Photo via Imgur
Photo via Imgur
Owl Cafe: Because Owls are Flying Cats
Japan is known for it’s crazy, kooky fads. The social trends there cover almost any kind of interest (and any subset of that interest). So it’s no surprise that after making gaming cafes, cat cafes and even bunny cafes, the Japanese thought of a new adorable trend: owl cafes.
Over the past year, owl cafes have been springing up in Tokyo and Osaka… and they’re just as adorable as they sound.
Via Viral Nova
Cats make great sewing assistants.
Photos by ©My Happy Sewing Place
Vets Didn’t Expect THIS To Show Up At The Animal Hospital
At a 24-hour emergency animal hospital, lots of creatures come in needing help, not just dogs and cats. Sometimes people bring in injured wildlife. One night a large bald eagle (which they appropriately named Freedom)… and the vets weren’t expecting just how big this guy would be.
He had a broken wing, they suspect from being hit by a vehicle. Luckily, they were happy to help Freedom out of this tight spot.
The vets at the emergency clinic were able to get the eagle patched up and send him on his way. This was an update posted by one of them at the hospital:
“Once we’ve stabilized an animal/checked them over, we call the wildlife rehab centre in our city and they come p/u the animals. They provide long-term treatments and will attempt to rehab them in the wild again. A bad wing break like this (open fracture) is difficult to repair and can sometimes result in a wing amputation which prevents release. A wild bird does not always do well in captivity so, quite often, humane euthanasia is a common route. For this particular fellow, he went to the centre and I’m personally crossing my fingers that they’ll be able to help him and give him another few years of life. Hopefully he stays away from vehicles in the future…”
Hopefully Freedom is able to heal up at the rehab center and find his way back out into the wild. Talk about an unforgettable night at the clinic!
Via Viral Nova
"I am Daenerys Stormborn, of House Targaryen. Rightful heir to the Iron Throne, Queen of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros, the Rhoynar, and the First Men. I am the Mother of Dragons, the Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, the Unburnt, and Breaker of Chains."
7 Things You Didn’t Know About Red Pandas
Here’s one thing you already knew: red pandas are adorable. While they’re not domesticated and therefore are probably not suitable as pets, some people keep them as pets anyway – especially in Nepal and India – and upload their adorable hijinks to the internet for the world to see. Here are seven other facts about red pandas (Ailurus fulgens) that you might not already know.
1. Red pandas aren’t pandas. Despite their name, red pandas aren’t actually closely related to giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca), but it wasn’t until the last ten or fifteen years that scientists settled upon just where red pandas fit on the evolutionary tree of life. It was clear that red pandas were members of the taxonomic “infraorder” Arctoidea, placing them in a group with bears, pinnipeds (seals, sea lions, and walrus), raccoons, and mustelids (weasels, skunks, otters, and badgers). Research published in 2000 in the journal Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution determined that they were not most closely related to bears or to raccoons as had been previously suggested. Instead, red pandas form their own phylogenetic family, alongside skunks, raccoons, and mustelids. From a genetic perspective, they’re more like the skunks and raccoons you might find in your own backyard than the giant pandas with whom they share habitats.
2. Herbivorous carnivoran. As a member of the Order Carnivora, the red panda is a carnivoran. But unlike most carnivorans, it’s not actually a carnivore. That is, the red panda is a mostly an herbivore. It’s actually one way in which the red panda is more like the giant panda than its genetic relatives: its diet consists almost entirely of bamboo leaves, plus bamboo shoots when in season, and the occasional fruit, flower, and (rarely) an odd egg or bird. The other carnivoran who is also primarily herbivorous? The binturong, the funny-looking bearcat that smells like popcorn.
3. Sweet tooth. Speaking of diet, red pandas like fake sugar. In a 2009 study in The Journal of Heredity, researchers presented a variety of Carnivoran species with bowls of plain water, naturally sweetened water, or artificially sweetened water. They discovered that red pandas preferred three artificial sugars: neotame, sucralose (Splenda), and aspartame (Nutrasweet or Equal). That makes them the only non-primate species known to be able to taste aspartame, an ability previously thought unique to Old World monkeys, apes, and humans.
4. Blending in. Take a look at the reddish-orange tint of the red panda’s coat and you might not immediately think “good for camouflage,” but that’s where you’d be mistaken. It turns out that the red panda is pretty good at hiding from predators by disappearing into the branches of fir trees which are usually covered with reddish-brown moss. Which is pretty handy because death by snow leopard seems like a particularly bad way to go.
5. A Cheesy Problem. Okay, stay with me on this one. Red pandas, classified as “vulnerable” by the IUCN, are threatened by habitat loss and poaching, despite being protected by legislation in the countries where they’re found. Because of that habitat loss, wild populations of red pandas are increasingly fragmented. One fragment that hosts a population of around forty red pandas is Nepal’s Langtang National Park, in the Himalayas. Even within the national park, those forty pandas are fragmented into four groups. In Langtang, the red pandas have another problem, and it’s cheese. You see, the park is also home to two cheese factories that produce a combined 14,000 kilograms of cheese each year to be sold in nearby Kathmandu. To amass the 140,000 liters of milk necessary to make the cheese, farmers keep large herds of chauri, a yak-cow hybrid, and those herds are permitted to graze within the park. The competition over food sources with the chauri combined with other threats to their lives from the herders and from their dogs has led to the death of many, many red pandas. “This problem might be solved,” write a pair of researchers in the journal Conservation Biology, “by reducing cheese production and restricting the number of chauri while commensurately increasing the price of cheese so that farmers’ income from milk could remain the same.”
6. Red pandas tweet. They don’t tweet in 140 characters like you or I do, but they tweet nonetheless. Actually, to be accurate, the sound they make is known as “twittering.” Have a listen. According to researchers at the National Zoo, twittering seems to mainly used to signal reproductive intent. Which, now that I think about it, is not all that different from some twitterers of our own species either.
7. It Could Have Been Called The Wah. Red pandas have different names depending on where you are. In Nepal, they’re called bhalu biralo. Sherpas call the critter ye niglva ponva or wah donka. But the Western world did not always call it a red panda. In 1821, the English naturalist Major General Thomas Hardwicke made a presentation on the creature at the Linnean Society in London. That is typically regarded as the moment the red panda became known in Western science. In his presentation, titled “Description of a new Genus of the Class Mammalia, from the Himalaya Chain of Hills Between Nepaul and the Snowy Mountains,” he argued that the animal be called a “wha,” explaining, “It is frequently discovered by its loud cry or call, resembling the word ‘Wha’, often repeating the same: hence is derived one of the local names by which it is known. It is also called Chitwa.” Unfortunately, Hardwicke’s paper wasn’t published until 1827, by which time the French zoologist Frédéric Cuvier had already published a description of the species along with a drawing. Naming rights, therefore, went to Cuvier.
Text by Scientific American
Photos found on Pinterest
This Owl Forgot How To Owl
Photo via National Geographic Photo of the Day
"Call Rufus. I’m gonna make him an offer he can’t refuse."
Photo via cashcats
Owls are flying cats.
By jennelle-art: “This is what I like to do with my free time.”
"Dammit, Ginger! That’s low blow!"
Photo via Daily Picks and Flicks
This Kitten Thinks She’s A Pit Bull, And It’s Too Cute For Words
From the day she came home, Matilda the foster kitten has been obsessed with Lisa Revella Morabito’s pit bulls. And Morabito has a lot of pit bulls to capture this girl’s not-always-completely-useful attention.
"She tries to nurse off of Spike," says Morabito, "which is funny since he’s our only male dog."
Spike, the boy, is 9 years old, and, no, he is not lactating. Piglet is a deaf 8-year-old pit mix who was rescued from a dog fighting situation about seven years ago, and is now a therapy dog. Betty White, also a pit, is 7 years old and was brought to BARCS — the Baltimore animal shelter where Morabito is director of operations — about a year and a half ago with severe burns, and now visits schools as part of a humane education program.
Matilda turned up at BARCS as a skinny stray and Morabito incorporated the kitten into the household “to get her fattened up and socialize her,” she says.
It’s gone remarkably well. “Her cuddling with all of the animals is adorable” Morabito says. “Once the afternoon hits and the dogs have been fed and walked, they retreat for napping and Matilda joins them then for cuddling.”
Via Huffington Post
"We’ll be together again someday."
Photo/caption via Cheezburger
Nathan let me meet his cats recently. Juno is the sweetest, chubbiest cat I have ever met. She does not get tired of being pet! I… I may have fallen in love.
Comic/caption by ©kagcomix
Cat Fights Off Violent Dog Attacking Little Boy
When YouTube user Roger Triantafilo set up his home security video system, he had no idea he’d capture something like this! Watch as his cat defends his son from a vicious dog attack and chases the dog off before he can do more damage.
Via Viral Forest