What if we told you that some animals had more senses than you? Well, at least different and heightened ones? Read on to make believe!
We know that dogs have a better sense of smell than us humans, elephants can hear sounds at 14–16 Hz (humans 20 Hz and onwards), the cheetah has a broader band of vision than us; It is beyond amazing to fathom the fact that while we are supposedly the more advanced and evolved of all species, there are some that can outrun us if senses were isolated! Don’t believe us? Take a look at these 8 animal senses you would never even imagine, and yes, they are way beyond sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch!
1. Magnetic Field Sensors
We may not be able to tell what direction we are facing just like that, but a diverse range of animals — sea turtles, worms, some birds, wolves and even butterflies can! All these mentioned animals have one thing in common - the Magnetic Field sense. The sense allows them to assess the earth’s magnetic field. According to scientists, the sense is derived from a light-detecting protein called “cryptochrome” specifically found in these animals.
2. Detection of Electric Fields
A sense specific to predatory animals, the detection of electric fields is prevalent in sharks, skates, and even rays. Ampullae of Lorenzini, a network of organs, generates this sense. The organs are located in and around the head deep within thick skin and consists of a jelly-filled pore causing to a bundle of electrical sensors.
3. Sensing Nutrients
Who? White-Crowned Sparrows
One sense we should envy the White-Crowned Sparrows and Deer for! These animals possess the ability to sense whether their food has or doesn’t have the nutrients their body needs. They typically crave for food containing amino acids. These acids are typically the ones that their body can’t naturally produce.
4. Magnified Taste
Literally, if you could imagine a tongue swimming, you would be imagining a Catfish right, anatomically! Not just internally, but the catfish, possesses tastebuds even externally; wrapped in over 100,000 tastebuds, this animal can detect the flavours of its potential prey from all directions!
5. Abdomens With Paramagnetic Iron Oxide
Who? Worker Honeybees
You know you have worked really hard for the day when you can’t find your way back home — well, at least the Worker Honeybees would agree. These species find their way back home thanks to the sense that they derive from the paramagnetic iron oxide in their abdomens. The abdomens shrink or swell subject to the outside magnetic changes of the earth’s magnetic field.
6. Detection of Infrared Radiation
Who? Jewel Beetles
With the earth more susceptible to forest fires than ever today, we may not be living our safest times. Sure, taking precautions is one thing but imagine having the ability to actually sense the onset of a fire; the Jewel Beetles can! These tiny beings are capable of sensing a fire that is as far as 50 miles away. That’s not all, they also use put this sense to the right use — using recently scorched areas for mating!
Who? Zebra Finch
One of the greatest senses that we human are grateful for every day is that of sight - a sense that allows us to experience the beauty of life, with all its colours. Did you know why we see the colours we do? It is because of the three independent channels that we possess; channels that convey colour information. Now, imagine having four of these, result - more colour. Animals and some birds like the Zebra Finch are tetrachromatic - meaning they can so more colours than us!
8. Smelling Exhaled Carbon Dioxide
Doesn’t it sometimes take us by surprise the way mosquitoes manage to find us every single time?! Ever wondered how? Well, of the many factors, one is their sense to smell exhaled carbon dioxide. Their antennas or the maxillary palps are in fact sensory organs that contain special receptors that can identify carbon dioxide, making it easy for them to bite into you!
And now we know that us humans do have some serious competition out there in the magnanimous animal kingdom! Do you know more about such facts about animals? We would love to get enlightened! You can share your knowledge by signing up on this community brought together by the passion of animals!