Lizards Mark Territory By Pumping Up

The gym I belong to (notice I didn’t say “work out at”) isn’t the kind of place where beefcake-like men make primal-sounding noises as they hoist barbells above their heads. If it were that kind of place, I wouldn’t even be a member, because grunting guys would be in control. Need a five-pound weight? Too bad, a red-faced guy is standing in the way and might attack. With lizards, it’s the same. According to a new study, some lizards do morning and evening push-up routines as a show of their strength and to mark their territory. “As in humans, if an anole can do many of these push-ups, it shows that he is in prime physical condition,” said researcher Terry J. Ord. “These displays of strength help avert actual physical confrontations between male lizards, which can be very fierce and destructive.” So, by faking toughness, lizards (and guys) get in fewer fights. If you’re a total wimp but don’t want people beating up on you, start grunting at the gym. [LiveScience]

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