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27 May

Super Cool Bear, Just Hanging Out, Walking Around Like a Human (VIDEO)

Oh hi, bear. What's happenin'? Going for an afternoon stroll, you say? ...

Check out this too cool for you Asiatic black bear who struts his stuff on his two hind legs, like a human:  

Although this video may appear to be too cute, the bear's backstory isn't so adorable -- he was rescued from a bile farm where he was malnourished as a cub. Because he was so underfed, his upper body developed much smaller than your typical Asiatic black bear, allowing him to be able to support himself on his hind legs.  He learned to stand up on his hind legs at his rescue as a means of receiving food from visitors.

Bear-walks
Photo: YouTube image

*HUGS* ... We heart you, Bear. <3

 

Learn more about bears in our video archives: 

Continue reading >

27 May

Super Buff Kangaroo Intimidates with Manly Toned Pecs and Major Guns (VIDEO)

A kangaroo in the suburbs of Brisbane, Australia, is frightening local residents with some MAJOR GUNS -- as in: "Got your tickets to the gun show"?  Check out this marsupial's super buff bod:

Buff-kangaroo

He has been spotted hanging about golf courses in the North Lakes, Queensland, area, according to Seven News

Kangaroos are a rather common sight in this locale -- but not as large as this sweet-faced, buff, bad boy. He is reportedly estimated to be about 210 pounds and 6' 5" tall.  He is quite recognizable with his toned pecs and a droopy, torn ear -- which quite frankly, we here at Animal Planet HQ believe adds to his already charming self:

 

You can learn more about these impressive marsupials from videos in our archives:

Continue reading >

26 May

Sneaky Seal Steps Into Market, Makes Off With Fruit (VIDEO)

In this surveillance footage, you can see a brazen seal hop out of the water, cross a dock and make its way into a market, where it then stole a package of fruit left on the floor, according to Oregon Live.

We appreciate the seal's tenacity, even though it probably would have preferred some fish.

Check out this video of some more playful seals:

22 May

The Helicoprion: 'It Doesn’t Get More Badass Than a Big Buzzsaw for a Lower Jaw'

RIVER MONSTERS PREHISTORIC TERROR: JURASSIC SIZED premieres Monday, May 25, at 8/7c.   Find out more about the BADASS Helicoprion in an exclusive feature with the leading experts on the species, below.

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Illustration Credit: Ray Troll 2013

Five years ago in the invertebrate paleontology collection in the basement of the Idaho Museum of Natural History, a student of Idaho University Professor Leif Tapanila, Jesse Pruitt, was searching for an undergraduate research project when he stumbled upon the Helicoprion fossil. 

The spiral rock had been an anomaly for over a century, with scientists trying to figure out what was buried beneath its surface. Without the technology of today, however, most fell short, only being able to interpret the fossil for face value. 

But with the help of CT scans and a lot of manual labor, Tapanila and Pruitt along with four other scientists and Alaskan artist Ray Troll, who Tapanila calls "the world expert on Helicroprions," uncovered the age-old mystery.

Together they solved how its jaw works, what its function was and where exactly the whorl, spiral of teeth, were placed in the mouths of these 275 million-year-old sharks. 

So ladies and gents, I give you, the Helicoprion.

Helicoprion

The ancient shark lived nearly 275 million years ago, with a body of up to 25 feet long and a jaw stretching two to two and a half feet. And, inside of that jaw, sat a deadly set of teeth.

But its 130 to 150 teeth didn't go from left to right like those of a normal jaw, no, these teeth spiraled outward from the inside.

A human, like many other animals, sheds its teeth, but the Helicoprion keeps every tooth its ever grown. In the center of the diagram are its baby teeth and on the outside are the newer teeth it has created, holding a lifetime of teeth! Tapanila says Helicoprions are "married to these teeth forever." 

Helicoprion jaw

But the shark has a "storage problem," said Leif Tapanila, leader of the Helicoprion research team, because it can't shed its teeth. So instead, it "wraps its bigger newer formed teeth around the smaller teeth," hence the spiral.

Continue reading >

21 May

Paddle Boarder Checked out by Orca (VIDEO)

 

Luke Reilly was paddle boarding just off the beach in New Zealand when he got a surprise visitor: an orca.

Orcas, also known as killer whales, are incredibly powerful predators, preying on everything from stingrays to salmon to seals and even giant baleen whales. While human encounters with apex predators might generally be cause for alarm, in this case, Reilly seemed more an object of curiosity than potential prey. Orcas, though at the very top of the marine food chain, don't consider humans food and wild orcas have never attacked a human. (We, on the other hand, pose a significant threat to orcas in the wild.)

That's reassuring to know, especially when the curious whale swam right up to the paddle board and gave it an investigatory nibble.  

2760406217_c16aa801d3_z
Photo by Kat Kellner via Flickr Creative Commons.

Help the National Wildlife Federation Save the Endangered Orcas of Puget Sound.

H/T to Huffington Post

21 May

Scary, Loud Human Frightens Sweet, Snuggly Bear (VIDEO)

When a Scandinavian brown bear came charging out of the woods toward one Swedish hunter, the man screamed as loud as he could muster in that moment and frightened off the bear.

Swedish-bear
Photo: YouTube image

Ralph Persson, a hunter and outdoorsman, told media outlets that he simply attempted to make himself very big and scream as loud as possible to frighten the animal.  And it worked! AMAZING! Watch the encounter:

Persson did say however that he probably got a little too close to the bear -- and notes that people should be respectful of wildlife and stay a safe distance.

 

It's MONSTER WEEK! Get a few stories of animal attacks that did not end so fortunately.  Watch sneak peeks from the program MAULED, airing tonight at 8/7c, only on Animal Planet. DON'T. WATCH. ALONE.

 

This post is part of our special MONSTER NEWS coverage for MONSTER WEEK! Check out related articles here and watch video highlights -- and tune in all week through May 25 for Monster Week, only on Animal Planet.

20 May

Beautiful Crane Fights Off Hungry Tigers (VIDEO)

When a crane was blown into a tiger enclosure by strong winds at a zoo in China, the crowds yelped in horror as they watched the battle that unfolded.

Crane-tigers-zoo
Photo: The Telegraph CCTV video image

The tigers immediately chased after the crane -- but the bird beauty impressively managed to fend off her attackers with a few graceful wing swoops and looking larger than life! The crowds of zoo visitors cheered and watched the drama at the Fuyang Wildlife Park in Zhejiang Province:

The crane was eventually rescued by zoo staff and removed from the tigers' territory.

 

It's MONSTER WEEK! Watch videos about a killer tiger on the loose in India from our program SERIAL KILLER TIGER AT LARGE:

Continue reading >

20 May

40,000 Bees Found Under Woman's Bedroom in NYC (VIDEO)

When one woman suspected she had a little bee problem happening under her bedroom, she didn't expect that meant a 40,000-bee PROBLEM under her bedroom!

Mary Jean Dyczko contacted NYPD bee detective, Anthony "Tony Bees" Planakis, last summer when she noticed a large volume of bee traffic outside her window, according to the Gothamist.  Planakis did not want to disturb the hive prior to winter, thinking they wouldn't survive any attempt at extraction. The retired detective returned to Dyczko's home this spring for one last job -- and, this one was a MONSTER:

Bees-hive-nyc
Photo: Video image from Lots of bees removed from NYC home (Credit: BMR... by Gothamist

*SHUDDER*


Lots of bees removed from NYC home (Credit: BMR... by Gothamist

More video of the extraction:

Honeycomb from NYC home (Credit: BMR Breaking... by Gothamist

Planakis discovered a massive hive of 40,000 -- he was able to extract the queen safely.  The hive will be relocated to a beekeeper in upstate New York

 

Meanwhile, in Asia ... KILLER HORNETS ARE ON THE RISE! Tune in tonight to KILLER HORNETS FROM HELL to hear about the spread of these monstrous insects. Here's a HORRIFYING highlight from the Monster Week program:

Continue reading >

15 May

A Monster Find: Warm-Blooded Opah Fish Discovered Deep in Pacific Ocean

In what is quite the discovery, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) researchers found the first warm-blooded fish living deep in the Pacific Ocean, according to USA Today.

The Opah, unlike other fish, generate heat when they swim and have special blood vessels that distribute warmth throughout their disc-shaped bodies. Along with this, the Opah (considered deepwater predators) have "counter-current heat exchangers" in their gills that work to lessen heat loss and keep their body temperature above the water temperature as they swim 250 feet undersea, USA Today reported.

The opah isn't the only fish to warm it's body while swimming. Apparently tuna and sharks are known to temporarily warm their swimming muscles. However, the difference is that the opah can warm its entire body, similar to whole-body endothermy, which is how mammals and birds distinguish themselves from fish and reptiles.

Thanks to its warm-blooded talent, the opah is able to swim at faster speeds, something not common of deep, cold-water fish. Because of this, the opah benefits from quicker swimming, better vision and quicker responses - allowing it a better chance at survival.

Read more >>

Check out the latest River Monsters clip:

This post is part of our special MONSTER NEWS coverage for MONSTER WEEK! Check out related articles here and watch video highlights in anticipation of Monster Week, starting May 17, only on Animal Planet.

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14 May

British Cat Sets Guinness World Record for Loudest Purr

British cat Merlin just broke the Guinness World Record for having the loudest purr. According to BuzzFeed, this guy's purr reaches 70 decibels, perhaps the equivalent to having an AC unit or dishwasher running right in your face. For cat owners out there, you know how loud your cat's purr can be - can you even imagine having Merlin around? 

“Occasionally when he’s really loud I have to repeat myself," Merlin's owner, Tracy, said. When you’re watching films you have to turn the telly up or put him out of the room, if he’s eating he’ll purr loudly. I can hear him when I’m drying my hair."

 Merlin lives in Torquay, Devon (UK), is 13 years of age, and was adopted from an animal rescue centre in nearby Kingskerswell by his owner Tracy Westwood and her daughter Alice, according to the Guinness World Record website.

Meet the cat that last held the world record:

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