March 19, 2020 – Predators and Prey

Today I decided to share a bit of animal science and behavior.

We tend to group animals because of traits they share.

Predators are hunters, and that means they have some characteristics that are unique. Predators, as hunters, are meat eaters. We call animals that eat primarily meat carnivores.

Hunters need sharp, keen vision and very precise depth perception.

They need to be able to locate their prey and know exactly how far and fast they need to go to attack.

Predators have special eye placement that allows them to zero in on their target. Both eyes are placed in the front of the face, facing directly forward. Binocular vision (two eye looking together) is essential for this task.

Some examples of predators are cats. This includes house cats, panthers, lions, tigers, and all the rest.

Dogs, coyotes, raccoons, eagles, and many other animals are predators.

Now on the other side of this equation are the prey animals. These are primarily herbivores, which means they eat plants.

Herbivores such as horses, goats, cattle, and deer, all turn plants into meat and milk.

Prey animals have eyes set on either side of their head. They primarily use monocular vision (one eye sees something different than the other eye). This allows them to be very aware of their surroundings to watch for approaching predators.

Some animals, such as humans and pigs, are omnivores.

Omnivorous animals eat a mix of both plant and animals products.

Here is a video from the barn explaining this concept using the animals. (Just to warm you, I do present animal skulls, if your children need prep for that.)

Please remember to let me know of anything specific you would like to know or any questions your children may have.

I can even do Farm Math.

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