Sorry, Amazon: your robot drone delivery program just got one-upped, in terms of both efficiency and novelty. The future of delivery will not be dependent on technology, but rather winged animals — that is, if one British book retail giant has any say in it. Waterstones has trounced Amazon’s plans (which, really, now seem quaint in comparison) by announcing the introduction of their O.W.L.S., or Ornithological Waterstones Landing Service. A fleet of specially trained owls will be ordained with the task of delivering your Waterstones package within 30 minutes. Dispiritingly, this is only proposed as a future plan: as the bookseller’s appropriately named press manager, Jon Owls, reasons, “It takes ages to train owls to do anything, and we only just thought of it this morning.” [Refinery29]
Bears always have been and always will be totally awesome, and we have the pictures to prove it. Click to see more awesome photos on Huffington Post…
Consi Taylor was half done eating the banana when she noticed white spots on the peel. Upon closer inspection, she realized those spots were moving, and when dozens of the spots jumped off the banana and began quickly scattering around her family’s home, she realized they were SPIDERS. As if this fruit horror story wasn’t horrible enough, they weren’t just any spiders, either — they were Brazilian wandering spiders, AKA the deadliest spider in the world, with venom powerful enough to kill a grown man in about an hour. Keep reading »
This baby goat has decided that his days in the pen are over. They say you have to step on others to get to the top, but this escape artist took it literally. I wonder if he planned his way out for a while with his donkey friend before taking his leap to freedom or just seized an opportunity when it presented itself. Either way, I admire him for being so brave! He could have ended up impaled on the side of a fence, but instead he’s runnin’ free around the barnyard. [Huffington Post]
Kerri Wolter, otherwise known as the woman who flies with vultures, has been paragliding with the carcass-eating birds for the last 11 years. (Yes, that’s a real job — flying with vultures in the African wilderness and caring for them at a vulture conservation center. You can add that to the long list of things you didn’t know people could make money doing.) The 36-year-old has learned a lot from these endangered creatures (which terrify most of us) and would like to spread their winged wisdom:
“When you’re up close and personal with them, you learn things other people don’t understand. They are as individual as humans with personalities and moods. They might look mean but they are gentle and intelligent. They fly right alongside and are very curious – they just want to play with you. To see them wild and free like that was almost spiritual.”
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Just when you thought the streets of Brooklyn were safe again, cat people had to go do something ridiculous: on November 24th, there will be a Brooklyn Cat Painting Takedown held in a gallery space. What happens at a Cat Painting Takedown? Unlike past Takedowns where competitors try to make the best soup or bacon, artistes use their allotted time to paint the best cat picture possible. If this sounds too much like an elementary school class, guests can enjoy some (no doubt craft-brewed) beer and (vegan soy free range) chili while watching the Picassos do their art. Paintings will be auctioned off at the end of the event, with proceeds going to animal shelters. Awww! I renounce my snark, I like this cat painting thing after all. [Brokelyn]
[The above feline beast is my favorite Internet cat, Pudge, who I would paint if I participated in the Takedown.]
I don’t suppose we have many Frisky readers in the Himalayas, but if we do, WATCH OUT. The abominable snowman exists and he is half-polar bear. Science says so! Keep reading »
Ever wondered how your cat sees the world? Artist Nickolay Lamm wondered too, so he consulted with ophthalmologists and veterinarians to put together images of different scenes as they would appear from the viewpoint of a kitty. Thanks to his nifty photo series, we can take a look at the likes of Times Square or a country meadow through the eyes of a kitty.
According to Lamm’s findings, cats’ vision is a lot fuzzier and less colorful than ours, and they can only see things clearly at distances of up to 20 feet. That sounds like a bummer, but they do have broader visual fields than we humans that span about 200 degrees instead of our 180 degrees. Where they really have people beat is night vision – cats have much better perception in low lighting than we do. Their eyes are also better at picking up on fast-moving images or objects, which might explain their paws darting at everything from floating dust particles to dangling yarn. What I really want to know is whether my cat can see what’s happening on the TV when he watches with me. [Wired]
If you are a human being with a heart and a soul and the ability to emote and feel, you will most certainly enjoy clicking on the video above and watching the mesmerizing live feed of these baby fainting goats from the Barnyard Buddies farm in Colorado. For the uninitiated, fainting goats are goats that have a inherited and harmless genetic condition that causes their muscles to freeze when they’re startled or excited. They don’t actually faint — just collapse to the ground, completely aware of their surroundings, and are not harmed! This is truly the most adorable affliction I’ve ever heard of. This live cam is highly recommended, but if goats aren’t your thing, check out some other animal cams after the jump!
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Ready to feel like the worst cat mom ever? A new study shows that stroking your cats could be making them more stressed out. When researchers at the University of Lincoln set out to study the way cats handle living alongside humans in the same home, they tested stress hormone levels in cats before stroking them at various levels. When they measured those stress hormones again after petting them, they found that none of the cats liked being constantly touched, though the study noted that some were “prepared to tolerate it.”
I am now guiltily picturing my cat tensing up and steeling himself whenever he sees my hand heading toward his furry head. Keep reading »