People Share The Animals That Don't Get The Love And Recognition They Deserve
Brett Jordan/Unsplash

Hello dear readers,

Do you have a moment to talk about how Disney owes hyenas a huge apology?

Shenzi, Bonsai, and Ed may have been hilarious and iconic characters, but they also convinced people that hyenas were unintelligent, sneaky, and evil.

I'd like to have a word about that.


Hyenas are incredibly intelligent, both as individuals and when working together as a group. The hyena regularly out performs chimps in intelligence and teamwork tests.

Uh huh. Take that, Bubbles and Curious George. (He's a chimp, not a monkey, deal with it. Don't @ me.)

Hyenas are demonstrably smarter; but we think of chimps as furry little brainiacs. Make it make sense!

You want girl power? Forget Nala.

Always Sunny Reaction GIFGiphy

You want hyenas for that. Their society is led by the girls, female hyenas are bigger and stronger than the boys, and the ladies aren't afraid to get scrappy.

They're also thought to be among the best mothers in the animal kingdom. Hyenas invest more energy per cub than any other terrestrial carnivore...

Far more than lioness, DISNEY. Y'all out here making Sarabi look like the distraught mother the whole movie and it turns out she probably didn't even notice Simba was gone...

While I appreciate Jasiri as your "good hyena Lion King character to make up for the movies" and acknowledge that Sisi Ni Sawa is a bop... I remain salty.

Lots of readers literally had no idea what that last paragraph meant, which is exactly my point!

It wasn't enough. Hyenas deserved better!

Reddit user sqnyq asked:

"Which animal do you think deserves more love and recognition than it gets?"

So yeah ... I don't really have a passionate and long-held opinion on this completely asinine matter at all.

Backyard Buddies

Giphy

"The opossum!"

"Eats ticks and pests, rabies resistant, carries cute babies on its back, has a bunch of teeth, marsupial!"

- impregnatEcOpWives

"Omg yes!! Every time I’ve ever seen a opossum they’ve been the chillest wild animal I’ve ever met."

- xchakrumx

"Yus! They eat ticks, which helps combat lime disease."

- Triborg501

"And they have little fingers 😍"

- ipakookapi

Diseased Flesh Eaters

"Turkey vultures."

"Hear me out: they look ugly AF, but they're gentle creatures who just clean up the environment naturally."

"If they get too scared, they will vomit themselves. They can eat diseased flesh without taking on any illness. They live in a flock, and are tied to their mates until death."

"They're also endangered in some areas."

- boomblebeez

"They were my favorite animal as a little kid and my family could never understand why lol"

"But they are just freaking rad. Also turkey vultures are so HUGE up close it’s amazing."

- xchakrumx

Keep Count

"Backyard birds."

"Set up a bird feeder and see how much enjoyment you can get just by watching and counting the different kinds of birds that show up."

"From my old deck I was able to identify 28 different species of birds."

- Feels2old

"I love the birds in the green space outside my flat!"

"I get robins, sparrows, great tits, big dumb wood pigeons, woodpeckers, Eurasian jays, and the occasional pheasant. They’re all adorable, my cats and I have lots of fun watching them."

- burgeremoji

Criminal Masterminds

Finding Dory Octopus GIF by Disney/Pixar's Finding DoryGiphy

"Octopus are very intelligent creatures and fascinating to watch."

- bagpipesfart

"I love that story about a big aquarium having fish going missing from a lot of it's tanks, so they put up some cameras and their octopus turned out to be the culprit."

"It climbed out of its tank, walked over to the other tanks, jumped in, munched down some fish, climbed out, walked back, and put its lid back on."

- ipakookapi

"Not only that, the octopus actually memorized the guards walk around pattern to time its escape so that it didn't get caught!! Crafty little bugger"

- RazvanDubrinsky

"My favorite is the one that was being 'annoyed' by a light above its tank, so it figured out that it could shoot water at the light to cause it to short circuit and turn off."

"This also caused a bunch of the aquarium’s other electric systems to short out, causing a bit of a commotion."

"Several people question his motives; believing that it wasn’t about the light bothering him, but because he enjoyed the resulting commotion."

"Considering that some of the other stories about him show he was a sassy little thing, either one wouldn’t surprise me."

- GrimmSheeper

Bad Press

"Sharks, they do get recognition but most of it is negative. Sharks are 👌👌"

- --Dominion--

"Sharks are my fav animal."

"A couple years back we went on vacation to Florida and I went snorkeling with sharks with no cage just open ocean."

"It was easily the best, most relaxing, experience I've ever had. I think there was about 4 different kinds of sharks (I only remember lemon and bull sharks) and they were beautiful."

- manbamtan

"My favourite shark fun fact. They are older than the rings of Saturn."

- lenny_ray

Irritating Humans

"Spiders."

"Most are harmless to humans and they get rid of irritating bugs."

"They are also perfect for keeping away irritating humans."

- falkordragon233

"Nice choice."

"As long as they're not venomous, it's literally just a little guy living in your house and eating flies and mosquitos."

- ipakookapi

"Thank you!"

"I adore spiders. I got into macro photography for a while and spiders are my favorite to photograph - they're often so much more beautiful than we realize."

"And those little jumping spiders are the cutest darn things ever."

- BlacksmithAlert1313

Interesting Death

oscar keeper GIFGiphy

"I like porcupines and find them interesting, but they smell like stale death."

"Any I've been near smell horrible and carry a cloud around them. It's entirely possible my experience is an outlier; I've only encountered them a few times, so I could be misled by a narrow sample."

"But the smell was assaulting. Still like them!"

- Dangercakes13

"Used to work at a zoo in my teens. Porcupines are super stinky to ward off predators."

"We used to rock paper scissors for who was going to pull weeds by their enclosure."

- SuparToastar

"I love them. They're cute and make cute noises. Also, have some of the best defense mechanisms."

- frostmasterx

How Many More Bugs

"Bats are one of the most beneficial animals on the planet."

"A single bat can eat over 1,000 insects in one night of feasting. Take into account the largest bat colony is in Texas and is about 20-40 million bats (depending on time of year)."

"Think about how many more bugs there would be without those bats."

- Winter-Life8196

"They are cute and fascinating and we should all be proud of them, they're the only mammals who have managed actual flight."

- siani_lane

"Upvote for skypuppies! Pollinators, bug eaters, they’re so biologically important."

- trocarkarin

Incredible

"Donkeys. Grumpy horse with bunny ears 😍"

- ipakookapi

"Yes!"

"They're stronger than horses, which is probably why they're carrying around all our stuff. They have great memory and bond for life."

"The reputation for stubbornness comes from the fact that they refuse to move if they feel they're in danger rather than run away."

"Horses flee. Donkeys stand their ground."

- dustnrose

"I love horses, been around them most of my life. But donkeys scare me, precisely because they don't have that same fleeing instinct as horses."

- imlumpy

"They're so close to horses but are suddenly so heartful and loving and they show affection in a very visible way."

"They can also cry if they miss someone and they usually come to greet people like dogs do."

"I'm your average dude, but they have a soft spot on me 😅"

- Yukazaka

"Fun fact, some farmers keep donkeys to protect their horses from coyotes and wolves. Donkeys will stomp the sh*t out of coyotes and that is incredible."

- JauneStrife

Pocket Puppies

sleepy photos GIFGiphy

"Rats."

"They are incredibly smart, sweet, and social animals."

"One reason why they are often used for experiments (lab rats) is because they are so socially similiar to us humans. That gets more and more heartbreaking the longer you think about what that means."

"Rat Park is a great read about an experiment on how our life conditions affect likelyhood of drug addiction."

- [Reddit]

"100% I was scrolling to see if anyone had said this."

"I am a huge dog person but it wouldn't have been fair to have one in college. Rats are amazing and as rewarding as dogs."

"They are just as smart and loving. They learn tricks, love to cuddle and play."

"Sammy and Oliver got me through some of the lonely times of college."

- Dance-Various

"Totally agree, my ladies are so smart. They are way better trained them my cat."

"My favorite nickname for then is pocket puppies."

- supercalisto

Yucky Heroes

"Carrion feeders of every stripe."

"They are the heroes of the animal kingdom, providing important steps in decomposition and reclamation of matter, and people think they’re yucky."

"If you hit an animal with your car, and are able to stop, please stop and move the animal to the side of the road, it helps prevent carrion feeders from getting hit by cars later."

- kharmatika

Genes Are Jerks

"Okay so I know a lot of people hate pandas for them eating bamboo even though they’re designed to eat meat, but it’s not because they’re stupid. They lost their taste for meat."

"A gene they had which 'motivated' them to hunt and eat meat somehow disappeared. It’s not like they can control that."

"And people also say they don’t mate on their own. Well god made female pandas go into heat for only three flippin days out of an entire flippin year! That’s it!"

"Since their population numbers are so low and they don't exactly live in herds, what are the chances a male and a female are going to see each other in that time frame?"

"Exactly. Haters."

- Horror-Award-1144

Snake Spotting

"Crows. They are so intelligent!"

"When i was 14 working at a farm, some crow opened our chickens door. It didn't go in, it just opened it."

"The door was there to keep specific chickens separated from others, so I was annoyed like why the f*ck would a crow just open that door?"

"Anyways I closed it. A few minutes after I stepped away, the same crow opened the door again."

"This time when I went, I took a look. I was shocked."

"There was a huge snake in that enclosure with the chickens and the crow was literally trying to help the chickens to get away from the snake!"

"People just look at them as some useless bird or whatever but they are not."

- SolubleSlug

Little Tie Fighters

"The termite."

"They are fascinating and they know when it's going to rain!"

"The termites have a caste system. The soldiers will boot out the aeletes only when it will rain within 24 hours."

"Aeletes are winged reproductives; they will fly out of the nest and try to start a new one. They look like the tie fighters in Star Wars: four fixed wings like a biplane."

"They are harmless; you will see them in the evening with low wind, about 70% humidity and 30 degrees C. [World's American, I know. I wasn't brought up with Fahrenheit] "

"That's also a survival tip. If you see the winged reproductives flying then it's going to rain soon. Go to higher ground, prepare to collect rain etc."

"There are many different kinds of termites. Many have not yet been discovered."

"Some are similar to cockroaches in the way they lay eggs; the Giant Northern Australian termite. Others use parthenogenesis to reproduce. For instance, the French Guianan termite."

- Dense-Independent-66

Beaver Baddies

"Beavers."

"Did anyone say that yet? If they did, please know they are an awesome person. Please learn why! Links included because don’t take my word on anything."

"Beavers are incredibly hard workers, capable of the same level of decision making and precision that goes into our construction of dams or homes or chopping down trees. There ears can sense the slight trickle of water indicating a leak."

"In a story linked below the arrival of settlers in the 1800’s wiped out beavers in one area effectively destroying the ecosystems that the beaver dams had created and wildlife depended on. The loss of beavers was still so profound that HUMANS started to make their own beaver dams!!"

"Then like the born workers they are, a few beavers must have heard through the grapevine and took over what humans were doing with far more than their teeth and bare hands."

"They work so hard. Their work ethic is better than any humans. They are always on call. No nights off."

"Now, I truly admire the team work and socialist structure of most any colonies, but beavers can build dams that transform its environment and create their own mini ecosystem. They are incredibly important and considered a keystone species."

"The largest beaver dam is half a mile long and started in the 70’s and is located in Canada. That’s generations of beavers dedicated to the 'family business' of continuing this huge dam."

"They of course continue to MAINTAIN a dam a half mile long. Made of just sticks and trees and mud and whatever other tricks they have. I have the utmost respect for their abilities and contributions to their environments!"

"Seeing videos blowing up their incredibly hard work makes me sad. I get it, someone’s poor garden is flooded and we can’t stand for that. Or someone’s property is filling with water and they have the right to not want it to."

"But, it just seems so horrible to destroy something so incredibly built and with such hard work and dedication and brain power that we need to blow it up to take it down."

"For the record, I get that beavers can cost millions in damages to property and some support trapping when their numbers get high or they become a problem."

"But, I just truly hope animals have the capacity to just laugh at a species who’s numbers are growing faster than the environment can handle or support, whom quickly destroy and invade their homes before they take over and are everywhere, who cost thousands and thousands of years of growth and strength and survival in trees every year with their destruction, that species having the NERVE to point to others as needing help being controlled."

"Calling others destructive or a nuisance."

"The best part is saying with a straight face how another species population is growing too fast and too large and needs to be culled and controlled!"

"I know, I’m human. But even if it’s just us, it still feels hypocritical to say."

"BEAVERS ARE AMAZING (Just don’t think about the rodent thing)"

"Sources:"

"https://www.science.org/content/article/beaver-dam..."
"https://phys.org/news/2010-05-world-biggest-beaver..."
"https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/67662/sound-ru..."
"https://www.bu.edu/articles/2015/beavers-vs-humans/"
"https://www.sciencefocus.com/nature/why-do-beavers..."

- Rgsnap

You've heard Reddit get all Steve Irwin and champion for animals that don't get enough love.

Now it's your turn, wildlife warriors!

What creatures don't get the love they deserve?

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