Strange but True

By MDC | May 1, 2022
From Xplor: May/June 2022

Impressive pollywog: Most American bullfrog tadpoles are 2 to 6 inches long, but some grow much larger. A bullfrog tadpole discovered in an Arizona lake measured 10 inches long and was as big around as a soda can!

Any white-marked tussock moth fluttering around your porch light is definitely a male. Females can’t fly. To attract mates, girl moths yell with smell. They release “perfumes” called pheromones, that lead boy moths right to them.

Not only can a yellow jacket sting over and over again, it can also spray venom. The venom burns an attacker’s eyes and contains “alarm pheromones,” which are special odors that rally other members of the hive to attack.

The amount of food gobbled up by Carolina chickadee chicks may seem hard to, well, swallow. Hardworking parent birds must gather 6,000 to 9,000 insects over the course of 14 to 19 days to raise a brood of five baby chickadees.

Dung beetles may have nature’s yuckiest job — they collect animal droppings for a living. But these six-legged poop-pushers are among the strongest animals alive. Some dung beetle species can push more than 1,000 times their body weight!

It’s not just mama mammals that make milk. Mourning doves (and a few other birds) make it too. Adults use their beaks to feed the milk to their babies. And unlike mammals, both male and female doves produce milk.

There’s a reason to keep your ducklings in a row. Baby ducks often swim in an orderly line behind mom. This lets them ride waves in her wake like fluffy surfers, which requires less energy than if they were swimming alone.


This Issue's Staff

Artist - Alexis (AJ) Joyce
Photographer – Noppadol Paothong
Photographer – David Stonner
Designer – Marci Porter
Designer – Les Fortenberry
Art Director – Cliff White
Editor – Matt Seek
Subscriptions – Laura Scheuler
Magazine Manager – Stephanie Thurber