Behavioral Self-Defense

Behavioral Self-Defense

Often, animals that are frequently hunted by predators are very effective at defending themselves simply by the way they act. Here are some examples:

On the African savanna, wildebeest group together in vast herds. This behavior makes it harder for a lion or another big cat to visually target one particular animal. The safety-in-numbers policy is especially important when mothers are giving birth to calves and the newborns need protection from the whole wildebeest "village."

When threatened by an approaching predator, African baboons broadcast loud warning calls alerting other baboons to the looming danger. Impalas and other grazing animals may benefit from overhearing the baboons alarms.

Groups of cotton-top tamarin monkeys from tropical America arrange their daily schedule to avoid predators. They move out of their sleeping trees about an hour and a half after sunrise to spend the day on food-foraging expeditions. Then, they find safety back in a sleeping tree by afternoon. By avoiding moving on the ground around dawn and dusk, when predators like to hunt, they simply reduce their exposure to predators.

Fun Facts

The reticulated giraffe has a bluish tongue. This adaptation prevents the tongue from getting sunburned.
Fun Fact - giraffe tounge

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