Eastern bluebirds have such phenomenal eyesight they can spot small insects at least 60 feet away.
We are all aware that bats help control insect populations.
However, it is less widely known that bats pollinate at least 80 species of plants that scientists have used to develop a wide range of medicines.
Captain John Smith, a leader of the Jamestown Colony, is widely credited with naming the opossum.
Supposedly, Captain Smith came across an opossum while in the company of a member of the Algonquin Tribe. When Smith asked the man what this strange looking animal was called, his companion told him it was an “aposum.” The Native American name referred to the long-tailed animal’s white face. However, as luck would have it, as the man uttered the word “aposum” he grunted. This led Captain Smith to believe he said possum. Is this story true? We may never know for sure. What I do know is the opossum is indeed an odd animal.
I am truly amazed at the ruby-throated hummingbird’s memory. For example, studies have revealed rubythroats can remember the locations of every feeder and flower they visit in our yards as well as how long it takes each flower to replenish its supply of nectar. They can even remember the locations of the feeders and flower beds that provided them with food the previous year.
Wow! It must take a truly large brain to accomplish such mental fetes. In truth, the rubythroat’s brain is smaller than a pea. While that is indeed physically very small, comparatively speaking it is larger than our brains or those of any other bird in the entire world. Let me explain.
The hummingbird brain makes up about 4.2 percent of its body weight. This makes its brain is proportionally larger than the brains of all other birds. In comparison, our brains comprise only about 2 percent of our body weight.
For reasons that are not fully understood, some orchard orioles will nest close to the nests of eastern kingbirds. This might come as a surprise since eastern kingbirds have the reputation of aggressively defending their nests. Well, many experts believe that this is the reason why orchard orioles will choose nest sites sometimes within mere yards from the nests of eastern kingbirds.
It seems obvious that kingbirds do not feel threatened by North America’s smallest oriole. However, when kingbirds fly out to confront a crow, common grackle or other potential avian nest predator flying close to their nests, they unwittingly also defend the nearby nests of orchard orioles.
Some studies suggest that this behavior may translate into real benefits for the orchard orioles. Studies have shown that, when the nesting success of orchard orioles that nest close to eastern kingbirds was compared with the success of those that do not, they discovered the nesting success of orioles that nest some distance away from eastern kingbird nests was lower. In fact, there also seems to be a correlation between kingbird populations and orchard oriole populations. When eastern kingbird numbers are high orchard orioles are more abundant too.