Sunday, August 26, 2012

Stomp, Stomp, Stomp.

   When my friends were visiting from out of town, one of the places we went was Georgetown, which is a neighborhood I do not visit very often but when I do I always take tons of pictures.

    I learned something interesting recently, which is that elephants 'hear' through their feet. They do not actually have ears or hearing sensors on their feet, but they pick up vibrations through their feet and communicate this way. When an elephant in danger stomps his foot or toots his trunk, other distant elephants pick up the sounds through vibrations in the ground. This gives me a good idea for a sci-fi story about a race of humanoids on another planet that do not have vocal chords. Instead of speaking they have learned to communicate through stomping and feeling vibrations. So when they have conversations, they do various stomping dance moves that make different feeling vibrations and thus hold different meanings, similar to our words.
    Elephants amazing ability reminds me of another interesting animal fact. While watching "Life of Mammals" I learned that raccoons use their hands as almost their second eyes. Their hands are extremely sensitive and raccoons use around the same amount of their brain for the sense of touch that we do for sight. Scientists think that racoons can construct a picture in their head using touch.  Learning about the differences in the way animals use their senses to perceive the world is always interesting. If I could chose a super power I would want to be able to shape shift into an animal at will. Then I could see what it is like to have the ability to smell as well as a dog or see in the night like cats. Also, I would want to turn into a bird so I could fly and a fish so I could swim in the sea.

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