Friday Faves August 22, 2014

Do you look like your pet?

For some strange reason, we are really good at matching photos of strangers and their dogs. This finding has been demonstrated in a few studies, and a new study delved deeper - and it turns out that if you can't see the eyes of either the dog or the owner, it is ever so much harder to match the whatever it is that makes people and their dogs seem like they belong together - it's in the eyes!

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The disturbing history of ape language studies

Hey! My friend Jane Hu wrote this amazing expose/history of ape language studies, which as you will see, is a complicated and depression one. My undergrad advisor worked with (and was bitten by) Kanzi, so I've heard many "interesting" stories. A must read for perspective on animal research, ethics and studies of language in other species.

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The fascinating nests of the weaver bird

This very social bird, the weaver, lives in huge colonies in a shared nest...a nest so big that sometimes it causes the tree it is built in to fall down! These birds are an interesting example of both social living, and vertebrates living together in one massive structure (similar to humans and skyscrapers). Super cool, read about it here.

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