We’re having a movement!

Join us over at The Proceedings of the Ever so Strange! We’re finally settling down on to a proper grown up website, to show our new found maturity there is a serious piece on The Toilet Plant!

... that's better!

Published in: on January 12, 2011 at 8:34 pm  Leave a Comment  

Fennec Fox

Meet the littlest dog with the biggest ears… delightful isn’t he! What’s more he’s probably the only dog that is a regular supper for cats… probably best not to mention his feline foes… Gah! Don’t whisper about it either… as if that was going to help!

'I'm all ears!'

The Fennec Fox, Vulpes zerda, is found scampering about the Saharan desert getting eaten by things. Being the littlest of the dogs it’s supper for pretty much anything bigger than it’s good self, which of course is pretty much anything… other dogs, owls, budgerigars and what not… Aaah yes good point there is of course his feline mortal enemy the caracal; the biggest of the small cats… a small cat that delights in chomping on very small dogs.

... pardon?

Naturally the fennec fox had a good old think about this invitation to lunch and has come up with a cunning plan to politely decline this RSVP; run like the bejesus. It works too… it’s said to be very hard to get a table for a fennec fox and a caracal, even in the most indifferent of bistros.

... blasted German naturalists! Keep the etching noises down old boy, wouldn't want to come over there, not after last time...

You won’t be surprised to hear that he has remarkable hearing either, he certainly isn’t. Though it’s not the reason he has those remarkable ears. He uses those honking great listeners to cool off with, quite, exactly the same reason that the elephant has massive flappers. Though it has to be said that this chap has a cunning hidden plan for those big ears; to listen with. Remarkable we know but he, along with the other foxes, have incredible hearing. Indeed they can hear tasty things scrobbling around underground. Though if you ever tell him not to go out at night, when the biggest of the small cats are out on the prowl… well he just never bloody listens.

Published in: on December 18, 2010 at 8:16 pm  Leave a Comment  

Silky Anteater

WE’VE MOVED! COME SEE US AT THE NEW SITE!

Wakey wakey little snoozy chops, it’s time to bimble through the trees being as sweet as can be. Meet the silky anteater, though don’t bother him just yet, he’s dreadfully grumpy until he’s had a big bowl of flightless social insects…

z...

As we found out in a previous installation of The Proceedings, anteaters are not all related, they are simply using the same tactic to get at a bit of brunch and so look a bit like each other. The silky anteater hails from South America and is most likely to spend Christmas with the tamandua and the giant anteater, if he isn’t too busy having a nap. His relatives aren’t the only thing he has a passing resemblance to either; the silky bundle of fur that sits in the treetops all day… looks rather like a silky bundle of fur that sits in the treetops all day. Not by accident either, our sleepy little friend looks just like silk cotton tree seed-pods, which is rather handy as harpy eagles and other beaky buggers rarely chomp on seed-pods, they prefer their furry things to be full of meat… allowing our somnolent chum to catch a few more z’s.

z...

He’s not the only one who rather enjoys these little slivers of death either, we at The Proceedings try and do it most nights. Indeed it’s probably safe to say that all higher animals sleep. Of course sleep must be dreadfully important if everything with half a brain does it, but remarkably no one knows why the blazes we need it so. We spend half of our lives comatose, and we haven’t got the foggiest why. It might be an evolutionary mechanism, and like the silky anteater it helped a distant relative of ours avoid predators. Having a nap is often thought of as restorative, but the body repairs cells twenty-four hours a day. It might be that to sleep is simply to dream, though no one knows why we do that. It could be that dreaming is a way of reorganizing the brain, so we can wake up every morning to a fresh noggin. Other thoughts on dreams include that it may be a problem-solving device, a different way of thinking and when we come across the conundrum again we suddenly remember an idea we had, one we dreamt up.

z...

All this doesn’t matter one bit to the silky anteater, he’s just happy snoozing his days away in the treetops… and if you were to ask him what he thought all this bedtime hoopla meant, he’d probably just say he’d have to sleep on it.

Sweet dreams!

Sir P-S x

Published in: on July 1, 2010 at 8:52 am  Comments (2)  

Celebes Crested Macaque

WE’VE MOVED, COME AND JOIN US YOU BIG SMASHER!

The rather delightful Celebes crested macaques can be found bobbing around the forests of Sulawesi, formerly known as Celebes, in Indonesia.

... I say!

There they have come down from the trees to live on the floors. The macaques are a curious bunch who will happily pop down out of the forest looking for tasties. On Sulawesi they are a tad rare, thankfully on a number of islands nearby they are a bit more populous, what with there being less of those big bald apes making a blasted mess of things. The islands with a decent population of the beggars aren’t hindered by the fact that they are a remarkably randy wee bunch.

... a rather unlikely looking island...

You see the ladies are rather promiscuous, God bless ‘em. Actually that’s the last thing He’d do isn’t it? … moving on… The chaps of course are rather promiscuous too, though we’d expect them to be; that’s what we were all taught in biology class. You’ll remember that chaps are bounders and cads and will get as many fillies in the sack as possible. Fillies on the other hand are delightful creatures who will only sleep with their husband and only then with the light off and with none of that funny stuff involved… though it doesn’t take a degree in advanced calculus to work out that 1 + 1 equals fun, so it shouldn’t be a big surprise that ladies are rather partial to putting it about a bit too.

While it’s true that chaps do tend to be promiscuous, and will try the rather rakish ploy of getting as many fillies up the duff as possible. Nuptials and reproduction are also rather important for the fairer sex too. Indeed it can be beneficial for her to pick out a couple of chaps… or more. If she has more lovers she is more likely to have a wee one, and if she has a litter they may have a nice spread of genes… and be therefore more likely to survive. The males may offer her food or protection for nuptials, and when she does have kids the male may have his suspicions about them looking a bit like Geoff two doors down… but when it comes down to it he’s a couple of millennia off sussing out that using polymerase chain reaction or restriction fragment length polymorphism is probably the most effective method of paternity testing… and is more likely to find sniffing what he’s just scratched off his buttocks a profound intellectual awakening… and will just go on assuming that Timmy is his child.

That’s why ladies of many species put it about a bit… promiscuity is the norm. Only a few percent of creatures are considered monogamous and then it is very rare that they are found to be not naughty when scrutinized. Animals that are considered faithful such as the swans very rarely are, studies in other ‘monogamous’ birds have shown that if the male partner is sterilized year in and year out the female will have young. While it’s thought that 90% of birds are said to be in a monogamous relationship it’s thought that 90% of that 90% in fact have a little bit extra on the side. The queen honeybee’s maiden flight is anything but virginal… quite the opposite – she’ll mate with about 40 drones on the way. The list could go on and on.

Though we wouldn’t be too judgmental of the Celebes crested macaque if we were you. It wasn’t that long ago that your ancestors were bobbing around along to the forest floor, edging out of the forest looking for tasties… and indeed other funny looking apes to have some fun with… lots of them.

Published in: on April 7, 2010 at 2:35 pm  Comments (2)