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Fish are friends, not food

A blog about marine biology, zoology and the environment
Apr 15 '14

A 13-year-old eagle huntress in Mongolia
By William Kremer

Most children, Asher Svidensky says, are a little intimidated by golden eagles. Kazakh boys in western Mongolia start learning how to use the huge birds to hunt for foxes and hares at the age of 13, when the eagles sit heavily on their undeveloped arms. Svidensky, a photographer and travel writer, shot five boys learning the skill - and he also photographed Ashol-Pan.
"To see her with the eagle was amazing," he recalls. She was a lot more comfortable with it, a lot more powerful with it and a lot more at ease with it."
Read more…

That’s incredible! :)

A 13-year-old eagle huntress in Mongolia

Most children, Asher Svidensky says, are a little intimidated by golden eagles. Kazakh boys in western Mongolia start learning how to use the huge birds to hunt for foxes and hares at the age of 13, when the eagles sit heavily on their undeveloped arms. Svidensky, a photographer and travel writer, shot five boys learning the skill - and he also photographed Ashol-Pan.

"To see her with the eagle was amazing," he recalls. She was a lot more comfortable with it, a lot more powerful with it and a lot more at ease with it."

Read more

That’s incredible! :)

Apr 15 '14
Apr 14 '14

trynottodrown:

It’s a bit like something out of the famous sci-fi horror movie Alien.

Before they have even hatched, cuttlefish embryos can peer out of their eggs and spot potential prey.

It is the first time any animal has been shown to learn visual images before they are born.

Ludovic Dickel and his colleagues at the University of Caen Basse-Normandy, France, made the discovery by placing crabs alongside cuttlefish eggs in a series of laboratory tanks.

Those embryos exposed to crabs preferred them as prey later in life, the scientists report in the journal Animal Behaviour.

The young embryos must be able to see through their translucent egg case, the scientists believe, and learn which animals are worth hunting even before they have hatched.

"This is the first time there is evidence of visual learning by embryos," said Dr Dickel.

Visual cues

Embryos are known to able to pick up chemical and auditory cues - unborn gulls, for example, learn to recognise the alarm calls of their parents whilst still in the egg, while salmon and frog embryos can learn the chemical signatures of the surrounding water before they hatch.

But until now, no one has looked at whether unborn animals can also learn visual images. Dickel and his team decided to study embryos of the cuttlefish Sepia officinalis, a relatively advanced ocean-going mollusc closely related to squid and octopus.

Crabs, a common prey of adult cuttlefish, were also placed into the tanks, but enclosed in separate compartments. Crucially, the compartment sides were made of clear glass, so the crabs were in plain view of the eggs.They harvested wild eggs, and placed them in tanks filled with sea water.

But the embryos could not smell or hear the crabs. Once the cuttlefish embryos hatched, they were instantly moved, to ensure they could not glimpse the crabs, and were not exposed to any other prey until they were seven days old.

They were then set free in a lab tank full crabs and shrimp, another cuttlefish delicacy.

'Window of genius'

Remarkably, cuttlefish embryos not exposed to crabs preferred to hunt shrimp once they were born.

But those embryos exposed to crabs much preferred to hunt crabs after hatching. And the clearer the view of the crabs they were given, the greater their taste for it.

Dickel says that his team has recently discovered that extremely young cuttlefish have very good memories and are capable of astonishing feats of learning, despite their young age and tiny, immature brains.

But this “window of genius”, as he puts it, appears to open even before hatching.

Usually, cuttlefish eggs lie in an envelope full of black ink. But this clears as the embryos grow older, leaving them growing within translucent eggs.

These unborn cuttlefish also have fully developed eyes. That leads the researchers to conclude that the cuttlefish embryos must peer through their eggs, and learn to recognise their prey, a behaviour which will help give them a head-start in life.

It is less likely that birds, reptiles and, particularly, mammals - including humans - could recognise visual images in the womb.

But the cuttlefish discovery helps reinforce the idea that some animals at least can begin to learn before they are born.

source

This is amazing!

Apr 13 '14
Apr 12 '14
Apr 12 '14

freedomforwhales:

I feel like dusky dolphins don’t get enough appreciation

Like check out these sweet flips guys

Dusky dolphins <3

(Source: deepblueseawhales)

Apr 11 '14

European Cetacean Society conference in Liege, Belgium

2 days of workshops and 3 days of talks on cetaceans and seals and all of it absolutely fantastic! I’ve learnt so much and written loads of notes, made some friends and met some amazing scientists. Liege museum was also really interesting.

I’d highly recommend young scientists go to conferences - they are a great place to network and learn about the latest research and to spark ideas for your own future research.

Apr 8 '14
Lol!

Lol!

Apr 3 '14
Apr 3 '14
Apr 2 '14

:D

Apr 2 '14
marinemammalblog:

Hourglass dolphins by Vicktrr on Flickr.

Reblogging because Viki takes fantastic photos :)

marinemammalblog:

Hourglass dolphins by Vicktrr on Flickr.

Reblogging because Viki takes fantastic photos :)

Apr 1 '14
griseus:

Which marine mammals dive the deepest?

A new long-term study of elusive Cuvier’s beaked whale shows they can dive to nearly 3,000m (10,000 feet) while a second stayed down for 138 minutes.
awesome

Reference (Open Access) : Schorr et al 2014 First Long-Term Behavioral Records from Cuvier’s Beaked Whales (Ziphius cavirostris) Reveal Record-Breaking Dives. PLoS ONE 9(3): e92633. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0092633

Incredible!

griseus:

Which marine mammals dive the deepest?

A new long-term study of elusive Cuvier’s beaked whale shows they can dive to nearly 3,000m (10,000 feet) while a second stayed down for 138 minutes.

awesome

Incredible!

Apr 1 '14
griseus:

This photograph of a Caribbean Monk Seal (Monachus tropicalis) taken at the New York Aquarium during 1910, is one of only two photographs in existence. It was last sighted in 1952 and is considered extinct.
Photographer is unknown
via S.A


Wow! It&#8217;s mad how we have photos of animals that we allowed/caused to become extinct so recently like the Caribbean Monk Seal and Tasmanian Tiger :/

griseus:

This photograph of a Caribbean Monk Seal (Monachus tropicalis) taken at the New York Aquarium during 1910, is one of only two photographs in existence. It was last sighted in 1952 and is considered extinct.

  • Photographer is unknown
  • via S.A

Wow! It’s mad how we have photos of animals that we allowed/caused to become extinct so recently like the Caribbean Monk Seal and Tasmanian Tiger :/

Mar 31 '14
:D Absolutely fantastic news! :D I&#8217;m so so happy!
Read more here

:D Absolutely fantastic news! :D I’m so so happy!

Read more here