

Shallow digging spots in planting beds. These sites aren’t large—you’re looking for golf ball-size or smaller holes. Freshly planted seedbeds are a big squirrel target, as they enjoy unearthing and eating the seeds.

Bite marks and/or missing fruit. Squirrels sometimes eat part of a tomato and leave the rest behind; other times, they eat the entire fruit. Other squirrel favorites include beans, squash, cucumbers, and eggplants.

Missing plants. You might find remnants of seedlings lying on the soil, or they may completely disappear. Ditto for leaves of perennials.

Nibbled seedheads. Squirrels nibble flat, ripening seedheads from the outside edges in, and are especially drawn to sunflowers.

Container digging. If your pots of veggies, herbs, and flowers are constantly being dug into, that’s likely a squirrel’s nut-hiding handiwork (although chipmunks do the same thing). Occasionally squirrels will unearth young potted plants in their quest to bury nuts.

Partially eaten flowers. Squirrels seem to be fond of daisy blooms, but sometimes eat other flowers, too. Half-eaten daisies, with half the petals and most of the center disk missing, are a pretty good clue that squirrels are feasting in your garden.

What To Do What Squirrels Eating Your Plants

The real trouble with squirrels feeding on your plants is that when they are full they start taking the food to the flower beds and burring them. (Digging up your flower beds). Then, they go back and dig them up later.

Squirrels are a pain but there are things like Squirrel B Gone that help. Other ideas include using cheap sunflowers and having leave piles as far away from my gardens as possible. Squirrels will also dig down six inches and loot your bulbs. Making a mix with cayenne pepper with it and spraying it on the plants does help too.

There are many gardeners that don’t want to trap squirrels so they simply feed them with a squirrel feeder. This will keep the squirrels away from many of the plants in your yard you care about.

What is Eating my Rose Leaves?

There are many types of insects that eat will eat your roses, like aphids and spittle bugs, and also invertabrates like slugs and snails prefer them as well. The most common bugs that eat roses are Spider Mites, Rose Bud Borers, Rose Chafers ,Rose Chafers, Leafcutter Bees or Japanese Beetles.

How do you kill aphids on roses? How do you kill aphids on plants?

Clemson.edu has a great chart on the type of pesticide that should be used for Ants Eating Rosesroses. Aphids can also be hosed off with a strong stream of water directed above and below the leaves. Spraying with water should be repeated frequently as needed, focusing in particular on new growth. Roses can also be sprayed with insecticidal soap to control aphids. Insecticidal soap must be sprayed onto the aphids to be effective. Repeat spray three times at 5-7 day intervals. Higher toxicity insecticides are available. However, it is important to note that aphids are very difficult to control because they multiply so rapidly. Leaving even one aphid alive can result in a large population very quickly. In addition, these insecticides kill the natural enemies of rose aphids.

What is a Rose Slug?

Rose slugs are the larvae (immature forms) of sawflies, non-stinging members of the wasp family. Three species of sawflies, the roseslug (Endelomyia aethiops), bristly roseslug (Cladius difformis), and curled rose sawfly (Allantus cinctus), are pests of roses. The larvae of some sawfly species are hairy and often mistaken for caterpillars. Others appear wet and shiny, superficially resembling slugs. The larvae generally reach about ½-to-¾ inch in length.

Rose slug feeding on leaf surface.Generally rose slugs feed at night. Depending on the species, young rose slugs feed on the upper or lower surfaces of leaves between veins, leaving a ‘window’ of translucent tissue that turns brown. As some species of rose slugs get larger, they chew large holes or the entire leaf with only the midrib remaining. Regular inspection of roses is important because feeding typically progresses quickly and extensive leaf skeletonizing can occur if infestations are not noticed. In addition, with their coloring, they can be very difficult to spot on leaves.

Control: Rose slugs can be controlled by handpicking. They can also be removed by spraying with water. Once dislodged, they cannot climb back onto the plant. Insecticidal soap and horticultural oil are also effective against rose slugs. Sprays should thoroughly cover both upper and lower leaf surfaces. Soil drenches or granular applications of dinotefuran or imidacloprid will control sawfly larvae. Bacillus thuringiensis will only control true caterpillars and not the larvae of sawflies. See Table 1 for examples of brands and products.

What is a Horticultural Oil?

Horticultural Oils or Narrow Range Oils are lightweight oils, either petroleum or vegetable based. They are used in both horticulture and agriculture, where they are applied as a dilute spray on plant surfaces to control insects and mites.

The oils provide control by smothering the target pests, and are only effective if applied directly to the pest, and provide no residual controls.

Oils are generally considered suitable for ‘organic pest control’, with most oils permitted under the U.S. National Organic Program.


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