World’s Strangest

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The Whale That Speaks Human

Image: U.S. Navy Ever heard of the whale that speaks human? Meet NOC, a white beluga whale that "talks" just like you and me: For years, NOC was part of the U.S. Navy’s Marine Mammal Program in [...]

How to Train Your Goldfish

Col. Konrad Most, one of the pioneers of modern animal training, began training service dogs while serving in the Royal Prussian Police in 1906. His book on the subject, Training Dogs, described many of the basic elements of operant conditioning—including reinforcement, extinction, and shaping—that American behaviorist B.F. Skinner would later popularize. If Most were alive [...]

Unexpectedly Employable Animals

Seeing-eye dogs, police dogs, and cutting horses: they have nothing on these unexpected employable animals. Some animals have very dangerous jobs. Well, certainly more dangerous than mine! Since the late 1950s the U.S. military’s Marine Mammal Program has been working with dolphins and sea lions to see if they could be employed for the purpose of [...]