According to a study published in the journal "BMC Evolutionary Biology", some spiders cooperate more with relatives. German researchers divided Stegodyphus tentoriicola spiders into 2 groups - siblings and non-siblings - while studying their food collecting behavior. Siblings worked better together when looking for food and were more likely to share digestive enzymes for quicker eating of prey. Even in large groups, where fracturing interferes with productivity, sibling spiders avoided destructive patterns and were more productive. It seems cooperation among relatives is common in the animal kingdom. For humans with the ability to reason, this should be reasonable.
Fiddler Crabs and Invaders
According to researchers at The Australian National University, male fiddler crabs defend neighboring females from invaders in return for sex. Both males and females are territorial and live in burrows; but males have a large, defensive claw and females have 2 small, feeding claws. When out-of-the-area fiddler crabs were brought in, males fought off male invaders on neighboring females' territory 95% of the time. However, when the invaders were female, the males fought them off only 15% of the time. Sex for protection is a "defense coalition" - something wives should remember when invaded by things like leaking faucets and peeling paint.
Brown Pelicans Coming Back
According to the U.S. Department of the Interior, the brown pelican was off the endangered list as of November 11, 2009. The brown pelican was declared an endangered species in 1970. For almost 40 years these birds had to struggle to survive being hunted for their feathers and being exposed to widespread habitat loss. However, the recovery of the species is largely due to the 1972 ban on the pesticide DDT, which devastated their population. Brown pelicans are again prevalent across Florida, the Gulf and Pacific coasts and the Caribbean due to the 1973 Endangered Species Act in action.
Beck's Petrels Not Dead Yet
Animals listed as being critically endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature are presumed to be extinct. Not so, however, with the Beck's petrel. The Beck's petrel is a dark brown seabird with a pale belly and a tube-like nose. Although this species hadn't been seen since the 1920's, an Israeli ornithologist photographed 30 of them in flight over islands northeast of Papua, New Guinea in March 2008. Because the exact location of their breeding grounds isn't known, conservationists plan to search the area. Obviously, they hope the saying "birds of a feather flock together" is scientific fact.
About the Author
Knight Pierce Hirst takes a second look at what makes life interesting and it takes only second at knightwatch.typepad.com