March 2012

Homemade Mineral Feeders

We have goats, and goats need loose minerals as well as baking soda.  The trouble is, goats also like to make a mess of things, and need to have special feeders that keep the dirty stuff out while still allowing easy, free choice access to the necessary minerals.  Rather than spending a lot of money to make something for them, we tried out these homemade mineral feeders out of old peanut butter tubs, and they were a hit!

Bees Found to Have Individual Personalities

Risk-taking activity varies in honeybee communities

We usually think of bees in terms of the hive mind, as little buzzing drones who spend their whole lives working for their queen. We don't consider bees, ants, or wasps to have anything like individual agency. And we certainly don't consider them to have personalities. But a new study from the University of Illinois suggests that we may be far off in our conception of how a bee's brain works. They're not just pheremone-fueled workaholics; they actually have individual personalities of their own.

Open a Petting Zoo for Extra Income

Everyone loves seeing animals they don’t get access to in their daily lives.  For people who live in the city, this can be sheep, goats, cows, horses and any other animal you don’t typically see in city limits.  If you have the time and the space, a petting zoo can be a great side income, or even full time income, providing hands on experience for kids and families who wouldn’t otherwise ever get to meet a real farm animal.

Robot Fish Controls School Behavior

Scientists use biomimetics to steer groups of fish

It takes a lot to become a successful leader of people. To convince a large group to place their confidence in what you say, you're going to need charisma, flair, intelligence, and probably one hell of a speechwriter. Fish, though, seem to be a lot more easily swayed. They're so impressionable, in fact, that they'll gladly accept a fake robot fish as the leader of their school.