The internet is a double-edged sword. Although it has tons of advantages, it has its fair share of disadvantages too. However, the good thing is, it’s totally up to you to make the most of your time spent surfing the net. So, if animal photos and videos are your type of content, why not couple them with some interesting animal facts? Luckily, you can find them all in the Reddit community “Awwducational.”
Created in November 2012, the community features random and wholesome trivia about all sorts of furry creatures. From giraffes‘ unique sleeping position to pigs’ episodic memory, you’ll find some of the most mind-blowing information here that you probably didn’t even learn in school. So, that’s why this page is easily many animal lovers’ favorite online hangout.
Are you an animal lover? If so, the Reddit community “Awwducational” just might be your new favorite online hangout!
“Flamingo’s pink coloring comes from the shrimp they eat, and in 1992 in the Miami Zoo, they had to stick the flamingos in the bathroom to ride out Hurricane Andrew.”
“Despite their appearance, elephant shrews are in fact more closely related to elephants than shrews.”
“This is the raccoon dog, the only extant species in the genus Nyctereutes. It’s a close relative of true foxes and the only canid known to hibernate during the winter.”
“The Okapi’s closest relative is the giraffe. Okapis were discovered in 1901. Unfortunately, they are now endangered.”
“Rats giggle when you tickle them. Their voices are so high-pitched you need special equipment to hear them, but when you do, their laughs are immediately evident.”
“The Asiatic Black Bear has the largest ears of any bear species.”
“Tigers are carnivores, but will eat fruit in order to ease digestion”
“Adult giraffes only sleep for a couple of minutes at a time. Baby giraffes will sleep for much longer periods of time with their head resting on their rump.”
This subreddit features aww-worthy photos of animals and plants, coupled with educational facts shared by its members
According to one of the senior moderators, IchTanze, the subreddit’s title refers to people’s typical “aww” reaction to living creatures. These include animals, insects, endangered species and even plants. Meanwhile, members contribute to the community’s “educational component” by sharing relevant insights and engaging in meaningful discussions with one another.
“Done brushing your dog? Birds love using the hair to build nests. Set aside one birdfeeder to fill with hair.”
“The eyes of the blunthead tree snake make up approximately 26% of its head.”
“Seagulls stomping on grass is called the rain dance. This mimics rain by vibration and brings earthworms and other bugs to surface.”
“Lynx have evolved enormous paws to distribute weight better in snow, acting like natural snowshoes.”
“The aardvark, alphabetically the first animal, plays an important role in preventing wildlife deaths from fire. They dig large underground burrows that wildlife can hide in during fires.”
“Blue Penguins are the smallest type of penguin. Adults reach only 12-13in tall. Owing to their small size and bright color they are often called Fairy Penguins.”
“The Burmese star tortoise is one of the few animals that have come back from being called functionally extinct.”
“A University of Chicago study found that rats are just as capable of empathy as humans.”
All submissions are backed by credible sources and reviewed by the moderators
And the best part? The community’s moderators are actually pretty hands-on too, so they verify all member submissions. Plus, all information must come from a highly reputable source or from one that, at least, has been peer-reviewed. So, it’s generally a credible page where you can find adorable animal photos and interesting facts about them.
“Our mod team is a diverse group of animal lovers, enthusiasts, and scientists from a range of backgrounds spanning ecology, biophysics, and infectious disease.”
“150 kakariki karaka chicks have hatched this season, potentially doubling this rare birds population.”
“The northern cardinal is probably the most ‘romantic’ bird species: they mate for life, travel together, sing before nesting, and during courtship, feed seed beak-to-beak.”
“When in danger, the Malabar giant squirrel often freezes or flattens itself against the tree trunk, instead of fleeing.”
“The Mangalica is the only pig species covered in a long wool coat, similar to a sheep’s.”
“Trained African Giant Pouched Rats have found thousands of unexploded landmines and bombs. Researchers have also trained these rats to detect tuberculosis. And most recently they are training them to sniff out poached wildlife trophies being exported out of African ports.”
“In most western cultures, black cats are considered a bad omen. But in Scottish lore, the arrival of a strange black cat signifies prosperity.”
“Cheetahs are so shy that zoos give them their own emotional ‘support dogs.'”
“Opossums get a lot of hate, but they clear many unwanted bugs and parasites from the ecosystem and are generally helpful friends. please appreciate them, especially this good boy.”
So, it’s essentially a credible page where you can get your daily dose of adorable animal photos and facts
Meanwhile, according to AGreatWind, another senior moderator, content about natural history is welcome too. So, basically, they allow facts about all kinds of animals and plants, “even if their cuteness may be… subjective.” After all, “Aww is in the eye of the beholder,” according to IchTanze.
“Capybaras are social animals, who get along with a large variety of other animals, including chickens, ducks, dogs, cats, llamas, rabbits and turtles.”
“Alex, the African Grey parrot, is the only animal to ever ask an existential question. He asked ‘what color’ he was.”
“A sloth’s claws work the opposite way that human hand does. The default position is a tight strong grip, and sloths must exert effort to open them up. This is why sloths don’t fall out of trees when they’re asleep.”
“Cows have ‘eureka’ moments and take pleasure in their own learning achievements.”
“Scientists know that rats like to have their bellies tickled, so they used that as basis for testing happiness in rats. They found out that the ears of rats undergoing tickling became droopier and pinker – subtle signs of being relaxed and happy.”
“The Opossum is North America’s only marsupial, they can eat 5000 ticks a year and are almost immune to rabies! Their body temperature is too low for the virus to survive!”
“The Pudú deer is the smallest species of deer standing at 15 inches tall on average.”
“The milk of pinnipeds consists of up to 60% fat, allowing the young to grow fairly quickly. Pups can gain over 2.2 kg (4.9 lb) per day while nursing.”
Created in November 2012, the subreddit now boasts over two million members
So, feel free to join them for your daily dose of educational animal-related content. In the meantime, keep scrolling down for a sneak peek of what you can expect from the community.
“A newborn Chinese Water Deer is so small it can almost be held in the palm of the hand. When it matures, instead of growing antlers, they grow long upper canine teeth gaining them the name ‘Vampire Deer.'”
“Cows have similar emotional range as dogs. They display boldness, shyness, fearfulness and even playfulness.”
“Aardwolves are shy and nocturnal, sleeping in underground burrows by day. They have often been mistaken for solitary animals. In fact, they live as monogamous pairs with their young.”
“Sand Cats specialize in surviving in the desert. They are not good climbers or jumpers, but they are excellent diggers. They use their digging ability to dig shallow burrows to escape the heat of the desert during the day.”
“Gibbons are one of the only non-human primates which practice monogamy. Both parents play a vital role in raising of their young.”
“Secretary birds are famous for its snake-stomping legs; a single kick delivered some 195 Newtons of force. They are also famous for their long eyelashes.”
“Van kittens are initially born with pale blue eyes, which change to a deeper blue or amber as they grow older. Occasionally, you’ll also see a Van with one amber eye and one blue eye, or two blue eyes of different hues.”
“Pigs have episodic memory. It is likely that they can replay and feel past experiences in their heads.”
So, which of these animal facts has blown your mind? Let us know in the comments section!