Hey, Kitty! Yes, you. A new study suggests household cats can respond to the sound of their own names. Japanese scientists said they’ve provided the first experimental evidence that cats can distinguish between words that people say. Atsuko Saito of Sophia University in Tokyo said there’s no evidence that cats actually attach meaning to our words. Instead, they’ve learned that when they hear their names they often get rewards like food or play, or something bad like a trip to the vet. And they hear their names a lot. So the sound of it becomes special, even if they don’t really understand it refers to their identity. The research was described in the journal Scientific Reports. Monique Udell, who also studies animal behavior at Oregon State, said the study shows “cats are paying attention to you, what you say and what you do, and they’re learning from it.”
How squid are able to shapeshift so quickly
Squid are chameleons of the ocean, shifting effortlessly from hue to hue as they cross sand, coral and grass. Scientists have long studied the peculiar structures in their skin that interact with light, trying to understand how the animals change color so swiftly and with such precision. Now, a paper published in Nature Communications suggests that their chromatophores, previously thought to be mainly pockets of pigment embedded in their skin, are also equipped with tiny reflectors made of proteins. These reflectors aid the squid to produce such a wide array of colors, including iridescent greens and blues, within a second of passing in front of a new background. The research reveals that by using tricks found in other parts of the animal kingdom — like shimmering butterflies and peacocks — squid are able to combine multiple approaches to produce their vivid camouflage. The researchers studied Doryteuthis pealeii, or the longfin squid, which is found in the North Atlantic Ocean.