lone hero cares for abandoned animals of Fukushima The untold human suffering and property damage left in the wake of the Fukushima disaster in Japan has been well-documented, but there’s another population that suffered greatly that few have discussed – the animals left behind in the radioactive exclusion zone. One man, however, hasn’t forgotten – 55-year-old Naoto Matsumura, a former construction worker who lives in the zone to care for its four-legged survivors. He is known as the ‘guardian of Fukushima’s animals’ because of the work he does to feed the animals left behind by people in their rush to evacuate the government’s 12.5-mile exclusion zone. He is aware of the radiation he is subject to on a daily basis, but says that he “refuses to worry about it.” See more about his work and what he has seen in the exclusion zone below! More info: Facebook (h/t: vice, bbc, aplus) Naoto Matsumura is the only human brave enough to live in Fukushima’s 12.5-mile exclusion zone “They also told me that I wouldn’t get sick for 30 or 40 years.
The adorable science behind the “sea bunny” It’s round, and fluffy and has wiggly little ears! Sort of. These little sea creatures, affectionately dubbed “sea bunnies” have recently become social media celebrities. They’re actually sea slugs, and belong to the wild group of mollusks called nudibranchs. The bunny slug species is Jorunna parva, and was first described by the renowned Japanese marine biologist Kikutaro Baba. ダイブストアエグザイル/Video screen capture As for the “ears”—over on Deep Sea News, Dr. Crawl Ray/CC BY 2.0 All nudibranchs are hermaphrodites, which means they produce both sperm and eggs but cannot fertilize themselves. Jorunna parva have a number of different colorings, and are often yellow with black specks and rhinophores. If there wasn’t enough reason to “aawwww” over sea bunnies, the fact that these creatures are incredibly tiny adds extra points to their adorableness score. And in case your day hasn't had enough bunny cuteness from Japan, check out this island full of (land) rabbits.
BBC Nature - Corals inflate to escape being buried alive in sand 8 February 2012Last updated at 03:38 By Victoria Gill Science reporter, BBC Nature Footage captured over 20 hours shows the coral inflating and deflating to throw off sand Coral might appear solid and inanimate, but surprising new footage of a mushroom coral inflating itself to escape a sandy burial has brought the organism to life. A scientist from the University of Queensland used timelapse photography to capture the footage. It was already known that the species could release itself from the sandy seabed, but it was not clear how. Since corals move so slowly, time-lapse imagery was used to find out. Dr Pim Bongaerts captured the footage and published his findings in the journal Coral Reef. As sandy sediments shift on the seabed, corals need to breathe and prevent themselves from being smothered. "Sedimentation presents a major threat for corals, as they can become covered in a layer of sand from which they are unable to escape," explained Dr Bongaerts. Inflate and deflate
Hokkaido Island In Japan Is Home To 7 Unique Animals Hokkaido, the large island at Japan’s northern end, is home to populations of adorable little critters that can’t be found anywhere else in Japan. There are seven cute little critters in particular that you will absolutely fall in love with! Some of these are just subspecies of other more widely-spread critters, while others are unique natives. All of them, however, are cute. Whether it’s for the winter sports, natural sights, unique culture or cute animals, Hokkaido is definitely worth a visit if you’re ever in Japan. More info: Twitter (h/t: rocketnews24) Ezo Momonga The adorable ezo momonga is a type of flying squirrel unique to Hokkaido. Shima-Enaga The Shima-Enaga is a type of long-tailed tit that lives only in Hokkaido. Hokkaido red fox The Hokkaido red fox is simply a sub-species of the common red fox, but we really love foxes, so we won’t miss the opportunity to post a few more. Hokkaido red squirrel Ezo Naki Usagi Iizuna Ezo Fukuro The Ezo Fukuro is a local sub-species of the Ural Owl.
Look Inside One Of Tokyo’s Owl Cafes An owl cafe in Tokyo, Japan, lets its customers spend time with these majestic birds. Visitors to Ikefukurou can pet or take photos with the owls for 1400 yen (11.5 USD) per hour during the week, or 1600 yen (13 USD) on weekends. Owl owners can bring their birds, too, or if you don’t have an owl but want one, you can buy one through the local breeder. “Ikefukurou” combines the name of the town, Ikebukuro, and Fukuro, owl in Japanese. More info: ikefukuroucafe.com | Facebook | (h/t: designtaxi) Penguin Cam, Ustream.TV: Penguin Cam - Topside In honor of Discovery Channel and the BBC's groundbreaking Frozen Planet series, we are proud to bring you We are pleased to announce the Penguin Cam will continue to broadcast LIVE in HD on the SeaWorld website beginning June 1. Join us every day to watch these funny and fascinating creatures swim, slide, eat and waddle around SeaWorld’s state of the art facility. Kept at a brisk 25°F year-round and featuring nearly 300 penguins from five different species, there's only two places in the world you can get this experience – Antarctica and SeaWorld. Tune in for periodic penguin feedings throughout the day. Be sure to check back often for announcements and news about our new penguin chat community coming soon. Frequently Asked Questions Where is this? How many penguins are here and what types are there? Why is the picture blurry?
Chimps, Like Humans, Act Out When They Know They're Right by Monica Joshi Chimpanzees are marvelous creatures. Jane Goodall has spent her whole life trying to understand them. As chimps share over 98 percent of our DNA, they have been known to make and hunt with spears. Researchers at Georgia State University, Agnes Scott College, Wofford College, and the University at Buffalo, The State University of New York have discovered that chimpanzees not only are capable of metacognition, but also can adjust their behaviour based on this metacognition. Published in the journal Cognition, their findings suggest that this reflects a form of cognition control that underlies intelligent decision-making across species. Humans are able to report confidence in a few different ways such as: using an oral reportage of confidence or lack thereof, numerical rating scales, and body language. In the course of the study, three chimps were tested using a series of computerized tests. Audrey Parrish, researcher from Georgia State pointed out that:
Pet Owner Walks His Giant Tortoise Through Streets Of Tokyo Residents in Tokyo have recently reported several sightings of possibly the most patient pet-walker in the world: an elderly man who takes his enormous African spurred tortoise (or sulcata) out for walks around the town. Judging by the tortoise’s size, the mysterious pair has probably been together for a very long time, and the tortoise always plods faithfully by its owner’s side. It even tolerates the occasional silly costume! More info: togech.jp (h/t: rocketnews24)
Earth - Rats will save their friends from drowning Saving another person from a life-or-death situation is something many of us do instinctively. But it's not unique to humans. Many primates will also help each other out. They are our closest relatives, so it's likely that our ape-like ancestors behaved in similar ways. In other words, our willingness to save others is an ancient trait, which modern humans have inherited. This trait may go back a surprisingly long way. When one was soaked in water, another rat quickly learned how to operate a lever that would allow it to escape to a safe and dry area. They did so even in the presence of a tempting chocolate treat, foregoing the lever that would release the food in favour of the one that would save the drowning rat. The rats therefore engage in helpful "prosocial behaviour" even if there was no apparent reward. Past experience played a role too. But when there was nobody to save, or the distressed rat was replaced with an inanimate object, the rats no longer pressed the lever.
Fox Village In Japan Apparently, Japan is covered in magical and irresistibly cute animal sanctuaries. We’ve heard about the bunny island and cat island, but there’s also a fox village, where six different species of fox romp and play together in a battle for your attention (and probably for your food, too). This magical oasis of foxiness is called Zao Fox Village, and it’s located in Japan’s Miyagi prefecture. As is the case in the West, foxes in Japan are considered to be sly tricksters. More info: japantravel.com (h/t: kotaku) Image credits: Souctine Source: fox-info Image credits: Piccolist Image credits: uuaya Image credits: Danny Villeneuve Image credits: Gustav98se Imgae credits: Handai Fox Image credits: ryooo007 Image credits: Momizi Lin (left) | Yik Yuh (right) Image credits: Chi Nao Image credits: Hiroto Ue Image credits: Tatsuro Shimono Image credits: Handai Fox Image credits: secret chaos Image credits: Maguny Annisin Image credits: Cocotte Ms33 Image credits: yukino618 Image credits: Danny Villeneuve