The 17 Strangest Animal Facts Ever Published

Posted Jun 27, by Val Liarikos [+]

A species of octopus loses its penis during sex.

The Argonaut octopus has a lot of sex, but it never directly experience sex.

This is because it reproduces via tele-sex. The male octopus produces sperm in its penis.

The penis is then detached (yes, detached) from the body and swims (yes, swims) by itself to a suitable female.

The female is automatically impregnated by this detached, swimming penis.

The most the male can do is sit back and watch as his disembodied junk carries out the sex out for him.

After all of this, the male begins to regrow his penis, which is often a very slow, tedious process.

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People get thrown for long distances when they're electrocuted due to strong muscle contractions!

There's growing scientific evidence that our muscles possess an incredible strength that we can't tap to in normal circumstances.

You've probably heard a dramatic example of someone being able to lift a car in a moment of great peril, or achieving some other physical feat while in danger.

The reason for these is adrenaline. It acts on muscles and allows them to contract more than when the boy is in a calm or neutral state.

The theory goes that we only use a small percentage of our muscles' capabilities. This extreme stress causes us to involuntarily use our muscles beyond the limitations of normal voluntary use.

This theory is supported by what happens when someone gets electrocuted. Sometimes this person can be thrown a notable distance away from the shock.

The real cause for this is not the shock itself, but the sudden, violent contraction of their muscles as electricity runs through their body.

While adrenaline and electric shock aren't 100% related, they do support the idea that our muscles can achieve far greater things than we are able to ask of them normally.

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The female anglerfish absorbs her male mate into her body

During each mating season, the relatively puny male anglerfish feverishly scurry to find a mate.

They appeal to the relatively large female anglerfish with a fair degree of passion. If the female approves of the male's advances, then he's going to get lucky.

However, the anglerfish's definition of lucky differs from ours.

You see, during sex, the female anglerfish absorbs the male anglerfish into her body.

Essentially, the male anglerfish becomes a sperm-providing extension of the female. When the female is ready to spawn, she has a mate immediately available.

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Every night, Disneyland releases over 200 feral cats into the park to keep its rodent population under control.

Disneyland owns 200 or so feral cats. By day, they reside in five permanent feeding stations hidden within the park's 85 public acres.

But by night, they are released into the empty park.

Park officials first employed these animals in 1955. During the renovation of the Sleeping Beauty castle two years later, more than 100 cats were found living in the unused portions, covered with fleas.

Nowadays, these cats are much better controlled. They are sprayed, neutered, and given regular shots.

Additionally, they are well fed (during the day, and obviously at night) and kept in open spaces that cannot be reached by the public.

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Centipedes are the best insect to have in your home!

Most people shriek and run when the multiple legs of a centipede are discovered, yet they are actually one of the more beneficial insects that can infest a home. The reason for this is because the diet of a common house centipede usually consists of a rather large assortment of other insects including roaches, houseflies, moths, silverfish, termites, and nearly ever other bug that infects a home.

In addition, they do not harm humans, eat plants, carry diseases, or damage homes, which means their entire life purpose is to pretty much rid your house of every other insect! So next time you see a centipede lurking around, give him thanks rather than the bottom of your shoe and your house just might end up a little less infested.

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A boy fell unconscious into a gorilla enclosure. One of the gorillas protected him from the rest!

Jambo was a gorilla housed at the Jersey Zoo between 1972 and 1992. While gorillas can often be unpredictable and sometimes violent, Jambo became famous for an act of protection. On August 31, 1986, five-year-old Levan Merritt fell into the gorilla enclosure at the Jersey Zoo. The fall caused him to lose consciousness amongst the giant gorillas. Jambo stood guard over the boy, placing himself between Merritt and other gorillas in the enclosure. Ethologists analyzed the gesture as a protective one.

Jambo proceeded to stroke the back of the unconscious boy. When Merritt regained consciousness, he began to cry. The gorillas, including Jambo retreated in panic. Jambo lead them into their house. However, when the gate was closing, a young gorilla named Hobbit got out. Thankfully, an ambulanceman and two zookeepers were able to rescue Merritt in time. The action was caught on videotape and camera by zoo visitors and received a lot of attention on local news. Another similar incident happened at the Brookfield Zoo in Brookfield, Illinois.

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The oldest cat lived 38 years and 3 days and had an unusual diet!

Creme Puff was born in 1967 and lived a ludicrously long life. Her owner, Jake Perry, has now owned the two cats with the first and second Guinness World Record for the longest life. So how does he do it? Books have been written on the cats and how they live so long, and when interviewed Perry cites their diet as the potential key. Among other things, bacon, eggs, asparagus, and broccoli compose their diet.

While pet food companies work tirelessly to create the best formula, it seems as though eating some of the foods we eat could contribute to the longevity of their lives. Creme Puff lived until 2005, making her life span of 38 years over three times longer than the average cat!

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A beaver’s lips are located behind its teeth!

The beaver is the largest North American rodent. It spends a whole lot of its time acquiring and cutting wood. Some would say that it has been perfectly adapted to its function and aquatic environment. For one thing, its nose and ear valves shut as the animal submerges and nictitating membranes serve as goggles to protect the eyes from irritation.

Additionally, its lips are located behind its teeth so that it can carry branches around without drowning. With their strong jaws and teeth, beavers can chew through a six-inch tree in 15 minutes. A single beaver can chew down hundreds of trees each year.

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Male puppies purposely let female puppies win while playing.

If you’ve survived that cute nuke, let’s get on with the story. A new study has found that when young male dogs play with young female dogs, they will often let the females win even if the males have the physical advantage. They sometimes place themselves in potentially disadvantageous positions that would make them more vulnerable to attack.

Such “self-handicapping” has been documented in red-necked wallabies, squirrel monkeys, hamadryas baboons, and of course, human beings. The study has found that this act of puppy chivalry tends to occur in conjunction with play bows. A play bow is when a puppy playfully bows to signal to its companion that it doesn’t have any serious intentions; that it just wants to have a little fun.

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How can a toad tell you if you're pregnant?

Listen up, ladies! Read this before you head out to the pharmacy to buy that pregnancy test. Apparently, male toads are an extremely reliable way to test for pregnancy when injected with a woman’s urine. (Important disclaimer: please spare the toads in your backyard and do not try this at home!) As far back as 1947, during scientific studies in a laboratory setting, male toads were injected with a woman’s urine, and the toad would always produce eggs within one to three hours if the woman was pregnant. If she weren’t pregnant, nothing would happen.

The eggs would disappear within 72 hours, and the toad would revert back to normal. They were given a rest period of 7 days after a positive test, then were injected again. The same thing would happen! Different species of frogs and toads were also experimented on, and the studies gained similar findings. No doubt interesting, but we still think it might be easier just to pee on a stick.

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Where did the only Albino Gorilla ever live?

There has only ever been one documented albino gorilla in the world, and his name was Snowflake. He was born in 1964 and passed away in 2003 while living in a zoo in Barcelona, Spain. He was their most popular attraction and became the “poster child” of the endangered animal conservation movement during his long life in captivity. Sadly, Snowflake was captured in Equatorial Guinea in 1966 by a farmer who massacred the rest of his group, including his mother.

Only two at the time, Snowflake was found clinging to his mother’s neck after she was shot. Spared for his unique color, he was sold to the zoo in Barcelona where he spent the majority of his life. During his life at the zoo, Snowflake fathered 22 offspring, but none were albino. It was discovered that he had a rare form of skin cancer, which undoubtedly was related to his unique condition. Though no longer alive, Snowflake’s legacy lives on. A scholarship for primate research was founded in his name, and his image lives on in books, a PBS special, and even on the cover of a music album.

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The Assassin bug wears its victim's bodies as armor!

This is a really incredible bug. After killing its pray and liquefying and consuming their innards, the Assassin Bug will wear the bodies of its victims like trophy armor. The Malaysian bug injects them with an enzyme that dissolves the innards of their pray. Once they're just an empty shell, the bug attaches the exoskeleton with a sticky secretion and creates an armor that protects it and confuses its enemies.

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Elephants have been trained to use film equipment!

Of course not all elephants have been trained, but a few of them have. The reason for this is that BBC was looking to film a documentary on tigers, and get a better understanding of how they live and hunt. The only problem was that tigers are very secretive animals that live in such dense jungles that it’s hard for a human film crew to get close. The reason that elephants were chosen to be the new film crew is because tigers were familiar with the elephants being around, thus they were able to get closer to the tigers than humans ever could!

The elephants were trained to use three different types of cameras! The first camera was picked up by an elephant and put its trunk when they were moving around. The second was a camera that was placed in the elephants tusks, and was easier to carry. The third and final cameras disguised as scenery that were put in place by the elephants, and were turned on by motion sensors. The elephants were so good at operating cameras that they were able to gather enough footage that researchers were able to see baby tigers’ progress into adulthood!

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Black Death still exists.

Just because the massive Black Plague disappeared because it had no living human hosts in which to survive. However, the infection managed to stay in rodents, fleas, or warm places that act as reservoirs. The plague repeatedly bounced back up in Europe and the Mediterranean throughout the 14th to 17th century, but in smaller degrees. The Third plague pandemic lasted from 1855-1959, and started in China.

The first North American plague epidemic was the San Francisco plague of 1900-1904, following 1907-1908. The plague was confirmed in the US from 9 western states during 1995. Currently, 5 to 15 people in the United States are estimated to catch the disease each year, typically in western states.

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