A piebald deer is a deer with a brown and white spotting pattern which is not caused by parasites or diseases. They can appear to be almost entirely white. In addition to the non-standard coloration, other differences have been observed: bowing or Roman nose, overly arched spine (scoliosis), long tails, short legs, and underbites.
“Probably no stars will physically hit each other. There’s just so much space between the stars, but when Andromeda collides with us it’ll have a huge impact on the Milky Way. Some things will get thrown into the black hole in the middle, some stars will get ripped off and thrown away into space, so it’ll be dramatic. And the entire night sky will change.” - The Universe S1E9 Alien Galaxies
Please brace yourself against something or someone sturdy. It’s time for another visit to the Department of Incapacitating Cuteness:
This itty-bitty creature, who looks like he/she just had one too many pancakes for breakfast, is part of a new species of mouse lemur.
Microcebus mittermeieri is one of three newly announced mouse lemur species found on the African island of Madagascar.
Photo by Mark Thiessen
[via National Geographic]
It’s time for another visit to the Department of Awesome Animals We Never Knew Existed where we’ll meet (but not touch!) a creature that looks like it’s either an exceptionally stylish Tribble or Donald Trump’s hair gone astray.
This amazing creature, and yes it really is a living thing and not a walking toupée, is a yellow-coloured caterpillar. Specifically it’s the larvel form of the wonderfully furry Flannel Moth (Megalopyge opercularis). When it grows up it’ll look like this: But you still shouldn’t touch it!
“The caterpillar’s “hair” actually consists of setae, which are long, fine silky appendages that, in this case, can cause serious skin irritations. If an unlucky person tries to grab one, they will get a handful of venom, released when the setae poke into skin. Like a bee sting, the injuries can be painful but, for most, are not life threatening.”
Wildlife photographer Jeff Cremer and conservation biologist Phil Torres spotted the caterpillar during a photography tour in an Amazon rainforest. The two men conduct rainforest expeditions from Posada Amazonas, a 30-bed rainforest lodge located in Peru.
Butterfly of the Sea also known as a Sea Robin or Gurnard.
An odd looking fish, this species is a bottom dweller, they live on the sea floor and can actually “walk” along underwater by alternatively moving its pelvic fins and short pectoral fin rays. It’s not related to flying fish, nor do they glide in air, the large pectoral fins are normally held against the body but are spread out when threatened to put off predators.
Piano playing cats
An Animal Planet segment ponders how and why this cat seems to be playing the piano. Animal behaviorist and UC Davis alumna Dr. Sophia Lin says that cats can hear and understand different tones played on instruments such as the piano. Additionally these animals are born imitators and so this cat could very well be trying to communicate to her piano teacher owner.
Sophia researches animal behavior as a way for humans to better understand their pets:
“Pets don’t understand spoken language, they rely on body language plus desired or undesired consequences in order to learn. This means that humans must be aware of their movement and actions because every move they make while interacting with the pet influences the animal’s behavior and perception of them.”