Biology: The Science of Exceptions

[Edit: March, 2018. Every year, I get a large number of visitors from Nepal and Bhutan on this post. Welcome, everyone. I’m just curious why this seems to happen every year at the same time. Could someone please let me know? It would help me understand how this site is being used, particularly if it’s for educational purposes. Thank you.]

Biology is sometimes referred to as “the science of exceptions.” A few recently reported examples from the study of animal behavior (i.e., ethology) help to bolster that reputation.

The first instance has probably received the most attention simply because it’s just so cool. It’s a video from Russia of some type of wild corvid (others have said it is most likely a hooded crow) that appears to snowboard down a roof. It does this multiple times by sliding on a small unidentified object under its feet, picking it up with its beak when it gets to the bottom of the roof, then flying back to the top to do it again. See for yourself.

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