Raccoons Could Become Junk Food Addicts | New Jersey Raccoon Control
We all know raccoons love to scavenge for tasty snacks. You may have experienced a group of raccoons going through your trash at night only to leave a mess for you to clean up the next morning. However, you probably don’t often consider the possibility of raccoons becoming addicted to the junk food that they find stuffed in garbage cans and dumpsters. It is not at all inconceivable that raccoons could develop an addiction to the foods that they crave so much, and there are indeed cases of animal control units stumbling upon raccoon shacks full of morbidly obese raccoons that, presumably, had given up on life.
According to an animal control supervisor, Jena Troxler, raccoons will devour anything that is even faintly sweet tasting. Apparently raccoons have a particular taste for marshmallows, cereals, donuts and cookies.
According to many experts, feeding raccoons could lead to dangerous situations. For example, people who continuously leave food out for wild animals, such as raccoons, could be conditioning them to approach all humans with the hopes that they might offer food. For this reason wild animals are better left finding their own sources of sustenance, which would hopefully cause the diabetes level for raccoons to decrease.
Have you ever stumbled upon a raccoon that you thought looked fatter than normal?
Have You Ever Seen A Squirrel Fly?
Sure, you’ve probably seen a squirrel before, but have you ever seen a flying squirrel? These amazing little creatures are quite a sight. So, how does a furry mammal without wings or feathers manage to fly? Flying squirrels have a built in parachute in their bodies, and their flying is more similar to hang gliding than the kind of flying you see birds doing. Linking their arms and legs from their wrists to their ankles is a stretchy, thin membrane. Flying squirrels will leap from one tree top, stretch out their arms and legs to their sides, which opens up their body parachute, and glide through the sky, controlling their direction with their rudder-like tail. While that thin membrane helps them stay aloft, their tale helps them steer and brake. They basically turn into a living paper airplane.
These little critters look pretty amazing when you see them as they take aim from one tree, jump and spread out their arms and legs, and glide smoothly through the air to their next tree top destination. They look like very brave little creatures, leaping off trees with out actually having any wings, but they still have quite a lot they have to fend off out in the wild. While flying through the air helps them escape many land-bound predators, they still have to watch out for snakes, owls, and even wild cats. At least flying squirrels have a better escape plan then most other small mammals. They can always just jump for it.
Have you ever seen a flying squirrel in action? How far do you think they can glide in one shot?
Your perception of ants probably involves notions of cooperation, mutual advantage, incessant work and sacrifice. However, not all ants take their duties seriously. Just like humans, some ants can be total sloths. Maybe every animal species has their slackers, who knows? What I do know is that a majority of the work duties that exist within an ant colony are carried out by a minority of determined and enterprising ants, while lazier ants sit around watching.
Anna Dornhaus, associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Arizona has been an ant expert for most of her life. Dornhaus claims that while a minority of ants work diligently to serve the queen, most ants stand on the sidelines motionless. However, these ants may not be lazy at all, it may just look that way to humans.
Dornhaus believes that it is possible for the motionless ants to serve a purpose to the group solely by successfully staying still. Perhaps some ants would slow down the process of tackling a particular challenge, so they would be better off not participating, but they could participate in other activities where they are not slowing down the process. This way of thinking about the eusocial behavior of ants is certainly new, and there is still much to be explored on the topic.
Have you ever witnessed several motionless ants sitting by while other ants from its colony are actively working together?
Why Do Some Insects Kill Their Mothers? | New Jersey Exterminator
Although there is not much literature on the matricidal behavior of some social insects, the little bit that does exist caught University of California at Riverside Entomologist, Kevin J. Loope by surprise, and he has been researching matricidal behavior in bees, wasps and ants ever since he first learned of this insect behavior.
Most social insects have workers that will dedicate every moment of their short lives to the well being of the queen. The workers are female, and their primary duty is to help the queen bear offspring. However, Loope initially found anecdotal reports telling about workers eating queens, which seemed paradoxical to Loope.
The truth is, social insects like ants and bees, have workers that are far more calculating than you would expect from such a small brained creature. Social insect workers will kill or serve their queen depending on the circumstances.
Have you ever witnessed a swarm of ants working cooperatively on a large scale? Were you able to spot the queen in the plethora of ants?
What Is The Difference Between An Arachnid And A Spider? New Jersey Spider Control
Many people use the term “spider” and “arachnid” interchangeably, but do these words mean the same thing as everyone assumes? I personally have always assumed that an arachnid and a spider were one and the same thing. Actually, arachnids include a variety of different creepy crawlies that you probably had no idea were actually arachnids, but not spiders.
There are, in fact, eleven orders of arachnids. These include such bugs like scorpions, mites, ticks, harvestmen, psuedoscoprions, whipscorpions, solpugids, and last, but not least, spiders. Experts compare people’s confusion between arachnids and spiders in the same way that the relation between beetles and insects is misunderstood. Many people, even some experts, don’t realize that beetles are only one order of insect, the coleoptera. And obviously not all insects are beetles, just as not all arachnids are spiders. And that is the end of that.
Are there any other types of arachnids that were not listed in the article?
Giant Japanese Spider Is Found In A Shipping Container | New Jersey Pest Control
It seems that there has been a lot of stories in the media lately about invasive insects and spiders arriving in America through shipping containers. You would think that since invasive insect pests are so devastating shipping officials would have figured out some way of making all shipments pest-free, but apparently that is easier said than done. Recently a shipping crew found a giant spider in a container from Japan.
Word has it that not a single member of the shipping crew was willing to trap the spider or remove it from the crate where it was found on account of its very large terrifying look. So the workers contacted an expert. Eventually an animal collection officer arrived to take care of the scary spider for the dock workers.
The spider turned out to be a large huntsman spider that is normally found in Australia. This spider can reach lengths of 13 or more centimeters, and their venom is not deadly to humans. Although these creatures are huge and scary looking they are completely harmless.
Which foreign insect or spider pest do you think is most damaging to North America’s ecosystem?
Vampire Bats Discovered Drinking Human Blood
So, unlike actual vampires, vampire bats don’t drink human blood, right? Wrong! For years scientists have believed that vampire bats do not ever consume human blood, but a recent study revealed they do choose to snack on a human every now and again. These blood-sucking bats eat by puncturing the skin of their prey and lapping up the blood that oozes out, which is helped by the bat’s saliva that contains an anticoagulant. Doesn’t that sound pleasant?
While studying the dung of vampire bats in Brazil, scientists discovered evidence of other two legged animal blood in some bat doo doo they found. That blood belonged to – you guessed it – humans! The scientists believe that the bats may have widened their range of food sources because the birds they usually eat dropped in numbers and were harder to find. As the birds in that specific region are very sensitive to human activity, researchers believe that is what led to the bat’s normal food supply growing scarce. Researchers are most concerned about the possibility that with bats feeding on humans there is a higher risk of rabies also being transmitted during their meal.
Have you ever come across a bat in the wild? What do you think of these flying rodent-like creatures?
Could A Spider Be Living In Your Hair? | New Jersey Spider Control
There is an urban legend, though not as common today as it was before the 1980’s, that told about a person with a bushy hairdo having a family of black widows nesting within his or her locks. There are also plenty of stories about spider eggs hatching in some guys Afro. So have spiders been found to dwell within human hair?
There is probably not even a grain of truth to these stories, and as you can guess, spiders do not find the human scalp, with its rows of hair, an ideal place to lay their eggs. Even if the stories about black widow eggs hatching on a person’s scalp were true it would not matter much since black widow spiderlings do not have enough venom to make bite victims notice that they have been bitten. Even bites from adult females rarely result in fatal consequences if proper treatment is found in time.
Have you ever felt paranoid about having spiders in your hair?
Thousands Of Ants Ruin A Family’s Vacation | New Jersey Ant Control
Family vacations can be stressful, especially when you hear creepy sounds coming from behind the walls of your hotel. This scenario turned into a reality for family of five, only they were lodging in a cabin, and not a hotel. After the father of three heard his son’s concerns about ghostly noises coming from within the cabin, the father decided to investigate the matter. Luckily, the noises were not coming from a ghost, but unluckily the noises were coming from thousands of ants that were behind the walls of the cabin.
The family did not become aware of the ant infestation until after five days of staying in the cabin. After the family complained to the staff at the tourist retreat, they were told to sweep up the ants themselves, and that ants just have to be tolerated. Sadly, the family did not receive a refund or an apology.
Have you ever discovered an infestation of insects or spiders at a hotel while vacationing?