Animal Therapy // December
This Animal Therapy edition is all about extraordinary color-changing animals! These impressive animals that seem to have walked right out of Fantastic Beasts, can change their coat color! Experience nature’s magical touch….
Studies have shown that interacting with animals can increase people's level of the hormone oxytocin. Oxytocin helps us feel happy and trusting. Oxytocin has some powerful effects for us in the body's ability to be in a state of readiness to heal, and also to grow new cells, so it predisposes us to an environment in our own bodies where we can be healthier.
Happy Animal Therapy Wednesday! Here's a dose of animal therapy pictures to break the week with a little peak!
The thick fur of the Arctic Fox enables it to live well in the Arctic climate, they can survive temperatures less than 50 degrees Celsius! Even more amazing, the fur changes according to the season, blending in with its surroundings: in the summer it is a beautiful light brown color and in the winter it is a magical snow white!
Native to Greenland and the High Arctic of Canada, the Peary Caribou changes the color of its fur according to season. In the summer, they wear a silvery coat and with the coming of the winter this changes into a magnificent white! The Peary Caribou is the only subspecies of caribou that can change color.
Three species of weasels trade their brown summer coats for snow-white winter ones: the Least Weasel, the Short-Tailed Weasel, and the Long-Tailed Weasel. Since during transition zones some weasels only change colors partially, which results in a white and brown fur. Though, weasels of the same species that live in southerly climates don’t change color.
Like the weasel, three different species of Ptarmigans are also able to change color. Like the previous mentioned animals, the Ptarmigans feathers turn from a warm brown to an icy white during the winter. Though the White-Tailed Ptarmigan turns completely white, the Willow Ptarmigan and Rock Ptarmigan keep some black feathers in their tails.
Several hare species such as the Arctic Hare, the Mountain hare, and the Snowshoe Hare, change their brown or grey fur for a winter white one. There is a presumption that the fur change is partially linked to photoperiod: the period of time the day perceives illumination.
During the warmer season, the Collared Lemming wears a beautiful brown/grey coat, which turns into a snowy white during the winter. The Lemming is a true snow-lover as it can be found bundling underneath the snow most of the time. Though not only the coat undergoes change, the nails of the Lemming also transforms. Its claws grow longer so that it can easily dig nests and get food.
The Siberian Hamster, also called the Dzhungarian Hamster, transforms from silver into magical white as winter approaches. Like the Hare, the Siberian Hamster’s coat change also seems to be mostly the cause of photoperiod.