7. Killer whales’ favorite pastime is attacking whales much larger than them in size.
In the wild, animals usually fight with those species that they can win against, but not a group of orcas or killer whales. They are quite playful and social. They love to attack huge mammals like blue whales, sperm whales, or humpback whales just for some adventure and entertainment.
While a healthy killer whale weighs around six tons, a blue whale could weigh up to 200 tons. They are synchronized and quiet. They emerge stealthily from the water at the same moment in a perfectly formed line. (1, 2, 3)
8. Fulmar chicks vomit oil to attack predators.
Fulmar chicks seem to be easy picking for predators as they can’t fly and usually stay in their nests. However, when a predator comes in their close vicinity, they throw up concentrated stomach oil, a waxy residue left after the digestion of the food. They squirt the oil through their mouth and spread it on the predator, making them lose their waterproof coating.
Once the predator enters the water to clean itself, it loses buoyancy and drowns. Owls, gulls, herons, crows, and sea eagles are some of the species which are often attacked by fulmar chicks. On the contrary, the oil does not affect fulmar chicks, and they can clean themselves easily. (source)
9. Male clownfish can change their sex.
Surprisingly, all clownfish are born male, but can all carry both female and male reproductive organs. They can switch their sex but will do so only to become the dominant female of a group. The change is irreversible. A female clownfish is the head of the group. However, when it dies, the male clownfish transforms itself into a female.
In a clownfish school, male fish take care of eggs and fan them, and the females keep an eye out for predators, issues warning calls, and sometimes launch attacks.
10. Horned lizards squirt blood from their eyes.
Horned lizards have multiple defense mechanisms based on the predator. When a predator approaches, they first evaluate the danger and then decide. So, if a cat, dog, or wolf comes near the lizard, it squirts a stream of blood from its eyes. This frightens the prey, and they move away. Horned lizards have a pouch below their eyes called an “ocular sinus.”
This pouch is filled with blood. When extreme pressure is applied, it sprays blood through the eye socket that can travel up to two meters. The lizard also uses this mechanism to remove foreign particles from the surface of its eyes. (1, 2)
11.The male platypus is venomous. The venom causes unbearable pain, lasting for months, and even conventional medicine is ineffective.
Platypus, an egg-laying mammal, have venomous spurs on the heels of their hind feet attached to a venom-secreting gland. Venom is released much more frequently during the mating season. Interestingly, a male platypus injects venom into another male platypus while fighting for the female’s attention.
The venom is made in venom glands that are connected to hollow spurs on their hind legs. However, there are cases when human beings became the victim of platypus venom. It is so poisonous that it can lead to agonizing pain for months.
Up to now, there are no human fatalities, but be aware, the venom has significant side effects like nausea, cold sweats, and muscle injury. Conventional pain medicines, like even morphine, do not soothe the pain. The only option left for doctors is to quickly administer a local anesthesia. (1, 2)
12. Capuchin monkeys wash their hands with the urine to lure females.
Capuchin monkeys wash their hands and feet with their own urine. They usually do it either to attract a female monkey or to comfort themselves. In a study conducted at the National Institutes of Health Animal Center in Maryland, the primatologists found out that the alpha male of the group urine-washed itself much more frequently in the company of a female.