Bites at Animal Planet

Animals

11 Sep

Bulldog Puppy, Late to the Party, Takes on #IceBucketChallenge

Bulldog-puppy-ice

Welp ... minus the bucket and water part. But this adorable clip is TOO CUTE to pass up!

Watch this precious little bulldog challenge one frigid adversary — brrrr! We'd much rather watch moments of cuteness like so, than dump a bucket of ice water over our heads.

We can't get enough cute bulldog clips here at Animal Planet HQ — here are a few awww-inspiring videos of the fun, silly and determined breed:

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9 Sep

Copperhead Gives Birth

Crocodiles, lizards, turtles and snakes are reptiles, and generally speaking, most reptiles lay eggs--but not all of them. Some snakes give birth to fully formed live young, just like mammals. Copperheads are one of them, and this time of year is birthing season for these beautifully camouflaged snakes.

At National Wildlife Federation, copperheads are causing quite a buzz. Our headquarters landscape is a Certified Wildlife Habitat, which means it is filled with native plants that provide food, cover and places to raise young for all sorts of wildlife. Several ponds offer a water source. The landscape is filled with songbirds, butterflies, frogs--and yes, snakes.

A few of my colleagues spotted a copperhead on their walk into the office earlier this week and sent an email out alerting others to the presence of the snake so folks could avoid the area. It was a great wildlife sighting and they snapped this picture of the gorgeous animal:

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Photo by Greg Hudson.

But that's not all that was going on. The snake was a female and she was there giving birth! The next day, several small snake skins were found in the exact location. Shortly after coming into the world, the tiny newborn snakes shed their skin and let us know that mom had given birth to her babies.

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6 Sep

Dog Books it for Ocean for One Last Summer Splash

If you've ever had a Labrador in your life, you're probably pretty aware of the fact that they LOVE the water.

Case in point, watch one Italiano pup named Walter make a run for it, straight for the sea - he knows the way! Summer may be over, but there's still time for one last dip in the ocean:

*SIGH* ... We know exactly how you feel, Walter!

Dog-loves-ocean
Photo: YouTube image

 

Visit our DOG BREED SELECTOR to learn more about the wonderful Labrador >>

 

6 Sep

Poop-Eating Pika Makes History

My friend and National Wildlife Federation colleague Beth Pratt-Bergstrom is a self-avowed pika lover. Pikas are small mammals that live in high-elevation cool mountains west of the Rocky Mountains in Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Utah and New Mexico. They are very, very cute.

Even though they look like it, pikas are not rodents. They belong to the taxonomic order called Lagomorpha and are closely related to rabbits and hares. They feed on on grasses and other vegetation, and spend much of their time gathering and hoarding plants in their rocky burrows, which they feed on during the long winter. You can often see them with their furry little faces stuffed with a huge amont of vegetation, scurrying through the rocks.

Apparently, that's not all they collect. Beth snapped this picture of a pika with what looks like a poop pellet in its mouth. She thought it was a funny and odd photo (right on both counts) but there's more the story than that. 

  

Pika Poop
Photo by Beth Pratt-Bergstrom.

 

From Beth:

Wow! Just heard from top pika researcher and my hero Eric Beever and he said I made a pika discovery! "I think this photo is the first photographic evidence of pikas moving / consuming fecal pellets of marmots." My contribution to science involves poop! How fitting.

Marmots are large members of the squirrel family that share the pika's habitat. Perhaps there's still available nutrients in the marmot droppings, and in nature such resources rarely go to waste. Lagomorphs are known for their coprophagia (poop-eating), and pikas are no exception, but usually it's their own droppings that they feed upon. More study is required to figure out what's going on with pikas in this regard. Science is cool!

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5 Sep

Missing Cobra Found In California Neighborhood

Cobra
The missing albino monocled cobra (Photo Credit: The County of Los Angeles Department of Animal Care and Control)

Families and their pets are safe to go outside after a missing cobra was found in the Los Angeles area.

Yesterday, the County of Los Angeles Department of Animal Care and Control announced it found a loose albino monocle cobra days after it disappeared in Thousand Oaks, CA. Before the cobra disappeared, it reportedly attacked a dog, according to the Associated Press.

California prohibits private ownership of cobras, except for educational and scientific purposes, which then would require a permit. Authorities believe the cobra was kept as someone's pet. 

While the species isn’t known to be aggressive, it is venomous and will defend itself if cornered. Fortunately, the dog the cobra attacked suffered minor injuries.  

The monocle cobra can grow up to 4 feet long and is more active in the morning and evening when the temperature is cooler, according to authorities. The cobra was found just after 3pm, according to the AP.  

Want to learn more about cobras? Take a look at some videos online, and learn about the life or death situation one man faced with his:

3 Sep

R.O.A.R. To Their Rescue - Calling All Pet Pics! Send Us Your Adoption Stories

Sept. 1 marked the launch of the R.O.A.R. To Their Rescue program where Animal Planet is teaming up with the ASPCA® to cover adoption fees in Austin, Texas; Miami, Fla.; and Cleveland, Ohio. You can get the details all about the initiative and partner organizations here! >>

To celebrate the launch, we want to hear from Animal Planet fans, far and wide — and we want to know all about your beautiful adoption stories!

Send us your adoption stories and photos and we'll feature our favorites right here on AnimalPlanet.com at the R.O.A.R. website and share them with the hashtag #ROARToTheirRescue.  To submit, email us at animalplanetdotcom@gmail.com. Be sure to send us:

  • Your Name
  • Where You Live (City/State)
  • Your Pet's Name
  • At Least 1 Photo of Your Pet (and any other family members)
  • Your Adoption Story — Tell us why you chose to adopt and how you found your pet soulmate! <3

See additional rules about photo submissions below ... And, stay tuned for YOUR stories!

  Roar-to-their-rescue-allreg-500
 

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27 Aug

Hideously Cute Baby Bat Munches on Mealworms

Some animals are just so ugly that they are cute.

Here's a video of a tiny bat named Frank being raised by wildlife rehabilitators in Australia, happily munching on mealworms.

 

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27 Aug

Giant Grouper Takes Down Shark With One Bite

Bhkod

That's one for the grouper!

Friends in Florida were in for a shock while fishing off the coast of Bonita Spring, FL this month. While reeling in a black tip shark, a goliath grouper jumped out of nowhere and took the predator in its mouth.

Don’t believe us? Take a look at the video posted to YouTube by user Gimbb14:

Some may find it surprising that a fish could attack a shark, but as we’ve seen on River Monsters, groupers aren’t ones to be messed with. According to the Florida Museum of Natural History, goliath grouper (like the one in the video) can grow beyond eight feet and weigh as much as 800 pounds. And while shark isn’t on its usual menu, crustaceans, stingrays, octopus and young sea turtles are, making the fish a revered predator in the water.

Interested in learning more about groupers? Take a look at some video from River Monsters

25 Aug

Moray Eel Eats Lionfish

It's an eel-eat-fish world out there!  Check out this video below of a spotted moray eel attacking and eating a lionfish.  

Pay special attention to the eel's hunting technique. It bites the lionfish in the middle of its body and uses its double set of jaws to both hold and cut the lionfish in half. Then it pulls the lionfish through its coils and tears it in two. It's pretty amazing to watch!

 

Eel:1, Lionfish: 0!

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23 Aug

Plant Milkweed for Monarchs!

Monarch butterflies are in serious trouble. Their populations have crashed and are at an all time low, and experts fear that this iconic black and orange butterfly species could disappear altogether if action isn't taken. 

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Monarch butterfly on milkweed. Photo by Rick&Brenda Beerhoorst via Flickr Creative Commons.

Monarchs, like all butterfly species, require host plants where they lay their eggs and where their caterpillars feed. Through the process of co-evolution, over hundreds of thousands of years each butterfly species has evolved immunity to the chemical defenses of just a limited number of plants. These are that species' host plants.

In the case of monarchs, milkweed (Asclepias spp.) is their only host plant, and unfortunately, we have done a bang-up job at a massive elimination of milkweed from coast to coast. Like many native plants that support wildlife, milkweed has gotten a bad reputation as a "weed." The default position of both conventional commercial agriculture as well as conventional home gardening is to eliminate it.

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Welcome to the Bites @ Animal Planet, where you can connect with the people who bring Animal Planet to life. Find out what's in the works here at Animal Planet, share your feedback with the team and see what's getting our attention online and in the news.

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