A short summary of the work I did on learning about, and writing about the top ten hated species who really don’t deserve to be.
I reflect on my thoughts and feelings of what I’ve learned about different species, how I felt about it, what it has given me moving forward and give a little personal perspective.
It’s been a genuine project! I can’t even say I put this much effort in when I was an undergrad. And I am changed because of it.
The brown rat (rattus norvegicus) is a beautiful, cute and highly successful creature that has not only become a companion of humans across the world but helps us dispose of our rubbish by eating it, helps maintain our sewers by keeping them clean and clear for their own purposes and has sacrificed uncountable members of its species to further our scientific curiosity.
Yet they are universally hated as a disease-spreading pest, a destroyer of crops, a horrid and beastly home invader and – it’s bollocks. It’s mostly lies, unfounded myth.
This is my rat redemption. It’s time we change the way we think about rats and learn to live alongside them. If for nothing else than the noble sacrifices they have become in our medical services industry.
Or your native ‘nuisance’ gull species. Where I come from it is mostly the herring gull (Larus argentatus), possibly also the yellow-legged gull (Larus michahellis). In the US they have the American herring gull (Larus smithsonianus). In Australia, the silver gull (Chroicocephalus novaehollandiae). There are lots of gull species and almost every inhabited area hasContinue reading “Top Ten Hated (But Misunderstood) Animals – 3 – The European Herring Gull (Larus argentatus)”
A lengthy article talking about the similarities in treatment between the European mole (Tapa europaea) and the Plateau Pika (Ochotona curzoniae). They are both a species vital to earth and soil health that benefit and enrich their environments that are considered a pest and a nuisance and are often killed for little or no reason. We explore the animals themselves, their lives and habitats, how our opinions of them were formed and similarities to our behaviours with other species too, like prairie dogs and badgers. We also focus on the ability of humans to form opinions, ideas or myths about animals and also how they can change over time. In the case of these species, changing for the negative, but it also means the reverse is true.
Nearly half-way through this list and I want to come clean. This started as a conversation about my love for certain ‘undesirables’ – They’re coming up later, but if I asked you to guess the top few hated but misunderstood animals they’d be on your mind. What I didn’t expect was for my research toContinue reading “Top Ten Hated (But Misunderstood) Animals – 6- The Aye-Aye (Daubentonia madagascarensis)”
It started out as a rehabilitation piece on wolves and ended up with me being a full blown wolf fantatic and begging for their reintroduction to the UK. Wolves are a fascinating species with an undeserved reputation for cruelty and violence. A smart, shy and social group of species, with a remarkable story written in their genome of migrations, troubles, bottlenecks and redistributions. I have developed a new-found love and respect for them in writing this article and, if you are wolf sceptic, I hope it will give you some new perspective, too.
A short introduction to our Most Hated (But Misunderstood) Animals Top Ten! Why are some animals hated? What lingering cultural superstitions cause us to wrongfully malign certain species? We intend to explore that in this list. This article mainly deals with what won’t be on the list! Including snakes, spiders, jellyfish and, specifically, the spotted hyena.
Exploring the similarities and differences between the members of the family of hammerhead sharks, the Sphyrnidae, with focus on the scalloped hammerhead and its overfishing, and the bonnethead shark which it turns out is omnivorous.
CONTENT WARNING: Contains images of animal cruelty “Tiger, tiger burning bright…” etc. I’ve got tiger stories up the wazoo, man. I did a pub quiz once where I argued for an extra half point because the question was ‘what is the largest cat in the world?’ and everyone said tiger, but I said, quite rightfully,Continue reading “Top Ten Cats #3 – Tiger, Panthera tigris”