Sunday Sketch: A little eye roll

The Chambered Nautilus (Nautilus pompilius) is one of 6 extant species of nautilus, the closest living relative of coleoid cephalopods (octopuses, squid, and cuttlefish). Considered by many to be living fossils, nautiluses have experienced little morphological change over millions of years and are more similar to ancient cephalopods than modern coleoid cephalopods. Nautiluses have numerous…

Sunday Sketch: Color me intrigued

Stump-tailed macaques (Macaca arctoides) are a vulnerable species of macaques found in South and Southeast Asia. These monkeys are known for their interesting color patterns. The infants of this species are born with white fur which gradually darkens with age. Older individuals are identified by their dark-colored faces with black or brown patches. Fact and…

Sunday Sketch: Are You a Squitter?

Spotted hyenas are no quitters, but they are squitters! A squitter is the annoying, grating sound a spotted hyena cub makes when it wants its mother to let it nurse. This sound is just one of about a dozen distinct vocalizations in the spotted hyena repertoire. Other calls in include “whooping”, “giggling”, “lowing”, and “alarm…

Sunday Sketch: Interrupt Much?

Meerkats use a variety of vocalizations to communicate in their tightly knit social groups, but all that talking takes coordination. And that coordination takes skill. Meerkats are particularly fond of communicating when they are “sunning”, which is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Meerkats’ “sunning calls” are a special vocalization that only occurs during…

Sunday Sketch: A whole snake? Piece of cake!

Snakes can eat a wide variety of animals due to their many feeding adaptations that allow them to consume animals that are bulkier and larger than what would seem possible at first glance. Snakes often eat other animals with elongated body plans such as other snakes, eels, and lizards. Still, they certainly can’t eat anything…

Sunday Sketch: Gentle Giants

Whale sharks (Rhincodon typus) are the largest fish on the planet and can grow up to 18 meters in length! Now if you’ve seen Jaws, you must be wondering: Can it eat me? If so, why haven’t I heard of these sharks before? Well, whale sharks are filter-feeders and feed on plankton (very small crustaceans and fish) so they hardly make the news. More…