Wild Things: Mongooses, Bladderworts and More…

Fairy-wrens, wasps, and a nearly 3,000 year old big toe

Splendid Fairy-wren (Malurus splendens splendens) calling. (Steven David Miller / NaturePL.com)

Shared Birthdays

Juvenile Banded Mongoose
(Mark Macewen / Peter Arnold)
Banded mongooses, small striped carnivores from sub-Saharan Africa, have unusually high "breeding synchrony"—64 percent of females give birth on the very same night. A 12-year study in Uganda reveals the reason for this phenomenon. If a mommy mongoose gives birth too early, other adults in the group may kill the new pup. And if a pup is born too late, it is too small to compete with larger litter mates and is more likely to starve.

Learn more about the banded mongoose at the Encyclopedia of Life.


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