Specifically the natural world around me. I recently moved back to California (southern, but interested in all) and have a growing desire to know and understand the 'natural' world around me. The flora and fauna (ID & cultural/commercial/ethnobotanical qualities), weather, and the changes to this aspect of the world, all interest me, especially in an environment so dynamic and exceptional, yet heavily culled and altered by human hand. Books, articles, websites, film, writers; any and all resources are welcome. Thank you. [more inside]
We've noticed a few areas of torn-up grass in our backyard recently. Pic. Some googling suggests it might be raccoons or skunks tearing it up to look for grubs. Has anyone else experienced this? What's the best course of action?
I would like to get a dog sometime in the next few years. My cat does not like dogs. I don’t want to adopt a dog and realize later that she’ll never come around. Is there a way I can acclimate her to dogs now, before I own one? [more inside]
I'm looking for regular web-based sources of amazing animal photos, stories, and videos. I'm interested in content that shows silly animals, incredibly athletic animals, or (particularly) extraordinary animal intelligence. I'd also like to find material that shows cool interspecies relationships, whether that's cats who love dogs, rhinos who live with turkeys, or people who have unusual pets. I'm even interested in things like dog-training videos! Can you point me to forums, subreddits, YouTube channels, or other corners of the web that regularly publish stuff about amazing animals?
Can anyone suggest a great thing to do on your birthday in Prague in the middle of next week? My girlfriend and I are about to go to Prague for 4 days, staying near the Old Town (Prague 1). We have the same birthday so I'm trying to find something special for us to do on Wednesday. [more inside]
Please help me reduce the stress/separation anxiety and improve the behavior of my 3 year old dog. More inside. [more inside]
Are there downsides to not eating organ meats? How has the transition to eating only flesh impacted our bodies? [more inside]
I'd love to follow more Snapchat accounts that feature cute animals! Extra bonus points for: [more inside]
I recently enjoyed The Builders by Daniel Polansky immensely. I also enjoy other books about anthropomorphised or semi-anthropomorphised animals in a medieval, heroic or fantasy setting like the Duncton Wood books and (to a lesser extent) Redwall. It's so much fun! Any recommendations for similar books in this genre? [more inside]
another installment of the name-that-children's-book-with-no-details-about-title-or-author:it was a picture book; it came out or was out around 1993-1998; I have almost no memory of the plot...I read it as a child and it reappeared to me in my mind's eye suddenly and is driving me crazy; it involved fantastical themes of animals with complex societies, at least one of which were cats (but maybe woodland creatures?) [more inside]
My kids and I were watching Evan Almighty and when the animals started following him, they all burst out, Mom, that's you! It's weird. Dogs that never jump on people jump on me. I've had horses and elephants (at the zoo) start rushing towards me to try and get closer. Children will follow me. I've never been to a small venue concert where the musician didn't make eye contact and try and talk to me after. [more inside]
Can anyone help figure out what happened to my cat? [more inside]
My town's no-kill animal shelter is inaccessible and has a low adoption rate. I would like to have a "display" of the real-life dogs and cats in the library I manage to improve adoption rates, bring awareness to low-cost neutering/spaying programmes, vaccinations, and annual registration as well. I was also hoping the animals could be used in a "puppy room" that provides stress relief while helping socialise the animals prior to adoption. Besides allergies, what other liabilities or challenges should be on my radar?
Some family members and I have money that we would like to pool together to support a shared, lifelong value: the promotion of animal welfare. At least for the near-future, we have ruled out starting our own charity and are, thus, more interested in giving sizeable financial support to existing charities. But what is the best means of doing this that would also achieve some of our other aims? [more inside]
Another geeky field recording question! I live in L.A. and would like to spend Memorial Day weekend in a "primitive camping" situation, surrounded by noisy nocturnal wildlife, to make long-form field recordings (6-10 hours). Birds and beasts are a particular interest. I'd like as little human company and contact as possible. Where would you go within, say, a six-hour drive?
I am interested in animal costumes, but searches either come up with mascots and fursuits (which are far too literal) or things like The Lion King (which foreground the human too much). Can you point to anything less conventional? [more inside]
Please tell me about bands (or one-off projects) who have one or more animal members, or composers who use animals in their compositions. Especially interested in animals performing/touring live, but purely recorded animals are okay too. [more inside]
I've had several careers (or jobs) that seem very different from each other, and I have an educational background which is equally varied. I'm looking to possibly embark on a new path, but need help figuring out where I'm going exactly. [more inside]
Any examples of animal species that are vastly different or behave differently, eat differently than the rest of their species. [more inside]
For a project I'm doing, I'd like an illustrated book with lots of information on the physical world of the Bible - particularly animals, plants, and insects. I can look up what's mentioned in the Bible on Wikipedia, but I want more than that. I want to be able to page through an illustrated work (color) - bonus points if there are commentaries from scholars - and to learn a lot about all of the creatures mentioned without having to turn to my computer for complete information. More below. [more inside]
Possums are living in my attic, in California. I've found their entry, about 12x6 inches, and want to block it, but really don't want to trap any possums inside. [more inside]
I was wondering if any Metafilter crafters could help my wife out with a sewing problem she's having? Here's her question: "I make felt animals, usually of the jointed variety. I draw my own patterns and sew by hand, and it's been going fine up till now, but the last two creatures I made have both had a weird bunching at the neck. I've tried altering the width of the necks, the gussets, basting in advance, what-all, but I can't figure out what the problem is... [more inside]
I'm looking for a giant book of life on earth for a kid. A book with real pictures (not drawings) that highlights the biodiversity of the earth. A book with 400+ pages that would have pictures of things like the dragon blood tree, the jewel caterpillar, the banyan tree, the cashew tree, the iridescent sky blue Hoplia coerulea. Not just pigs, zebras, and lions. And not anything framed as "weird!" If there was an updated version of the Illustrated Wildlife Treasury Cards, that would be fantastic and ideal. But I don't see such a thing, so a book will have to do. Any suggestions?
I has new kitteh! Yay! She's a rescue, about 2 years old, a small spayed female tuxedo beauty in good health, with a shy temperament. I have not had a cat in years. I am sure I am asking a question to which there are many answers and about which MeFites have strong opinions, but here goes: What is the current "state of the art" answer on the best quality and healthiest commercially prepared food for an adult, indoor, younger cat? [more inside]
I moved into a great new place yesterday, with a garden. I have hit the Holy Grail of Paris-area apartments. However. Garden has plants from previous tenant. I have cats. Cats will nom the plants. I'm unfamiliar with a few of the plants, and am particularly worried about curious noms of this one. MeFi, can my cats eat these? Or should I remove them? [more inside]
After your pursuing a lot of your recommendations from last time, I am looking for animals that are not specific to any kind of "business", rather those that exude luxury and elegance. Also, different cultures (countries, areas, societies) view animals differently, so what kind of animals does your culture associate with these qualities? [more inside]
I am trying to find an animal that fits the whole medicinal/body care/spa kind of vibe because I want to create a logo. I thought of swans, but I am looking for animals that could appeal to a broader demographic (if that makes any sense).
My dog races to this plant and eats it every chance she gets. She acts like it's pepperoni! What is it and will it kill her?
I woke up this morning, smiled with the rising sun, and then heard (approximately) three little birds singing in my bathroom ceiling. Upon further investigation, it turns out that they are nesting in our bathroom venting, in the ductwork between the the ventilation fan and the exterior wall. We have seen the adults fly into the vent opening on the side of our house carrying food to their babies, and we hear the babies chirruping throughout the day. [more inside]
Going to Australia for its animals. Seeking advice re making conversation: [more inside]
Let's say I want to hang out with baby lions and tigers. Is there a place I can do this? [more inside]
I'm looking for a particular comic strip--a web-only comic, I'm pretty sure. The plot, more or less, opens with a small child tormenting an animal (cat? dog? mouse? can't recall). The child grows up, becomes an upstanding member of society, a model citizen, an all-around gem of a human being. He eventually dies of natural causes, and--hello, plot twist!--goes to hell, which consists of a cat/dog/mouse torturing him for eternity. I'm googling my damned fingers off here, and can't track this comic down. Any help?
I saw a dog get hit and injured on the highway. What should/could I have done? Unpleasantness inside (no gore or death). [more inside]
Something about the lion's roar at the beginning of the Pet Shop Boys' cover of Always on my Mind really gets me. What other songs use animal sounds to great effect? [more inside]
Would a human brain be able to make sense of the information? Would the person see anything at all. Or would the person see exactly like the donor animal (very unlikely I'm guessing).
Can any animal understand a rhyme? Different animals can process different things that we consider part of normal cognition. What about rhymes? Have there been studies done to see which species agree with humans that certain human words rhyme? Can my cats appreciate that I rap for them
A long-held dream of mine has been to start an animal sanctuary. Of course, I know that doing such a thing would take a lot of time, effort and money. Setting those issues aside for the moment, I am looking for people to point me to existing sanctuaries that are on the cutting edge in terms of how they house their animals, how the animals' lives are enriched (I.e., do the animals get to do something other than sit in their pen or paddock every day?), how they operate (e.g., is it a standard "take in, adopt out" scheme, or do they do something else), and maybe even how they fundraise. [more inside]
I'd like to put together a playlist of songs sung by non-humans. [more inside]
What are some animals that have the same name plural as singular? Examples I can think of: Elk, Deer, Caribou. Are there any others? What is this called? Why does this phenomenon exist? Is it just for North American species?
What cat breed is this?
Please recommend some live-action wild animal programming on Netflix! [more inside]
My dream for some time now has been to get a dog. I have a full time job. I'm scared the dog would hate his/her life. [more inside]
Several times over the last 10 years a columnist for the Salt Lake Tribune has claimed that a representative in the Utah House voted down a bill outlawing bestiality, saying "Rep. Pignanelli just doesn't understand the pressures on the farm in rural Utah." Is there any truth to this claim? [more inside]
Several of our dog's incisors were starting to come loose, so our vet recommended pulling between 3-5 of them. Today was surgery day, and they ended up pulling 8 teeth! I'm not so much concerned about the aesthetics, but should we be worried about anything in particular with him having lost almost all of his front teeth? [more inside]
Bunny is a generally healthy, happy 1 year old with smelly poo the consistency of frosting. I'm thinking of switching her food out. What's the skinny on grain free/raw kitty food diets these days? [more inside]
Dear Mefi, I need some animal vengeance reading to soothe me. [more inside]
The person who was supposed to watch our pets while we were away on a short trip didn’t follow through. Our animals are fine but this situation has set off a complicated chain of events and now I’m not sure what to do. Well, frankly, I am sure but I’d like to sort it through here because you all can be objective in ways I can’t right now. [more inside]
Looking for prints of animals clearly in love or displaying "love" that I can buy, frame, and hang on my wall [more inside]
We just moved into a new rental - it's early 1900s with polished hardwood floors. When we moved in there was a bit of a musty odor, but we assumed that this was just "empty house smell". The odor has largely dissipated, except for the bedroom and the adjacent hallway where the smell is getting stronger and now smells a little bit like animal pee (though it could be just general mustiness too). But we cannot locate the exact source of the smell. How do we find the location of the smell and eradicate it!? More details after the fold... [more inside]
Is opening a dog daycare/boarding open 6 days a week weird? [more inside]