Why everything you know about wolf packs is wrong
By Lauren Davis
The alpha wolf is a figure that looms large in our imagination. The notion of a supreme pack leader who fought his way to dominance and reigns superior to the other wolves in his pack informs both our fiction and is how many people understand wolf behavior. But the alpha wolf doesn’t exist—at least not in the wild…
Although the notions of “alpha wolf” and “alpha dog” seem thoroughly ingrained in our language, the idea of the alpha comes from Rudolph Schenkel, an animal behaviorist who, in 1947, published the then-groundbreaking paper “Expressions Studies on Wolves.” During the 1930s and 1940s, Schenkel studied captive wolves in Switzerland’s Zoo Basel, attempting to identify a “sociology of the wolf.”
In his research, Schenkel identified two primary wolves in a pack: a male “lead wolf” and a female “bitch.” He described them as “first in the pack group.” He also noted “violent rivalries” between individual members of the packs… Thus, the alpha wolf was born. Throughout his paper, Schenkel also draws frequent parallels between wolves and domestic dogs, often following his conclusions with anecdotes about our household canines. The implication is clear: wolves live in packs in which individual members vie for dominance and dogs, their domestic brethren, must be very similar indeed.
A key problem with Schenkel’s wolf studies is that, while they represented the first close study of wolves, they didn’t involve any study of wolves in the wild… In more recent years, animal behaviorists, including [wildlife biologist L. David] Mech, have spent more and more time studying wolves in the wild, and the behaviors they have observed has been different from those observed by Schenkel and other watchers of zoo-bound wolves. In 1999, Mech’s paper “Alpha Status, Dominance, and Division of Labor in Wolf Packs” was published in the Canadian Journal of Zoology. The paper is considered by many to be a turning point in understanding the structure of wolf packs…
Mech’s studies of wild wolves have found that wolves live in families: two parents along with their younger cubs. Wolves do not have an innate sense of rank; they are not born leaders or born followers. The “alphas” are simply what we would call in any other social group “parents.” The offspring follow the parents as naturally as they would in any other species. No one has “won” a role as leader of the pack; the parents may assert dominance over the offspring by virtue of being the parents. While the captive wolf studies saw unrelated adults living together in captivity, related, rather than unrelated, wolves travel together in the wild. Younger wolves do not overthrow the “alpha” to become the leader of the pack; as wolf pups grow older, they are dispersed from their parents’ packs, pair off with other dispersed wolves, have pups, and thus form packs of their owns.
This doesn’t mean that wolves don’t display social dominance, however… Wolves (and other animals, including humans), display social dominance, it just isn’t always easy to boil dominant behavior down to simple explanations. Dominant behavior and dominance relationships can be highly situational, and can vary greatly from individual to individual even within the same species. It’s not the entire concept of wolves displaying social dominance that was dispelled, just the simple hierarchical pack structure…
If grandmothers around the world had a rallying cry, it would probably sound something like “You need to eat!”
Photographer Gabriele Galimberti’s grandmother said something similar to him before one of his many globetrotting work trips. To ensure he had at least one good meal, she prepared for him a dish of ravioli before he departed on one of his adventures.
“In that occasion I said to my grandma ‘You know, Grandma, there are many other grandmas around the world and most of them are really good cooks,” Galimberti wrote via email. “I’m going to meet them and ask them to cook for me so I can show you that you don’t have to be worried for me and the food that I will eat!’ This is the way my project was born!”
The project, “Delicatessen With Love”, took Galimberti to 58 countries where he photographed grandmothers with both the ingredients and finished signature dishes.
He acted as photographer and stylist during each shoot with the grandmothers, taking a portrait of both the women and the food they made for him.
From top to bottom:
Inara Runtule, 68, Kekava, Latvia. Silke (herring with potatoes and cottage cheese).
Grace Estibero, 82, Mumbai, India. Chicken vindaloo.
Susann Soresen, 81, Homer, Alaska. Moose steak.
Serette Charles, 63, Saint-Jean du Sud, Haiti. Lambi in creole sauce.
The photographer’s grandmother Marisa Batini, 80, Castiglion Fiorentino, Italy. Swiss chard and ricotta Ravioli with meat sauce.
Normita Sambu Arap, 65, Oltepessi (Masaai Mara), Kenya. Mboga and orgali (white corn polenta with vegetables and goat).
Julia Enaigua, 71, La Paz, Bolivia. Queso Humacha (vegetables and fresh cheese soup).
Fifi Makhmer, 62, Cairo, Egypt. Kuoshry (pasta, rice and legumes pie).
Isolina Perez De Vargas, 83, Mendoza, Argentina. Asado criollo (mixed meats barbecue).
Bisrat Melake, 60, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Enjera with curry and vegetables.
the worst part of creating an original character is figuring out their last name
I go through cemeteries and jot down the most interesting ones.
That’s actually a really good idea thank you
Bloodstain Pattern Analysis (BPA) - Resource for Crime Writers
well you never know when this might come in handy.
I feel like this would be useful to some of you.
Dangerous U.S. Spiders
When people see me pick up a spider with my bare hands and throw it outside, their typical reaction is “You are crazy! How do you know that spider isn’t dangerous?”
Here is the answer, out of approximately 3,000 different species of spider in North America, only two species from the U.S. are considered deadly. These are the brown recluse spider and the black widow spider. These spiders are easy to identify (See the first two on the above chart. The brown recluse has a violin shape on top of the cephalothorax and the black widow has an hourglass shape on the underside of the abdomen) and therefore pretty easy to avoid being bitten by, but even if you are bitten, it is very unlikely that you would die if you sought medical attention. In the U.S. there are only an average of four spider deaths reported per year.
There are other spiders in the U.S. that are somewhat dangerous but not deadly. If you are bitten by one of them you may experience some unpleasant symptoms but not death. You can see some of these spiders in the chart above.
*Note: If a small child or pet is bitten by one of these venomous spiders they are much more likely to be seriously affected.
Please stay aware of spiders that could be dangerous and only handle spiders that you know are not significantly dangerous, but also recognize that spiders are very beneficial creatures and try not to kill them whenever possible, dangerous or not! It’s just rude. Just let them be, even spiders that do have potent venom are often not aggressive. They just want to be left alone.
Note: the violin-shaped marking on a brown recluse can be REALLY hard to see, even on an adult. They can be almost nonexistent on younger spiders.
Other ways to identify brown recluses:
-They are almost always a very solid color, ranging from light to dark brown, but never have any markings other than the “violin” markings (i.e., no bands of color on the legs)
-Very smooth legs and body (basically never fuzzy)
-Approximately the size of a quarter
-They don’t make webs
Also pay particular attention to the shape of the abdomen; a brown recluse will have an abdomen that is pretty much a perfect oval. If the spider you’re trying to identify has a long, thin, and pointed abdomen, it’s more likely a more common spider (grass spider, I think?).
A collection of 1920’s photographs, depicting some of the hairstyles of the time, like the kiss curl, the orchid bob, the charleston cut, coconut bob, earphones hairstyle, cottage loaf (bun) and popular styles you’ll probably never see in a period drama like extreme windblown style, the frizzy hairstyle and the Poodle cut.
The “earphones” hairstyle was also known colloquially as the “cootie garage” at the time. And I was just thinking the other day while watching an early Mabel Normand film, where she was wearing a very frizzy fringe with long ringlets, that we’re unlikely to see the frizzy hairstyles of the teens and twenties show up on screen in period dramas.
HOLY SHIT, ATTENTION ALL COSPLAYERS.c
oh, hey, we didn’t have a tutorial last tuesday because I’m a dumb and I put this one to post on 4/23/2012 and tumblr didn’t know what I wanted. OOps.
The sound I made was inhuman.
I would make an actual blog post about this but I’m too lazy
people who are like “native americans didn’t develop technology that contributed to the world”
like, I don’t think people fully understand, those awesome foods and plants you guys found on these continents? yeah they weren’t just laying around, people had to develop them. they had to carefully over generations turn that weird little teosinte into the delicious and edible maize.
indigenous americans were so fricken awesome we invented corn, pumpkins, beans, chili peppers, chocolate, tomatoes, potatoes, vanilla, cotton, tobacco, rubber, and a bunch of other stuff. I N V E N T E D
people think indigenous americans were lacking technology because they think technology only means dead things made out of wood and plastic and stone. when we actually have been specializing in the technology of life all along
YES. And not just stumbling around, neither, muddling through biotechnological innovation. Folks like to forget that many of the meticulously-built agricultural laboratories, test gardens, and geoengineering sites where this research and development was done are still there centuries later. Not just careful breeding programs, but orderly examination of what moisture levels, altitudes, soil conditions, constructed microclimates, and planting patterns were ideal for these crops to thrive. They came up with findings whose brilliance modern agricultural science is only recently coming to understand.
Especially for the food crops, we’re also talking what are at this point worldwide staples that sit at the backbone of most cuisines that you love. Respect.
Remember that one time about a bazillion colonizers died needlessly of pellagra because they didn’t understand and refused to admit Native technology existed?
Remember that time that white people were all like “we’ve discovered the benefits of alkalized water! zomg!”
For the person who wants to kill the shit out of somebody.
The knife is in case I don’t kill you with the six bullets first.
the Apache Revolver, ladies and gentlemen
What the shit?
this is my headcanon for spades slick’s favourite weapon