Sioux Falls Zoologists

"Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent!"

The mirror test is an experiment developed in 1970 by psychologist Gordon Gallup Jr. to determine whether an animal possesses the ability to recognize itself in a mirror. It is the primary indicator of self-awareness in non-human animals and marks entrance to the mirror stage by human children in developmental psychology. Animals that pass the mirror test are: Humans older than 18 mo, Chimpanzees, Bonobos, Orangutans, Gorillas, Bottlenose Dolphins, Orcas (Killer Whales), Elephants, and European Magpies. Others showing signs of self-awareness are Pigs, some Gibbons, Rhesus Macaques, Capuchin Monkeys, some Corvids (Crows & Ravens) and Pigeons w/training. (Sorry Kitty!)

Sioux Falls Zoologists endorse Radioactive Wolves for showing
us that the world can get along just fine without humans.

Radioactive Wolves
Chernobyl's Nuclear Wilderness

Radioactive Wolves (2011) 60 minutes
Radioactive Wolves at Amazon.com

It's been 25 years since disaster struck the Chernobyl nuclear power plant deep in the former Soviet Union. Radioactive fallout from the accident created a "dead zone" around the reactor, and area of almost 1,100 square miles, too contaminated to be safely inhabited by humans. Everyone living in the zone was evacuated and relocated by government order. A no-man's land of our own making was created and left to it's own devices.

In the interim, something remarkable has happened. Forests, marshes, fields, and rivers have reclaimed the land, reversing the effects of human cultivation and development, returning everything to its natural state. In the absence of people, the "dead zone" has become a surprising post nuclear Eden, populated by beaver and bison, horses and birds, fish and falcons - and ruled by wolves.

Now that access to the zone is permitted, at least on a limited basis, scientists are trying to learn how the surviving wildlife is coping with invisible blight of the land. As the top predators in this new wilderness, wolves reflect the conditions of the entire eco-system. If the wolves are doing well, the populations of their prey must also be doing well. Accordingly, a key long-term study of the wolves has been initiated to determine their health, their range, and their numbers. It's an amazing exploration into a world we hoped never to see which yields answers we never expected.

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Radioactive Wolves
Chernobyl's Nuclear Wilderness

Sioux Falls Zoologists endorse Radioactive Wolves for showing
us that the world can get along just fine without humans.