Animal Facts

This desert spider spins its web in sand and catches its prey by cooking them alive!

It’s incredible how clever some animals are.

When most people think of spiders, they picture a few distinct characteristics: big eyes, eight legs and, above all else, the ability to spin webs.

Often seen strung across windows, doorways, tree branches, and ceiling corners, these webs allow spiders to capture and contain their prey. For most arachnids, slinging webs to capture insects like flies is an essential part of surviving.

But what about spiders found in less hospitable environments?

The spoor spider lives in the arid deserts of Africa. Due to the location’s blazing heat and lack of foliage, spoor spiders can’t string a traditional web and wait for flies to pass by.

In order to eat, they have to get more creative.

The spoor spider uses a clever system of camouflage to capture ants that are twice its size. To do this, they use the desert to their advantage.

In less than 30 seconds, spoor spiders attach their web to sand crystals and string them together to make a net. After doing so, they burrow underground and hide inside the cool Earth, leaving one strand of web at the surface to notify them when an ant passes.

Once the strand vibrates, the spoor spider rockets back to the surface, grabbing the unsuspecting ant with its leg and pressing it down into the hot sand. Unable to withstand the heat, the ant is cooked alive.


Octopuses decorate their yards!

Octopuses, the 8-legged and surprisingly intelligent sea creatures have a penchant for interior design. Both captive and wild octopuses actually decorate their front yards. They will often live in rocky dens and leave to hunt their prey. They eat mollusks, crabs, scallops, shrimp and other shellfish.

Once they are done eating these animals, they will take the remnants, such as mollusk shells and crab skeletons, and artfully strew them around their den. Octopus are excellent at camouflage so divers will look for their den decorations in order to track them down.


Twenty-four rabbits set lose in Australia grew to a population of 10 billion in about 67 years.

In 1859, a man named Thomas Austin in Barwon Park, Australia released 24 rabbits. These European wild rabbits spread rapidly, about 130 km per year. By 1926, there were over 10 billion rabbits in the island. 

Since the peak in population, disease has reduced the rabbit population down from billions to hundreds of millions. Rabbits reproduce at a ridiculously fast rate. Rabbits are mature enough to reproduce after only three or four months of life. 

After that, they have a very short gestation period of only 28-30 days. A female rabbit creates a burrow to breed in. A female rabbit can birth 5-6 litters a year, with about 5 baby rabbits in each litter. That means a single female rabbit could give birth to as many as 30 new rabbits in a year. 

These rabbits are very hazardous to the ecosystem of Australia. Rabbits feed on certain plants in particular, so those plants got eaten up by the high population of non-native rabbits. 

The absence of those plants affected other native animals in the area. This changed the ecological landscape of Australia. Rabbits also hurt the economy by overgrazing in farm areas. 


Some awesome lists!

When four men killed his dog, this Navy SEAL chased them through four counties!

In case you needed more reasons not to mess with Navy SEALs.

Marcus Luttrell, known to his fellow soldiers as Southern Boy, always wanted to be a SEAL. As a child, he trained to be a SEAL with Army veteran Billy Shelton, and eventually enlisted in the Navy.

During his service, Luttrell was stationed in Afghanistan and participated in Operation Red Wings, a military strike designed to disrupt a local militia.

However, things didn’t go exactly as planned. During the operation, Luttrell and his squad were spotted. His team members - Danny Dietz, Matthew “Axe” Axelson, and Michael “Yankee” Murphy - were all killed in action.

Though Luttrell escaped, he was certainly shaken. As part of his recovery, he was given a small Labrador puppy. He named the dog DASY, an acronym created by combining the first letter of each of his squadmates’ names, along with his own.

Trouble arose when, in April 2009, four men snuck onto Luttrell’s property and shot DASY. Enraged, Luttrell grabbed two 9 mm Berettas and chased the men across four counties. Eventually, local police apprehended the shooters.

After three years of proceedings, the men were found guilty.

Luttrell’s story was recently adapted into the feature film ‘Lone Survivor’.


Russian stray dogs have found new ways to survive--they take the subway!

Making the daily trip to and from work is one of the most despised tasks of the day.

Nobody looks forward to those crowded freeways, trains and buses, just fighting to get to the daily grind.

Well, now we aren't the only species to understand that pain—stray dogs are making the trip too in Russia.

Commuters sometimes noticed that stray dogs were amongst the other travelers on Russia's subway system. Dogs have figured out how to use the Moscow's immense subway to get around various stops to gather and hunt for food in different areas and then return home once the day is over.

Man, we all know that feeling!

The dogs go largely unnoticed since there as many as 35,000 stray dogs in Russia's capital and are found everywhere. Even if they are relatively homeless, the dogs are far from stupid and have adapted to the man-made jungle to survive and even thrive.

Maybe it's time the subway cracks down on these stray mutts and start charging them for a fare!



users online