Bites at Animal Planet

8 Oct

Heart Rate Monitor Camera Snaps Pics Whenever Dog is Excited

Meet the world's first dog photographer! Strapped with the new “Heartography” heart monitor and photo camera system to his chest, Grizzler was able to capture just what excited him, which admittedly seemed like everything. 

So how does it work? A heart monitor is worn around the dog's neck while the camera is strapped to its chest. The devices communicate using Bluetooth, so when the dog's heart rate goes up, the monitor sends a signal to the camera, which then snaps a picture of what got the dog so excited or afraid.

While it hasn't been confirmed if this will be sold to the public, it's still an amazing invention and offers some insight into what makes man's best friend tick.  

Get more info on Nikon's website!

Grizzler may be a natural photographer, but dogs aren't always the easiest to photograph as Tania found out.

8 Oct

Fire Ants Create Raft with Their Bodies

FOX Carolina 21

That's not mud, that's a floating island of ants! This phenomenon was recorded during last weekend's heavy rains in Greensville, South Carolina. These are specifically fire ants and are actually known for this kind of behavior. 

According to Georgia Tech, ants "weave" together to form a bottom raft layer, while the rest of colony walks around on top. The ants weave together so tightly that no water gets through and keeps the rest of the colony dry. The colony can remain this way for weeks if necessary. 

While their floating ability is amazing, fire ants can be lethal to humans. Find out more here:

8 Oct

Wildlife Reportedly Returning to Chernobyl 30 Years After Disaster

The first long-term study of Chernobyl shows that wildlife is coming back to the site of the worst nuclear power plant accident in history. In the clip above, Professor Jim Smith of the University of Portsmouth says that after studying populations of large mammals, such as wolves and boars, in the area, it seems that their populations are similar numbers to those in nature reserves in other parts of the region!

However, this doesn't mean that irradiation is good for the environment. The research concludes that the lack of human habitation is what is causing the wildlife populations to grow. 

“The everyday things we do, such as occupying an area, forestry, hunting and agriculture, are what damages the environment," Smith says in the video.

There is still research to be done. Mike Wood of the University of Salford told News Scientist that this study only reflects the impact on large mammals.

“There are ongoing studies to further evaluate the extent to which both insects and mammals are impacted by the radiation,” he said.

Jeremy Wade was able to experience the aquatic life of Chernobyl. Watch here:

8 Oct

Dog Serves as Best Man in Veteran's Wedding

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Stephen Messenger from

Gabe the service dog has stood faithfully by his owner's side through some of the toughest times, so there was no question that he'd be right there for best of times, too.

On Saturday, the sweet golden retriever served as "best man" in U.S. Army veteran Justin Lansford's wedding to his bride, Carol. The decision to pick a dog for that honored role, while perhaps a bit unusual, makes all the sense in the world after learning the impact Gabe has had on Justin's life.

While stationed in Afghanistan in 2012, Justin had been injured when the truck he was riding in was struck by an IED, resulting in the amputation of his leg. But shortly after experiencing that indelible loss, the injured veteran gained something perhaps just as irreplaceable — a new friend to help him through it all.

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8 Oct

Baby Possum Clings to Stuffed Animal Because She Misses Mom

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Anna Swartz from

Bettina, a 4-month-old possum joey, was found alone, frightened and dehydrated one September night, with her mom nowhere in sight.

She was taken to the Taronga Zoo Wildlife Hospital in Sydney, Australia, and while it's tough to be a little possum on your own, she has one thing that helps: a cuddly stuffed kangaroo that she clings to when nursing or sleeping.

Paul Fahy/Taronga Zoo

"The soft toy gives her something to snuggle for comfort," staff veterinarian Felicity Evans explained in a press release.


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8 Oct

Farmer Saves Baby Orangutan and His Mother

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Sarah V Schweig from

When a farmer noticed a mother orangutan and her son living on his palm oil plantation just before harvesting season, he knew something had to be done.

So he decided to protect them.

Calling on the experts of Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center, the farmer helped secure transport for the mother, Ah Foo, and her 18-month-old son, Kabaco, to a new and safer place to live.

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8 Oct

Tiny Puppy is Scared of Stairs So He Comes Up With a Better Plan

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Anna Swartz from

This tiny puppy is absolutely terrified of stairs (wouldn't you be scared too if you were that small?), so when confronted with the three steps outside his front door, he has to come up with another plan!

The best part is the way he has his dad cracking up. Don't worry, little guy. Soon you'll be big enough to take the stairs like a normal doggie.

These kittens don't have a problem with the stairs! Watch them make leaps and bounds here!

8 Oct

Photogenic Rescue Squirrel is a Huge Fan of Her New Life

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Caitlin Jill Anders from

This is Jill, a squirrel who was rescued during Hurricane Isaac. She now lives with her unlikely human best friend who gave her a home, and she could not be happier about it. 

Jill is a happy, playful 2-year-old squirrel whose only fears in life are vacuums,according to her Instagram profile. When Jill was first rescued, she probably had no idea that her life would become so fabulous.

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7 Oct

16 Animals Who Lost A Mom But Gained a Teddy Bear

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Ameena Schelling from

There are few things sadder than baby animals without their mothers. Rescue groups can provide them with food, shelter and care — but baby animals need constant love and attention as well.

Fortunately, they've found a pretty good alternative: stuffed animals. Here are 16 orphaned animals who might not have their mothers, but still get plenty of cuddles.

This orphaned orangutan who can't sleep without someone to snuggle up against.

Screen Shot 2015-10-06 at 10.11.11 PM

This tiny lamb who was found motherless and freezing at just a few hours old.

Screen Shot 2015-10-06 at 10.16.58 PM

This little calf who was rescued from a dairy farm.

Screen Shot 2015-10-06 at 10.18.06 PM


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7 Oct

Cheetah Cub and Puppy Form Amazing Friendship

When Kumbali the cheetah cub was born at the Metro Richmond Zoo, he wasn't gaining any weight and quickly became the runt of his litter. The zoo's animal caretakers took him from his mother and litter mates to bottle feed him and ensure his survival. However, once he was readt to return back to his family, they discovered his mother, Khari, could only nurse two cubs instead of three. So, the decision was made to hand raise Kumbali!

So where does Kago the puppy come in? Well, without litter mates and a mother to teach him how to be a cheetah, Kumbali needed someone to socialize with and learn animal social cues. He couldn't return to his family as he grew older because he would be considered a threat. So, in came Kago!


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