Category Archives: Animals

Humans and Gorillas:  The Harambe Tragedy. 

  Harambe, a 17-year-old male Western lowland gorilla (an endangered species with only about 175,000 left in the world), was shot to death on May 28 when a 3 year old boy fell 12 feet (seemingly without injury as he was … Continue reading

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Shark as “other.”

Why is the shark, and especially the great white shark, so relentlessly “other,” more other than perhaps any other animal? There is nothing cute and cuddly about sharks, true. On the other hand, most humans throughout history have not been … Continue reading

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Orcas Who Play with Their Food

You probably know the orca by its other name: the killer whale. This name is old. In 1835, R. Hamilton wrote that the killer whale “…has the character of being exceedingly voracious and warlike. It devours an immense number of … Continue reading

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Peaceable Kingdom

Some years ago I conducted a fairly ordinary experiment in group living: I introduced a baby rabbit, two baby rats, a kitten, a puppy, and a rooster and a chick to one another at a very early age, and surprise, … Continue reading

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The Big Cats by Way of the Little Cats at Home

I am trying to come to terms with “violence” in different species, other than humans. The big cats obviously come to mind. Nobody would deny that we kill them in enormous numbers, and they kill us hardly at all. But … Continue reading

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Do Animals Get Depressed?

I re-read William Styron’s 1991 “tale of horror,” Darkness Visible about his deep depression in the 1980s. I could not help thinking, as I was reading, the big cats don’t get depressed… sharks don’t get depressed… elephants don’t get depressed. … Continue reading

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Crocs and Us

Crocs and Us . Recently we were warned that there was a great white shark swimming not far from our house on the beach in Auckland.  Nobody entered the ocean for weeks.  If you told me the chances of being … Continue reading

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