Cuttlefish are marine animals of the order Sepiida. Cuttlefish have a unique internal shell, the cuttlebone. Despite their name, cuttlefish are not fish but molluscs.
Male cuttlefish challenge one another for dominance and the best den during mating season. During this challenge, no direct contact is usually made. The animals threaten each other until one of them backs down and swims away. Eventually, the larger male cuttlefish mate with the females by grabbing them with their tentacles, turning the female so that the two animals are face-to-face, then using a specialized tentacle to insert sperm sacs into an opening near the female's mouth. The male then guards the female until she lays the eggs a few hours later.
On occasion, a large competitor arrives to threaten the male cuttlefish. In these instances, the male will first attempt to intimidate the other fish. If the competitor does not flee, the male will eventually attack it to force it away, and the confrontation turns physical. The cuttlefish that can paralyze the other first, by forcing it near its mouth, would win the fight and the female. Since there are, on average, four or five ( and sometimes as many as ten) males for every female, this kind of behavior is inevitable.
Cuttlefish are indeterminate growers, so smaller cuttlefish always have a chance at finding a mate the next year, when they are bigger. Additionally, cuttlefish unable to win in a direct confrontation with a guard male have been observed employing several other tactics to acquire a mate. The most successful of these methods is camouflage; smaller cuttlefish will use their camouflage abilities to disguise themselves as a female cuttlefish. Photo unknown.
My route into wildlife conservation was not as straight forward as some of you may think. I have always loved animals and being around nature, but I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted to do until I reached 22.
I originally wanted to take Zoology as my undergraduate degree but due to not having two sciences at A level (I only did one), I wasn’t able to. Instead, I took the next best thing that I was good at, Psychology. I was lucky enough to do some Animal Behaviour / Biology modules, but it wasn’t really fulfilling enough for me.
After graduating, I got a job in an industry I wasn’t really interested in to make some money, whilst trying to think of the next steps in my life. I felt quite lost for a while. It was then I decided to take the leap and apply to go back to University to study something I was genuinely passionate about. I applied for a Master’s in Wild Animal Biology at the Royal Veterinary College and to my surprise, was accepted first time (there were only 18 spaces!). Now, it wasn’t as easy as just that. Prior to applying I spent two years doing endless volunteer work and used my work holidays to help out at nearby animal rescue centres. I worked in a veterinary diagnostics lab to gain more science experience, and also completed two internships: one at Blackpool Zoo and the other at a reserve in South Africa.
Throughout my MSc, I did some work at the Zoological Society of London, as well as my research on gidgee skinks there (soon to be published!). I really put myself out there and got involved with as much as I could, which is why I was then offered a job. After a wonderful year at ZSL, I moved onto work at People’s Trust for Endangered Species, which is where I’m currently based.
If you’re reading this I want you to know that it’s ok to feel lost or not know what you want straight away. In particular, Wildlife Conservation is a highly competitive field and it can often get you down when you don’t hear back from the endless jobs you’ve applied for. But whenever you feel like giving up (trust me I’ve been there), keep at it and continue to pursue your dreams because I promise you, your hard work will pay off in the end 🐯🦁🐵
Do you remember any times from #childhood where you felt like a happy free little rascal? Like no grown up could touch you with silly #rules or outdated fear - Outta your mind in that expansive I can be anything kinda way?
I grew up on the #Canadian Sheild. That's rocks and trees and lakes and more rocks. I Remember flying over rocks up & down leaping (sometimes tumbling) all joined with the decadently tempting feeling of smooth warm rock on small #barefeet.
I got a reputation for being the fastest kid on rocks and I loved that! I earned it!
The rocks taught me to practice & that #confidence is earned. The warmth & smoothness of the stone all the reward of navigating my little #naturalworld on my toes, eager to forget myself and remember #freedom.
Eager to #remember so I could remind myself when things felt #hard that the world's an inviting #happyplace made for #adventure !
You grow up don't you. You become what you think you're supposed to grow up into and the little rebellious rascal in you gets busy with this thing called accomplishment & #ambition and... Oh wait, that's what I did:). What a gift that these #magical#mysterious bodies do an #enchanting little thing with our important memories: it stores them for safe keeping.
This month I spent some time in Vegas, #nevada and on the wild isolated #westcoast of Canada and I found rocks - Smooth warm kiss the sky rocks!
Cause hubby & I know our wise mysterious bodies store memories for safe keeping we make sure to tap into this kept treasure when & if the opportunity presents. Shoes & socks come off, I carefully bounce from rock to rock, remembering... And then it happens.
In less time than it takes to make a deep dark coffee I'm smiling from ear to ear, I hear nothing but my own #focused#concentration, maybe I'm a goat, or an eagle or a squirrel. I don't care I'm free! I remember.
Each time we put our good memories to use, it makes it easier for our brain to integrate #ease with our grown-up perspectives. Simply said, that means more joy, more easily, for more time.
This is #thetrufflebox living!
I am having a tough day today, I am I blessed that the eagles came by this morning. Apparently there 3 juveniles (all 3 were sitting on the ice together, too far away for pics but not for binoculars). 1 flew directly overhead for a minute..awesome!)
What a beautiful swan image. My two love feeding the ducks and the swans always like to get in on the action. Our local lake has a lovely cafe which also sells crushed bird seed; safe for them to eat (birds not boys 🤦♀️) and it’s a real treat for the boys to have a bag to hold. 😀 🦢
I’m always slightly wary of the swans but they generally stay in the water which suits me just fine 😂