Bats Make Scary Faces to “See” Better

A lot of people find bats creepy. There are a lot of reasons for this, such as their mythical association with vampires and ghouls. One thing that makes people nervous about bats is that their faces often look menacing and aggressive, like they’re threatening to bite. But this weird grimace isn’t what you think. WhenContinue reading “Bats Make Scary Faces to “See” Better”

Most American Squirrels Used to be Black

Black squirrels aren’t common anymore in the U.S., but you may still see them if you’re lucky! Believe it or not, there was a time that most squirrels in the U.S. had this interesting (and beautiful!) trait. Black coloration, or melanism, can occur in both fox squirrels and Eastern grey squirrels. Prior to European invasionContinue reading “Most American Squirrels Used to be Black”

Woodchucks Don’t Chuck, Chew, or Eat Wood

Centuries before any English speakers ever laid eyes on this animal, the Narragansett people of Rhode Island— an Algonquian tribe— called it a “wuchak.” This indigenous name likely shared roots with a similar Cree word meaning weasel or fisher. English speakers turned “wuchak” into “woodchuck,” leading not just to a popular tongue-twister, but a lotContinue reading “Woodchucks Don’t Chuck, Chew, or Eat Wood”